There have been hundreds of studies about how technology can improve your health, but a compelling new study in JMR Publications found that participants who used fitness apps were much more active compared to those who didn't and even had a lower body mass index. In light of this study, I wanted to share a few of my favorite health, fitness and wellness apps that have helped me a great deal over the years:
1) The “MyFitnessPal" app. This app includes a database of 5 million+ foods so you can easily track your food intake and also log the activity you do. It is a great way to get a sense of calorie intake, add your own recipes and figure out how many calories you’re burning each day.
2) The “Podcasts” app. Depending on the podcast you’re listening to at the time, you can get incredible amounts of value ranging from motivation (thank you, The School of Greatness with Lewis Howes) to deep dives into health (thank you, House Call with Dr. Hyman) to a glimpse inside the fitness industry (thank you, The Fitness Business Podcast).
3) The “Calm” app. The calm app provides both guided and unguided meditations, breathing exercises, and sleep-specific meditations and stories to help relax you no matter where you are.
Another way I use technology to improve my health is through the Apple Watch’s built-in activity tracker. Not only do I pay attention to my steps each day, but I also share my activity stats with a group of friends at the end of the day. It is incredibly motivating and encourages you to up your “step game", especially if you’re a bit competitive like me! If you don’t have a watch, but do have an iPhone, your phone automatically tracks your steps with the built-in app Healthkit. Just search “Health” on your phone and you’ll find it.
As great as technology is for our health, it’s also important to think about when it’s best to step away from it. Save your eyes from excessive screen time by completing tasks away from your phone and computer when it makes sense. For example, if you have to brainstorm about something, do it on a white board or a simple pen and paper instead of typing notes on your computer. Another tip is to read real paper books instead of spending hours looking at your Kindle or iBooks.
What’s your favorite way to use technology to keep you healthy? Let me know in the Top Health Club Owners & Managers Facebook group here.
VP, Global Sales at ClubConnect
P.S. Did you know? ClubConnect is now the number one resource for health clubs and gyms. We power the education and development for over 4,500 health clubs and growing. Learn more about how we help health club managers, directors and owners here.