I want to get fit and I’m developing my own programme, the Red Check Shirt Fitness Programme (!) to do it.
Over the last two years or so, I’ve amassed a few bits of kit which I’m going to use to try and help shift this goddamn #dadbelly. Some of them are genuinely inspirational and useful tools in the hunt for the lost pound, while others I’m a bit sceptical about.
Here are the weight loss gadgets and tools that I’m going to be using to try and lose weight.
Fitbit Charge 2
This is my favourite gadget. In case you don’t know, it’s a kind of digital wristwatch bracelet which monitors your activity, heart-rate and sleeping pattern. With an ease which even I can muster, it connects up to the Fitbit app on your phone / ipad / tablet / PC and all of your statistics can be accessed, interpreted and fed back to you in an easy to understand manner.
But there’s more. Through the app, you can set targets, keep a note of the food that you eat, and then use that info to figure out your calorie balance for the day. But is it any good in the battle of the bulge?
Well, yeah. I find targets to be motivational. Fitbit uses that, by setting goals for me to hit on a daily basis. This could be the amount of steps I have to do or the amount of flights of stairs I should be trying to climb. It’s also not shy to buzz you and remind you throughout the day that you should be getting up and walking. It’s a very popular device and there’s quite a few in the range. I’m confident that this will help me shift my #dadbelly.
I also have a Bluetooth heart monitor but that’s redundant given the superior functions of the Fitbit.
In principle, these are a brilliant idea. These awesome digital scales connect via Bluetooth to your gadget of choice and the app analyses your, produces stats and monitors your weight over time. The only trouble I’ve had with them is finding a suitable surface in my house to get a reliable reading.
It isn’t fair to suggest that this is a problem unique to these scales. It isn’t. It applies to all scales. The manual confirms that lino has too much spring to give an accurate or consistent reading. Carpets obviously have same problem, as does thin click-lock wooden flooring. That’s left me with very few places in the house where I can reliably weigh myself. I’m going to try placing the scales on top of an old cupboard door, on top of flooring in the hall. I reckon that will be the best I can manage.
Anyway, the scales are awesome.
Electric Stomach Muscle Stimulator
So, prior to publishing this blog, I’d written about how I was sceptical about these devices which work by giving your stomach muscles electric shocks, which stimulates them, giving them exercise. There are varying settings, going from a slight tingle up to damn-I-just-put-my-tongue-in-a-socket.
I mean, prior to putting this gadget and belt on, you’re meant to smear your belly with lubricant to aid the transfer of electrical charge. Someone’s having a laugh, aren’t they?
And then I saw a blog post linked to a tweet (http://muminanutshell.com/getting-rid-of-my-mum-tum-with-slendertone) which appears to show that it is a credible gadget after all.
It won’t work on it’s own, but the suggestion that it will help, along with exercise, is something that I will be taking on board.
I’ve written about the bike before. When used in conjunction with the Fitbit and a website like My Fitness Journey(!), it becomes a bloody good tool.
It is, by far, the largest gadget on my list. It’s also the one that is for exercising rather than monitoring or electrocution. To be frank, apart from trying to power walk during my lunch break, it’s my sole source of exercise.
The advantages are obvious. It’s indoors, so weather isn’t a factor. It’s private. You can do it while you’re watching the TV. You can use it to hang laundry on or prop the kitchen door open. The potential is limitless.
Resistance bands are a way to have a comprehensive, full-body workout in your own living room and can be used to challenge virtually every major muscle group in your body. It’s just as well. The reality is that I don’t have the time in my day-to-day life to fit in a visit to the gym, nor can I currently justify the cost.
Resistance bands themselves can be quite robust things, like mine from Gallant, or simple bands of stretchy durable plastic. Both are equally effective.
There are also loads of videos on Youtube which show you exercises to work on your belly.
So, these are the tools & gadgets at my disposal in my fight against my #dadbelly. Are there any more that I should be looking in to?