We all know that an active lifestyle is critical to our physical and mental health.
Basic activity of walking is one of the best ways to maintain your overall health! The recommended daily target is 10,000 steps. If you work in a office like me, you’d be lucky to hit 3,000-5,000 steps on an average day. This is not good for your physical OR mental health. The good news is that there are plenty of Self Health apps and devices out there that will help you to gather data on your physical activity, ready to go straight away!
There is a great App called SHealth on the Samsung Galaxy S5. This App does not require any wearable equipment, simply turn it on and it tracks the steps you take throughout the day. The beauty of this Device is the same App also has the capability to measure your Heart Rate, Stress (through HRV), Food Intake, Weight and Exercise sessions. There are numerous other similar apps available with step tracking functionality – if you haven’t already, try one out.
Apple has released a similar Health app on iOS 8, with the added bonus of HealthKit. Healthkit is a tool that allows users to pool data from multiple Apps, and view them in the one location. This is a critical part of the Optimisation phase – more on this later!
If you don’t have a smartphone, then Fitbit Flex Wireless Activity + Sleep Wristband is a great entry level alternative. Fitbit is a great integrative tool that quantifies your overall activity and sleep health. Features Include:
- Tracks steps, distance, calories burned and active minutes
- Monitor how long and well you sleep
- Wakes you (and not your partner) with a silent wake alarm
- LED lights show how your day is stacking up against your goal
- Slim, comfortable and easy to wear (sold with both large and small wristbands included)
- Includes small and large wristbands
If you’re looking for the top of the line health monitor, my favourite is the Basis Peak Watch. This watch requires no chest strap, and tracks your activity, sleep, stress 24/7. This watch features and Optical Heart Rate Sensor, Galvanic Skin Response, Skin Temperature, 3-Axis Accelerometer. The activity tracker automatically transitions from walking, running and cycling to keep all your activity data in the one place. It even tells you when you’ve been sitting still for too long, giving you a reminder to get your lymphatic system pumping! It syncs with most smart phones, and has a 4 day battery life (superior to most competitor watches!). One of the most exciting things about this watch is the automatic sleep tracking, which provides invaluable insights into your sleep cycles – which will help you to hack your sleep.
All of the tools mentioned on this page will give you a valuable window to view your health. This is a short, targeted list of the tools that I recommend for monitoring your activity.
The next step is to review the data and make targeted changes to Optimise your health.