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Mobile Tools for a Healthy Lifestyle

Mobile Tools for a Healthy Lifestyle
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By Lauryn Botterman

If you made a New Year’s resolution to lose that spare tire, you are certainly not alone. Losing weight is the number one New Year’s resolution among Americans. But according to data, the third week of January is when most people give up on their goals.

But have no fear, my fickle-willed friends! You can utilize the tools and apps below to maintain a healthy lifestyle and gain control of your waistline.

Jawbone/FitBit

Jawbone and FitBit are two “wearable technology” companies that have taken the fitness industry by storm. Both companies offer mobile activity trackers in the form of high-tech water-resistant wristbands that keep tabs on everything from eating habits to calories burned to sleep patterns. These devices are meant to be worn 24/7 and can offer helpful insight about your activity levels and overall health. At the end of each day, you can plug your wristband into your computer to retrieve data and analysis that can help you make more informed decisions. Some versions even include special features, such as gentle vibrations if you’ve been sitting for too long, and “smart alarms” that you can set to wake you up at an ideal point in you sleep cycle. With models starting at $99, a Jawbone or FitBit could be well worth the investment if you are truly committed to getting healthy. Welcome to the future.

Fitocracy

This app harnesses the power of “groupthink” to motivate you to workout. This free app is available for download on all smartphones. You’ll be part of the Fitocracy community—a virtual society of individuals seeking to get in shape. Fitocracy adds an element of accountability to the mix by allowing you to “compete” with people of the similar fitness levels. You can gain points and by doing workouts and sticking to a recommended nutrition plan. You’ll also gain access to a virtual “personal trainer” who can provide workout and diet advice.

LoseIt!

LoseIt! focuses on nutrition and calorie management. The free app prompts you to plug in your weight loss goals and then recommends a personalized diet plan. It is especially useful for tracking daily calorie intake, as it features an immense database of foods—from scrambled eggs to chicken parm, and everything in between. LostIt! also features comprehensive calorie information for meals from a wide array of national restaurant chains and a barcode scanner for packaged foods, allowing you to make smart choices when eating on-the-go. User friendly and easily accessible, LoseIt! takes the guesswork out of healthy eating.

Take a Break!

Mental health is a crucial component of overall wellbeing. The Take a Break! app offers convenient guided meditation tools designed to help you clear your mind and manage anxiety. Even if you’ve never embraced yoga or meditation before, Take a Break! can be truly beneficial in allowing you to take control of your stress level. You can choose between short “work breaks” to regain focus, or longer meditation sessions to promote relaxation at the end of a long day. Give it a shot and embrace the zen!

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Lauryn Botterman
Lauryn Botterman, a New Jersey native and senior public relations major at Syracuse University, is FiftyistheNewFifty’s resident tech and social media expert. She is an avid current events and pop culture connoisseur and aspires to be a leader and innovator in the public relations industry. She is currently on the executive board of Syracuse’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America. Lauryn caught the travel bug during her semester abroad in London in fall 2013 and hopes to continue traversing the world. Lauryn can be reached via email at lauryn.botterman@gmail.com or @LaurynBotterman on Twitter.