The year is 2021, and we are rapidly approaching our twelfth month of the pandemic. For some, getting to the gym is out of the question. Heck, for some, getting off of the couch is out of the question at this point! It has been a long (Covid-laden) run, and the finish line’s location is vague. Some days, it even feels like it might be a mirage. That being said, it can be exceedingly difficult these days to find motivation for maintaining fitness, health, and nutrition. So, what is one to do?
If you have noticed that your waistline has… well… changed, or that your pre-pandemic fitness routine has been pushed to the wayside, perhaps it is time to consider the use of technology to help you get motivated and help you to reach your goals. You can track your fitness progress and health stats with wearable technology. This is super helpful in achieving your goals because most fitness trackers will send you reminders if you fall behind and help hold you accountable. They also may give you a sense of accomplishment by showing progress over time.
You can also explore and partake in various fitness classes, workouts, and the like with fitness apps. The best part is that these can be done at the gym or in your living room, so there are no excuses! Some of the best fitness apps on the market are literally at your fingertips, making your health and well-being pandemic-proof. Read on to learn more.
BEST FITNESS TRACKERS:
1. Fitbit Inspire 2
If you are reading this article, chances are you have wondered, what is the best fitness tracker? The market is saturated with a wide range of options that have a wide variety of features and price points. We have landed on the Fitbit Inspire 2 as our top pick because it covers a lot of ground without breaking the bank. For under $100 ($68.95, to be exact), you get all of the essentials, such as tracking heart rate variability, sleeping respiration, and activity. It is also super sleek and attractive. You can easily change the band from silicone to something fancier and get this – the battery can last as long as TEN DAYS. Yes, you read that correctly. The only thing the Inspire 2 appears to be missing from its competitors is GPS, but who doesn’t already have that on their cell phone?
2. Garmin Vivoactive 4
Okay, so if you can’t live without the GPS feature and have a bit bigger of a budget, maybe the GPS device pioneer is more your speed. The Garmin Vivoactive 4 rings in at $349. So, you could buy nearly five Fitbit Inspire 2 fitness trackers for the price of a single Vivoactive 4. What gives? Well, it does come with a ton of fancy features. To say that this device is made to track fitness is kind of like saying your iPhone is made to make phone calls. It doesn’t really tell the entire story.
The Vivoactive 4 also has music functionality (including Spotify, Amazon Music, and Deezer) and a color touchscreen display. You can (manually) track your hydration and liquid intake. In conjunction, the device automatically estimates your sweat loss post-workout (cool!). Like the Inspire 2, the Vivoactive 4 includes tracking your respiration rate for the day and sleep metrics. Additionally, it has breathwork exercises, workout animation functionality, built-in Yoga and Pilates workouts, blood oxygen tracking, and of course, GPS. The battery life averages about eight days. Not bad!
For some, no matter how great the features are, wearing a watch (especially while working out) is just too much. We are about to blow your mind with this one. Did you know that health tracker rings are now a thing? How cool is that?! If you are intrigued, you need to check out the Ōura. This sleek and custom-sized titanium ring looks like any other ring band on the outside. The inside, where it makes contact with your finger, is equipped with advanced sensors to capture your resting heart rate, HRV (heart rate variability), body temperature, and calorie burn. The price point is $299, and it comes in silver, black, or diamond. All finishes are scratch-resistant and water-resistant.
BEST FITNESS APPS:
Fitness trackers are awesome, and can easily be used in conjunction with workout apps. Below are three of our favorites.
1. Alo Moves
Alo Moves gets our votes because for $20 per month (which is about the cost of just one yoga class at a studio), you will get unlimited access to yoga, fitness, and meditation classes led by pro instructors. The fitness classes are actually pretty diverse and include strength, barre, Pilates, HIIT, and more. You are given enough content to never be bored and always try something new. That ought to help with fitness motivation!
If you came into the pandemic as a group exercise enthusiast, Obé might be just what you need to keep up your workout routine. This fitness app is awesome because it offers live and on-demand classes so that you will be working out with actual people and actual instructors in real-time. Class offerings include Pilates, yoga, barre, cardio dance, cardio boxing, HIIT, and strength training. The price point is a bit higher ($27 per month) but still less than most gym memberships or the cost of dropping into in-person classes at a studio.
If you are “too busy” to exercise, we have got some great news for you! The Seven app was designed to make every minute count. Every workout included in the app is just seven minutes long and requires no equipment. The exercises are all rooted in HIIT (high-intensity interval training), which has been proven to be extremely effective, as it trains your metabolism to be revving all day long. The price point is great! (Only $9.99 per month, with an option to purchase for the year at just $59.99).