Apps – Life by Daily Burn https://dailyburn.com/life Sat, 31 Mar 2018 00:21:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.5 10 Genius iPhone Hacks to Boost Your Productivity https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/iphone-hacks-boost-productivity-stat/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/iphone-hacks-boost-productivity-stat/#respond Mon, 09 Oct 2017 15:15:11 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=62447 iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity_

[caption id="attachment_62456" align="alignnone" width="620"]10 Genius iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity Photo: Twenty20[/caption]

If you’re reading this in the palm of your hand, it’s probably tough to remember the days you weren’t tethered to your iPhone. But when it comes to smartphones, there’s a fine line between “useful tool for getting things done” and “all-mighty controller of your entire life.” And if you prefer the former, then it’s time to reassess your technology habits. That’s why we’ve tapped four tech experts for their best-kept iPhone hacks to ensure your device boosts productivity — instead of harming it. We’ll double tap to that.

RELATED: 8 Signs You’re Way Too Stressed (and How to Deal)

10 Easy iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity

1. Define what “productivity” means to you.

“In my view, productivity isn’t simply about getting a lot of things done,” says Peter Bregman, CEO of Bregman Partners and author of Four Seconds: All the Time You Need to Replace Counter-Productive Habits with Ones That Really Work. “It’s about getting the right things done. The only way you know if you’re getting the right things done is if you’re thoughtful about what it is that’s most important to you.”

Once you’ve identified that, ask yourself, “How can my iPhone give me traction in what I care about most?” Bergman says. For example, if your priority is spending time with your kids, set a special ring on your phone that’s different for your kids than anyone else. That way you’ll know to prioritize those calls.

2. Schedule everything — even the obvious.

Bregman is teased for scheduling lunch dates with his wife on his calendar, but he insists there’s no better way to lock in what matters most. “It might seem weird, but you’ve got to put that stuff in your calendar,” he says. “There’s a tremendous amount of evidence that says if you decide when and where you’re going to do something, then you’ll do it.”

iCal, Gmail — choose whichever works best. And factor in which will sync best with your work calendar, or shared calendars with family members. Getting everything in one place will save you extra headspace.

RELATED: Boost Productivity with This Feng Shui Office Makeover

3. Get picky about your apps.

“Don’t download an app without having a need first,” says Peggy Duncan, Personal Productivity Expert and Founder and Lead Trainer at The Digital BreakThroughs Institute. “Figure out what you need to do while on mobile, then find the app that’ll help. [Then] group similar apps using broad categories. This works better than app overload.” Duncan’s favorite functional apps include: PDF Converter for converting documents to PDFs; Copier for copying and pasting text from various sources to use later; and Duet Display for using the iPhone as a dual monitor with a laptop while traveling.

4. Keep an uncluttered home screen.

“The best way I’ve found to minimize distractions on my iPhone is to keep the home screen as lean as possible,” says Michael Simon, a Staff Writer at MacWorld. Much like Duncan, he’s discovered the power of minimizing the number of apps across his entire device. “I used to have hundreds of apps in folders across multiple pages, but these days I try to keep things limited to the apps I absolutely need,” he says. “And if there’s one that's sucking too much time, I’ll just delete it.”

[caption id="attachment_41639" align="alignnone" width="620"]iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity Photo: Pond5[/caption]

5. Let your phone hold your thoughts — so you don’t have to.

“Most people have their iPhone with them virtually all the time, so it makes a handy tool for externally capturing what's on your mind,” says John Forrister, a Utility Player at the David Allen Company. "Don't discriminate — big ideas or small, they should be quickly captured in some version of a digital inbox where you can decide if there's action later. You can send yourself a quick email, use an app that sends you email, or put them in the “inbox” of your list management app,” Forrister says. “The key is to make sure they land in some type of an inbox that you will go through within 24 to 48 hours, so your mind can let go of the tracking job.”

RELATED: 3 Guided Meditations for Productivity, Sleep and Cravings

6. Only do work on your phone that works well on your phone.

“You can be more productive by noticing what you like to do on your iPhone, and what you don’t like as much,” says Forrister. “Yes, there’s an app for almost everything. Even so, there are some things that are easier on a bigger screen, or two bigger screens. If you’re doing something that feels like more work than it needs to be, consider switching to an activity that fits the iPhone screen and interface better.”

7. Distinguish between “emergency scanning” versus organizing emails.

“It’s tempting to look at email on the iPhone when you’re away from your computer,” says Forrister. “Quickly scanning to see if something time-sensitive has shown up can be productive if it allows you to communicate or handle work now that would take more effort later.”

What that doesn’t mean? “Going through each email in your inbox, deciding if it’s actionable, adding that action to a list, then filing or deleting the email,” Forrister warns. “If you know that an email is not timely, and you know that you’re not going to fully clarify its meaning and organize it in your system, don’t spend your time on it until you are ready to process it to completion… Be smart about whether you want to do that on the iPhone or back at your computer.”

8. Sync your phone with other devices.

“I always have my iPhone with me, so it needs to be loaded with everything I need to get things done, both on the phone and in sync with my other devices,” says Simon. “Outlook, Gmail and Slack are a must, but my secret weapon is iA Writer. I have it installed on my Mac, iPad and iPhone. And with Dropbox integration, I can jump to one of my Android phones or my Chromebook too and pick up right where I left off. It’s the first app I install on any new device I get.”

RELATED: The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation

9. Get familiar with your iPhone’s “secret” functions.

The iPhone comes equipped with a variety of tricks that most people don’t even know about. That means you might be missing out on enhanced functionalities as a result. Here are a few of Duncan’s favorite functions:

  • Shake your iPhone to get the option to Undo. Note: This feature has to be turned on by going to Settings > General > Accessibility.
  • Use your device as a magnifying glass. Open the Camera app and tap the phone’s Home button three times to activate the magnifier. Once you see what you need, tap the round, white button to freeze. Then pinch the image to expand it. Activate this feature using the same steps described in the previous tip.
  • Go back to the top of the screen by tapping your device at the top. (It’s near where the time is.)
  • Take a photo while you're recording a video with the help of the white button to the left of the Record button. Tap it, and you'll take a photo without disrupting the recording.

10. Don’t let your iPhone bug you

“The most productive way to use your phone during a time when you’re doing the thing that is most important for you to do… is to not use your phone,” says Bregman. “When you’re doing the thing you most want to do — writing a chapter in your book, spending time with family, or in a meeting for your business — that’s when you want to shut your phone off. That’s when you want no distractions.”

Ask yourself, “Is your technology bothering you, or are you bothering your technology?” Bregman says. “We should be in a situation mostly where we’re bothering our technology.”

And keep in mind, willpower alone usually isn't enough to pry you away, says Bregman. Instead, eliminate the choice. For example, “If you don’t want to be on your phone while you’re driving, put it in the trunk. If you need it for navigation, then use Do Not Disturb while driving.”

Bottom line: “Use the technology to create an environment that makes it more likely you’re going to do what you’re going to do,” says Bregman. “That often means disabling the technology. Otherwise it’s going to nag you.”

Read More
8 DIY Projects to Get You Motivated
What Mental Health Experts Do to De-Stress
Single-Tasking: Less Stress, More Productivity?

The post 10 Genius iPhone Hacks to Boost Your Productivity appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>
iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity_

[caption id="attachment_62456" align="alignnone" width="620"]10 Genius iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity Photo: Twenty20[/caption] If you’re reading this in the palm of your hand, it’s probably tough to remember the days you weren’t tethered to your iPhone. But when it comes to smartphones, there’s a fine line between “useful tool for getting things done” and “all-mighty controller of your entire life.” And if you prefer the former, then it’s time to reassess your technology habits. That’s why we’ve tapped four tech experts for their best-kept iPhone hacks to ensure your device boosts productivity — instead of harming it. We’ll double tap to that. RELATED: 8 Signs You’re Way Too Stressed (and How to Deal)

10 Easy iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity

1. Define what “productivity” means to you.

“In my view, productivity isn’t simply about getting a lot of things done,” says Peter Bregman, CEO of Bregman Partners and author of Four Seconds: All the Time You Need to Replace Counter-Productive Habits with Ones That Really Work. “It’s about getting the right things done. The only way you know if you’re getting the right things done is if you’re thoughtful about what it is that’s most important to you.” Once you’ve identified that, ask yourself, “How can my iPhone give me traction in what I care about most?” Bergman says. For example, if your priority is spending time with your kids, set a special ring on your phone that’s different for your kids than anyone else. That way you’ll know to prioritize those calls.

2. Schedule everything — even the obvious.

Bregman is teased for scheduling lunch dates with his wife on his calendar, but he insists there’s no better way to lock in what matters most. “It might seem weird, but you’ve got to put that stuff in your calendar,” he says. “There’s a tremendous amount of evidence that says if you decide when and where you’re going to do something, then you’ll do it.” iCal, Gmail — choose whichever works best. And factor in which will sync best with your work calendar, or shared calendars with family members. Getting everything in one place will save you extra headspace. RELATED: Boost Productivity with This Feng Shui Office Makeover

3. Get picky about your apps.

“Don’t download an app without having a need first,” says Peggy Duncan, Personal Productivity Expert and Founder and Lead Trainer at The Digital BreakThroughs Institute. “Figure out what you need to do while on mobile, then find the app that’ll help. [Then] group similar apps using broad categories. This works better than app overload.” Duncan’s favorite functional apps include: PDF Converter for converting documents to PDFs; Copier for copying and pasting text from various sources to use later; and Duet Display for using the iPhone as a dual monitor with a laptop while traveling.

4. Keep an uncluttered home screen.

“The best way I’ve found to minimize distractions on my iPhone is to keep the home screen as lean as possible,” says Michael Simon, a Staff Writer at MacWorld. Much like Duncan, he’s discovered the power of minimizing the number of apps across his entire device. “I used to have hundreds of apps in folders across multiple pages, but these days I try to keep things limited to the apps I absolutely need,” he says. “And if there’s one that's sucking too much time, I’ll just delete it.” [caption id="attachment_41639" align="alignnone" width="620"]iPhone Hacks to Boost Productivity Photo: Pond5[/caption]

5. Let your phone hold your thoughts — so you don’t have to.

“Most people have their iPhone with them virtually all the time, so it makes a handy tool for externally capturing what's on your mind,” says John Forrister, a Utility Player at the David Allen Company. "Don't discriminate — big ideas or small, they should be quickly captured in some version of a digital inbox where you can decide if there's action later. You can send yourself a quick email, use an app that sends you email, or put them in the “inbox” of your list management app,” Forrister says. “The key is to make sure they land in some type of an inbox that you will go through within 24 to 48 hours, so your mind can let go of the tracking job.” RELATED: 3 Guided Meditations for Productivity, Sleep and Cravings

6. Only do work on your phone that works well on your phone.

“You can be more productive by noticing what you like to do on your iPhone, and what you don’t like as much,” says Forrister. “Yes, there’s an app for almost everything. Even so, there are some things that are easier on a bigger screen, or two bigger screens. If you’re doing something that feels like more work than it needs to be, consider switching to an activity that fits the iPhone screen and interface better.”

7. Distinguish between “emergency scanning” versus organizing emails.

“It’s tempting to look at email on the iPhone when you’re away from your computer,” says Forrister. “Quickly scanning to see if something time-sensitive has shown up can be productive if it allows you to communicate or handle work now that would take more effort later.” What that doesn’t mean? “Going through each email in your inbox, deciding if it’s actionable, adding that action to a list, then filing or deleting the email,” Forrister warns. “If you know that an email is not timely, and you know that you’re not going to fully clarify its meaning and organize it in your system, don’t spend your time on it until you are ready to process it to completion… Be smart about whether you want to do that on the iPhone or back at your computer.”

8. Sync your phone with other devices.

“I always have my iPhone with me, so it needs to be loaded with everything I need to get things done, both on the phone and in sync with my other devices,” says Simon. “Outlook, Gmail and Slack are a must, but my secret weapon is iA Writer. I have it installed on my Mac, iPad and iPhone. And with Dropbox integration, I can jump to one of my Android phones or my Chromebook too and pick up right where I left off. It’s the first app I install on any new device I get.” RELATED: The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation

9. Get familiar with your iPhone’s “secret” functions.

The iPhone comes equipped with a variety of tricks that most people don’t even know about. That means you might be missing out on enhanced functionalities as a result. Here are a few of Duncan’s favorite functions:
  • Shake your iPhone to get the option to Undo. Note: This feature has to be turned on by going to Settings > General > Accessibility.
  • Use your device as a magnifying glass. Open the Camera app and tap the phone’s Home button three times to activate the magnifier. Once you see what you need, tap the round, white button to freeze. Then pinch the image to expand it. Activate this feature using the same steps described in the previous tip.
  • Go back to the top of the screen by tapping your device at the top. (It’s near where the time is.)
  • Take a photo while you're recording a video with the help of the white button to the left of the Record button. Tap it, and you'll take a photo without disrupting the recording.

10. Don’t let your iPhone bug you

“The most productive way to use your phone during a time when you’re doing the thing that is most important for you to do… is to not use your phone,” says Bregman. “When you’re doing the thing you most want to do — writing a chapter in your book, spending time with family, or in a meeting for your business — that’s when you want to shut your phone off. That’s when you want no distractions.” Ask yourself, “Is your technology bothering you, or are you bothering your technology?” Bregman says. “We should be in a situation mostly where we’re bothering our technology.” And keep in mind, willpower alone usually isn't enough to pry you away, says Bregman. Instead, eliminate the choice. For example, “If you don’t want to be on your phone while you’re driving, put it in the trunk. If you need it for navigation, then use Do Not Disturb while driving.” Bottom line: “Use the technology to create an environment that makes it more likely you’re going to do what you’re going to do,” says Bregman. “That often means disabling the technology. Otherwise it’s going to nag you.” Read More 8 DIY Projects to Get You Motivated What Mental Health Experts Do to De-Stress Single-Tasking: Less Stress, More Productivity?

The post 10 Genius iPhone Hacks to Boost Your Productivity appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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This Discreet Smartwatch Counts All Your Fitness Stats https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/martian-kindred-smartwatch-fitness-stats/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/martian-kindred-smartwatch-fitness-stats/#respond Thu, 21 Sep 2017 15:15:47 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=61891

This Discreet Smartwatch Counts All Your Fitness Stats

It’s good to know how many steps you’ve taken in a day or how many hours of shut-eye you snagged last night. That way, you can strive to do better tomorrow. But if you want to know all your health stats, without broadcasting them to the world, we found the perfect smartwatch for you.

SCORE THIS DEAL: Martian Kindred mVip Hybrid Smartwatch ($80)

The Martian Kindred mVip Hybrid Smartwatch keeps all your numbers right on your wrist (and in the corresponding app), but it doesn’t boast a big sporty face or feel. By looking like a regular, super sleek timepiece, you can keep the fact that you’re slaying your step count or getting texts from your favorite friend, all to yourself. Plus, with nine different styles, you can find one to fit any wardrobe — even your favorite athleisure. (It’s durable enough to wear to the gym!)

Top features on the watch include various vibrations and LED color alerts so you know who’s contacting you, plus notifications from your most used fitness, social and news apps. Of course, you also get your step and sleep readings, which you can view by day, week or month. You can also take that post-workout sweaty selfie — without cutting out your classmates — simply by double tapping the face of the watch. To top it off, you can set notifications so you never leave your phone at home or so you can find your cell if you misplaced it. Because with all this info right at your fingertips, it’s easy to get a little sidetracked.

Click HERE to snag the Martian Kindred mVip Hybrid Smartwatch while its still 58% off!

This post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission.

More Deals
Rocketbook: The Smart Notebook That’ll Organize Your Life
5 Wireless Headphones to Tune Up Your Workouts
5 Kitchen Gadgets That Make Meal Prep Easy

The post This Discreet Smartwatch Counts All Your Fitness Stats appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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This Discreet Smartwatch Counts All Your Fitness Stats It’s good to know how many steps you’ve taken in a day or how many hours of shut-eye you snagged last night. That way, you can strive to do better tomorrow. But if you want to know all your health stats, without broadcasting them to the world, we found the perfect smartwatch for you.

SCORE THIS DEAL: Martian Kindred mVip Hybrid Smartwatch ($80)

The Martian Kindred mVip Hybrid Smartwatch keeps all your numbers right on your wrist (and in the corresponding app), but it doesn’t boast a big sporty face or feel. By looking like a regular, super sleek timepiece, you can keep the fact that you’re slaying your step count or getting texts from your favorite friend, all to yourself. Plus, with nine different styles, you can find one to fit any wardrobe — even your favorite athleisure. (It’s durable enough to wear to the gym!) Top features on the watch include various vibrations and LED color alerts so you know who’s contacting you, plus notifications from your most used fitness, social and news apps. Of course, you also get your step and sleep readings, which you can view by day, week or month. You can also take that post-workout sweaty selfie — without cutting out your classmates — simply by double tapping the face of the watch. To top it off, you can set notifications so you never leave your phone at home or so you can find your cell if you misplaced it. Because with all this info right at your fingertips, it’s easy to get a little sidetracked.

Click HERE to snag the Martian Kindred mVip Hybrid Smartwatch while its still 58% off!

This post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission. More Deals Rocketbook: The Smart Notebook That’ll Organize Your Life 5 Wireless Headphones to Tune Up Your Workouts 5 Kitchen Gadgets That Make Meal Prep Easy

The post This Discreet Smartwatch Counts All Your Fitness Stats appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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Rocketbook: The Smart Notebook That’ll Organize Your Life https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/rocketbook-smart-notebook/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/rocketbook-smart-notebook/#respond Tue, 12 Sep 2017 15:15:15 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=61671

Rocketbook: The Smart Notebook That’ll Organize Your Lif

If you ever wished you could have your half-marathon training plan, meal prep schedules and to-do lists all in one place, you now have it with the Rocketbook Reusable Smart Notebook. This new and innovative smart notebook allows you to creatively organize your meeting minutes, appointments and to-dos. Forgot to add milk to your grocery list? Write it down on the Rocketbook with the Pilot FriXion pen, and it will store the message in your phone so you can pull up the full list at the store.

GET THE DEAL: Rocketbook Reusable Smart Notebook ($23)

You’ll also never have to waste post-its or worry about losing your notes again. The notebook has 80 pages, but you can reuse each page up to five times. Write what you want on the dotted lines, save it to the cloud and then erase it in the microwave. (Yup, your words melt right off!) At the bottom of each page, there are seven icons, where you can map your notes to the destination of your choice, whether it’s Dropbox, Google drive or even Slack.

Aside from keeping your lists and ideas in one place, you can use the Rocketbook like a true bullet journal. (Not familiar with the BuJu craze? You can read up on it here.) Unlike regular planners, bullet journaling allows you to creatively organize your past, present and future into logs. Think of it as the adult version of the Etch A Sketch, except it comes with an actual pen that you can use to decorate your bullet journal with drawings, helpful reminders and motivators.

Create a daily log to keep track of what you’ll do for the next 24 hours, a monthly log to lists tasks and goals you’ll tackle in 30 days, and a future log to give you a big picture view of the year ahead. When you look back at the end of the year to see what you’ve accomplished, you’ll be surprised to see how much you’ve done and thought of!

Click HERE to get your Rocketbook Reusable Smart Notebook for $23 (14% off)

This post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission.

More Deals
The Best Activity Tracker You Can Get for Under $20
5 Kitchen Gadgets That Make Meal Prep Easy
5 Wireless Headphones to Tune Up Your Workouts

The post Rocketbook: The Smart Notebook That’ll Organize Your Life appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>

Rocketbook: The Smart Notebook That’ll Organize Your Lif If you ever wished you could have your half-marathon training plan, meal prep schedules and to-do lists all in one place, you now have it with the Rocketbook Reusable Smart Notebook. This new and innovative smart notebook allows you to creatively organize your meeting minutes, appointments and to-dos. Forgot to add milk to your grocery list? Write it down on the Rocketbook with the Pilot FriXion pen, and it will store the message in your phone so you can pull up the full list at the store.

GET THE DEAL: Rocketbook Reusable Smart Notebook ($23)

You’ll also never have to waste post-its or worry about losing your notes again. The notebook has 80 pages, but you can reuse each page up to five times. Write what you want on the dotted lines, save it to the cloud and then erase it in the microwave. (Yup, your words melt right off!) At the bottom of each page, there are seven icons, where you can map your notes to the destination of your choice, whether it’s Dropbox, Google drive or even Slack. Aside from keeping your lists and ideas in one place, you can use the Rocketbook like a true bullet journal. (Not familiar with the BuJu craze? You can read up on it here.) Unlike regular planners, bullet journaling allows you to creatively organize your past, present and future into logs. Think of it as the adult version of the Etch A Sketch, except it comes with an actual pen that you can use to decorate your bullet journal with drawings, helpful reminders and motivators. Create a daily log to keep track of what you’ll do for the next 24 hours, a monthly log to lists tasks and goals you’ll tackle in 30 days, and a future log to give you a big picture view of the year ahead. When you look back at the end of the year to see what you’ve accomplished, you’ll be surprised to see how much you’ve done and thought of! Click HERE to get your Rocketbook Reusable Smart Notebook for $23 (14% off) This post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission. More Deals The Best Activity Tracker You Can Get for Under $20 5 Kitchen Gadgets That Make Meal Prep Easy 5 Wireless Headphones to Tune Up Your Workouts

The post Rocketbook: The Smart Notebook That’ll Organize Your Life appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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This Productivity App Helps You Get More Done in Less Time https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/saent-productivity-app/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/saent-productivity-app/#respond Tue, 22 Aug 2017 15:15:21 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=61260 This Productivity App Can Help You Get More Done in Less Time

It’s easy to get trapped in a black hole of Instagram stories, Game of Thrones tweets and news alerts instead of concentrating on the task at hand. The truth is our minds aren’t made to multitask. Recent research suggests multitasking actually prevents productivity. But there’s a way to practice more mindfulness with your daily to-do list, and that’s where Saent comes in.

Not be confused with Siri or Alexa, Saent is a device and productivity app that blocks out digital distractions by creating focus sessions. Based on the Pomodoro technique of time management, Saent schedules focus sessions that prevent you from accessing certain websites for a period of time. That’s right — no Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest until you hit send on that assignment.

Try Saent Productivity Solution for $49.99

This Productivity App Can Help You Get More Done in Less Time

You can choose a focus session that lasts until a task is done, or set up reminders to take a break and go for a walk. It also allows you to put up a “Do not disturb” message to alert co-workers (no Slack messages, please). This mindful shift of focusing on one task at a time will make all the difference in your productivity and lifestyle. You’ll not only get more done in less time, but you’ll also help prevent the build-up of stress and truly thrive in the moment.

So stash your smartphone, silence your email and notifications and get ready to see your brilliance fill the blank screen.

This sponsored post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission.

The post This Productivity App Helps You Get More Done in Less Time appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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This Productivity App Can Help You Get More Done in Less Time

It’s easy to get trapped in a black hole of Instagram stories, Game of Thrones tweets and news alerts instead of concentrating on the task at hand. The truth is our minds aren’t made to multitask. Recent research suggests multitasking actually prevents productivity. But there’s a way to practice more mindfulness with your daily to-do list, and that’s where Saent comes in. Not be confused with Siri or Alexa, Saent is a device and productivity app that blocks out digital distractions by creating focus sessions. Based on the Pomodoro technique of time management, Saent schedules focus sessions that prevent you from accessing certain websites for a period of time. That’s right — no Facebook, Twitter or Pinterest until you hit send on that assignment.

Try Saent Productivity Solution for $49.99

This Productivity App Can Help You Get More Done in Less Time You can choose a focus session that lasts until a task is done, or set up reminders to take a break and go for a walk. It also allows you to put up a “Do not disturb” message to alert co-workers (no Slack messages, please). This mindful shift of focusing on one task at a time will make all the difference in your productivity and lifestyle. You’ll not only get more done in less time, but you’ll also help prevent the build-up of stress and truly thrive in the moment. So stash your smartphone, silence your email and notifications and get ready to see your brilliance fill the blank screen. This sponsored post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission.

The post This Productivity App Helps You Get More Done in Less Time appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/guided-meditation-apps/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/guided-meditation-apps/#comments Sat, 19 Aug 2017 13:15:55 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=19440 The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation

[caption id="attachment_61107" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation Photo: Twenty20[/caption]

Nothing can compete with having your own meditation guru on hand, but a little technology can go a long way. These meditation apps make it easy to unwind, whether you’re on-the-go or sitting down for some peace and quiet at home. A few of the apps on this list simply provide a reminder to be mindful (since we know all too well that dedicating time every day can sometimes feel impossible). And if you're looking for something more advanced, several of the apps offer longer guided meditations to keep you on track to zen. These meditation apps will also help bring your attention to everyday activities, including concentrating on your breath. Whatever level you’re at, your smartphone can boost your meditation practice. Just remember to turn off the ringer!

RELATED: 5 Blissful Meditation Studios to Stop and Feel the Zen

9 Meditation Apps to Practice Mindfulness9 Top Meditation Apps: Welzen

1. Welzen Lifetime Subscription ($30, iOS and Android)

Kick off each day with a new mindfulness meditation targeted at making you happier (and it's just 10 minutes). You can also choose your area of focus for five-day streaks, including creativity, anxiety and relationships. Or simply follow the Just Breathe program to take a moment for yourself during the day to just be. (The best part? The lifetime subscription is 80% off.)9 Top Meditation Apps: Calm

2. Calm (free, iOS and Android)

Calm’s free web and mobile app offers guided meditations ranging from three minutes, up to 25 minutes with relaxing nature scenes to help you calm down, as well as breathing exercises and the option for an unguided timer. The app also featured adult bedtime stories to help lull you to sleep.

RELATED: 3 Guided Meditations for Productivity, Sleep and Cravings9 Top Meditation Apps: Inscape

3. Inscape (free, iOS)

Start with the five-day introductory series to relieve stress right from the get go. The app also offers daily recommendations for a get-calm session to start the day, a five-minute breathing exercise to do in the p.m. or a pre-bedtime, sound-focused meditation for winding down. Trust us, the music is super soothing, plus it's meant to help you reach deep sleep.

9 Top Meditation Apps: Headspace

4. Headspace (free, iOS and Android)

A free download will get you a 10-day starter program from Headspace, a straightforward, guided meditation app for beginners. Then, for a small, optional monthly fee of $5.99, founder Andy Puddicombe will guide you through a new meditation every day. Use the app to watch Puddicombe’s TED Talk if you’re still not convinced that meditation is a must-do.

RELATED: 40 Resources for Practicing Mindfulness Every Day

9 Top Meditation Apps: The Mindfulness App

5. The Mindfulness App (free, iOS and Android)

Like a little meditation assistant, this app alerts you when it’s time to step back and take a breather. In addition to setting a particular time and day, the app also allows you to set GPS reminders telling you to meditate when you enter a certain location. Feel particularly stressed on the subway or in your office? Then it's time to set a reminder to just stay calm. 

9 Top Meditation Apps: Buddhify

6. Buddhify ($5 for iOS, $3 for Android)

This app brings mindfulness into the modern age with fun graphics and meditations that you can do during everyday activities. Users can customize sessions based on location or select tailored guides to follow on walks, at the gym, on the train or right from your pillow.

RELATED: 3 Moving Meditations to Take Your Workout Higher9 Top Meditation Apps: Pranayama

7. Pranayama (free, iOS and Android)

Combine the power of breath with technology. Pranayama guides you toward slower, deeper breathing by helping you count your inhalations and exhalations according to a fixed ratio. Different sounds identify the right times to inhale and exhale, which makes finding some peace of mind super easy.9 Top Meditation Apps: Simple Habit

8. Simple Habit (free, iOS and Android)

Dubbed the mediation app for busy people, Simple Habit aims to get you to meditate regularly by sending a reminder at the same time every day. Plus, it offers more than 1,000 guided sessions that last just a mere five minutes — which you can do on your commute or at your desk. If you want to go longer, it offers extended times, too.

RELATED: The Daily Mediation You Can Do In Front of a Mirror9 Top Meditation Apps: Aura

9. Aura Lifetime Subscription ($30, iOS and Android)

Aura brings personalized meditations right to your smartphone. Based on your mood, age, location and lifestyle, it'll curate guided sessions that help you find calm. The meditations last three, seven or 10 minutes and you can opt for breathing reminders throughout the day. And it's 84% off the original price.

Originally published October 2013. Updated August 2017. 

This post includes products brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission.

Read More
Meditation Meets HIIT in New Mindful Fitness Approach
Is Forest Bathing the New Meditation?
What Is Transcendental Meditation (And Does It Work)?

The post The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>
The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation

[caption id="attachment_61107" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 9 Best Apps for Guided Meditation Photo: Twenty20[/caption] Nothing can compete with having your own meditation guru on hand, but a little technology can go a long way. These meditation apps make it easy to unwind, whether you’re on-the-go or sitting down for some peace and quiet at home. A few of the apps on this list simply provide a reminder to be mindful (since we know all too well that dedicating time every day can sometimes feel impossible). And if you're looking for something more advanced, several of the apps offer longer guided meditations to keep you on track to zen. These meditation apps will also help bring your attention to everyday activities, including concentrating on your breath. Whatever level you’re at, your smartphone can boost your meditation practice. Just remember to turn off the ringer! RELATED: 5 Blissful Meditation Studios to Stop and Feel the Zen

9 Meditation Apps to Practice Mindfulness9 Top Meditation Apps: Welzen

1. Welzen Lifetime Subscription ($30, iOS and Android)

Kick off each day with a new mindfulness meditation targeted at making you happier (and it's just 10 minutes). You can also choose your area of focus for five-day streaks, including creativity, anxiety and relationships. Or simply follow the Just Breathe program to take a moment for yourself during the day to just be. (The best part? The lifetime subscription is 80% off.)9 Top Meditation Apps: Calm

2. Calm (free, iOS and Android)

Calm’s free web and mobile app offers guided meditations ranging from three minutes, up to 25 minutes with relaxing nature scenes to help you calm down, as well as breathing exercises and the option for an unguided timer. The app also featured adult bedtime stories to help lull you to sleep. RELATED: 3 Guided Meditations for Productivity, Sleep and Cravings9 Top Meditation Apps: Inscape

3. Inscape (free, iOS)

Start with the five-day introductory series to relieve stress right from the get go. The app also offers daily recommendations for a get-calm session to start the day, a five-minute breathing exercise to do in the p.m. or a pre-bedtime, sound-focused meditation for winding down. Trust us, the music is super soothing, plus it's meant to help you reach deep sleep. 9 Top Meditation Apps: Headspace

4. Headspace (free, iOS and Android)

A free download will get you a 10-day starter program from Headspace, a straightforward, guided meditation app for beginners. Then, for a small, optional monthly fee of $5.99, founder Andy Puddicombe will guide you through a new meditation every day. Use the app to watch Puddicombe’s TED Talk if you’re still not convinced that meditation is a must-do. RELATED: 40 Resources for Practicing Mindfulness Every Day 9 Top Meditation Apps: The Mindfulness App

5. The Mindfulness App (free, iOS and Android)

Like a little meditation assistant, this app alerts you when it’s time to step back and take a breather. In addition to setting a particular time and day, the app also allows you to set GPS reminders telling you to meditate when you enter a certain location. Feel particularly stressed on the subway or in your office? Then it's time to set a reminder to just stay calm.  9 Top Meditation Apps: Buddhify

6. Buddhify ($5 for iOS, $3 for Android)

This app brings mindfulness into the modern age with fun graphics and meditations that you can do during everyday activities. Users can customize sessions based on location or select tailored guides to follow on walks, at the gym, on the train or right from your pillow. RELATED: 3 Moving Meditations to Take Your Workout Higher9 Top Meditation Apps: Pranayama

7. Pranayama (free, iOS and Android)

Combine the power of breath with technology. Pranayama guides you toward slower, deeper breathing by helping you count your inhalations and exhalations according to a fixed ratio. Different sounds identify the right times to inhale and exhale, which makes finding some peace of mind super easy.9 Top Meditation Apps: Simple Habit

8. Simple Habit (free, iOS and Android)

Dubbed the mediation app for busy people, Simple Habit aims to get you to meditate regularly by sending a reminder at the same time every day. Plus, it offers more than 1,000 guided sessions that last just a mere five minutes — which you can do on your commute or at your desk. If you want to go longer, it offers extended times, too. RELATED: The Daily Mediation You Can Do In Front of a Mirror9 Top Meditation Apps: Aura

9. Aura Lifetime Subscription ($30, iOS and Android)

Aura brings personalized meditations right to your smartphone. Based on your mood, age, location and lifestyle, it'll curate guided sessions that help you find calm. The meditations last three, seven or 10 minutes and you can opt for breathing reminders throughout the day. And it's 84% off the original price. Originally published October 2013. Updated August 2017.  This post includes products brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission. Read More Meditation Meets HIIT in New Mindful Fitness Approach Is Forest Bathing the New Meditation? What Is Transcendental Meditation (And Does It Work)?

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Stressed AF? Download This Meditation App for Instant Zen https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/stack-aura-meditation-app/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/stack-aura-meditation-app/#respond Tue, 25 Jul 2017 15:15:57 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=60526 Stressed AF? Download This Meditation App to Feel Better ASAP: Aura Meditation App

We tend to dial up the intensity in our lives, whether it’s doing the toughest HIIT workout in town or taking on more than we can handle at work. But sometimes, we can benefit from slowing down. In an age when distractions invade every second of our lives, some silence can be a true luxury. And the easiest way to sound off is with some meditation.

Aura Meditation App: Lifetime Subscription (Just $59.99)

Stressed AF? Download This Meditation App to Feel Better ASAP: Aura Meditation AppStudies have shown that meditation can help reduce stress, improve productivity, boost memory and even inspire creativity. Meditation helps you bring more awareness around your thoughts, so you can better connect in the moment and resolve issues that come up. But it’s not totally intuitive how to do it on your own. That’s where the Aura Premium Meditation App comes in. And for a limited time, you can get a lifetime subscription, discounted from $399 to $59.99 (that’s 84% off!).

There are hundreds of free meditation apps out there, so why pick Aura? Whether you’re stressed, anxious, happy or depressed, Aura collects data around your mood patterns and takes into account your age, location and lifestyle. Aura analyzes this information so it can provide you with thoughtfully curated guided meditations that fit your specific needs. Choose from three-, seven- or 10-minute meditations, which are created by top meditation teachers and therapists. In addition to receiving meditations, you’ll also get daily reminders to take mindful breathers. Because who couldn’t use an excuse to chill?

This sponsored post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission.

The post Stressed AF? Download This Meditation App for Instant Zen appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>
Stressed AF? Download This Meditation App to Feel Better ASAP: Aura Meditation App

We tend to dial up the intensity in our lives, whether it’s doing the toughest HIIT workout in town or taking on more than we can handle at work. But sometimes, we can benefit from slowing down. In an age when distractions invade every second of our lives, some silence can be a true luxury. And the easiest way to sound off is with some meditation.

Aura Meditation App: Lifetime Subscription (Just $59.99)

Stressed AF? Download This Meditation App to Feel Better ASAP: Aura Meditation AppStudies have shown that meditation can help reduce stress, improve productivity, boost memory and even inspire creativity. Meditation helps you bring more awareness around your thoughts, so you can better connect in the moment and resolve issues that come up. But it’s not totally intuitive how to do it on your own. That’s where the Aura Premium Meditation App comes in. And for a limited time, you can get a lifetime subscription, discounted from $399 to $59.99 (that’s 84% off!). There are hundreds of free meditation apps out there, so why pick Aura? Whether you’re stressed, anxious, happy or depressed, Aura collects data around your mood patterns and takes into account your age, location and lifestyle. Aura analyzes this information so it can provide you with thoughtfully curated guided meditations that fit your specific needs. Choose from three-, seven- or 10-minute meditations, which are created by top meditation teachers and therapists. In addition to receiving meditations, you’ll also get daily reminders to take mindful breathers. Because who couldn’t use an excuse to chill? This sponsored post is brought to you by StackCommerce. We only select products we think you’ll love — at a price we hope you’ll love, too. If you decide to make a purchase, Life by Daily Burn may receive a small commission.

The post Stressed AF? Download This Meditation App for Instant Zen appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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Is It Possible That You’re Tracking Too Much? https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/fitness-tracking-possible-track-too-much/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/fitness-tracking-possible-track-too-much/#respond Mon, 06 Feb 2017 16:15:12 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=55904 Are You Tracking Too Much?

[caption id="attachment_55937" align="alignnone" width="620"]Are You Tracking Too Much? Photo: Twenty20[/caption]

If you’re looking to lose weight or boost your endurance, there’s a tool out there that’s begging to help you reach your goals. From phone apps to wearable devices, it’s possible to track every aspect of your existence these days. But all this measuring can be too much of a good thing.

Double-tap if you’ve been here before: You diligently enter every ingredient of your smoothie, salad and stir-fry — only to be kept up at night ruminating whether you correctly entered that heaping tablespoon of almond butter into your calorie count. For some, tracking can bring out the worst in us, including our obsessive-compulsive tendencies and their passive aggressive cousin. (You know, the one that thinks, “My Fitbit has no idea what kind of day I’ve had. I just don’t feel like walking to the other end of the parking lot.”)

RELATED: The Surprising Reason You're Not Losing Weight

What's more: New research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds that too much tracking might even sabotage long-term weight loss goals. But why? Read on to find out what and how much to keep tracking — and what’s OK to let fall by the wayside.

The Curse of the Nudge

In the study, researchers followed 471 adults ages 18 to 35 over 24 months and found that those assigned a “wearable technology device” lost less weight than those who didn’t. “We were surprised because we thought it would make a difference,” says co-author Renee J. Rogers, Ph.D., director of the Physical Activity and Weight Management Research Center at the University of Pittsburgh. “Having an electronic tool that would give you real-time feedback seems like a good idea.”

Trackers are indeed helpful to understand how many calories you’re burning so you can tinker with your diet or adjust your fitness routine. The problem, says Rogers, is that all those gentle reminders designed to be motivating can quickly become discouraging. “What happens when you get a notification at 8:30 p.m. that you’re only halfway to your exercise goal for the day? When are you going to get those extra steps?” says Rogers. “When is this prompting going to help you?”

RELATED: How to Make Better Use of Your Tracking Data

In other words, if you’re being constantly reminded of what you’re not doing, it’s tempting to want to tune out such notifications — or chuck your tracker completely.

Trackers also don’t take into account the ups and downs of real life. “The technology is limited,” says Rogers. “All it knows is to tell you how many steps you need each day.”

But not all hope is lost. Check out our tips on how to reap the benefits of self-monitoring — without going insane.

5 Tips to Make Tracking Work for You

1. Use trackers as teaching tools.

"At the end of the day, we’re not machines. We’re people."

Want to know what a serving of quinoa looks like? Or how long it takes to cycle 20 miles outside of a spinning studio? Trackers are incredibly useful to gain a quick learning curve. But they shouldn’t be electronic leashes. “I encourage my clients to use them for a couple of weeks,” says Jennifer Gibson, head of nutrition for the personalized coaching app Vida Health. “That’s long enough to give people a sense of what they need to do. If you need to cut back on calories, these trackers can help you understand what 250 calories looks like.”

2. Mix in other kinds of low-tech tracking.

Remember food diaries, like the kind you wrote down on actual paper? Such tried-and-true tools can help you stay accountable when keeping up with your fancy electronic tracker becomes too tedious. (We're also loving the Bullet Journal trend, if getting crafty is your thing.) Or, take photos of your meals to give you a visual snapshot of what you’re eating. “It helps people see their portion sizes,” Gibson says. By integrating other kinds of information, you’ll realize how trackers offer just one snapshot of your health.

RELATED: 15 Genius Meal Prep Ideas from Top Trainers

3. Focus on enjoying exercise rather than meeting quotas.

It’s so easy to get caught up in the details of your device that you forget to have fun. “The motivation to stick to your fitness routine has to come from the inside out,” explains David Zulberg, fitness coach and author of The Mind Body Synergy “Diet.” “We get so focused thinking ‘I need to do this amount of exercise’ that we’re concentrating on external things. At the end of the day, we’re not machines. We’re people.” The bottom line: When you enjoy doing something, you’re more likely to make it a habit.

4. Don’t get stuck on steps.

If you’re wearing a device that calculates steps, you might forget there are other kinds of exercise out there. Gibson’s husband became so focused on meeting his daily step quota that he gave up his high-intensity workouts in favor of lower-intensity routines in which he could log more steps. “He would skip his spin classes to fit in more steps because he was in a competition with his friends, and his cholesterol crept up,” she says. As soon as he incorporated aerobic exercise back into his routine, his cholesterol came back down. Moral of the story: Don’t lose sight of what you need to do for your big-picture health.

RELATED: Is 10,000 Steps a Day Really the Secret to Better Health?

5. Trust your gut.

When it comes to food, there’s something to be said for cultivating an awareness of your body’s internal cues. Promise, you won’t (and shouldn’t have to) measure out every serving of quinoa for the rest of your life. Eventually, you’ll just know how much you should eat by how it feels in your body. That means logging off your tracker every once in a while so you don’t become too dependent on it, says Zulberg. And if you feel full, don’t keep eating because you already accounted for the calories. “The key to weight loss is getting back in touch with your natural instincts and re-programming your habits,” he says. “You want to change your approach to food and not just calculate numbers.”

The post Is It Possible That You’re Tracking Too Much? appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>
Are You Tracking Too Much?

[caption id="attachment_55937" align="alignnone" width="620"]Are You Tracking Too Much? Photo: Twenty20[/caption] If you’re looking to lose weight or boost your endurance, there’s a tool out there that’s begging to help you reach your goals. From phone apps to wearable devices, it’s possible to track every aspect of your existence these days. But all this measuring can be too much of a good thing. Double-tap if you’ve been here before: You diligently enter every ingredient of your smoothie, salad and stir-fry — only to be kept up at night ruminating whether you correctly entered that heaping tablespoon of almond butter into your calorie count. For some, tracking can bring out the worst in us, including our obsessive-compulsive tendencies and their passive aggressive cousin. (You know, the one that thinks, “My Fitbit has no idea what kind of day I’ve had. I just don’t feel like walking to the other end of the parking lot.”) RELATED: The Surprising Reason You're Not Losing Weight What's more: New research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association finds that too much tracking might even sabotage long-term weight loss goals. But why? Read on to find out what and how much to keep tracking — and what’s OK to let fall by the wayside.

The Curse of the Nudge

In the study, researchers followed 471 adults ages 18 to 35 over 24 months and found that those assigned a “wearable technology device” lost less weight than those who didn’t. “We were surprised because we thought it would make a difference,” says co-author Renee J. Rogers, Ph.D., director of the Physical Activity and Weight Management Research Center at the University of Pittsburgh. “Having an electronic tool that would give you real-time feedback seems like a good idea.” Trackers are indeed helpful to understand how many calories you’re burning so you can tinker with your diet or adjust your fitness routine. The problem, says Rogers, is that all those gentle reminders designed to be motivating can quickly become discouraging. “What happens when you get a notification at 8:30 p.m. that you’re only halfway to your exercise goal for the day? When are you going to get those extra steps?” says Rogers. “When is this prompting going to help you?” RELATED: How to Make Better Use of Your Tracking Data In other words, if you’re being constantly reminded of what you’re not doing, it’s tempting to want to tune out such notifications — or chuck your tracker completely. Trackers also don’t take into account the ups and downs of real life. “The technology is limited,” says Rogers. “All it knows is to tell you how many steps you need each day.” But not all hope is lost. Check out our tips on how to reap the benefits of self-monitoring — without going insane.

5 Tips to Make Tracking Work for You

1. Use trackers as teaching tools.

"At the end of the day, we’re not machines. We’re people."
Want to know what a serving of quinoa looks like? Or how long it takes to cycle 20 miles outside of a spinning studio? Trackers are incredibly useful to gain a quick learning curve. But they shouldn’t be electronic leashes. “I encourage my clients to use them for a couple of weeks,” says Jennifer Gibson, head of nutrition for the personalized coaching app Vida Health. “That’s long enough to give people a sense of what they need to do. If you need to cut back on calories, these trackers can help you understand what 250 calories looks like.”

2. Mix in other kinds of low-tech tracking.

Remember food diaries, like the kind you wrote down on actual paper? Such tried-and-true tools can help you stay accountable when keeping up with your fancy electronic tracker becomes too tedious. (We're also loving the Bullet Journal trend, if getting crafty is your thing.) Or, take photos of your meals to give you a visual snapshot of what you’re eating. “It helps people see their portion sizes,” Gibson says. By integrating other kinds of information, you’ll realize how trackers offer just one snapshot of your health. RELATED: 15 Genius Meal Prep Ideas from Top Trainers

3. Focus on enjoying exercise rather than meeting quotas.

It’s so easy to get caught up in the details of your device that you forget to have fun. “The motivation to stick to your fitness routine has to come from the inside out,” explains David Zulberg, fitness coach and author of The Mind Body Synergy “Diet.” “We get so focused thinking ‘I need to do this amount of exercise’ that we’re concentrating on external things. At the end of the day, we’re not machines. We’re people.” The bottom line: When you enjoy doing something, you’re more likely to make it a habit.

4. Don’t get stuck on steps.

If you’re wearing a device that calculates steps, you might forget there are other kinds of exercise out there. Gibson’s husband became so focused on meeting his daily step quota that he gave up his high-intensity workouts in favor of lower-intensity routines in which he could log more steps. “He would skip his spin classes to fit in more steps because he was in a competition with his friends, and his cholesterol crept up,” she says. As soon as he incorporated aerobic exercise back into his routine, his cholesterol came back down. Moral of the story: Don’t lose sight of what you need to do for your big-picture health. RELATED: Is 10,000 Steps a Day Really the Secret to Better Health?

5. Trust your gut.

When it comes to food, there’s something to be said for cultivating an awareness of your body’s internal cues. Promise, you won’t (and shouldn’t have to) measure out every serving of quinoa for the rest of your life. Eventually, you’ll just know how much you should eat by how it feels in your body. That means logging off your tracker every once in a while so you don’t become too dependent on it, says Zulberg. And if you feel full, don’t keep eating because you already accounted for the calories. “The key to weight loss is getting back in touch with your natural instincts and re-programming your habits,” he says. “You want to change your approach to food and not just calculate numbers.”

The post Is It Possible That You’re Tracking Too Much? appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>
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The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/meditation-app-mindfulness-simple-habit/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/meditation-app-mindfulness-simple-habit/#respond Fri, 16 Dec 2016 12:15:31 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=54683 The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy

[caption id="attachment_54688" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy Photo: Twenty20[/caption]

Over the last few months, I’ve noticed just how much my mind wanders. Maybe you’ve been here, too: When a comment or question requires your response mid convo, and you have to resort to the lame (and obviously distracted) nod and smile. Naturally, I’d like to blame social media for this lack of attention span. I’ve caught myself thinking more about what my Instagram caption will be than actually experiencing the intensity of my workout or savoring every sip of my Bloody Mary. The first step is realizing you have a problem though, right?

So when my editor asked if anyone wanted to try a new five-minute meditation app, Simple Habit, I quickly raised my hand. (Because I was listening closely that time!)

RELATED: 40 Resources for Practicing Mindfulness Every Day

This wouldn’t be my first attempt at powering up my mindfulness skills. I occasionally listen to a Buddhify meditation before I go to sleep. I try to eat my dinner at least a few nights a week sans Gilmore Girls — that way I can taste my food without distraction. I’ve also signed up for more yoga classes than ever. But I was ready for some extra tech-spiration.

RELATED: Meditation Meets HIIT in New Mindful Fitness Approach

Simple Habit: A Meditation App for People on the Move 

The idea behind Simple Habit (free on iOS and Android) is, well, pretty simple: Listen to the short, guided meditations throughout the day to gain a calmer, more in-the-moment mindset — aka exactly what I needed to get focused. Founded by an entrepreneur who started meditating to deal with her own work-related stress, Yunha Kim had discovered that a few quick bouts of mindfulness each day tipped her mental scale toward zen.

“At Simple Habit, we believe that starting with just five minutes of daily meditation is the easiest entry point into a lifelong meditation practice,” she says. “One common mistake beginner meditators make is setting the bar too high — like committing to 30 minutes of meditation every morning.” While an admirable goal, she says, it’s easy to miss a day and get discouraged.

I was in that same boat, only able to get through a lengthy meditation when fully submerged in a studio setting. But a five-minute solo session? Totally doable, I thought. Here’s what I learned after trying the app for a little over a week.

RELATED: 9 Mantras to Find Zen from Gabrielle Bernstein’s New Book

[caption id="attachment_54689" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy Photo courtesy for Simple Habit[/caption]

5 Things I Learned from Using a Meditation App

1. Scheduling a meditation really helps you stick to it.

I knew I wanted to try to meditate for at least a few consecutive days to feel the effects. But with a busy day at work, followed by events and sleepiness, I made it to whopping Day Three before messing up my plan. And that’s mostly because it just slipped my mind. (Have you sensed the distracted theme yet?) The next day I decided that I’d add “meditate!” to my calendar every morning for the next seven days, and I could adjust on the fly if I wanted to listen to the app on the way to work or after leaving the office. Lesson learned: Actually having a wellness-boosting task on the schedule — complete with reminders — will get you to do it.

2. A midday mindfulness sesh can boost productivity.

In Simple Habit’s “on the go” feature, a wheel of meditations lets you choose based on the activity you’re doing — commuting, walking, etc. I chose “at work,” which opened up a few more options from which I selected “improve focus.” (Within the work category, you can also opt for “lunch break,” “stressed,” “frustrated” or “work break.”) I sat in a small conference room to listen. While it took me a minute to get over my fear that someone would see my eyes closed and think I was sleeping, I quickly pressed play and settled into my five minutes of peacefulness. A voice with an Australian accent told me to roll my shoulders down, relax and tune into how my hands felt. Concentrating on just one sensation certainly helped bring me into the moment.

Without the distraction of emails, Slacks or chats gone wild, I did manage to walk out of the room ready to take on the next task. (Hint: writing this story.) While I don’t think that calm and concentrated vibe lasted through the remainder of the day, it was definitely a welcomed break. And confessional side note, I didn’t really get over the fear of a co-worker thinking I was sleeping. So I did this one with my eyes open. Picture the possibilities if I had them closed.

RELATED: Single-Tasking: The Secret to Less Stress, More Productivity

3. You can meditate anywhere, even on your morning commute.

I can’t even imagine just how lovely the New York City subway would be if everyone listened to a meditation while on it. Just think of the benefits of stepping onto the train to de-stress!

That's precisely what I did on day two of testing this app — as soon as I got on the subway, I popped in my earplugs to meditate. While most people read or play music to pass the time, the app forced me to stay in the moment. I listened as the voice in my ear instructed me to observe the sounds, sights and smells around me. It’s certainly tough to tune into everyone and everything you encounter on your morning commute, but it’s probably one of the most effective ways to learn to focus on the present. I plan to practice en route to work more often, even if that opens my eyes to more subway shenanigans.

4. Not all guided meditations are the same.

As mentioned, this app offers different categories for various meditations. Besides work and commute, you can choose one for sleep, the morning, a tough day, a big event, walking and more. For each of those categories, comes more subcategories that practically called my name: Mallory, are you restless? Want to improve your mood? Feeling under the weather? We have the magic formula, just click here.

I wanted to hear what all of these meditations sounded like. So I ended up listening to two of the audios on some days. For example, I'd tune in while walking to the subway in the morning, when I'd pay attention to how my body was moving and observe the environment around me. Then I'd listen again before I went to bed, when I concentrated more on my breath. With so many options, it’s easy to find a meditation you like or one that better fits your schedule.

RELATED: 7 Ways to Carve Out Time to Meditate

5. Meditation is the best way to get out of bed.

…especially for non-morning people, like me. Even if I go to sleep at 10 p.m. and only need to get up around 7 a.m., I still have a tough time crawling out of the covers. A quick post-snooze mindfulness session changed the game, though. Taking five minutes to listen to Simple Habit before jumping to my feet basically put me on cloud nine and let me float through the morning. In other words, stay in bed for a few extra minutes tomorrow and try it. Day, made!

Want to try Simple Habit? Download it for free on iOS and Android devices. It also has additional in-app purchases for more guided meditations.

The post The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy

[caption id="attachment_54688" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy Photo: Twenty20[/caption] Over the last few months, I’ve noticed just how much my mind wanders. Maybe you’ve been here, too: When a comment or question requires your response mid convo, and you have to resort to the lame (and obviously distracted) nod and smile. Naturally, I’d like to blame social media for this lack of attention span. I’ve caught myself thinking more about what my Instagram caption will be than actually experiencing the intensity of my workout or savoring every sip of my Bloody Mary. The first step is realizing you have a problem though, right? So when my editor asked if anyone wanted to try a new five-minute meditation app, Simple Habit, I quickly raised my hand. (Because I was listening closely that time!) RELATED: 40 Resources for Practicing Mindfulness Every Day This wouldn’t be my first attempt at powering up my mindfulness skills. I occasionally listen to a Buddhify meditation before I go to sleep. I try to eat my dinner at least a few nights a week sans Gilmore Girls — that way I can taste my food without distraction. I’ve also signed up for more yoga classes than ever. But I was ready for some extra tech-spiration. RELATED: Meditation Meets HIIT in New Mindful Fitness Approach

Simple Habit: A Meditation App for People on the Move 

The idea behind Simple Habit (free on iOS and Android) is, well, pretty simple: Listen to the short, guided meditations throughout the day to gain a calmer, more in-the-moment mindset — aka exactly what I needed to get focused. Founded by an entrepreneur who started meditating to deal with her own work-related stress, Yunha Kim had discovered that a few quick bouts of mindfulness each day tipped her mental scale toward zen. “At Simple Habit, we believe that starting with just five minutes of daily meditation is the easiest entry point into a lifelong meditation practice,” she says. “One common mistake beginner meditators make is setting the bar too high — like committing to 30 minutes of meditation every morning.” While an admirable goal, she says, it’s easy to miss a day and get discouraged. I was in that same boat, only able to get through a lengthy meditation when fully submerged in a studio setting. But a five-minute solo session? Totally doable, I thought. Here’s what I learned after trying the app for a little over a week. RELATED: 9 Mantras to Find Zen from Gabrielle Bernstein’s New Book [caption id="attachment_54689" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy Photo courtesy for Simple Habit[/caption]

5 Things I Learned from Using a Meditation App

1. Scheduling a meditation really helps you stick to it.

I knew I wanted to try to meditate for at least a few consecutive days to feel the effects. But with a busy day at work, followed by events and sleepiness, I made it to whopping Day Three before messing up my plan. And that’s mostly because it just slipped my mind. (Have you sensed the distracted theme yet?) The next day I decided that I’d add “meditate!” to my calendar every morning for the next seven days, and I could adjust on the fly if I wanted to listen to the app on the way to work or after leaving the office. Lesson learned: Actually having a wellness-boosting task on the schedule — complete with reminders — will get you to do it.

2. A midday mindfulness sesh can boost productivity.

In Simple Habit’s “on the go” feature, a wheel of meditations lets you choose based on the activity you’re doing — commuting, walking, etc. I chose “at work,” which opened up a few more options from which I selected “improve focus.” (Within the work category, you can also opt for “lunch break,” “stressed,” “frustrated” or “work break.”) I sat in a small conference room to listen. While it took me a minute to get over my fear that someone would see my eyes closed and think I was sleeping, I quickly pressed play and settled into my five minutes of peacefulness. A voice with an Australian accent told me to roll my shoulders down, relax and tune into how my hands felt. Concentrating on just one sensation certainly helped bring me into the moment. Without the distraction of emails, Slacks or chats gone wild, I did manage to walk out of the room ready to take on the next task. (Hint: writing this story.) While I don’t think that calm and concentrated vibe lasted through the remainder of the day, it was definitely a welcomed break. And confessional side note, I didn’t really get over the fear of a co-worker thinking I was sleeping. So I did this one with my eyes open. Picture the possibilities if I had them closed. RELATED: Single-Tasking: The Secret to Less Stress, More Productivity

3. You can meditate anywhere, even on your morning commute.

I can’t even imagine just how lovely the New York City subway would be if everyone listened to a meditation while on it. Just think of the benefits of stepping onto the train to de-stress! That's precisely what I did on day two of testing this app — as soon as I got on the subway, I popped in my earplugs to meditate. While most people read or play music to pass the time, the app forced me to stay in the moment. I listened as the voice in my ear instructed me to observe the sounds, sights and smells around me. It’s certainly tough to tune into everyone and everything you encounter on your morning commute, but it’s probably one of the most effective ways to learn to focus on the present. I plan to practice en route to work more often, even if that opens my eyes to more subway shenanigans.

4. Not all guided meditations are the same.

As mentioned, this app offers different categories for various meditations. Besides work and commute, you can choose one for sleep, the morning, a tough day, a big event, walking and more. For each of those categories, comes more subcategories that practically called my name: Mallory, are you restless? Want to improve your mood? Feeling under the weather? We have the magic formula, just click here. I wanted to hear what all of these meditations sounded like. So I ended up listening to two of the audios on some days. For example, I'd tune in while walking to the subway in the morning, when I'd pay attention to how my body was moving and observe the environment around me. Then I'd listen again before I went to bed, when I concentrated more on my breath. With so many options, it’s easy to find a meditation you like or one that better fits your schedule. RELATED: 7 Ways to Carve Out Time to Meditate

5. Meditation is the best way to get out of bed.

…especially for non-morning people, like me. Even if I go to sleep at 10 p.m. and only need to get up around 7 a.m., I still have a tough time crawling out of the covers. A quick post-snooze mindfulness session changed the game, though. Taking five minutes to listen to Simple Habit before jumping to my feet basically put me on cloud nine and let me float through the morning. In other words, stay in bed for a few extra minutes tomorrow and try it. Day, made! Want to try Simple Habit? Download it for free on iOS and Android devices. It also has additional in-app purchases for more guided meditations.

The post The 5-Minute Meditation App that Makes Mindfulness Easy appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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The Best New Fitness Trackers to Step Up Your Game https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-new-fitness-trackers/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-new-fitness-trackers/#respond Thu, 15 Dec 2016 12:15:56 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=54714 The 8 Best Fitness Trackers to Step Up Your Game

The Best New Fitness Trackers to Step Up Your Game

You’ve tracked countless steps and picked apart numerous hours of sleep (or lack thereof). Now it’s time to take your exercise data to the next level. These eight fitness trackers motivate you to go way beyond logging 10,000 steps or snagging eight hours of shut-eye. They provide coaching and feedback on strength exercises, boxing basics and triathlon training — heck, they might even help you get to a finish line faster.

Welcome the new age of sports watches! We bet they’ll be your best workout buds in no time.

RELATED: 9 Top Wireless Headphones for Fitness Fanatics

8 Tricked Out Fitness Trackers

Mood Now Fitness Tracker

1. Moov Now

Best for: Training day
Anyone who’s tried Wii Fit knows how fun it can be to turn a workout into a video game, complete with a little competition (at least against yourself). That’s what the Moov wristband and app does for exercise on the go. Choose a workout routine in the app, and the wristband’s 3D motion sensor analyzes your movements. As you exercise, a coach will count reps, encourage you to keep pushing and even provide tips on form, like keeping your upper body stable in a plank.

Moov’s real-time feedback goes beyond strength training, too. If you’re running, it might tell you to land softer or lengthen your stride. And while cycling, it’ll offer advice on when to switch gears on your bike, so you can power up a steep incline. The best part about the band, though, is the cardio boxing feature. You’ll see a sequence on screen (think different pop-up combos similar to Guitar Hero) that’ll lead you to jab, uppercut and hook your way to a high calorie burn. Start at “basic training” and work your way to “champion” level. Gigi Hadid and the model gang will have nothing on you. ($60, moov.cc)

Apple Watch Nike+ Fitness Tracker

2. Apple Watch Nike+

Best for: Running this town
Consider the Apple Watch Nike+ an all-in-one smartwatch built specifically for athletes. It’s also one you’ll want to wear all day long. With the same trusted features as the Apple Watch Series 2, the Nike+ iteration also boasts built-in GPS (no iPhone required on runs), but with a brighter display, sportier strap and water resistance up to 50 meters.

Nike doesn’t just bring the cool factor, either. Ease of use and community are baked right in. Start a run with one click to the home screen or schedule one for later in the day. See real-time stats big and bold. Get audio updates from NRC coaches as you pick up the pace. And when you're done with your run, challenge Nike+ friends to match it. When your watch asks, “Are we running today?” we think we know the answer… ($369 for 38 mm, $399 for 42 mm; nike.com and apple.com) —Jordan Shakeshaft

RELATED: Hate Running? 25 Ways to Learn to Love It

Strenx by GymWatch Fitness Tracker

3. Strenx by GymWatch

Best for: Heavy lifting
Let’s be real: Most of us could use a little help when it comes to mastering proper form during strength sessions. Enter, Strenx by GymWatch. The wearable band wraps around your arm or leg and (with the help of an app) gives audio and visual cues on how to make your lifting routine more efficient.

Thanks to a sensor that includes an accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetometer, the band analyzes your movements around all axis and tells just how long your muscles tense up during an exercise. That means it can read your range of motion, starting and max strength, power, force, volume, the number of partial and full reps and more. Choose an entire workout sequence from the app or put together your own line-up by pulling from the library of 900 moves. Then prepare for some serious strength gains. ($149, store.gymwatch.com)

TomTom Adventurer Fitness Tracker

4. Tom Tom Adventurer GPS Outdoor Watch

Best for: Hitting the slopes
If winter sports are your thing, then you'll want the TomTom Adventurer on your wrist. In one rugged wearable, you’ll get built-in GPS, a compass and heart-rate monitor, plus 3GB of music storage. But what really sets this arm candy apart is the addition of a newly minted barometer to enable fresh new sports modes: skiing, snowboarding, hiking and trail running. Even fancier: Lift detection mode, so you can kick back on the ride up the mountain to check out some quick real-time stats. Apres-ski, connect to the MySports app to pour over the day’s runs in more detail, including distance, elevation, ascent, descent, max speed and max hill gradient.

Hiking more your scene? Expect up to 24 hours of continuous use (GPS is sampled every two seconds, favoring battery life over pin-point accuracy). Still, hikers will come away with a pretty detailed report card, including ascent, descent, splits and a topographical map of your route — all via the MySports app. ($349, tomtom.com) —J.S.

RELATED: The 10 Most Incredible Hiking Trails in the World

Garmin Forerunner 35 Fitness Tracker

5. Garmin Forerunner 35

Best for: Scoring that PR
Got your eye on the finish line of your first half-marathon or a new race day record? This Garmin Forerunner will help get you there. Besides providing pace, distance, total time, heart rate, training zones and calories burned, you can also set your goal pace, opt to follow intervals or choose the run/walk function and it’ll notify you when to speed up or slow down. You control your hype-me-up playlist right from your wrist for an extra boost, too. And by signing up on GarminConnect.com, you can also choose a training plan, see your monthly progress, find a new route or join challenges.

It won’t let you just sit back and relax after pounding the pavement, either. The watch will buzz if you’ve been sitting too long. Even better, it’ll tell you if you’ve hit the recommended 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week (or 75 minutes in the vigorous range), guidelines set by the American Heart Association. In other words, you can’t just phone in your workouts — how hard you work really matters. ($200, shop.garmin.com)

LVL Fitness Tracker

6. LVL

Best for: Nutrition tracking
One thing most trackers neglect to keep tabs on: your H2O levels... until LVL came along. In addition to the typical steps, sleep and heart rate monitor, this wristband uses medical-grade infrared light to tell you how hydrated you are (or aren’t). It also tells you exactly how much more liquid you need to improve physical performance levels, and how that’ll enhance your sleep and your mood. Created by an MD who suffered a stroke due to dehydration and based on more than four years’ worth of research, it’s the first consumer product to provide info on hydration in real-time. Anyone else reaching for their water bottle already? ($150, available for pre-order now at onelvl.com, ships August 2017)

RELATED: 10 Ways to Stay Hydrated (That Aren’t Water)

Huawei Fit Fitness Tracker

7. Huawei Fit

Best for: Triathlon training
The sleek Huawei Fit watch is so lightweight you’ll hardly notice it’s on your wrist — an attribute you’ll hold high if you’re trying to swim, bike and run your way to the finish line. Within the Huawei Wear app, you’ll find how much time you spent walking, running, biking, swimming and climbing stairs throughout the day. Plus, for each workout you complete, it breaks down each minute you spent in the various heart rate training zones, from fat burn to aerobic to anaerobic.

It’ll also give live updates on your heart rate while you work out. (Just tap for data when you’re at rest.) You have the option of choosing a training plan within the app, which syncs with your watch to coach you through each exercise session. And you can opt to get text notifications as soon as someone pings you, too, so you don’t miss a beat while working out. ($129, huawei.com)

Polar M600 Fitness Tracker

8. Polar M600

Best for: Goal getting
Sure, most trackers tell you how many minutes you’ve been active, but not many point out how much time you spent in your seat in a day — and that can yield some surprising stats. If that doesn’t inspire you to get moving more, the Polar M600 also allows you to set a goal (like running for 30 minutes or burning 500 calories during a bike ride) and will give you updates on your progress or whether you need to push harder along the way. When you’re done, it’ll provide instant feedback on the benefits of your workout, including the zones you reached (for example, fat burning) or how you improved your aerobic capacity.

The coolest feature of the M600 comes from its Siri-like assistance. Don’t want to forget your sneakers for your morning workout or need to add a run to tomorrow’s schedule? Simply say, “OK, Google,” and give it the command. It’ll remind you at the time you requested, so you’re set for success. ($330, polar.com)

Disclosure: All products featured on our site are hand-picked by our editorial team in the hopes of getting you closer to your health and fitness goals. We only recommend products we love and believe that you will, too. If you come across an affiliate link on our site, that means we receive a small commission should you decide to make a purchase.

The post The Best New Fitness Trackers to Step Up Your Game appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>
The 8 Best Fitness Trackers to Step Up Your Game

The Best New Fitness Trackers to Step Up Your Game You’ve tracked countless steps and picked apart numerous hours of sleep (or lack thereof). Now it’s time to take your exercise data to the next level. These eight fitness trackers motivate you to go way beyond logging 10,000 steps or snagging eight hours of shut-eye. They provide coaching and feedback on strength exercises, boxing basics and triathlon training — heck, they might even help you get to a finish line faster. Welcome the new age of sports watches! We bet they’ll be your best workout buds in no time. RELATED: 9 Top Wireless Headphones for Fitness Fanatics

8 Tricked Out Fitness Trackers

Mood Now Fitness Tracker

1. Moov Now

Best for: Training day Anyone who’s tried Wii Fit knows how fun it can be to turn a workout into a video game, complete with a little competition (at least against yourself). That’s what the Moov wristband and app does for exercise on the go. Choose a workout routine in the app, and the wristband’s 3D motion sensor analyzes your movements. As you exercise, a coach will count reps, encourage you to keep pushing and even provide tips on form, like keeping your upper body stable in a plank. Moov’s real-time feedback goes beyond strength training, too. If you’re running, it might tell you to land softer or lengthen your stride. And while cycling, it’ll offer advice on when to switch gears on your bike, so you can power up a steep incline. The best part about the band, though, is the cardio boxing feature. You’ll see a sequence on screen (think different pop-up combos similar to Guitar Hero) that’ll lead you to jab, uppercut and hook your way to a high calorie burn. Start at “basic training” and work your way to “champion” level. Gigi Hadid and the model gang will have nothing on you. ($60, moov.cc)
Apple Watch Nike+ Fitness Tracker

2. Apple Watch Nike+

Best for: Running this town Consider the Apple Watch Nike+ an all-in-one smartwatch built specifically for athletes. It’s also one you’ll want to wear all day long. With the same trusted features as the Apple Watch Series 2, the Nike+ iteration also boasts built-in GPS (no iPhone required on runs), but with a brighter display, sportier strap and water resistance up to 50 meters. Nike doesn’t just bring the cool factor, either. Ease of use and community are baked right in. Start a run with one click to the home screen or schedule one for later in the day. See real-time stats big and bold. Get audio updates from NRC coaches as you pick up the pace. And when you're done with your run, challenge Nike+ friends to match it. When your watch asks, “Are we running today?” we think we know the answer… ($369 for 38 mm, $399 for 42 mm; nike.com and apple.com) —Jordan Shakeshaft RELATED: Hate Running? 25 Ways to Learn to Love It
Strenx by GymWatch Fitness Tracker

3. Strenx by GymWatch

Best for: Heavy lifting Let’s be real: Most of us could use a little help when it comes to mastering proper form during strength sessions. Enter, Strenx by GymWatch. The wearable band wraps around your arm or leg and (with the help of an app) gives audio and visual cues on how to make your lifting routine more efficient. Thanks to a sensor that includes an accelerometer, gyroscope and magnetometer, the band analyzes your movements around all axis and tells just how long your muscles tense up during an exercise. That means it can read your range of motion, starting and max strength, power, force, volume, the number of partial and full reps and more. Choose an entire workout sequence from the app or put together your own line-up by pulling from the library of 900 moves. Then prepare for some serious strength gains. ($149, store.gymwatch.com)
TomTom Adventurer Fitness Tracker

4. Tom Tom Adventurer GPS Outdoor Watch

Best for: Hitting the slopes If winter sports are your thing, then you'll want the TomTom Adventurer on your wrist. In one rugged wearable, you’ll get built-in GPS, a compass and heart-rate monitor, plus 3GB of music storage. But what really sets this arm candy apart is the addition of a newly minted barometer to enable fresh new sports modes: skiing, snowboarding, hiking and trail running. Even fancier: Lift detection mode, so you can kick back on the ride up the mountain to check out some quick real-time stats. Apres-ski, connect to the MySports app to pour over the day’s runs in more detail, including distance, elevation, ascent, descent, max speed and max hill gradient. Hiking more your scene? Expect up to 24 hours of continuous use (GPS is sampled every two seconds, favoring battery life over pin-point accuracy). Still, hikers will come away with a pretty detailed report card, including ascent, descent, splits and a topographical map of your route — all via the MySports app. ($349, tomtom.com) —J.S. RELATED: The 10 Most Incredible Hiking Trails in the World
Garmin Forerunner 35 Fitness Tracker

5. Garmin Forerunner 35

Best for: Scoring that PR Got your eye on the finish line of your first half-marathon or a new race day record? This Garmin Forerunner will help get you there. Besides providing pace, distance, total time, heart rate, training zones and calories burned, you can also set your goal pace, opt to follow intervals or choose the run/walk function and it’ll notify you when to speed up or slow down. You control your hype-me-up playlist right from your wrist for an extra boost, too. And by signing up on GarminConnect.com, you can also choose a training plan, see your monthly progress, find a new route or join challenges. It won’t let you just sit back and relax after pounding the pavement, either. The watch will buzz if you’ve been sitting too long. Even better, it’ll tell you if you’ve hit the recommended 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week (or 75 minutes in the vigorous range), guidelines set by the American Heart Association. In other words, you can’t just phone in your workouts — how hard you work really matters. ($200, shop.garmin.com)
LVL Fitness Tracker

6. LVL

Best for: Nutrition tracking One thing most trackers neglect to keep tabs on: your H2O levels... until LVL came along. In addition to the typical steps, sleep and heart rate monitor, this wristband uses medical-grade infrared light to tell you how hydrated you are (or aren’t). It also tells you exactly how much more liquid you need to improve physical performance levels, and how that’ll enhance your sleep and your mood. Created by an MD who suffered a stroke due to dehydration and based on more than four years’ worth of research, it’s the first consumer product to provide info on hydration in real-time. Anyone else reaching for their water bottle already? ($150, available for pre-order now at onelvl.com, ships August 2017) RELATED: 10 Ways to Stay Hydrated (That Aren’t Water)
Huawei Fit Fitness Tracker

7. Huawei Fit

Best for: Triathlon training The sleek Huawei Fit watch is so lightweight you’ll hardly notice it’s on your wrist — an attribute you’ll hold high if you’re trying to swim, bike and run your way to the finish line. Within the Huawei Wear app, you’ll find how much time you spent walking, running, biking, swimming and climbing stairs throughout the day. Plus, for each workout you complete, it breaks down each minute you spent in the various heart rate training zones, from fat burn to aerobic to anaerobic. It’ll also give live updates on your heart rate while you work out. (Just tap for data when you’re at rest.) You have the option of choosing a training plan within the app, which syncs with your watch to coach you through each exercise session. And you can opt to get text notifications as soon as someone pings you, too, so you don’t miss a beat while working out. ($129, huawei.com)
Polar M600 Fitness Tracker

8. Polar M600

Best for: Goal getting Sure, most trackers tell you how many minutes you’ve been active, but not many point out how much time you spent in your seat in a day — and that can yield some surprising stats. If that doesn’t inspire you to get moving more, the Polar M600 also allows you to set a goal (like running for 30 minutes or burning 500 calories during a bike ride) and will give you updates on your progress or whether you need to push harder along the way. When you’re done, it’ll provide instant feedback on the benefits of your workout, including the zones you reached (for example, fat burning) or how you improved your aerobic capacity. The coolest feature of the M600 comes from its Siri-like assistance. Don’t want to forget your sneakers for your morning workout or need to add a run to tomorrow’s schedule? Simply say, “OK, Google,” and give it the command. It’ll remind you at the time you requested, so you’re set for success. ($330, polar.com) Disclosure: All products featured on our site are hand-picked by our editorial team in the hopes of getting you closer to your health and fitness goals. We only recommend products we love and believe that you will, too. If you come across an affiliate link on our site, that means we receive a small commission should you decide to make a purchase.

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Move Over, Pokemon Go: 6 Gamer Apps to Get Active https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/pokemon-go-best-gamer-apps-fitness/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/pokemon-go-best-gamer-apps-fitness/#respond Thu, 08 Sep 2016 15:15:25 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=52321 Move Over, Pokemon Go: 6 Gamer Apps to Get Active

[caption id="attachment_52329" align="alignnone" width="620"]Move Over, Pokemon Go: 6 Gamer Apps to Get Active Photo: Zombies Run![/caption]

Gaming and sedentary often fall in the same sentence. Until you mention Pokemon Go. The app has gotten more than 20 million daily users up and moving in hopes of catching the elusive digital monsters that appear on their smartphones.

Some experts think the fact that the app isn’t designed specifically for fitness (but rather, for fun) is why it’s working so well to get gamers on their feet. David A. Dzewaltowski, a professor in the department of kinesiology at Kansas State University, believes the distraction of the game is what might make it so successful.

RELATED: 275 Exercises to Shake Up Your Workout Routine

“If we start to think of ways technology can foster activity, even when the goal may not be the activity itself, we’re going to have people of all ages involved,” he says. “That’s very different than the stressful thought, ‘I’ve got to watch and count my steps.’ It’s essentially providing a way to get active, without that being the main goal.”

Want to find a way to rack up your step count, without even thinking about it? These five alternative apps to Pokemon Go will get both the avid user and the new gamer going.

RELATED: 7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your FitBit

6 Fun, Fit Apps (Better Than Pokemon Go)

1. Zombies, Run!
If you’re a fan of The Walking Dead, this app is for you! It turns any cardio session into a scene from your favorite horror flick or show. As you move around, you’ll listen to a mission to save the world from zombies and the closer they get to you, the quicker you need to run. (Hello, interval training!) The story lines are so good, you won’t even realize you’re putting in way more work than a casual stroll or jog. (Free or $3/month for all-access; iOS, Android)

[caption id="attachment_52323" align="alignnone" width="620"]Geocaching Photo: Geocaching[/caption]

2. Geocaching
Consider this a real-life treasure hunt that takes you around the world. Unlike other apps that involve virtual reality, this one involves people hiding actual containers for you to find all over the globe. When you find a box — whether in your backyard or many miles away — trade the geocaching game pieces inside, then sign and date the logbook and move on to the next one. Reaching that 10,000-a-day step count just got a lot easier (and way more exciting!). (Free or $6/month for premium; iOS and Android)

RELATED: Why Apps Might be Just as Good as Wearables for Tracking Steps

[caption id="attachment_52324" align="alignnone" width="620"]Goose Chase Screen Shots Photo: Goose Chase[/caption]

3. Goose Chase
When was the last time you did a scavenger hunt with your friends or family? Well, now you can have even more fun with it. Choose from pre-set tasks, like showing off your parkour skills on everyday terrain or racing a stranger on foot. Then post your craziest photos to the entertaining feed. You can also take over the designer’s seat and create your own hunt. Reward your participating crew with something special at the end. We suggest a post-20-burpee cashout to really raise the stakes — and the sweat. (Free to play; iOS, Android)

4. The Walk
From the same creators as Zombies, Run!, this app is best for beginners who aren’t quite ready to increase their speed. It also includes a spoken narrative that guides you on different missions, with every step helping you save the world. The game features 65 episodes containing intricate, fully-illustrated maps, 800 minutes of audio and hundreds of collectible items to explore the world. In other words, you’ll never get bored. ($3; iOS, Android)

RELATED: The Easiest 5K and 10K Training Plans Ever

[caption id="attachment_52325" align="alignnone" width="620"]Ninja Fitness Photo: Ninja Fitness[/caption]

5. Ninja Fitness
Learn from Grandmaster Old Beard what it takes to become a fit ninja. Pick your 3D character and follow along through bodyweight exercises to earn outfits, armor, weapons and some more pumped-up workouts. (Trainers show you how to do each move.) You can also earn new ninja belts by upping your skills in strength, agility, endurance and Zen. ($1; iOS)

[caption id="attachment_52326" align="alignnone" width="620"]SpecTrek Photo: Google Play[/caption]

6. SpecTrek
Similar to Pokemon Go, prepare to move around outdoors as you zap the ghouls invading your space. The app uses GPS and your camera to superimpose the creepy characters in your area. Pick the length of the session you want to participate in (anywhere from 15 minutes to 8 hours), look for the ghosts and other surprise creatures, and knock ‘em down. Just keep in mind it’s best to play in an open field so you have more room to roam. ($2.50; Android)

Pro Tip: You can use any game on your phone as an excuse to squeeze in some fitness. When you lose a round of Candy Crush or your friend schools you on Words with Friends, do 10 burpees or 20 lunges. Day, won.

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Move Over, Pokemon Go: 6 Gamer Apps to Get Active

[caption id="attachment_52329" align="alignnone" width="620"]Move Over, Pokemon Go: 6 Gamer Apps to Get Active Photo: Zombies Run![/caption] Gaming and sedentary often fall in the same sentence. Until you mention Pokemon Go. The app has gotten more than 20 million daily users up and moving in hopes of catching the elusive digital monsters that appear on their smartphones. Some experts think the fact that the app isn’t designed specifically for fitness (but rather, for fun) is why it’s working so well to get gamers on their feet. David A. Dzewaltowski, a professor in the department of kinesiology at Kansas State University, believes the distraction of the game is what might make it so successful. RELATED: 275 Exercises to Shake Up Your Workout Routine “If we start to think of ways technology can foster activity, even when the goal may not be the activity itself, we’re going to have people of all ages involved,” he says. “That’s very different than the stressful thought, ‘I’ve got to watch and count my steps.’ It’s essentially providing a way to get active, without that being the main goal.” Want to find a way to rack up your step count, without even thinking about it? These five alternative apps to Pokemon Go will get both the avid user and the new gamer going. RELATED: 7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your FitBit

6 Fun, Fit Apps (Better Than Pokemon Go)

1. Zombies, Run! If you’re a fan of The Walking Dead, this app is for you! It turns any cardio session into a scene from your favorite horror flick or show. As you move around, you’ll listen to a mission to save the world from zombies and the closer they get to you, the quicker you need to run. (Hello, interval training!) The story lines are so good, you won’t even realize you’re putting in way more work than a casual stroll or jog. (Free or $3/month for all-access; iOS, Android) [caption id="attachment_52323" align="alignnone" width="620"]Geocaching Photo: Geocaching[/caption] 2. Geocaching Consider this a real-life treasure hunt that takes you around the world. Unlike other apps that involve virtual reality, this one involves people hiding actual containers for you to find all over the globe. When you find a box — whether in your backyard or many miles away — trade the geocaching game pieces inside, then sign and date the logbook and move on to the next one. Reaching that 10,000-a-day step count just got a lot easier (and way more exciting!). (Free or $6/month for premium; iOS and Android) RELATED: Why Apps Might be Just as Good as Wearables for Tracking Steps [caption id="attachment_52324" align="alignnone" width="620"]Goose Chase Screen Shots Photo: Goose Chase[/caption] 3. Goose Chase When was the last time you did a scavenger hunt with your friends or family? Well, now you can have even more fun with it. Choose from pre-set tasks, like showing off your parkour skills on everyday terrain or racing a stranger on foot. Then post your craziest photos to the entertaining feed. You can also take over the designer’s seat and create your own hunt. Reward your participating crew with something special at the end. We suggest a post-20-burpee cashout to really raise the stakes — and the sweat. (Free to play; iOS, Android) 4. The Walk From the same creators as Zombies, Run!, this app is best for beginners who aren’t quite ready to increase their speed. It also includes a spoken narrative that guides you on different missions, with every step helping you save the world. The game features 65 episodes containing intricate, fully-illustrated maps, 800 minutes of audio and hundreds of collectible items to explore the world. In other words, you’ll never get bored. ($3; iOS, Android) RELATED: The Easiest 5K and 10K Training Plans Ever [caption id="attachment_52325" align="alignnone" width="620"]Ninja Fitness Photo: Ninja Fitness[/caption] 5. Ninja Fitness Learn from Grandmaster Old Beard what it takes to become a fit ninja. Pick your 3D character and follow along through bodyweight exercises to earn outfits, armor, weapons and some more pumped-up workouts. (Trainers show you how to do each move.) You can also earn new ninja belts by upping your skills in strength, agility, endurance and Zen. ($1; iOS) [caption id="attachment_52326" align="alignnone" width="620"]SpecTrek Photo: Google Play[/caption] 6. SpecTrek Similar to Pokemon Go, prepare to move around outdoors as you zap the ghouls invading your space. The app uses GPS and your camera to superimpose the creepy characters in your area. Pick the length of the session you want to participate in (anywhere from 15 minutes to 8 hours), look for the ghosts and other surprise creatures, and knock ‘em down. Just keep in mind it’s best to play in an open field so you have more room to roam. ($2.50; Android) Pro Tip: You can use any game on your phone as an excuse to squeeze in some fitness. When you lose a round of Candy Crush or your friend schools you on Words with Friends, do 10 burpees or 20 lunges. Day, won.

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Sport Watches: Do You Really Need One? https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/sports-watch-tracking-pros-cons/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/sports-watch-tracking-pros-cons/#respond Thu, 18 Aug 2016 11:15:52 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=51800

[caption id="attachment_51802" align="alignnone" width="620"]Sports Watches: Do You Really Need One? Photo: Pond5[/caption]

Wearable fitness trackers can drop serious knowledge. From how many minutes you’re pushing it and the number of miles you’ve slayed, to your intensity (thanks, heart rate monitors!) and average pace. For many sweat seekers, sports watches have become an accessory staple. But, like many tools of the wellness world, they’re not for everybody or for every workout

RELATED: How to Make Better Use of Your Tracking Data

Tech Talk: Sports Watches

One person who should probably keep a sports watch around at all times, though: Someone looking to score a PR at their next race. “As a running coach, I am big on monitoring training pace,” says Matt Wilpers, RRCA Certified Running Coach and founder of CoachCasts. “Looking at performance data, I learn what my clients’ pace should be so they reach a certain desired intensity. Then, by monitoring their pace during a workout, I know if they’re under or overtraining.”

You can gain that same knowledge with your own fitness tracker, but it’s not always necessary. Here’s when to keep an eye on your stats and when you should get sweaty, sans technology.

RELATED: 5 Tweaks That Took an Hour Off My Marathon Time

When to Sport Your Fitness Tracker  

A sports watch does provide some serious pay-offs, even if you’re a beginner exerciser. Check these reasons, explained by Wilpers, why you might want to wear one:

1. It replaces a manual training log. Of course, wearable devices take the work out of recording your runs. So if you want to assess your progress, including the speed you’ve gained and how many miles you’ve tackled, an electronic log is the way to go. No pen, paper or calculator required.

2. It helps you stick to a training plan. Many plans provide pace targets, like running 20 seconds slower than your goal race pace or going at your average 10K race pace. A GPS watch will make sure you hit that mark. Plus, the closer you stick to your training plan, the closer you get to meeting your goal, which leads us too...

3. It may get you to the finish line faster. Leading up to race day, you’ll have a constant reminder of how far you’ve gone and how speedy you’ve gotten. This often gives users the confidence to keep pushing forward, getting stronger and increasing speed during training runs. Also, if you track your stats during the actual race, you can easily check that you’re on target to snag a PR. 

RELATED: The Easiest 5K and 10K Training Plan Ever

A GPS watch will guide you through both distance-based intervals and time-based bursts. This lets you take your stride anywhere.

4. It allows you to focus on distance. A GPS watch will guide you through both distance-based intervals and time-based bursts. This lets you take your stride anywhere — track, road, trail, mud pit, you name it — without having to do some math on mileage. Even better, you can think less about numbers and concentrate more on running efficiently through every type of training, whether you’re doing strides or tempo runs.

5. You can join a community. Sync your run (or ride) results to cool apps like Strava, RunKeeper or MapMyRun or FitBit and befriend other users so they can see your activity feed. This way, you’re likely to get encouragement and praise from your peers — along with some solid bragging rights — which often helps users stay the course. 

RELATED: Hey Runner, Are You Doing Strides?

When to Stash Your Fitness Tracker

Sometimes a constant reminder of your progress can be more of a distraction than a motivator. Here’s when to avoid watching your watch, according to Wilpers:

1. You just want to get up and go. You may prefer to exercise based on how your body feels — pushing harder on days when you feel you could go forever or cutting a run short when you’re super tired or sore. If that’s the case, leave the arm candy at home.

2. You have a recovery run. You killed a 10K or 13-miler and a day or two later, you’re ready to get back out there — without worrying about how fast your feet are moving. This is the time to embrace a casual run, without a tech buddy.

RELATED: The 50 Best Half Marathons in the U.S.

3. Seeing the data makes you tense. For some people, data reminders can get overwhelming. If you check your watch at every step, get super frustrated when you slow down, stress out about the time or think about how little you’ve traveled, perhaps it’s time to step away from the tracker. Notifications aren’t for you if they make you want to give up.

4. It’s Keeping You from a Good Workout. Every now and then technology fails us and a tracker dies or stops recording info. That doesn’t mean your run isn’t worth it or you should skip a few exercises in a group class while you try to fix it. If it becomes your excuse for not moving, toss it to the side.

RELATED: 9 Trainer Tips to Get More from Your Fitness Classes

Just like choosing a certain type of exercise, different people have different preferences when it comes to fitness trackers, so test what’s best for you. Typically, “Type A” personalities like to know all of their info to make sure they’re training efficiently, says Wilpers. On the other hand, some runners like to use the open road as a time to disconnect.

“I coached an athlete that ran 10 to 15 miles a day, mostly alone,” Wilpers says. “He liked to run based how he felt. That said, he still used a GPS watch because when he finished, he wanted to know how far he went and his pace during the run.” Sound like something you’d be into? Look for an option in your app to turn off updates. That way, you won’t receive constant reminders of your mileage and pace, but you can still check when you get home.

Remember, there’s no right or wrong way to record your workouts (if you do at all!). A tracking tool can certainly help improve your performance, says Wilpers, but it’s not a requirement for a successful workout. The most important thing: Listen to how your body feels, then get out there and enjoy the movement.

The post Sport Watches: Do You Really Need One? appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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[caption id="attachment_51802" align="alignnone" width="620"]Sports Watches: Do You Really Need One? Photo: Pond5[/caption] Wearable fitness trackers can drop serious knowledge. From how many minutes you’re pushing it and the number of miles you’ve slayed, to your intensity (thanks, heart rate monitors!) and average pace. For many sweat seekers, sports watches have become an accessory staple. But, like many tools of the wellness world, they’re not for everybody or for every workout RELATED: How to Make Better Use of Your Tracking Data

Tech Talk: Sports Watches

One person who should probably keep a sports watch around at all times, though: Someone looking to score a PR at their next race. “As a running coach, I am big on monitoring training pace,” says Matt Wilpers, RRCA Certified Running Coach and founder of CoachCasts. “Looking at performance data, I learn what my clients’ pace should be so they reach a certain desired intensity. Then, by monitoring their pace during a workout, I know if they’re under or overtraining.” You can gain that same knowledge with your own fitness tracker, but it’s not always necessary. Here’s when to keep an eye on your stats and when you should get sweaty, sans technology. RELATED: 5 Tweaks That Took an Hour Off My Marathon Time

When to Sport Your Fitness Tracker  

A sports watch does provide some serious pay-offs, even if you’re a beginner exerciser. Check these reasons, explained by Wilpers, why you might want to wear one: 1. It replaces a manual training log. Of course, wearable devices take the work out of recording your runs. So if you want to assess your progress, including the speed you’ve gained and how many miles you’ve tackled, an electronic log is the way to go. No pen, paper or calculator required. 2. It helps you stick to a training plan. Many plans provide pace targets, like running 20 seconds slower than your goal race pace or going at your average 10K race pace. A GPS watch will make sure you hit that mark. Plus, the closer you stick to your training plan, the closer you get to meeting your goal, which leads us too... 3. It may get you to the finish line faster. Leading up to race day, you’ll have a constant reminder of how far you’ve gone and how speedy you’ve gotten. This often gives users the confidence to keep pushing forward, getting stronger and increasing speed during training runs. Also, if you track your stats during the actual race, you can easily check that you’re on target to snag a PR.  RELATED: The Easiest 5K and 10K Training Plan Ever
A GPS watch will guide you through both distance-based intervals and time-based bursts. This lets you take your stride anywhere.
4. It allows you to focus on distance. A GPS watch will guide you through both distance-based intervals and time-based bursts. This lets you take your stride anywhere — track, road, trail, mud pit, you name it — without having to do some math on mileage. Even better, you can think less about numbers and concentrate more on running efficiently through every type of training, whether you’re doing strides or tempo runs. 5. You can join a community. Sync your run (or ride) results to cool apps like Strava, RunKeeper or MapMyRun or FitBit and befriend other users so they can see your activity feed. This way, you’re likely to get encouragement and praise from your peers — along with some solid bragging rights — which often helps users stay the course.  RELATED: Hey Runner, Are You Doing Strides?

When to Stash Your Fitness Tracker

Sometimes a constant reminder of your progress can be more of a distraction than a motivator. Here’s when to avoid watching your watch, according to Wilpers: 1. You just want to get up and go. You may prefer to exercise based on how your body feels — pushing harder on days when you feel you could go forever or cutting a run short when you’re super tired or sore. If that’s the case, leave the arm candy at home. 2. You have a recovery run. You killed a 10K or 13-miler and a day or two later, you’re ready to get back out there — without worrying about how fast your feet are moving. This is the time to embrace a casual run, without a tech buddy. RELATED: The 50 Best Half Marathons in the U.S. 3. Seeing the data makes you tense. For some people, data reminders can get overwhelming. If you check your watch at every step, get super frustrated when you slow down, stress out about the time or think about how little you’ve traveled, perhaps it’s time to step away from the tracker. Notifications aren’t for you if they make you want to give up. 4. It’s Keeping You from a Good Workout. Every now and then technology fails us and a tracker dies or stops recording info. That doesn’t mean your run isn’t worth it or you should skip a few exercises in a group class while you try to fix it. If it becomes your excuse for not moving, toss it to the side. RELATED: 9 Trainer Tips to Get More from Your Fitness Classes Just like choosing a certain type of exercise, different people have different preferences when it comes to fitness trackers, so test what’s best for you. Typically, “Type A” personalities like to know all of their info to make sure they’re training efficiently, says Wilpers. On the other hand, some runners like to use the open road as a time to disconnect. “I coached an athlete that ran 10 to 15 miles a day, mostly alone,” Wilpers says. “He liked to run based how he felt. That said, he still used a GPS watch because when he finished, he wanted to know how far he went and his pace during the run.” Sound like something you’d be into? Look for an option in your app to turn off updates. That way, you won’t receive constant reminders of your mileage and pace, but you can still check when you get home. Remember, there’s no right or wrong way to record your workouts (if you do at all!). A tracking tool can certainly help improve your performance, says Wilpers, but it’s not a requirement for a successful workout. The most important thing: Listen to how your body feels, then get out there and enjoy the movement.

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How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/how-to-reach-goals-google-calendar/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/how-to-reach-goals-google-calendar/#respond Mon, 25 Apr 2016 11:15:54 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=49206 How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals

[caption id="attachment_49212" align="alignnone" width="620"]How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals Photo: Google[/caption]

Getting started on a new goal can be hard. But whether it’s exercising more, learning a new language, connecting with your family or carving out time for meditation, a new feature for Google Calendar claims it can support your pursuit of all those seemingly lofty hope and dreams. But can the new Goals feature really help you follow through with your half-marathon training or get your butt to morning yoga three times a week? Here’s what you need to know about this potentially game-changing tool.

RELATED: 15 Tricks to Actually Stick to Your Workouts

Google Calendar Goals: Set ‘Em So You Don’t Forget ‘Em

To start using the Goals feature, you’ll have to download the Google Calendar app if you’re not already using it. From the app, you can choose to set as many goals as you’d like, from five categories, including “Exercise,” “Build a Skill,” “Friends & Family,” “Me Time” and “Organize My Life.”

Next, select the time of day that’s best for you, or just have Google automatically pencil in time for the activity wherever you have room in your calendar that week. The app will eventually learn your schedule preferences, and every time you scroll through your calendar, you’ll be reminded with popups that it’s time to meditate (or read, run, study Spanish, you name it…).

RELATED: 19 Ways to Trick Yourself Into Becoming a Morning Person

And if you miss an appointment because a meeting runs long or you woke up late, the app can assist with rescheduling. (It’s smart like that.) Prefer to keep track of your calendar from your desktop? The function might still be helpful for you: Scheduled “goal activities” will appear on your standard desktop browser calendar marked with a flag.

[caption id="attachment_49207" align="aligncenter" width="315"]How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals GIF: Google[/caption]

Get Even Smarter About Goal Setting

If this all sounds simple enough, you’re not wrong. But before you embark on a new goal, just make sure it’s realistic and specific, and give yourself a little wiggle room, says Daily Burn Senior Fitness/Nutrition Coach Nora Minno, RD, CDN. Instead of saying you’ll work out seven days this week, pick the workouts you’ll do and give yourself a range, like four to five days. That way, if something comes up, you can still feel good about hitting the lower end of your goal.

RELATED: 15 Tricks to Actually Stick to Your Workouts

Planning mini “goal” appointments in advance could help by taking some of the thought out of holding yourself accountable, Minno says. “I talk to my clients a lot about scheduling workouts ahead of time, the same way you would schedule lunch with a friend or a meeting with a coworker.”

Plus, having visual cues within your calendar takes you back to your original motivation, says Minno. Maybe you were feeling a little sluggish on Sunday night and decided you’d definitely plan to exercise four times this week, for example. Every time you see your goal activities in your schedule, you’re more likely to recall the feeling that motivated you to set it in the first place, she says.

It can also help you reflect on how you’ll feel once you’ve reached your goal, says Minno. The colorful blocks peppered throughout your week can be a visual reminder of how important connecting with your family or committing to your health really is to you. They may be small chunks of time, but these mini reminders might be just the motivation you need to get on track to nail your every ambition.

The post How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals

[caption id="attachment_49212" align="alignnone" width="620"]How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals Photo: Google[/caption] Getting started on a new goal can be hard. But whether it’s exercising more, learning a new language, connecting with your family or carving out time for meditation, a new feature for Google Calendar claims it can support your pursuit of all those seemingly lofty hope and dreams. But can the new Goals feature really help you follow through with your half-marathon training or get your butt to morning yoga three times a week? Here’s what you need to know about this potentially game-changing tool. RELATED: 15 Tricks to Actually Stick to Your Workouts

Google Calendar Goals: Set ‘Em So You Don’t Forget ‘Em

To start using the Goals feature, you’ll have to download the Google Calendar app if you’re not already using it. From the app, you can choose to set as many goals as you’d like, from five categories, including “Exercise,” “Build a Skill,” “Friends & Family,” “Me Time” and “Organize My Life.” Next, select the time of day that’s best for you, or just have Google automatically pencil in time for the activity wherever you have room in your calendar that week. The app will eventually learn your schedule preferences, and every time you scroll through your calendar, you’ll be reminded with popups that it’s time to meditate (or read, run, study Spanish, you name it…). RELATED: 19 Ways to Trick Yourself Into Becoming a Morning Person And if you miss an appointment because a meeting runs long or you woke up late, the app can assist with rescheduling. (It’s smart like that.) Prefer to keep track of your calendar from your desktop? The function might still be helpful for you: Scheduled “goal activities” will appear on your standard desktop browser calendar marked with a flag. [caption id="attachment_49207" align="aligncenter" width="315"]How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals GIF: Google[/caption]

Get Even Smarter About Goal Setting

If this all sounds simple enough, you’re not wrong. But before you embark on a new goal, just make sure it’s realistic and specific, and give yourself a little wiggle room, says Daily Burn Senior Fitness/Nutrition Coach Nora Minno, RD, CDN. Instead of saying you’ll work out seven days this week, pick the workouts you’ll do and give yourself a range, like four to five days. That way, if something comes up, you can still feel good about hitting the lower end of your goal. RELATED: 15 Tricks to Actually Stick to Your Workouts Planning mini “goal” appointments in advance could help by taking some of the thought out of holding yourself accountable, Minno says. “I talk to my clients a lot about scheduling workouts ahead of time, the same way you would schedule lunch with a friend or a meeting with a coworker.” Plus, having visual cues within your calendar takes you back to your original motivation, says Minno. Maybe you were feeling a little sluggish on Sunday night and decided you’d definitely plan to exercise four times this week, for example. Every time you see your goal activities in your schedule, you’re more likely to recall the feeling that motivated you to set it in the first place, she says. It can also help you reflect on how you’ll feel once you’ve reached your goal, says Minno. The colorful blocks peppered throughout your week can be a visual reminder of how important connecting with your family or committing to your health really is to you. They may be small chunks of time, but these mini reminders might be just the motivation you need to get on track to nail your every ambition.

The post How to Hack Your Google Calendar to Reach Your Goals appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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5 Brilliant Apps to Make Meal Planning Easy https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-apps-meal-planning/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-apps-meal-planning/#respond Tue, 12 Apr 2016 15:15:15 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=43568 5 Brilliant Apps to Make Meal Planning Easy

[caption id="attachment_48991" align="alignnone" width="620"]5 Brilliant Apps to Make Meal Planning Easy Photo: Pond5[/caption]

Many people wing it when it comes to planning out a week’s worth of meals, hoping that a grocery haul full of healthy products will be enough to get by. But if you’ve ever found yourself throwing out expired produce or meats (and then promptly ordering takeout for dinner), it’s time to relook at those grocery shopping habits. Eating only from your well-intentioned shop is harder than it may seem.

All it really takes, though, is a bit of thoughtful meal planning. By merely outlining your meal strategy, healthy choices — and thus, healthy weeks — become no-brainers. Bonus? Knowing what and when you’re going to eat will streamline your grocery shopping and save you money. (Cha-ching!)

RELATED: How to Eat Healthy for Less Than $4 a Day

To get started on your clean-eating adventure, try one of these five apps, which make meal planning a total cinch. Whether you need help actually creating a well-rounded grocery list or are looking to expand your recipe repertoire, read on for the best meal planning apps around. Success is officially in sight — after a few taps and swipes on your smartphone, of course.

5 Meal Planning Apps to Save You Time and Money

Meal Plan- Meal Planning App

1. MealPlan Meal and Grocery Planner
Best for: First-time planners
Thanks to an easy-to-navigate interface where you drag and drop recipes (or keywords like “burgers” and “salad”) into a home screen organized by meal, this app is great for disorganized dieters who need a simple way to map out their weekly diet, sans all the crazy bells and whistles. Once completed, you can email or print out the generated grocery list (sorted by aisle — so helpful). ($4; iOS)

Yummly-duo3

2. Yummly
Best for: Recipe finders
With over one million drool-worthy recipes in its database, Yummly is the ultimate resource for casual chefs looking to whip up some fresh ideas. Filter app searches by prep time, nutrition or type of cuisine, then save favorites to your “Yums,” a virtual recipe box. After you choose the meals you’ll be making, the app curates all the ingredients to a grocery list, which can be exported to Instacart, a smartphone-based, grocery-delivery service. (Free, iOS, Android)

RELATED: The 7 Best Cookbooks to Get You Cooking This Fall

Any-List Meal Planning App

3. AnyList
Best for: Busy families
Need to pull the groceries together, but don’t have the time — or everyone in the same place at the same time to figure out wants and needs? Meet AnyList, which allows multiple users to add items to a singular shopping list, either manually or with the help of our girl Siri. (After all, your wish is her command.) Any changes made will sync to everyone’s devices, so the entire brood is on the same page when it comes to how many zucchinis you’ll need to make zoodles. Splurge for a premium account and you’ll be able to assign shopping list items to different stores, plus create location-based reminders so you’ll never forget to pick up more chia seeds next time you pass by Trader Joe’s. (Free or $8 for Premium; iOS)

Pepperplate Meal Planning App

4. Pepper Plate
Best for: Multi-course masters
Hosts with the most, this one’s for you. This course-minded app has a built-in timer on iPad, which can help you make multiple dishes at once. (So you won’t have to slave in the kitchen for the entirety of an afternoon!) Input recipes you’ve curated from the web or manually enter your own creations and Pepper Plate will generate a grocery list to make shopping a breeze, too. (Free; iOS, Android)

RELATED: 5 Tips for Setting a Totally Doable Weight Loss Goal

MealBoard Meal Planning App

5. Mealboard
Best for: Budget-Minded Foodies
Want to spend less money every month on your grocery bill? We feel that — and now know that it is possible to eat clean on a small budget. With Mealboard, you can whip your diet and your finances into shape together. (And what’s better than a bit of multi-tasking?) Tap to add recipes from your favorite blogs and sites (Life by DailyBurn, anyone?) into the weekly calendar and then literally drag and drop specific recipes to the days that you’ll be eating ‘em. The app will aggregate a grocery list that also shows you the price of ingredients if you shop at one of the stores utilized in the app. ($4; iOS)

Originally posted September 2015. Updated April 2016. 

The post 5 Brilliant Apps to Make Meal Planning Easy appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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5 Brilliant Apps to Make Meal Planning Easy

[caption id="attachment_48991" align="alignnone" width="620"]5 Brilliant Apps to Make Meal Planning Easy Photo: Pond5[/caption] Many people wing it when it comes to planning out a week’s worth of meals, hoping that a grocery haul full of healthy products will be enough to get by. But if you’ve ever found yourself throwing out expired produce or meats (and then promptly ordering takeout for dinner), it’s time to relook at those grocery shopping habits. Eating only from your well-intentioned shop is harder than it may seem. All it really takes, though, is a bit of thoughtful meal planning. By merely outlining your meal strategy, healthy choices — and thus, healthy weeks — become no-brainers. Bonus? Knowing what and when you’re going to eat will streamline your grocery shopping and save you money. (Cha-ching!) RELATED: How to Eat Healthy for Less Than $4 a Day To get started on your clean-eating adventure, try one of these five apps, which make meal planning a total cinch. Whether you need help actually creating a well-rounded grocery list or are looking to expand your recipe repertoire, read on for the best meal planning apps around. Success is officially in sight — after a few taps and swipes on your smartphone, of course.

5 Meal Planning Apps to Save You Time and Money

Meal Plan- Meal Planning App 1. MealPlan Meal and Grocery Planner Best for: First-time planners Thanks to an easy-to-navigate interface where you drag and drop recipes (or keywords like “burgers” and “salad”) into a home screen organized by meal, this app is great for disorganized dieters who need a simple way to map out their weekly diet, sans all the crazy bells and whistles. Once completed, you can email or print out the generated grocery list (sorted by aisle — so helpful). ($4; iOS) Yummly-duo3 2. Yummly Best for: Recipe finders With over one million drool-worthy recipes in its database, Yummly is the ultimate resource for casual chefs looking to whip up some fresh ideas. Filter app searches by prep time, nutrition or type of cuisine, then save favorites to your “Yums,” a virtual recipe box. After you choose the meals you’ll be making, the app curates all the ingredients to a grocery list, which can be exported to Instacart, a smartphone-based, grocery-delivery service. (Free, iOS, Android) RELATED: The 7 Best Cookbooks to Get You Cooking This Fall Any-List Meal Planning App 3. AnyList Best for: Busy families Need to pull the groceries together, but don’t have the time — or everyone in the same place at the same time to figure out wants and needs? Meet AnyList, which allows multiple users to add items to a singular shopping list, either manually or with the help of our girl Siri. (After all, your wish is her command.) Any changes made will sync to everyone’s devices, so the entire brood is on the same page when it comes to how many zucchinis you’ll need to make zoodles. Splurge for a premium account and you’ll be able to assign shopping list items to different stores, plus create location-based reminders so you’ll never forget to pick up more chia seeds next time you pass by Trader Joe’s. (Free or $8 for Premium; iOS) Pepperplate Meal Planning App 4. Pepper Plate Best for: Multi-course masters Hosts with the most, this one’s for you. This course-minded app has a built-in timer on iPad, which can help you make multiple dishes at once. (So you won’t have to slave in the kitchen for the entirety of an afternoon!) Input recipes you’ve curated from the web or manually enter your own creations and Pepper Plate will generate a grocery list to make shopping a breeze, too. (Free; iOS, Android) RELATED: 5 Tips for Setting a Totally Doable Weight Loss Goal MealBoard Meal Planning App 5. Mealboard Best for: Budget-Minded Foodies Want to spend less money every month on your grocery bill? We feel that — and now know that it is possible to eat clean on a small budget. With Mealboard, you can whip your diet and your finances into shape together. (And what’s better than a bit of multi-tasking?) Tap to add recipes from your favorite blogs and sites (Life by DailyBurn, anyone?) into the weekly calendar and then literally drag and drop specific recipes to the days that you’ll be eating ‘em. The app will aggregate a grocery list that also shows you the price of ingredients if you shop at one of the stores utilized in the app. ($4; iOS) Originally posted September 2015. Updated April 2016. 

The post 5 Brilliant Apps to Make Meal Planning Easy appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your FitBit https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/how-to-use-a-fitbit-tips/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/how-to-use-a-fitbit-tips/#respond Tue, 12 Apr 2016 11:15:14 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=48967 How to Use a Fitbit

[caption id="attachment_48978" align="alignnone" width="620"]7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your Fitbit Photo: Fitbit, Inc.[/caption]

When the scale gets stale, we’re always looking for fresh ways to track progress. And luckily, it’s never been easier to monitor your health and fitness. Virtually anyone with internet access and an extra few bucks can hop on the quantified self bandwagon.

For proof, look no further than the ubiquitous Fitbit, which in 2015 reported 9.5 million active users and 21 million Fitbits sold, each boasting a range of features, from a simple step counter to sophisticated sleep and heart rate monitors. Curious just how intense your HIIT workout was? Or need a daily reminder to kick your sedentary ways to the curb? This gadget has you covered, whether it’s creating new, healthy habits — or simply reinforcing them.

RELATED: 20 Meal Prep Pics from the Healthiest People on Instagram

That’s why we synced up with some of Fitbit’s most dedicated users (most of whom are Daily Burn 365 devotees, too!) to steal their best-kept tracking secrets. Once you get your hands on the device — or finally dust it off — success is yours for the taking.

7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your Fitbit

1. Find your angle.
Trackers can do a whole lot of things — but there’s no need to commit to the whole kitchen sink. “Experiment [to] see what aspect of your Fitbit…works for your health and wellness routine,” says host and university professor Hilary Russo. For Russo, a participant in Daily Burn’s live, daily workout show, it’s all about the food diary.

Your function of choice might change over time, as well. For example, says primary school teacher Sarah Adam, “Even though I am no longer trying to lose weight, I love seeing my resting heart rate get lower and knowing that I am getting fitter.” Keep your focus on whichever aspects of the gadget suit your needs and goals at any given time. And don’t feel pressured to use tools that don’t appeal to you — that’s a surefire way to lose motivation.

RELATED: Daily Burn 365: New Workouts, 7 Days a Week

2. Make every step count.
“On a good day, I try to get to at least 10,000 steps,” says university administrator Deirdre Folkers. “Sometimes my work keeps me at my desk for nine or more hours, so this can be a challenge.”

“It’s not a competition… We are all striving for our personal bests."

Because of her demanding work schedule, Folkers has learned to get creative when it comes to meeting her goal. “I now visit the women's room across the building from my office in order to force me to walk further,” she says. “I also will take a quick walk around the building as a fast break. At home, I may take a swing around the block if I notice that I'm close to my 10,000 steps. And I no longer feel bad when a trip to the grocery store is carried out inefficiently — I just count those extra steps that it takes to backtrack for half and half as extra steps towards my daily goal!”

RELATED: 3 Walking Treadmill Workouts Just for You

3. Pay as much attention to your body as you do to your device.
“Since using my Fitbit, I have had a goal of 10,000 steps a day,” says full-time mom Sarah Fontenot, who’s proudly able to reach her target most days. Perhaps even more valuable. though? Using the device daily has made Fontenot more aware of her body’s signals, particularly on days when she’s not able to hit her steps goal.

She’ll ask herself: “Am I being more sedentary today? Am I feeling sick? Am I just in need of a rest day after doing a lot of workouts recently?” The answers to these questions prove valuable in several ways, says Fontenot. “Knowing the reason for why I may be behind helps to shed any feelings of guilt when I may have just been in need of a rest day. It's also a reminder to get up and move if I'm having a less active day.”

[caption id="attachment_48975" align="alignnone" width="620"]Fitbit Alta Tips Photo: Fitbit, Inc.[/caption]

4. Be brutally honest.
“The food diary is a really honest way to keep it real,” says Russo. “Knowing what you’re [consuming] and what portion equates to what amount really… opens your eyes. It’s what helped me on my weight loss journey.”

Russo isn’t alone in this regard. Research consistently finds that keeping portion sizes in check is an effective strategy for anyone pursuing weight loss. And that doesn’t have to mean restrictive. Learning to identify healthy portion sizes can help ensure you’re able to continue eating the foods you love. (Yes, even high-fat foods such as cheese and fatty meats.) But in order to learn what constitutes a healthy portion size for you — and to determine whether you’re consistently eating the right portions — you have to commit to recording the whole truth (and nothing but the truth).

RELATED: 5 Super-Smart Ways to Avoid Portion Distortion

5. Get nerdy with it.
Progress graphs, FTW. Regardless of which aspects of the tracker you choose to use, log into the online app component and see your progress laid out in visual form. Not only can all those graphs and pie charts be a great way to boost both accountability, they can help keep you stay motivated, too. “I try as much as I can to enter all of the calories I am consuming in a day,” says Fontenot, who appreciates the app’s food log. “When I can visualize how many calories I have consumed…it really helps me to make smarter choices throughout the day.”

RELATED: 6 Printable Meal Planning Templates

6. Make it social (but don’t compare yourself to others).
“The Fitbit user forums are great… for questions, hints, tips and tricks,” says Adam. And there’s value in completing challenges, Fontenot adds. “I love the ability to chat with other participants doing the challenges with me. It’s so motivating to me,” she says.

If you do opt in to the gadget’s social features, just be wary of comparing yourself to other users. “I find that it is not wise at all to compare notes with other people, as there are so many variables at play,” she says. “It’s not a competition… We are all striving for our personal bests."

7. Use it.
Everyone interviewed stressed one tip above all others: If you want your Fitbit to assist your health and wellness goals, then you actually have to use it. “Put it on when you get dressed, and keep it on throughout the day,” says Folkers. And remember to look at it periodically so that you can course-correct throughout the day (instead of realizing at bedtime that you only walked 500 steps).

Using the device on a daily basis will also help keep you accountable. “I believe that consistently wearing the Fitbit will give the best overall picture of how I am doing with my activity level,” says Fontenot. Similarly, “Using the food tracking and water tracking consistently helps me stay accountable, and I believe that accountability is essential to achieving my health and fitness goals.”

The post 7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your FitBit appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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How to Use a Fitbit

[caption id="attachment_48978" align="alignnone" width="620"]7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your Fitbit Photo: Fitbit, Inc.[/caption] When the scale gets stale, we’re always looking for fresh ways to track progress. And luckily, it’s never been easier to monitor your health and fitness. Virtually anyone with internet access and an extra few bucks can hop on the quantified self bandwagon. For proof, look no further than the ubiquitous Fitbit, which in 2015 reported 9.5 million active users and 21 million Fitbits sold, each boasting a range of features, from a simple step counter to sophisticated sleep and heart rate monitors. Curious just how intense your HIIT workout was? Or need a daily reminder to kick your sedentary ways to the curb? This gadget has you covered, whether it’s creating new, healthy habits — or simply reinforcing them. RELATED: 20 Meal Prep Pics from the Healthiest People on Instagram That’s why we synced up with some of Fitbit’s most dedicated users (most of whom are Daily Burn 365 devotees, too!) to steal their best-kept tracking secrets. Once you get your hands on the device — or finally dust it off — success is yours for the taking.

7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your Fitbit

1. Find your angle. Trackers can do a whole lot of things — but there’s no need to commit to the whole kitchen sink. “Experiment [to] see what aspect of your Fitbit…works for your health and wellness routine,” says host and university professor Hilary Russo. For Russo, a participant in Daily Burn’s live, daily workout show, it’s all about the food diary. Your function of choice might change over time, as well. For example, says primary school teacher Sarah Adam, “Even though I am no longer trying to lose weight, I love seeing my resting heart rate get lower and knowing that I am getting fitter.” Keep your focus on whichever aspects of the gadget suit your needs and goals at any given time. And don’t feel pressured to use tools that don’t appeal to you — that’s a surefire way to lose motivation. RELATED: Daily Burn 365: New Workouts, 7 Days a Week 2. Make every step count. “On a good day, I try to get to at least 10,000 steps,” says university administrator Deirdre Folkers. “Sometimes my work keeps me at my desk for nine or more hours, so this can be a challenge.”
“It’s not a competition… We are all striving for our personal bests."
Because of her demanding work schedule, Folkers has learned to get creative when it comes to meeting her goal. “I now visit the women's room across the building from my office in order to force me to walk further,” she says. “I also will take a quick walk around the building as a fast break. At home, I may take a swing around the block if I notice that I'm close to my 10,000 steps. And I no longer feel bad when a trip to the grocery store is carried out inefficiently — I just count those extra steps that it takes to backtrack for half and half as extra steps towards my daily goal!” RELATED: 3 Walking Treadmill Workouts Just for You 3. Pay as much attention to your body as you do to your device. “Since using my Fitbit, I have had a goal of 10,000 steps a day,” says full-time mom Sarah Fontenot, who’s proudly able to reach her target most days. Perhaps even more valuable. though? Using the device daily has made Fontenot more aware of her body’s signals, particularly on days when she’s not able to hit her steps goal. She’ll ask herself: “Am I being more sedentary today? Am I feeling sick? Am I just in need of a rest day after doing a lot of workouts recently?” The answers to these questions prove valuable in several ways, says Fontenot. “Knowing the reason for why I may be behind helps to shed any feelings of guilt when I may have just been in need of a rest day. It's also a reminder to get up and move if I'm having a less active day.” [caption id="attachment_48975" align="alignnone" width="620"]Fitbit Alta Tips Photo: Fitbit, Inc.[/caption] 4. Be brutally honest. “The food diary is a really honest way to keep it real,” says Russo. “Knowing what you’re [consuming] and what portion equates to what amount really… opens your eyes. It’s what helped me on my weight loss journey.” Russo isn’t alone in this regard. Research consistently finds that keeping portion sizes in check is an effective strategy for anyone pursuing weight loss. And that doesn’t have to mean restrictive. Learning to identify healthy portion sizes can help ensure you’re able to continue eating the foods you love. (Yes, even high-fat foods such as cheese and fatty meats.) But in order to learn what constitutes a healthy portion size for you — and to determine whether you’re consistently eating the right portions — you have to commit to recording the whole truth (and nothing but the truth). RELATED: 5 Super-Smart Ways to Avoid Portion Distortion 5. Get nerdy with it. Progress graphs, FTW. Regardless of which aspects of the tracker you choose to use, log into the online app component and see your progress laid out in visual form. Not only can all those graphs and pie charts be a great way to boost both accountability, they can help keep you stay motivated, too. “I try as much as I can to enter all of the calories I am consuming in a day,” says Fontenot, who appreciates the app’s food log. “When I can visualize how many calories I have consumed…it really helps me to make smarter choices throughout the day.” RELATED: 6 Printable Meal Planning Templates 6. Make it social (but don’t compare yourself to others). “The Fitbit user forums are great… for questions, hints, tips and tricks,” says Adam. And there’s value in completing challenges, Fontenot adds. “I love the ability to chat with other participants doing the challenges with me. It’s so motivating to me,” she says. If you do opt in to the gadget’s social features, just be wary of comparing yourself to other users. “I find that it is not wise at all to compare notes with other people, as there are so many variables at play,” she says. “It’s not a competition… We are all striving for our personal bests." 7. Use it. Everyone interviewed stressed one tip above all others: If you want your Fitbit to assist your health and wellness goals, then you actually have to use it. “Put it on when you get dressed, and keep it on throughout the day,” says Folkers. And remember to look at it periodically so that you can course-correct throughout the day (instead of realizing at bedtime that you only walked 500 steps). Using the device on a daily basis will also help keep you accountable. “I believe that consistently wearing the Fitbit will give the best overall picture of how I am doing with my activity level,” says Fontenot. Similarly, “Using the food tracking and water tracking consistently helps me stay accountable, and I believe that accountability is essential to achieving my health and fitness goals.”

The post 7 Insider Tips to Level Up Your FitBit appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

]]>
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The 8 Best Podcasts for a Healthier 2016 https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-podcasts-healthy-living/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-podcasts-healthy-living/#respond Thu, 14 Jan 2016 12:15:59 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=46896

[caption id="attachment_46898" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 8 Best Podcasts for a Healthier 2016 Photo: Jan Vašek[/caption]

What if we told you there was a way to spice up tedious commutes, recharge your workouts, or make uneventful evenings at home way more productive — all by pushing “play.” Your answer: Podcasts — and not just any old shows. We’re talking ones that serve up support, inspiration or just new ways of learning to make healthy living work. Think about it: Wouldn’t a brief meditation reign far superior to the subway chatter or your seventh screening of Modern Family when you’re trying to get a fresh start? Likewise, getting schooled on the benefits of the Paleo plan as you’re doing your Whole30 diet (recipes for you, right this way) can help you stay on track for a tough month of strict eating, too.

And what’s especially great about podcasts is that they’re frequently updated, and most of them are completely free. Tune in to one of these wellness gurus that’ll have you chomping at the bit to get moving, start lifting or shut your mind down for the evening all in the name of having a happier, healthier New Year.

RELATED: 7 Killer Workout Playlists to Get You Through Any Workout

The 8 Best Health and Fitness Podcasts for 2016

1. The Minimalists
Listen If: You’ve finally committed to cleaning out your closets.
Clear clutter, clear you mind, right? Hosted by two men who walked away from six-figure corporate jobs to live a more minimal lifestyle, this podcast discusses what living a meaningful life actually means. And since the duo’s podcast is brand-new — just three episodes deep! — subscribe now and you’ll get the absolute latest tips to keeping the clutter out of your life, leaving you totally on point this New Year.

2. Spartan Up
Listen If: You’ll try anything once.
Level up your life with this podcast from Spartan Race founder Joe Dessena. (Don’t know what a Spartan Race is? Think epic mud run.) Conversations with superstars like entrepreneur Tim Ferris, marathoner Meb Keflezighi and Kelly Starrett of Mobility WOD will keep you motivated on the most dreary winter days, and yes, inspire you to sign up for one of those obstacle course races. We can’t guarantee you won’t want to start making your own life more epic after hearing a few episodes.

3. Start Cooking
Listen If: You’ve set off the kitchen smoke alarm one too many times.
If the kitchen and you aren’t the closest of friends, it can be tough to maintain a healthy diet. (Restaurant fare packs on extra calories, not to mention dollars.) Kathy Maister wants you to start cooking, and through her bi-weekly podcast, teaches simple, filling recipes, like grilled cheese and chocolate chip pancakes to anyone with ease (college students included). Try making some of our waistline friendly versions of Maister’s classics (think our 10-minute gazpacho) — the same skill set applies for all kinds of her comfort food picks.

RELATED: 7 Free Tutorials on How to Cook Practically Anything

4. The Fat-Burning Man Show
Listen If: You’re passionate about farm-raised meat.
Health crusader Abel James is out to teach us a thing or two about how to actually lose fat. (Spoiler alert: He’s a big supporter of the Paleo lifestyle and he’s currently competing on the new ABC show, My Diet Is Better Than Yours). On his podcasts, James interviews nutrition experts like Dave Asprey (the pioneer of Bulletproof coffee) as well as New York Times bestselling author and gluten expert David Pearlmutter about eating clean, partying in moderation, dietary dogma and other food-related facts. Also expect to hear Paleo experts like Mark Sisson and Michelle Tam weigh in on the pros of a protein-heavy diet.

5. Radio Headspace
Listen If: You want to take your stress levels down a notch.
If you’re thinking about dipping your toes into the meditation waters but aren’t quite sure you’re ready for that level of chillness, listen to Radio Headspace first. From the same folks who make the awesome guided meditation app is this podcast, which covers a variety of topics including change, fear, kindness and stress. Host Georgie Okell’s soft, accented voice alone will transport you to a calmer state of mind.

6. Half-Size Me
Listen If: You need a friend to help you with your own weight loss journey.
Straight up is how Heather Robison serves her podcast. An everyday mom — not a Hollywood star nor celebrity trainer — Robertson shed 170 pounds over five years and amassed an audience after sharing her story with others. She’s now keeping it real, busting diet myths and dishing out the best strategies for sustainable weight loss weekly. Hear how regular people like Robinson avoid binge eating, regain fitness after pregnancy or lose (and keep off!) significant amounts of weight.

RELATED: 9 Weight Loss Success Stories You’re Going to Want to See

7. The Rich Roll Podcast
Listen If: You’re a bit of an (admitted) overachiever.
It’s not just veganism and meditation on Rich Roll’s podcast. The ultrarunner and author of Finding Ultra and The Plantpower Way also dives into topics that include creativity, spirituality, nutrition and more. From entrepreneurs trying to shatter wellness elitism to Olympic swimmers sharing their motivation behind the passion, no two guests interviewed these episodes are alike — which will keep you coming back for fresh voices each week.

8. The Nutrition Diva Quick and Dirty Tips
Listen If: Any kind of food-related news usually makes your eyes glaze over.
Drowning in a sea of confusing nutrition information? Let Monica Reinagel, a nutritionist and trained chef, set the record straight for you. Her digestible episodes (sorry, had to) are perfect for those looking to clean up their eating habits. Want to know how to brew coffee that won’t upset your stomach? Can miso really benefit your health? Is timing your meals important? Reinagel has all these answers and more on her can’t-miss podcast.

The post The 8 Best Podcasts for a Healthier 2016 appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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[caption id="attachment_46898" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 8 Best Podcasts for a Healthier 2016 Photo: Jan Vašek[/caption] What if we told you there was a way to spice up tedious commutes, recharge your workouts, or make uneventful evenings at home way more productive — all by pushing “play.” Your answer: Podcasts — and not just any old shows. We’re talking ones that serve up support, inspiration or just new ways of learning to make healthy living work. Think about it: Wouldn’t a brief meditation reign far superior to the subway chatter or your seventh screening of Modern Family when you’re trying to get a fresh start? Likewise, getting schooled on the benefits of the Paleo plan as you’re doing your Whole30 diet (recipes for you, right this way) can help you stay on track for a tough month of strict eating, too. And what’s especially great about podcasts is that they’re frequently updated, and most of them are completely free. Tune in to one of these wellness gurus that’ll have you chomping at the bit to get moving, start lifting or shut your mind down for the evening all in the name of having a happier, healthier New Year. RELATED: 7 Killer Workout Playlists to Get You Through Any Workout

The 8 Best Health and Fitness Podcasts for 2016

1. The Minimalists Listen If: You’ve finally committed to cleaning out your closets. Clear clutter, clear you mind, right? Hosted by two men who walked away from six-figure corporate jobs to live a more minimal lifestyle, this podcast discusses what living a meaningful life actually means. And since the duo’s podcast is brand-new — just three episodes deep! — subscribe now and you’ll get the absolute latest tips to keeping the clutter out of your life, leaving you totally on point this New Year. 2. Spartan Up Listen If: You’ll try anything once. Level up your life with this podcast from Spartan Race founder Joe Dessena. (Don’t know what a Spartan Race is? Think epic mud run.) Conversations with superstars like entrepreneur Tim Ferris, marathoner Meb Keflezighi and Kelly Starrett of Mobility WOD will keep you motivated on the most dreary winter days, and yes, inspire you to sign up for one of those obstacle course races. We can’t guarantee you won’t want to start making your own life more epic after hearing a few episodes. 3. Start Cooking Listen If: You’ve set off the kitchen smoke alarm one too many times. If the kitchen and you aren’t the closest of friends, it can be tough to maintain a healthy diet. (Restaurant fare packs on extra calories, not to mention dollars.) Kathy Maister wants you to start cooking, and through her bi-weekly podcast, teaches simple, filling recipes, like grilled cheese and chocolate chip pancakes to anyone with ease (college students included). Try making some of our waistline friendly versions of Maister’s classics (think our 10-minute gazpacho) — the same skill set applies for all kinds of her comfort food picks. RELATED: 7 Free Tutorials on How to Cook Practically Anything 4. The Fat-Burning Man Show Listen If: You’re passionate about farm-raised meat. Health crusader Abel James is out to teach us a thing or two about how to actually lose fat. (Spoiler alert: He’s a big supporter of the Paleo lifestyle and he’s currently competing on the new ABC show, My Diet Is Better Than Yours). On his podcasts, James interviews nutrition experts like Dave Asprey (the pioneer of Bulletproof coffee) as well as New York Times bestselling author and gluten expert David Pearlmutter about eating clean, partying in moderation, dietary dogma and other food-related facts. Also expect to hear Paleo experts like Mark Sisson and Michelle Tam weigh in on the pros of a protein-heavy diet. 5. Radio Headspace Listen If: You want to take your stress levels down a notch. If you’re thinking about dipping your toes into the meditation waters but aren’t quite sure you’re ready for that level of chillness, listen to Radio Headspace first. From the same folks who make the awesome guided meditation app is this podcast, which covers a variety of topics including change, fear, kindness and stress. Host Georgie Okell’s soft, accented voice alone will transport you to a calmer state of mind. 6. Half-Size Me Listen If: You need a friend to help you with your own weight loss journey. Straight up is how Heather Robison serves her podcast. An everyday mom — not a Hollywood star nor celebrity trainer — Robertson shed 170 pounds over five years and amassed an audience after sharing her story with others. She’s now keeping it real, busting diet myths and dishing out the best strategies for sustainable weight loss weekly. Hear how regular people like Robinson avoid binge eating, regain fitness after pregnancy or lose (and keep off!) significant amounts of weight. RELATED: 9 Weight Loss Success Stories You’re Going to Want to See 7. The Rich Roll Podcast Listen If: You’re a bit of an (admitted) overachiever. It’s not just veganism and meditation on Rich Roll’s podcast. The ultrarunner and author of Finding Ultra and The Plantpower Way also dives into topics that include creativity, spirituality, nutrition and more. From entrepreneurs trying to shatter wellness elitism to Olympic swimmers sharing their motivation behind the passion, no two guests interviewed these episodes are alike — which will keep you coming back for fresh voices each week. 8. The Nutrition Diva Quick and Dirty Tips Listen If: Any kind of food-related news usually makes your eyes glaze over. Drowning in a sea of confusing nutrition information? Let Monica Reinagel, a nutritionist and trained chef, set the record straight for you. Her digestible episodes (sorry, had to) are perfect for those looking to clean up their eating habits. Want to know how to brew coffee that won’t upset your stomach? Can miso really benefit your health? Is timing your meals important? Reinagel has all these answers and more on her can’t-miss podcast.

The post The 8 Best Podcasts for a Healthier 2016 appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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8 Running Apps for Marathoners, Skeptics and Everyone in Between https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-running-apps-every-runner/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-running-apps-every-runner/#comments Tue, 15 Sep 2015 11:15:17 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=43443 running-apps-featured

[caption id="attachment_43458" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 8 Best Running Apps for Every Kind of Runner Photo: Pond5[/caption]

You’ve seen your friends bragging about their runs all over social media — from “I just crushed a 3.00 mi run” tweets to your pal’s #seenonmyrun selfie — and we don’t blame you for wanting to join the party. After all, if you didn’t post it, did it really happen? But you can’t get a cool share in unless you’re using one of those slick running apps. (Especially if you don’t want to shell out for a fancy watch just yet.) And let’s not forget these apps’ real function: making you a better runner. But with so many options available, it’s easy to end up using one that’s seriously subpar. So we downloaded ‘em all — so you don’t have to! — and found the eight best for lightning-fast sprinters, total beginners and everyone in between.

RELATED: Why Apps Might Be Just as Good as Wearables for Tracking Steps

The Best Running Apps for Every Type of Runner

[caption id="attachment_43447" align="alignnone" width="620"]iSmoothRun App Photo: iSmoothRun[/caption]

1. iSmoothRun
Best for:
Interval lovers
Have a need for speed? Then you’ll love iSmoothRun, which allows you to set custom intervals prior to lacing up. Preset your 400-meter repeats; it’ll also account for those much-needed rest breaks. Can’t remember why that one run last week didn’t go so well? iSmoothRun’s weather-logging feature adds in notes on temperature and humidity to jog your memory (sorry, we had to) so you’ll know that high humidity could be to blame. ($4.99; iOS)

[caption id="attachment_43448" align="alignnone" width="620"]Strava Running App Photo: Strava[/caption]

2. Strava
Best for: Weekend warriors
If teamwork is your thing (thrown in with a little healthy competition, of course), Strava is the app for you. Use one of over 50 compatible GPS devices — like your Garmin or your Timex — to upload your data, then compare it with your friends’ routes and paces. (You know, so you can identify which pals you’re going to pick off at your next half-marathon.) This app will even help you find local races, city running guides and running clubs. You’ll never have to run alone again! (Free; iOS, Android)

[caption id="attachment_43449" align="alignnone" width="620"]Map My Run App Photo: MapMyRun[/caption]

3. MapMyRun
Best for: Discovering new routes
The same site you know and love for, well, mapping your run, also has a reliable companion app for when you’re on the move. Every single route you’ve mapped will sync up to your smartphone, so you won’t forget the whereabouts of that hilly five-miler you ran on family vacation last year. Training for a race? You can also use their MapMyRun Trainer app to find training plans for races of distances between 5K and a 50K. (Free; iOS, Android)

RELATED: 13 Awesome Podcasts to Get You Through a Long Run

[caption id="attachment_43450" align="alignnone" width="620"]Runkeeper App Photo: RunKeeper[/caption]

4. RunKeeper
Best for:
Runners with rhythm
What’s a run without good tunes keeping you pumped up, right? And that’s the coolest feature of Runkeeper: its ability to seamlessly sync your pace up to your music. Specifically, the app’s “DJ” analyzes the music on your phone, detecting each song’s mood and tempo, then plays a track that matches up with your speed. If you tend to over-obsess about your pace, set RunKeeper to “stopwatch mode” and it’ll solely display time elapsed — but don’t worry, distance is still recorded, too. (Free; iOS, Android)

RELATED: 7 Killer Playlists to Get You Through Any Workout

[caption id="attachment_43451" align="alignnone" width="620"]Nike Plus Running App Photo: Nike[/caption]

5. Nike+ Running
Best for: Bragging rights
Consider this baby the OG of running apps. Released in 2006 and originally dubbed Nike+iPod, this DailyBurn staff-favorite has gone through four iterations, adding in cool features over the years like virtual coaching, an in-app camera for instant running pics and post-workout motivation from top Nike athletes like Alyson Felix. Was today the day you ran your #fastestmile, or logged your longest run? Earn some serious social media cred by sharing your feats (including a customized map of your route) instantly with your friends on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. (Free; iOS, Android)

RELATED: 50 Running Resources for Speed, Strength and Nutrition

[caption id="attachment_43452" align="alignnone" width="620"]Endomondo Running App Photo: Endomondo[/caption]

6. Endomondo
Best for:
Helping you go the extra mile
If you’re looking for a push to help you meet your goals, download Endomondo, stat. Its commitment feature will serve as a virtual accountability partner, gently reminding you via push notification to get those runs in for the week. And for six extra bucks a month, the app’s premium version provides a specific training plan designed around how you’ve been pacing on recent runs. Oh, and it can also show you the amount of hamburgers you burn off from every run — certainly a metric we can get behind. (Free; iOS, Android)

[caption id="attachment_43453" align="alignnone" width="620"]Fuel My Run Photo: Fuel My Run[/caption]

7. Fuel My Run
Best for: Avoiding the dreaded wall
If running a half-marathon or full marathon is in your future, you’re going to need to learn how to start fueling on the run. Yes, that means ingesting those weird foil packets of gel. But if you’re unsure of when to start taking down your energy chews or gels, this app will remind you when exactly to eat, swallow and repeat. And just like that, you pushed right through the wall. Take that, mile 21. ($1.99; iOS)

RELATED: The Easiest 5K and 10K Training Plan Ever (Walking, Allowed)

[caption id="attachment_43454" align="alignnone" width="620"]Couch to 5K Active App Photo: Couch to 5K[/caption]

8. Couch to 5K
Best for:
Undiscovered athletes
It’s totally cool if running’s new to you, and Couch to 5K ensures you can tackle a 3.1-mile race in just nine weeks. Clear 30 minutes a day, three days a week and you’ll be toeing that start line ready, physically prepped and mentally stoked. Throughout each workout, the app cues your run and walk intervals while the virtual trainer will whisper sweet motivational tips into your earbuds. Optional social badges help you share your successes along the road to your first race. ($1.99; iOS, Android)

Did we miss an app you love? Sound off in the comments below!

The post 8 Running Apps for Marathoners, Skeptics and Everyone in Between appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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running-apps-featured

[caption id="attachment_43458" align="alignnone" width="620"]The 8 Best Running Apps for Every Kind of Runner Photo: Pond5[/caption] You’ve seen your friends bragging about their runs all over social media — from “I just crushed a 3.00 mi run” tweets to your pal’s #seenonmyrun selfie — and we don’t blame you for wanting to join the party. After all, if you didn’t post it, did it really happen? But you can’t get a cool share in unless you’re using one of those slick running apps. (Especially if you don’t want to shell out for a fancy watch just yet.) And let’s not forget these apps’ real function: making you a better runner. But with so many options available, it’s easy to end up using one that’s seriously subpar. So we downloaded ‘em all — so you don’t have to! — and found the eight best for lightning-fast sprinters, total beginners and everyone in between. RELATED: Why Apps Might Be Just as Good as Wearables for Tracking Steps

The Best Running Apps for Every Type of Runner

[caption id="attachment_43447" align="alignnone" width="620"]iSmoothRun App Photo: iSmoothRun[/caption] 1. iSmoothRun Best for: Interval lovers Have a need for speed? Then you’ll love iSmoothRun, which allows you to set custom intervals prior to lacing up. Preset your 400-meter repeats; it’ll also account for those much-needed rest breaks. Can’t remember why that one run last week didn’t go so well? iSmoothRun’s weather-logging feature adds in notes on temperature and humidity to jog your memory (sorry, we had to) so you’ll know that high humidity could be to blame. ($4.99; iOS) [caption id="attachment_43448" align="alignnone" width="620"]Strava Running App Photo: Strava[/caption] 2. Strava Best for: Weekend warriors If teamwork is your thing (thrown in with a little healthy competition, of course), Strava is the app for you. Use one of over 50 compatible GPS devices — like your Garmin or your Timex — to upload your data, then compare it with your friends’ routes and paces. (You know, so you can identify which pals you’re going to pick off at your next half-marathon.) This app will even help you find local races, city running guides and running clubs. You’ll never have to run alone again! (Free; iOS, Android) [caption id="attachment_43449" align="alignnone" width="620"]Map My Run App Photo: MapMyRun[/caption] 3. MapMyRun Best for: Discovering new routes The same site you know and love for, well, mapping your run, also has a reliable companion app for when you’re on the move. Every single route you’ve mapped will sync up to your smartphone, so you won’t forget the whereabouts of that hilly five-miler you ran on family vacation last year. Training for a race? You can also use their MapMyRun Trainer app to find training plans for races of distances between 5K and a 50K. (Free; iOS, Android) RELATED: 13 Awesome Podcasts to Get You Through a Long Run [caption id="attachment_43450" align="alignnone" width="620"]Runkeeper App Photo: RunKeeper[/caption] 4. RunKeeper Best for: Runners with rhythm What’s a run without good tunes keeping you pumped up, right? And that’s the coolest feature of Runkeeper: its ability to seamlessly sync your pace up to your music. Specifically, the app’s “DJ” analyzes the music on your phone, detecting each song’s mood and tempo, then plays a track that matches up with your speed. If you tend to over-obsess about your pace, set RunKeeper to “stopwatch mode” and it’ll solely display time elapsed — but don’t worry, distance is still recorded, too. (Free; iOS, Android) RELATED: 7 Killer Playlists to Get You Through Any Workout [caption id="attachment_43451" align="alignnone" width="620"]Nike Plus Running App Photo: Nike[/caption] 5. Nike+ Running Best for: Bragging rights Consider this baby the OG of running apps. Released in 2006 and originally dubbed Nike+iPod, this DailyBurn staff-favorite has gone through four iterations, adding in cool features over the years like virtual coaching, an in-app camera for instant running pics and post-workout motivation from top Nike athletes like Alyson Felix. Was today the day you ran your #fastestmile, or logged your longest run? Earn some serious social media cred by sharing your feats (including a customized map of your route) instantly with your friends on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. (Free; iOS, Android) RELATED: 50 Running Resources for Speed, Strength and Nutrition [caption id="attachment_43452" align="alignnone" width="620"]Endomondo Running App Photo: Endomondo[/caption] 6. Endomondo Best for: Helping you go the extra mile If you’re looking for a push to help you meet your goals, download Endomondo, stat. Its commitment feature will serve as a virtual accountability partner, gently reminding you via push notification to get those runs in for the week. And for six extra bucks a month, the app’s premium version provides a specific training plan designed around how you’ve been pacing on recent runs. Oh, and it can also show you the amount of hamburgers you burn off from every run — certainly a metric we can get behind. (Free; iOS, Android) [caption id="attachment_43453" align="alignnone" width="620"]Fuel My Run Photo: Fuel My Run[/caption] 7. Fuel My Run Best for: Avoiding the dreaded wall If running a half-marathon or full marathon is in your future, you’re going to need to learn how to start fueling on the run. Yes, that means ingesting those weird foil packets of gel. But if you’re unsure of when to start taking down your energy chews or gels, this app will remind you when exactly to eat, swallow and repeat. And just like that, you pushed right through the wall. Take that, mile 21. ($1.99; iOS) RELATED: The Easiest 5K and 10K Training Plan Ever (Walking, Allowed) [caption id="attachment_43454" align="alignnone" width="620"]Couch to 5K Active App Photo: Couch to 5K[/caption] 8. Couch to 5K Best for: Undiscovered athletes It’s totally cool if running’s new to you, and Couch to 5K ensures you can tackle a 3.1-mile race in just nine weeks. Clear 30 minutes a day, three days a week and you’ll be toeing that start line ready, physically prepped and mentally stoked. Throughout each workout, the app cues your run and walk intervals while the virtual trainer will whisper sweet motivational tips into your earbuds. Optional social badges help you share your successes along the road to your first race. ($1.99; iOS, Android) Did we miss an app you love? Sound off in the comments below!

The post 8 Running Apps for Marathoners, Skeptics and Everyone in Between appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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7 Killer Workout Playlists to Get You Through Any Workout https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-workout-playlists-songs/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-workout-playlists-songs/#respond Fri, 21 Aug 2015 11:15:27 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=42735 7 Best Workout Playlists

[caption id="attachment_42776" align="alignnone" width="620"]7 Killer Workout Playlists Photo: Pond5[/caption]

There are countless music streaming sites around these days, all with their own sweet perks (some are free, at least for a bit). Others have drawbacks (sorry, still no Taylor Swift on Spotify). But if you’re overwhelmed on which one is best for your workout, don’t sweat it. DailyBurn did the sweating for you and found seven incredible playlists to keep you pumped up and focused from that first dynamic stretch all the way to Savansana.

RELATED: 13 Awesome Podcasts to Get You Through a Long Run

7 Amazing Workout Playlists

1. Songza's "All-Time Pumped-Up Hits"
Best for: Weight-room junkies who need an extra push.
Got a lifting session soon? This playlist, will get you, well, pumped up to, well, pump iron. Expect to hear everything from 80s classics (Gotta have The Eurythmics, right?) to current superstars like Rihanna and Beyonce. Bonus: The songs all boast catchy, high-energy beats, perfect for masking the huffing, puffing and grunting that’s sure to ensue with each deadlift or bench press. (Free; iOS, Android)

[caption id="attachment_42765" align="alignnone" width="620"]Best Workout Playlists Amazon Prime Music Photo: Pond5[/caption]

2. Amazon Prime Music's "Going the Distance"
Best for: Cardio champs with a long run ahead.
The peace, quiet and thoughts in your head may get you through the first few miles of your long run (it’s race season!), but after a few more, you’re going to need some pump-up jams to keep you motivated. Enter Amazon Prime Music’s “Going the Distance” mix, which was created specifically for marathon runners putting in hours (and hours) of training work. Expect to hear tunes like “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” by Daft Punk, “Stronger” by Kelly Clarkson, and of course, battle cries like “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor. And just like that, your last mile became your fastest. (Free; iOS, Android) 

3. SoulCycle's Spotify
Best for: The spinning-obsessed who can’t make it to every studio class.
Obvious choice, right? The boutique indoor cycling studio is known for a lot of things: crazy choreography, pricey classes, luxe studios and absolutely killer playlists. And SoulCycle works to constantly update its Spotify channel with the instructors’ favorite of-the-moment music. In fact, just about every song is remixed into a beat you can totally sweat to. It’s almost like all the over-played music you’re tired of hearing on the radio is fresh again when you’re back in the saddle (with spot-on form, naturally). (Free; iOS, Android)

RELATED: Should You Always Listen to Music While Running?

[caption id="attachment_42766" align="alignnone" width="620"]Best Workout Playlists Cardio Dance Pandora Photo: Pond5[/caption]

4. Pandora's "Club Dance Radio"
Best for: Dance cardio converts who want to keep shakin’ well beyond class.
Ever wanted that perfect playlist for making household chores seem a lot more fun? After your next cardio dance or Zumba class, pump up the “Club Dance Radio” station on Pandora and get ready to drop that booty, shimmy, shake and sweat all night long as you take care of business. Things like doing the dishes just got a lot sweatier — and that’s a good thing. (Free; iOS, Android)

RELATED: DailyBurn Trainer Anja Garcia Shares Her Workout Playlist

5. FIT Radio's "Phys Ed"
Best for: Fit families looking to get the whole crew moving.
FIT Radio is designed using BPMs (beats per minute, a measure of intensity) to create playlists for exercisers of different levels, then all of which are carefully crafted to seamlessly flow together by a pro DJ. We especially love the “Phys Ed” station, which keeps the lyrics from your tunes totally PG-13 — ideal if you’re planning a stroller run or a basement boot camp where the kids will be within earshot. You’ll be working out to awesome-but-edited versions of everything from Nicki Minaj to Taylor Swift. (Free; iOS, Android)

6. RockMyRun
Best for: All-level runners who want to cross the finish line feeling energized. 
With around 50 well-curated playlists specifically catered to runners, RockMyRun is a must-have for those who are training, racing or hitting the pavement for their first tempo run. Plus, the app’s so easy to synch with your favorite running apps (think: MapMyRun, Nike+, or Runtastic), hit play and be good to go for about four hours — each song’s BPM will adjust to your own speed thanks to the app’s built-in accelerometer. And since the music streams continuously, you don’t have to worry about losing your momentum during those annoying commercials. (Free; iOS, Android)

RELATED: Your Tour de France-Inspired Cycling Playlist

[caption id="attachment_42768" align="alignnone" width="620"]Best Workout Playlists Slacker Radio Yoga Photo: Pond5[/caption]

7. Slacker Radio's "Hotel Poolside"
Best for: Everyday yogis winding down with an at-home practice.
Yeah, Slacker gets that specific with its playlist choices. This week, try pretending you’re not exhausted after a long day as you bust out downward-facing dogs on a (slightly dusty?) mat in your cluttered living room. (Which, by the way, you’ll totally clean up later, once you’re sufficiently Zen’ed.) When you cue this stream up for your next evening practice, you’ll feel more like you’re on the beach in Turks and Caicos than on the floor in your house. The umbrella drinks afterwards are optional, but recommended. (Free; iOS, Android)

The post 7 Killer Workout Playlists to Get You Through Any Workout appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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7 Best Workout Playlists

[caption id="attachment_42776" align="alignnone" width="620"]7 Killer Workout Playlists Photo: Pond5[/caption] There are countless music streaming sites around these days, all with their own sweet perks (some are free, at least for a bit). Others have drawbacks (sorry, still no Taylor Swift on Spotify). But if you’re overwhelmed on which one is best for your workout, don’t sweat it. DailyBurn did the sweating for you and found seven incredible playlists to keep you pumped up and focused from that first dynamic stretch all the way to Savansana. RELATED: 13 Awesome Podcasts to Get You Through a Long Run

7 Amazing Workout Playlists

1. Songza's "All-Time Pumped-Up Hits" Best for: Weight-room junkies who need an extra push. Got a lifting session soon? This playlist, will get you, well, pumped up to, well, pump iron. Expect to hear everything from 80s classics (Gotta have The Eurythmics, right?) to current superstars like Rihanna and Beyonce. Bonus: The songs all boast catchy, high-energy beats, perfect for masking the huffing, puffing and grunting that’s sure to ensue with each deadlift or bench press. (Free; iOS, Android) [caption id="attachment_42765" align="alignnone" width="620"]Best Workout Playlists Amazon Prime Music Photo: Pond5[/caption] 2. Amazon Prime Music's "Going the Distance" Best for: Cardio champs with a long run ahead. The peace, quiet and thoughts in your head may get you through the first few miles of your long run (it’s race season!), but after a few more, you’re going to need some pump-up jams to keep you motivated. Enter Amazon Prime Music’s “Going the Distance” mix, which was created specifically for marathon runners putting in hours (and hours) of training work. Expect to hear tunes like “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” by Daft Punk, “Stronger” by Kelly Clarkson, and of course, battle cries like “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor. And just like that, your last mile became your fastest. (Free; iOS, Android)  3. SoulCycle's Spotify Best for: The spinning-obsessed who can’t make it to every studio class. Obvious choice, right? The boutique indoor cycling studio is known for a lot of things: crazy choreography, pricey classes, luxe studios and absolutely killer playlists. And SoulCycle works to constantly update its Spotify channel with the instructors’ favorite of-the-moment music. In fact, just about every song is remixed into a beat you can totally sweat to. It’s almost like all the over-played music you’re tired of hearing on the radio is fresh again when you’re back in the saddle (with spot-on form, naturally). (Free; iOS, Android) RELATED: Should You Always Listen to Music While Running? [caption id="attachment_42766" align="alignnone" width="620"]Best Workout Playlists Cardio Dance Pandora Photo: Pond5[/caption] 4. Pandora's "Club Dance Radio" Best for: Dance cardio converts who want to keep shakin’ well beyond class. Ever wanted that perfect playlist for making household chores seem a lot more fun? After your next cardio dance or Zumba class, pump up the “Club Dance Radio” station on Pandora and get ready to drop that booty, shimmy, shake and sweat all night long as you take care of business. Things like doing the dishes just got a lot sweatier — and that’s a good thing. (Free; iOS, Android) RELATED: DailyBurn Trainer Anja Garcia Shares Her Workout Playlist 5. FIT Radio's "Phys Ed" Best for: Fit families looking to get the whole crew moving. FIT Radio is designed using BPMs (beats per minute, a measure of intensity) to create playlists for exercisers of different levels, then all of which are carefully crafted to seamlessly flow together by a pro DJ. We especially love the “Phys Ed” station, which keeps the lyrics from your tunes totally PG-13 — ideal if you’re planning a stroller run or a basement boot camp where the kids will be within earshot. You’ll be working out to awesome-but-edited versions of everything from Nicki Minaj to Taylor Swift. (Free; iOS, Android) 6. RockMyRun Best for: All-level runners who want to cross the finish line feeling energized.  With around 50 well-curated playlists specifically catered to runners, RockMyRun is a must-have for those who are training, racing or hitting the pavement for their first tempo run. Plus, the app’s so easy to synch with your favorite running apps (think: MapMyRun, Nike+, or Runtastic), hit play and be good to go for about four hours — each song’s BPM will adjust to your own speed thanks to the app’s built-in accelerometer. And since the music streams continuously, you don’t have to worry about losing your momentum during those annoying commercials. (Free; iOS, Android) RELATED: Your Tour de France-Inspired Cycling Playlist [caption id="attachment_42768" align="alignnone" width="620"]Best Workout Playlists Slacker Radio Yoga Photo: Pond5[/caption] 7. Slacker Radio's "Hotel Poolside" Best for: Everyday yogis winding down with an at-home practice. Yeah, Slacker gets that specific with its playlist choices. This week, try pretending you’re not exhausted after a long day as you bust out downward-facing dogs on a (slightly dusty?) mat in your cluttered living room. (Which, by the way, you’ll totally clean up later, once you’re sufficiently Zen’ed.) When you cue this stream up for your next evening practice, you’ll feel more like you’re on the beach in Turks and Caicos than on the floor in your house. The umbrella drinks afterwards are optional, but recommended. (Free; iOS, Android)

The post 7 Killer Workout Playlists to Get You Through Any Workout appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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11 Health Gadgets Experts Wish You’d Use https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-gadgets-health-technology/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/best-gadgets-health-technology/#comments Wed, 29 Jul 2015 15:15:41 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=41800 The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used

[caption id="attachment_41979" align="alignnone" width="620"]11 Health Gadgets Experts Wish You'd Use Photo: Pond5[/caption]

Whether you want to lose weight, run faster or score extra workout motivation, there’s an app for that…and a fitness tracker…and a new-fangled gadget. Overwhelmed yet? With the world of health technology exploding every day, it’s no secret that sifting through your options to get to the good stuff can be a chore.

RELATED: 19 Reasons to Work Out (Beyond the Perfect Body)

That’s why we did the legwork for you and went straight to the experts for their picks. These are the tech tools your favorite doctors, trainers, nutritionists and bloggers rely on to reach their health and fitness goals. We found the best app to track your high-intensity interval training, the easiest way to count calories and the best tool to actually help you run faster. Plus, they’ve all been tested by trusted experts and bloggers, so you can bet they’re pretty darn good.

Your Go-to Gym Gadgets

[caption id="attachment_41811" align="alignnone" width="620"]The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used Photo: Pond5[/caption]

1. The PUSH Fitness Tracker
Want to tone your arm muscles? PUSH is the first device designed to help you reach your strength training goals. Strap the band below your elbow, select an exercise and the tracker will give you feedback on the number of reps you’ve done — and how fast and powerfully you completed each one. “It measures power and velocity, eliminating the need to rely on a laser-focused coach’s eye or…watching your own reps,” says Jen Sinkler, author, personal trainer and owner of The Movement Minneapolis. “When speed slows down, it’s time to call it a day for that movement,” she says. ($189; trainwithpush.com)

2. The Ithlete App
So how do you really know if your body has recovered from yesterday’s workout? James Cotter, former professional triathlete and founder of Hard Yards relies on ithlete to make sure he’s not overtraining. “This helps all athletes arrive at the start line fresher and helps you avoid becoming overly fatigued during bigger training blocks,” Cotter says. Using a heart rate monitor or finger sensor, the app measures your heart rate variability — the time between your heartbeats when you’re at rest. If the variation is minimal, then, according to the app, you’re ready to train. If your body is burned out, it’ll tell you to take a rest day. “Being an athlete involves being able to show up on key training days and races ready to perform,” Cotter says. ($8.99; myithlete.com)

RELATED: 7 New Recovery Tools You’ll Love to Hate

3. The Tabata Pro App
If you love HIIT training, you know how annoying it is to fumble with your watch to track your intervals. Luckily, the Tabata Pro app will do that for you. (The burpees are up to you.) Celebrity trainer and author of The 20-Minute Body Brett Hoebel says, “My 20-Minute Body classes require different timed intervals and music. This app allows for many different types of intervals as well as playing my favorite playlists over [the] timer noises.” ($2.99; simpletouchsoftware.com)

4. The Skulpt Aim Device
Pretty sure your BMI isn’t telling you the whole story? Skulpt Aim is a handheld device that uses electrical impulses to measure your body fat and muscle tone, from your pecs to your calves. “I’ve been using it monthly to track my progress in the gym,” says Tamara Grand, personal trainer, group fitness instructor and online fitness coach. “I love that it allows you to compare the left and right sides of the body.” The result? The ability to spot imbalances and work toward a more balanced physique. ($149; store.skulpt.me)

RELATED: 5 Ways to Test for Muscle Imbalances and Avoid Injury

Your Health and Weight Loss Arsenal

[caption id="attachment_41818" align="alignnone" width="620"]The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used Photo: Pond5[/caption]

5. The Handpick App
Need recipe inspiration for that Swiss chard wilting in your veggie drawer? Whip it into a delicious dish using this database of over 10,000 food items and recipes on the Handpick app. “Some people get stuck preparing the same meals all the time, so an app that can encourage you to infuse fresh ideas into the mix is a great tool,” says celebrity chef Paula Hankin. The coolest feature? You can browse a curated feed of recipes based on the best drool-worthy food pics from Instagram. (Free; handpick.com)

RELATED: 12 Brilliant Meal Prep Ideas to Free Up Your Time

6. The Sleep Cycle App
If you still feel groggy after a full night’s rest, put down your coffee and download the Sleep Cycle app now. “It’s an alarm clock that tracks your sleep patterns and wakes you up during light sleep,” say Lori Morris and Michelle Corso, the sisters behind the health and fitness blog Purely Twins. The app, which tracks your movements using your phone’s accelerometer, claims to gently nudge you awake only when you’re in a light sleep phase (your body’s natural waking point). The result: You’ll actually get out of bed feeling refreshed. ($0.99; sleepcycle.com)

7. My Fitness Pal
Whether you’re trying to lose weight or just keep a food diary, My Fitness Pal makes it easy with more than five million foods in its tracking database. Matt Orlando, the blogger behind The Runner Dad, used the calorie counting tool to lose about 20 pounds. “It allowed me to easily set calorie and fitness goals, track my daily intake and automatically import the data provided by my running watch to help me track my health,” he says. Meanwhile, Jesica D’Avanza, author of the blog rUnladylike, relies on the app to stay on top of her nutrition. “My Fitness Pal is incredibly helpful for keeping track of the food I eat to ensure that, as an athlete, I’m getting the right mix of proteins, carbs and fats as well as eating enough calories for the amount of physical activity I’m doing,” says the runner, triathlete and marathon coach. (Free; myfitnesspal.com)

RELATED: The 10 Biggest Diet Mistakes, According to Experts

Your Running Toolkit

[caption id="attachment_41821" align="alignnone" width="620"]The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used Photo: Pond5[/caption]

8. The Spring Moves App
There’s no doubt the right music can put a spring in your step. With Spring Moves, you can more easily match your running cadence to your tunes. All you have to do is run to the beat to stay on track. “As a sports doc, I love this app for my patients since I’m always trying to get them to quicken their cadence and shorten their stride, thereby reducing their risk of injury,” says Dr. Jordan Metzl, sports medicine doctor and creator of the Ironstrength Workout. “It’s much more user-friendly than counting steps.” (Free; springmoves.com)

9. The Strava App
If a little healthy competition is what motivates you, then Strava is the app for you. With Strava, you can compare your runs (or rides) against your past efforts, or go head-to-head with others in the community. “It’s the perfect app for anyone who has a competitive edge, whether you are competing against yourself to beat your best time or looking at the long list of athletes who beat you on the big climb or portion of your run or ride,” says Jamie King, CEO and founder of FitApproach and SweatGuru. (Free; strava.com)

RELATED: Hate Running? 25 Ways to Learn to Love It

10. Bluetooth Headphones
There’s nothing worse than getting tangled up in your headphone cords when you’re out for a run. That’s why Caroline Kaufman, MS, RDN relies on her Motorola bluetooth headphones. “[They] make it so much easier to head outside for a walk or run without being tethered to your phone or strapping on some uncomfortable, sweaty, ill-fitting armband,” she says. “You can listen to music and take phone calls without touching your phone.” ($43.95; amazon.com)

11. GPS Running Watch
Some runners may say that a GPS running watch isn’t just a cool technology — it’s a necessary one. At a basic level, these watches track distance, pace and time. But opinions are split as to which device does it all best.

Several run-nerds we spoke with swear by their Garmins, including Jeff Gaudette, Head Coach and founder of RunnersConnect. “There's nothing more important than getting an accurate time, distance and pace for your run and Garmin makes some sleek watches that get the job done,” says Gaudette.

Meanwhile, King recommends the Suunto Ambit2, an integrated GPS and heart rate monitor. “This GPS watch truly does it all — from recording workouts, heart rate monitoring and even weather functions,” she says. You can also download running apps designed to improve your performance directly to your watch.

And if you want to monitor your heart rate but hate wearing a chest strap, check out the TomTom Runner Watch. Orlando says it’s his favorite piece of fitness technology because it accurately tracks his stats and easily syncs to his phone and apps like My Fitness Pal. Amanda Brooks, the voice of the blog Run To The Finish, depends on her TomTom to help her stick to her training methodology. “As someone who follows low heart rate training, I have fallen head over heels for the TomTom Runner watch,” she says. “It measures heart rate through the watch strap, removing the need to wear that infuriating chest strap!”

Disclosure: All products featured on our site are carefully selected and vetted in the hopes of getting you closer to your health and fitness goals. In some cases, you might come across an affiliate link on our site, which means we receive a small commission should you decide to make a purchase. 

The post 11 Health Gadgets Experts Wish You’d Use appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used

[caption id="attachment_41979" align="alignnone" width="620"]11 Health Gadgets Experts Wish You'd Use Photo: Pond5[/caption] Whether you want to lose weight, run faster or score extra workout motivation, there’s an app for that…and a fitness tracker…and a new-fangled gadget. Overwhelmed yet? With the world of health technology exploding every day, it’s no secret that sifting through your options to get to the good stuff can be a chore. RELATED: 19 Reasons to Work Out (Beyond the Perfect Body) That’s why we did the legwork for you and went straight to the experts for their picks. These are the tech tools your favorite doctors, trainers, nutritionists and bloggers rely on to reach their health and fitness goals. We found the best app to track your high-intensity interval training, the easiest way to count calories and the best tool to actually help you run faster. Plus, they’ve all been tested by trusted experts and bloggers, so you can bet they’re pretty darn good.

Your Go-to Gym Gadgets

[caption id="attachment_41811" align="alignnone" width="620"]The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used Photo: Pond5[/caption] 1. The PUSH Fitness Tracker Want to tone your arm muscles? PUSH is the first device designed to help you reach your strength training goals. Strap the band below your elbow, select an exercise and the tracker will give you feedback on the number of reps you’ve done — and how fast and powerfully you completed each one. “It measures power and velocity, eliminating the need to rely on a laser-focused coach’s eye or…watching your own reps,” says Jen Sinkler, author, personal trainer and owner of The Movement Minneapolis. “When speed slows down, it’s time to call it a day for that movement,” she says. ($189; trainwithpush.com) 2. The Ithlete App So how do you really know if your body has recovered from yesterday’s workout? James Cotter, former professional triathlete and founder of Hard Yards relies on ithlete to make sure he’s not overtraining. “This helps all athletes arrive at the start line fresher and helps you avoid becoming overly fatigued during bigger training blocks,” Cotter says. Using a heart rate monitor or finger sensor, the app measures your heart rate variability — the time between your heartbeats when you’re at rest. If the variation is minimal, then, according to the app, you’re ready to train. If your body is burned out, it’ll tell you to take a rest day. “Being an athlete involves being able to show up on key training days and races ready to perform,” Cotter says. ($8.99; myithlete.com) RELATED: 7 New Recovery Tools You’ll Love to Hate 3. The Tabata Pro App If you love HIIT training, you know how annoying it is to fumble with your watch to track your intervals. Luckily, the Tabata Pro app will do that for you. (The burpees are up to you.) Celebrity trainer and author of The 20-Minute Body Brett Hoebel says, “My 20-Minute Body classes require different timed intervals and music. This app allows for many different types of intervals as well as playing my favorite playlists over [the] timer noises.” ($2.99; simpletouchsoftware.com) 4. The Skulpt Aim Device Pretty sure your BMI isn’t telling you the whole story? Skulpt Aim is a handheld device that uses electrical impulses to measure your body fat and muscle tone, from your pecs to your calves. “I’ve been using it monthly to track my progress in the gym,” says Tamara Grand, personal trainer, group fitness instructor and online fitness coach. “I love that it allows you to compare the left and right sides of the body.” The result? The ability to spot imbalances and work toward a more balanced physique. ($149; store.skulpt.me) RELATED: 5 Ways to Test for Muscle Imbalances and Avoid Injury

Your Health and Weight Loss Arsenal

[caption id="attachment_41818" align="alignnone" width="620"]The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used Photo: Pond5[/caption] 5. The Handpick App Need recipe inspiration for that Swiss chard wilting in your veggie drawer? Whip it into a delicious dish using this database of over 10,000 food items and recipes on the Handpick app. “Some people get stuck preparing the same meals all the time, so an app that can encourage you to infuse fresh ideas into the mix is a great tool,” says celebrity chef Paula Hankin. The coolest feature? You can browse a curated feed of recipes based on the best drool-worthy food pics from Instagram. (Free; handpick.com) RELATED: 12 Brilliant Meal Prep Ideas to Free Up Your Time 6. The Sleep Cycle App If you still feel groggy after a full night’s rest, put down your coffee and download the Sleep Cycle app now. “It’s an alarm clock that tracks your sleep patterns and wakes you up during light sleep,” say Lori Morris and Michelle Corso, the sisters behind the health and fitness blog Purely Twins. The app, which tracks your movements using your phone’s accelerometer, claims to gently nudge you awake only when you’re in a light sleep phase (your body’s natural waking point). The result: You’ll actually get out of bed feeling refreshed. ($0.99; sleepcycle.com) 7. My Fitness Pal Whether you’re trying to lose weight or just keep a food diary, My Fitness Pal makes it easy with more than five million foods in its tracking database. Matt Orlando, the blogger behind The Runner Dad, used the calorie counting tool to lose about 20 pounds. “It allowed me to easily set calorie and fitness goals, track my daily intake and automatically import the data provided by my running watch to help me track my health,” he says. Meanwhile, Jesica D’Avanza, author of the blog rUnladylike, relies on the app to stay on top of her nutrition. “My Fitness Pal is incredibly helpful for keeping track of the food I eat to ensure that, as an athlete, I’m getting the right mix of proteins, carbs and fats as well as eating enough calories for the amount of physical activity I’m doing,” says the runner, triathlete and marathon coach. (Free; myfitnesspal.com) RELATED: The 10 Biggest Diet Mistakes, According to Experts

Your Running Toolkit

[caption id="attachment_41821" align="alignnone" width="620"]The Health Gadgets That Experts Wish You Used Photo: Pond5[/caption] 8. The Spring Moves App There’s no doubt the right music can put a spring in your step. With Spring Moves, you can more easily match your running cadence to your tunes. All you have to do is run to the beat to stay on track. “As a sports doc, I love this app for my patients since I’m always trying to get them to quicken their cadence and shorten their stride, thereby reducing their risk of injury,” says Dr. Jordan Metzl, sports medicine doctor and creator of the Ironstrength Workout. “It’s much more user-friendly than counting steps.” (Free; springmoves.com) 9. The Strava App If a little healthy competition is what motivates you, then Strava is the app for you. With Strava, you can compare your runs (or rides) against your past efforts, or go head-to-head with others in the community. “It’s the perfect app for anyone who has a competitive edge, whether you are competing against yourself to beat your best time or looking at the long list of athletes who beat you on the big climb or portion of your run or ride,” says Jamie King, CEO and founder of FitApproach and SweatGuru. (Free; strava.com) RELATED: Hate Running? 25 Ways to Learn to Love It 10. Bluetooth Headphones There’s nothing worse than getting tangled up in your headphone cords when you’re out for a run. That’s why Caroline Kaufman, MS, RDN relies on her Motorola bluetooth headphones. “[They] make it so much easier to head outside for a walk or run without being tethered to your phone or strapping on some uncomfortable, sweaty, ill-fitting armband,” she says. “You can listen to music and take phone calls without touching your phone.” ($43.95; amazon.com) 11. GPS Running Watch Some runners may say that a GPS running watch isn’t just a cool technology — it’s a necessary one. At a basic level, these watches track distance, pace and time. But opinions are split as to which device does it all best. Several run-nerds we spoke with swear by their Garmins, including Jeff Gaudette, Head Coach and founder of RunnersConnect. “There's nothing more important than getting an accurate time, distance and pace for your run and Garmin makes some sleek watches that get the job done,” says Gaudette. Meanwhile, King recommends the Suunto Ambit2, an integrated GPS and heart rate monitor. “This GPS watch truly does it all — from recording workouts, heart rate monitoring and even weather functions,” she says. You can also download running apps designed to improve your performance directly to your watch. And if you want to monitor your heart rate but hate wearing a chest strap, check out the TomTom Runner Watch. Orlando says it’s his favorite piece of fitness technology because it accurately tracks his stats and easily syncs to his phone and apps like My Fitness Pal. Amanda Brooks, the voice of the blog Run To The Finish, depends on her TomTom to help her stick to her training methodology. “As someone who follows low heart rate training, I have fallen head over heels for the TomTom Runner watch,” she says. “It measures heart rate through the watch strap, removing the need to wear that infuriating chest strap!”

Disclosure: All products featured on our site are carefully selected and vetted in the hopes of getting you closer to your health and fitness goals. In some cases, you might come across an affiliate link on our site, which means we receive a small commission should you decide to make a purchase. 

The post 11 Health Gadgets Experts Wish You’d Use appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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5 Sun Safety Apps for Monitoring UV Index https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/sun-safety-apps-for-uv-index/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/sun-safety-apps-for-uv-index/#respond Sun, 24 May 2015 11:15:54 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=30498 Sun Safety Apps for UV Index

[caption id="attachment_30499" align="alignnone" width="620"]5 Sun Safety Apps for Monitoring UV Index Photo: Pond5[/caption]

Spoiler alert: Even on cool summer days, you still need to layer on sunscreen to avoid ending up with a red-hot burn. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation levels, which cause sunburn, can still harm you even if it isn’t sunny and warm outside. There’s no correlation between UV levels and temperature, so the sun’s rays can singe you during both winter and summer! And though laying out on the beach may feel great, excessive UV exposure can lead to cataracts, premature skin aging, sunburn and skin cancer, which is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States. If you spend time outside during any season, it’s important to know when your skin is most at risk for sun damage.

Fortunately, there’s an app for that. New smartphone tools can provide detailed predictions on what times of day are most dangerous to be outside, based on the UV index. A scale from zero (least dangerous) to 11 (most dangerous), UV index is calculated by accounting for sunlight angle, forecasted cloud cover, elevation and ozone throughout the day.

RELATED: 7 Must-Have Products for Sun Protection

Use these apps to figure out when you are most vulnerable to burning. Plus, we’ve got one that will help you monitor your moles just in case you already spent a little too much time outside.

 The Best Apps for UV Index and Skin Safety

1. Wolfram Sun Exposure Reference AppWolfram
Based on your skin type, what SPF you’re wearing and the UV forecast for your location, this comprehensive app can predict exactly how long you can stay in the sun before burning. Organizing a trip to the shore? Check out a five-day UV forecast displayed on a map, and find out what hours each day you should minimize sun exposure. ($0.99; available for iOS)

 

2. Ultraviolet ~ UV IndexUltraviolet UV index
Keep things simple with this cool tracker, which displays the current UV index in your area using a large, vibrantly colored circle. Blues and greens mean you’re in the clear while reds and purples mean a dangerously high index. General sun safety advice will tip you off for when it’s time to put on a hat, apply sunscreen or avoid going outside altogether. Just the bare necessities for when you’re bare at the beach. (Free; available for iOS)

 

3. EPA’s SunWise UV IndexSunWise
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency designed this easy-to-navigate application, which delivers location-based UV index information. Ideal for plan-ahead types, the most useful feature is the color-coded hourly forecast that makes it easy to spot when the UV index is highest. (Free; available for iOS and Android)

 

4. TANtasticTantastic
Heading to the beach or a tanning bed to bronze is never a good idea. Instead of using this app to tan, repurpose it to help you be smarter about sun exposure. TANtastic gives a five-day UV index and weather forecast, including temperature, wind, humidity and chance of rain. Keep your sun minutes to a minimum by using the tool’s timer to remind you when to reapply sunscreen or seek shade. (Free; available for iOS)

 

5. Doctor Mole – Skin Cancer AppDoctor Mole
Even SPF junkies need to monitor their moles for changes. If you’ve had at least five sunburns, your risk for melanoma will double, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. Though moles can be benign, it’s essential to monitor the size and shape of the small brown spots on your body in case they do become cancerous. Enter Doctor Mole, an app that assesses your moles’ border, color and diameter. There’s an archive for images so you can determine if and how your moles are changing and whether it’s time to see a health care professional. ($4.99; available for iOS and Android)

 

Originally posted on August 4, 2014. Updated on May 2015. 

The post 5 Sun Safety Apps for Monitoring UV Index appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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Sun Safety Apps for UV Index

[caption id="attachment_30499" align="alignnone" width="620"]5 Sun Safety Apps for Monitoring UV Index Photo: Pond5[/caption] Spoiler alert: Even on cool summer days, you still need to layer on sunscreen to avoid ending up with a red-hot burn. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation levels, which cause sunburn, can still harm you even if it isn’t sunny and warm outside. There’s no correlation between UV levels and temperature, so the sun’s rays can singe you during both winter and summer! And though laying out on the beach may feel great, excessive UV exposure can lead to cataracts, premature skin aging, sunburn and skin cancer, which is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States. If you spend time outside during any season, it’s important to know when your skin is most at risk for sun damage. Fortunately, there’s an app for that. New smartphone tools can provide detailed predictions on what times of day are most dangerous to be outside, based on the UV index. A scale from zero (least dangerous) to 11 (most dangerous), UV index is calculated by accounting for sunlight angle, forecasted cloud cover, elevation and ozone throughout the day. RELATED: 7 Must-Have Products for Sun Protection Use these apps to figure out when you are most vulnerable to burning. Plus, we’ve got one that will help you monitor your moles just in case you already spent a little too much time outside.

 The Best Apps for UV Index and Skin Safety

1. Wolfram Sun Exposure Reference AppWolfram Based on your skin type, what SPF you’re wearing and the UV forecast for your location, this comprehensive app can predict exactly how long you can stay in the sun before burning. Organizing a trip to the shore? Check out a five-day UV forecast displayed on a map, and find out what hours each day you should minimize sun exposure. ($0.99; available for iOS)   2. Ultraviolet ~ UV IndexUltraviolet UV index Keep things simple with this cool tracker, which displays the current UV index in your area using a large, vibrantly colored circle. Blues and greens mean you’re in the clear while reds and purples mean a dangerously high index. General sun safety advice will tip you off for when it’s time to put on a hat, apply sunscreen or avoid going outside altogether. Just the bare necessities for when you’re bare at the beach. (Free; available for iOS)   3. EPA’s SunWise UV IndexSunWise The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency designed this easy-to-navigate application, which delivers location-based UV index information. Ideal for plan-ahead types, the most useful feature is the color-coded hourly forecast that makes it easy to spot when the UV index is highest. (Free; available for iOS and Android)   4. TANtasticTantastic Heading to the beach or a tanning bed to bronze is never a good idea. Instead of using this app to tan, repurpose it to help you be smarter about sun exposure. TANtastic gives a five-day UV index and weather forecast, including temperature, wind, humidity and chance of rain. Keep your sun minutes to a minimum by using the tool’s timer to remind you when to reapply sunscreen or seek shade. (Free; available for iOS)   5. Doctor Mole – Skin Cancer AppDoctor Mole Even SPF junkies need to monitor their moles for changes. If you’ve had at least five sunburns, your risk for melanoma will double, according to the Skin Cancer Foundation. Though moles can be benign, it’s essential to monitor the size and shape of the small brown spots on your body in case they do become cancerous. Enter Doctor Mole, an app that assesses your moles’ border, color and diameter. There’s an archive for images so you can determine if and how your moles are changing and whether it’s time to see a health care professional. ($4.99; available for iOS and Android)   Originally posted on August 4, 2014. Updated on May 2015. 

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What Apple’s New ResearchKit Means for Your Health https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/news-researchkit-apple-health-apps-031215/ https://dailyburn.com/life/tech/news-researchkit-apple-health-apps-031215/#respond Thu, 12 Mar 2015 13:15:10 +0000 http://dailyburn.com/life/?p=38125 Wearables vs. Smartphones: Which Is More Accurate?

[caption id="attachment_38129" align="alignnone" width="620"]Apple Health Apps ResearchKit Photo: Apple.com[/caption]

You probably know at least one of the millions of Americans affected by asthma, diabetes, breast cancer, heart disease or Parkinson’s. Despite the prevalence of these illnesses, it’s not always easy for researchers to gather the data essential to understanding and treating these conditions. Now, that may change. This week, Apple announced a new tool, ResearchKit, which aims to revolutionize medical research by allowing you to sign up for clinical trails through your iPhone.

RELATED: Apple Watch Promises to Change Your Workouts Forever

That’s right: Medical research just got way more mainstream. ResearchKit is an open access (translation: available to anyone) tool that makes it easy for doctors and researchers to build health apps — even if they aren’t super tech savvy. “This dramatically lowers the barrier of entry for physicians and researchers to design their own apps,” says Dr. Stanley Shaw, a physician at Massachusetts General Hospital and co-director of the Center for Assessment, Technology and Continuous Health (CATCH). Shaw worked with ResearchKit to design GlucoSuccess, a clinical trial app geared towards people with type 2 diabetes.

Here’s why Apple’s latest announcement might be a game changer for the medical research world — and for patients, too.

Making Clinical Trials Bigger and Better

Start reorganizing your iPhone app folders. Thanks to ResearchKit, there are now five free apps available to people wishing to participate in clinical trials via their phone: GlucoSuccess, Asthma Health, mPower, for Parkinson’s patients, Share the Journey, for breast cancer patients, and My Heart Counts, which helps analyze cardiovascular disease risk. After consenting to become a part of the trial, users will receive instructions as to how often they should use the app. Data entry can be as easy as reporting how they felt or what they ate that day, or as involved as doing a series of simple tasks on their iPhone screen, depending on the app.

"In the first 12 to 24 hours, over 4,000 individuals signed up to participate and downloaded the app."

Since even your grandma might own a smartphone by now, researchers are getting access to a massive pool of study participants. Especially compared to standard clinical trials, which are typically done only in large, urban medical centers. “In the traditional trials, the findings may only be applicable to, for example, the Upper East Side [of New York City]. With this, the results are generalizable to the U.S. or the globe,” says Dr. Yvonne Chan, an emergency medicine physician at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, who led work on their Asthma Health app. “It’s kind of mind-boggling.”

RELATED: Apple HealthKit: Trainer, Doctor and Nutritionist in One?

Furthermore, most clinical trials collect data only periodically, requiring people to recall behaviors or symptoms that occurred over the past months or weeks — and self-reported data can be unreliable. Can you remember how many servings of fruit you ate last month? We didn’t think so.

“It’s really updating public health research from the era of questionnaires to using the smartphone as a way to collect data,” Shaw says. “We will understand how individuals respond differently to activity, dietary components and other things like whether they are taking their medications, and we’ll be able to analyze this over what we hope will be tens of thousand of people.”

Dr. Ray Dorsey, a professor of neurology and co-director of the Center for Human Experimental Therapeutics at the University of Rochester Medical Center, says they’ve already seen impressive levels of interest in their mPower Parkinson’s app. “In the first 12 to 24 hours, over 4,000 individuals signed up to participate and downloaded the app. That’s unprecedented. By comparison, the largest clinical trial [up until now] was 1,700 people.”

Worried about privacy? Apple says they won’t be looking at any of your data. Plus, each app has special precautions in place to protect the identity of the user. (For example, by giving out participant ID numbers, rather than identifying users by their full name.)

[caption id="attachment_38136" align="alignnone" width="620"]Apple Health Apps ResearchKit Photo: Apple.com[/caption]

ResearchKit: Improving Care for Millions

Wondering what’s in it for you? ResearchKit isn’t just about making life easier for your doctor. It also aims to empower patients to better manage long-term diseases. For people with diabetes, the app could help them pinpoint which habits they should ramp up (or tone down) to keep their glucose levels in check.

“It will break down their best glucose days and compare them to their worst glucose

days,’ Shaw says. “You might say, ‘I see on the app that I walk 700 more steps on days when my glucose is in the best control.’ That may help encourage them to form a habit.”

RELATED: The 11 Best Yoga Apps to Get Fit on the Cheap

Asthma sufferers may learn more about how seasonality, or even pollution affects their symptoms. Chan says she hopes to eventually develop algorithms that will allow the app to advise users on how to avoid triggers. “We are hoping to gain access to a lot of objective data from location specific GPS, on environmental pollution.”

And Parkinson’s patients may be able to finally pinpoint the things that increase or decrease the symptoms of their disease. “The app has four ways of measuring [symptoms]: one is voice, the second is speed of movement by tapping on the app, the third if the ability to use accelerometers and gyroscopes in the smartphone to measure posture by standing still for 30 seconds, and the fourth is to measure gait,” Dorsey says.

In the future, Dorsey hopes the app will allow participants to determine which behaviors — like sleep, physical activity, or taking medications — ease their symptoms. “They can exercise and come home and do the tapping test to see if their speed is better or not,” Dorsey says.

Perhaps most exciting, the information coming from these apps could change the way these diseases are treated in the future. “We think this data and having objective sensitive measures will make the development of new drugs and devices faster and more efficient,” Dorsey says. “We’ll be able to tell if they’re working.”

For more information about Apple’s ResearchKit apps, head to apple.com/researchkit.

The post What Apple’s New ResearchKit Means for Your Health appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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Wearables vs. Smartphones: Which Is More Accurate?

[caption id="attachment_38129" align="alignnone" width="620"]Apple Health Apps ResearchKit Photo: Apple.com[/caption] You probably know at least one of the millions of Americans affected by asthma, diabetes, breast cancer, heart disease or Parkinson’s. Despite the prevalence of these illnesses, it’s not always easy for researchers to gather the data essential to understanding and treating these conditions. Now, that may change. This week, Apple announced a new tool, ResearchKit, which aims to revolutionize medical research by allowing you to sign up for clinical trails through your iPhone. RELATED: Apple Watch Promises to Change Your Workouts Forever That’s right: Medical research just got way more mainstream. ResearchKit is an open access (translation: available to anyone) tool that makes it easy for doctors and researchers to build health apps — even if they aren’t super tech savvy. “This dramatically lowers the barrier of entry for physicians and researchers to design their own apps,” says Dr. Stanley Shaw, a physician at Massachusetts General Hospital and co-director of the Center for Assessment, Technology and Continuous Health (CATCH). Shaw worked with ResearchKit to design GlucoSuccess, a clinical trial app geared towards people with type 2 diabetes. Here’s why Apple’s latest announcement might be a game changer for the medical research world — and for patients, too.

Making Clinical Trials Bigger and Better

Start reorganizing your iPhone app folders. Thanks to ResearchKit, there are now five free apps available to people wishing to participate in clinical trials via their phone: GlucoSuccess, Asthma Health, mPower, for Parkinson’s patients, Share the Journey, for breast cancer patients, and My Heart Counts, which helps analyze cardiovascular disease risk. After consenting to become a part of the trial, users will receive instructions as to how often they should use the app. Data entry can be as easy as reporting how they felt or what they ate that day, or as involved as doing a series of simple tasks on their iPhone screen, depending on the app.
"In the first 12 to 24 hours, over 4,000 individuals signed up to participate and downloaded the app."
Since even your grandma might own a smartphone by now, researchers are getting access to a massive pool of study participants. Especially compared to standard clinical trials, which are typically done only in large, urban medical centers. “In the traditional trials, the findings may only be applicable to, for example, the Upper East Side [of New York City]. With this, the results are generalizable to the U.S. or the globe,” says Dr. Yvonne Chan, an emergency medicine physician at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, who led work on their Asthma Health app. “It’s kind of mind-boggling.” RELATED: Apple HealthKit: Trainer, Doctor and Nutritionist in One? Furthermore, most clinical trials collect data only periodically, requiring people to recall behaviors or symptoms that occurred over the past months or weeks — and self-reported data can be unreliable. Can you remember how many servings of fruit you ate last month? We didn’t think so. “It’s really updating public health research from the era of questionnaires to using the smartphone as a way to collect data,” Shaw says. “We will understand how individuals respond differently to activity, dietary components and other things like whether they are taking their medications, and we’ll be able to analyze this over what we hope will be tens of thousand of people.” Dr. Ray Dorsey, a professor of neurology and co-director of the Center for Human Experimental Therapeutics at the University of Rochester Medical Center, says they’ve already seen impressive levels of interest in their mPower Parkinson’s app. “In the first 12 to 24 hours, over 4,000 individuals signed up to participate and downloaded the app. That’s unprecedented. By comparison, the largest clinical trial [up until now] was 1,700 people.” Worried about privacy? Apple says they won’t be looking at any of your data. Plus, each app has special precautions in place to protect the identity of the user. (For example, by giving out participant ID numbers, rather than identifying users by their full name.) [caption id="attachment_38136" align="alignnone" width="620"]Apple Health Apps ResearchKit Photo: Apple.com[/caption]

ResearchKit: Improving Care for Millions

Wondering what’s in it for you? ResearchKit isn’t just about making life easier for your doctor. It also aims to empower patients to better manage long-term diseases. For people with diabetes, the app could help them pinpoint which habits they should ramp up (or tone down) to keep their glucose levels in check. “It will break down their best glucose days and compare them to their worst glucose days,’ Shaw says. “You might say, ‘I see on the app that I walk 700 more steps on days when my glucose is in the best control.’ That may help encourage them to form a habit.” RELATED: The 11 Best Yoga Apps to Get Fit on the Cheap Asthma sufferers may learn more about how seasonality, or even pollution affects their symptoms. Chan says she hopes to eventually develop algorithms that will allow the app to advise users on how to avoid triggers. “We are hoping to gain access to a lot of objective data from location specific GPS, on environmental pollution.” And Parkinson’s patients may be able to finally pinpoint the things that increase or decrease the symptoms of their disease. “The app has four ways of measuring [symptoms]: one is voice, the second is speed of movement by tapping on the app, the third if the ability to use accelerometers and gyroscopes in the smartphone to measure posture by standing still for 30 seconds, and the fourth is to measure gait,” Dorsey says. In the future, Dorsey hopes the app will allow participants to determine which behaviors — like sleep, physical activity, or taking medications — ease their symptoms. “They can exercise and come home and do the tapping test to see if their speed is better or not,” Dorsey says. Perhaps most exciting, the information coming from these apps could change the way these diseases are treated in the future. “We think this data and having objective sensitive measures will make the development of new drugs and devices faster and more efficient,” Dorsey says. “We’ll be able to tell if they’re working.” For more information about Apple’s ResearchKit apps, head to apple.com/researchkit.

The post What Apple’s New ResearchKit Means for Your Health appeared first on Life by Daily Burn.

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