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Getting Fit with Gadgets post Lockdown

So, how have your fitness levels survived Lockdown?

Perhaps you’ve been self-motivated enough to tune into Joe Wicks daily, work up a sweat with his high intensity interval training workouts and now feel fitter than ever?

Or, like us, have your motivation levels for exercise slipped somewhat over the lockdown months?

As a team of runners – or perhaps I should say those who were once able to run! – we are only too aware of the limited fitness levels that now reside post Lockdown and are keen to get going again & do something about it!

As with so many aspects of our life these days, technology has adapted quickly to help us in our quest and potentially ease our pain points…


With the unfortunate closure of gyms over Lockdown, we have been impressed at how quickly fitness companies have tackled technology to hold classes online and keep motivation levels high wherever possible.

Whether doing Zumba over Zoom, HIIT classes via YouTube or Pilates over pre-recorded videos, there has been – and still is – plenty out there to keep us moving without leaving our four walls.

Exergaming, whereby video games enable players to participate physically in active and interactive play against a computer or other players, has also continued to be popular.


Moving outdoors, as many of the fitness companies are now doing as they encourage open-air classes at the mercy of the Great British Summer, there are many other technical trends to help improve our fitness.

GPS technology allows the external exerciser to know precisely where you are, how fast you are moving, in what direction, and how to signal for help if necessary – all at the touch of a button.

Wearable technology, such as Fitbit, has become part of everyday life for adults and children, helping you reach health and fitness goals by tracking activity, exercise, sleep and weight. You can even form groups for like-minded tech-wearers and motivate each other by setting up a variety of challenges, virtual hikes or even play Bingo based on calories burnt, time spent exercising or steps taken.

Encouraging us to choose healthier options by monitoring our calorie intake and calories burnt, mobile apps such as MyFitnessPal are very popular in helping with weight loss.

My own first encounter with motivational technology when I started running a couple of years ago was with the aptly-named ‘Couch to 5k’ app. A soothing voice interrupted my uplifting Spotify playlist to encourage me to alternate walking for 10 mins with running for a heady 1 minute before gradually ramping it up. I then moved on to the ‘Couch to 10k’ app and, before I knew it, I was hooked on Strava, plotting my routes, checking my pace and giving like-minded friends ‘kudos’. It’s amazing what a bit of healthy competition can do for the spirit and, once you have a goal in mind, it’s surprisingly addictive to see your pace getting faster and that targeted distance becoming more achievable.

The likes of Strava have grown and adapted too so now, whether you’re into hiking, cycling, canoeing or ice-skating, you can be sure to keep track of your progress, speed and calories burnt!

GPS trackers, such as ‘Find My’ also have their uses, particularly if you’re supposedly exercising alongside someone who seems to have left you for dust(!) or, as I found out recently, if you’re practicing cycling loops with your children, whilst your husband runs a slightly different loop…but is the only one to have a house key…!


Now more than ever, we have been turning to social media for our connection with others during Lockdown.

With social distancing meaning that the larger organised events have been sadly cancelled or postponed, numerous other challenges have been set over social media.

The month of May motivated virtual runs to be undertaken for Miles for Mind, Roy’s Runners saw people achieving great runs during June and, of course, Captain Tom Moore’s great achievement of 100 laps around his garden before his 100th birthday wouldn’t have raised the amazing £33 million for the NHS without the power of social media.

Now we’re seeing the lifting of lockdown and the re-organisation of outdoor events, social media once again is encouraging friends and family to sign up and share these events. Whether it’s dance classes, outdoor military-style training sessions or paddle-board Pilates…whatever you’re into, look out for a nearby session being shared on social media soon.


So then, after all this fabulous exercise, it may well be time to track your progress, update your apps and step on the scales – eeek!

You can now get digital electronic bathroom scales which measure your weight, water fat and muscle mass, and calculate the body-mass index before handily (?) sending the data to you so you can keep track.

The likes of MyFitnessPal and FitBit then allow you to track your weight loss over the months but, remember, other measurements around your upper arms, waist and thighs are even more important and will show just how your body is changing with all that extra exercise.

So, whatever activity you fancy trying out and however you fancy tracking your triumphs, technology can definitely support you in your success – best of luck and think of us beside you every step of the way!

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