Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a trainer each day to put you through amazing personalized workouts, guide you toward great eating habits and keep track of what you have consumed? It’d also be ideal if this trainer didn’t come at a rate of $100 per hour, huh? Well, stop all that fantasizing and step into 2013, where technology can provide everything you need. Now, I’m not suggesting that the power of folks like me, who bark at folks like you in person, and, literally, yank the best out of you, are unnecessary. I’m just saying that there are plenty of cool, new tools ready and able to take the reigns and make this sometimes-confusing thing called “fitness” a reality for you.
Pear Sports has designed the perfect training tool for anyone trying to do better. Want to train for your first 5K or marathon? Want to pursue strength training? No problemo, Pear offers more than 300 training programs. Pear evaluates your heart rate and tells you—through elite coaches communicating through ear buds—when you should work harder, when you’re in the right zone and even when to slow down. For the price of one or two personal training sessions, it provides a lifelong coach to take you from one goal to the next. Use Pear as a download on your smart phone or buy a standalone Pear device.
Your cell phone likely has a ton of “smarty-pants” options, too! Instead of playing Words with Friends, Angry Birds or Fat Booth all day, spend a little time being productive toward your health and fitness goals. My Fitness Pal, Calorie-Count, Run Keeper, RunTastic, Cardio Trainer and others can help you count steps, log calories burned or consumed and more. Your phone can also play music and serve as a safety device if you ever need to call for help while out for a walk, jog or cycle. Feel like bragging about your big, sweaty accomplishments? Most apps have a “share” button so you can upload your stats. Won’t it be exciting when all of your Facebook friends “like” your workouts? Woohoo!
The Xbox 360 and Wii have also made training ridiculously accessible and fun. Depending on what games you get, you can train like a beast or a newbie. The boot camp workout on Your Shape: Fitness Evolved 2013 left me sweaty and cursing – a lot. Getting funky with some Just Dance games, though, is far more doable, requires far less vulgarity, is legitimate fun and still burns a bunch of calories. It’s a luxury to be able to vary these workouts based on my moods and energy levels. Do yoga, Zumba, Pilates and more with these games…right in your living room. I love them.
Your computer really is your other most important high-tech training tool. Sure, it compels you to kill hours on social media, but that thing can also become a positive. You can log calories and workouts on it, play music from it and find a bunch of killer workouts, too. Now I’d be a fool not to send you to my website, Fitzness.com. It’s chock full o’ short fitness videos designed to get your bum up and busy. I also have a Fitzness YouTube channel packed with the same. Sadly, I’m not the only game in town. If you don’t belong to a gym, and you don’t own a gaming console and you don’t have a Pear or a phone … YouTube is packed with free – yes, free – workout videos, training ideas and everything else you need to get moving. Just go there and start searching “ab workout,” “weight training,” “low-back stretches” or whatever else you want. You’ll find what you’re looking for.
Some believe we’d all be much fitter if we still hunted for our food and moved around massive boulders for work. Although I do believe those people were probably ripped, I don’t believe progress should hold us back from being equally fit. Instead of making excuses and using innovation as grounds for making your body lame, choose to make it your most powerful and convenient workout tool, coach and partner. Bill Gates, the late Steve Jobs and I would want you to. Now get to work!
Fitz Koehler, M.S.E.S.S, is a fitness expert who has taught around the globe for more than two decades. She is president of Fitzness International, which specializes in fitness education via mass media and fitness programming for children, MorningMile.com. Fitz has taught millions via TV, radio, books, magazines, seminars, corporate fitness presentations and through her online health and fitness magazine Fitzness.com. Email Fitzness@aol.com to inquire about having Fitz speak at your next corporate event or implement a full-blown fitness challenge.