We all want to be fitter and healthier. The New Year often provides an opportunity or a starting point for people to kickstart their self-improvement regimes and, like many other New Year’s Resolutions, they don’t make it past January.
It can be hard to keep up motivation and stick to your fitness plans. However, there are a wealth of connected accessories and apps for iOS that help to make keeping on top of your health and fitness a little easier.
Here are some of the best accessories and apps currently available for getting fit and staying healthy. Hopefully we’ll be able to add an Apple iWatch to this list in the near future.
Nike+ Fuelband SE
The Nike+ FuelBand SE allows you to track your daily activity level by gaining NikeFuel – a unique metric that applies to whole-body movement no matter age, gender or weight. This might be a little confusing as it does not necessarily translate to calories burned or distances covered but it is a useful way to measure your general activity level. With the FuelBand, and the accompanying iOS app, you can set a daily goal and see your progress with its display lights and LED display. The display shows time as well as goal information and has a simple one-button mechanism to cycle through info. The FuelBand app allows for more detailed info and stat tracking over time. The Nike+ FuelBand SE Available in a few sizes and colors to fit most wrists and tastes.
The UP24 is the sequel to the popular, yet troubled, Jawbone UP launched in 2011/2012 with a tweaked design and some added features. The UP24 is a water-resistant fitness tracker with a number of modes for tracking different activities and sleep as well as vibrating to act as a reminder if the wearer has been sedentary for too long. Rather than having to physically connect the wristband to your computer or iOS device like its predecessor, the UP24 now has built in Bluetooth LE connectivity and can sync with the accompanying iPhone app wirelessly. This impacts on the battery life and the wristband should run for about a week on a single charge, less than the previous model, but it’s much more convenient. The UP24 can link in with many third-party apps too like IFTTT, LoseIt! and MyFitnessPal making for a decent accessory to center your health around.
Misfit was one of the lesser know names in the iOS fitness accessories space but their offerings are actually pretty impressive. The Shine is a unique take on the activity tracking accessory, opting for a small disc-like design (about the size of three quarters stacked) instead of a sports wristband. The waterproof little disc can be magnetically clipped onto clothing, shoes or there is a wristband option if that’s your preference. The data it gathers is synced with the accompanying app via Bluetooth LE which interprets your activity to give you a detailed overview of how active you are. One advantage of is battery life – the Shine can run for up to 6 months on a single (replaceable) battery. The Shine’s has no screen but built-in LEDs show the time or your goal progress on the face of the device and the data it collects can be seen in the app.
ARGUS is a sophisticated and feature-packed activity and calorie tracker. The app can track daily steps, active calories, food diary with photo snapping, GPS mapping of runs or cycling, sleep time as well as supporting data from a number of third-party fitness devices. ARGUS makes for a one-stop app for all of your fitness and health tracking needs.
Free – Download now
Nike+ Running, as the name suggests, tracks your runs and helps you to set and reach goals. The app provides run measurement, progress tracking and helps to motivate you too. Whether you’re running outdoors or at the gym on the treadmill, Nike+ Running tracks your pace, distance and time with in-run audio to keep you updated without looking at the screen. Share runs and get encouragement when friends interact with your social posts (like retweets or likes) and set a power playlist or power song to push you to run further.
Free – Download now
Moves automatically tracks your everyday exercise, commuting and time spent in important places. Moves can keep track of walking, cycling and running, recognise the places in your daily life (like home or work), count steps and calories burned. What’s unique about Moves is how it presents your day back to you in a simple timeline showing how much you moved (or didn’t move) and how long you spent in different locations.
$2.99/£1.99 – Download now
Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker by MyFitnessPal
It’s not only the exercise you do that is important – it’s also about what you put into your body. MyFitnessPal’s Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker is one of the best ways to keep a track of what you’re eating and drinking with your iPhone. It’s database has info on over 3,000,000 foods (including a barcode scanning feature to quickly find foods) and makes entering items on your food diary quick and easy. You can track all important nutrients including calories, fat, protein, carbohydrates, sugar, fiber, cholesterol and so on. Add custom foods and recipes to better calculate the nutrients in the food you eat. You can keep a track of your progress too with weight, measurements and more, seeing your data charts over time and setting goals for the future.
Free – Download now