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Click here for fitness

I’d be interested in learning how many of you that read last week’s article explored some of the fitness sites mentioned and decided to get started. For those who did take the leap into the world of online fitness, well done! Getting started on a fitness regime isn’t always easy and being able to set goals and visually measure our success provides us with necessary motivation to keep on going.

Before starting any fitness plan ensure that you have all the necessary information to plan your fitness strategy and do so carrying out the necessary research on a reputable site such as www.mayoclinic.com/health/fitness.

There are a few key performance indicators (KPI) tracked when trying to assess one’s overall state of well being; weight, heart rate, BMI (body mass index), caloric intake and calories burned are a few of the primary metrics used.

Last week, we mentioned a few devices you can purchase that complement the online fitness tracking sites that you may be using and we’ll look at how those will help you to benchmark and track progress of the KPI’s mentioned above.

Weight & BMI

The Withings Wi-Fi Body Scale uses biometric impedance analysis to determine individual body make-up. This is no ordinary scale, but acts as a wellness management tool capable of tracking and storing results on a personal webpage that only the owner can access. Results from the scale can be programmed to upload scale data to certain online fitness management sites, so be sure to identify these in advance to ensure they will interface with your preferred fitness site.

Withings claim their data is more accurate than the traditional house scale and will produce results within 100 grams of actual weight and/or body mass. They provide results in pounds, kilograms or stones depending on your preference and each device can support results for up to 8 users, so the whole family can participate and they can also measure your BMI as well.


Heart Rate & Caloric Expenditure

Polar heart rate monitoring devices are designed to meet the needs of everyone from the new fitness buff to the advanced athlete. Whether you’re a cyclist, runner, walker or Zumba lover there’s a device available based on your individual workout needs.

Polar watches can measure both heart rate activity and tell you how many calories you have burned during your workout.

These devices can be customised to suit your individual style, allowing you to upload logos and other set predetermined goals. Their progressive software provides consumers with performance statistics and will assist you in taking your fitness plan to the next level as your stamina increases and your goalpost needs to be moved.

To get started, identify which device best identifies with your preferred physical activity and the current stage of your fitness programme; for example the RS100 is designed for ”beginners who want basic heart rate and timing features”.

Useful website: www.polar.fi/en

Next week we’ll look at how gaming can help keep us fit.

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Published March 14, 2012 at 2:00 am (Updated March 14, 2012 at 9:17 am)

Click here for fitness

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