Before I talk about tech, let me tell you something. The word ‘Stack’ has a special meaning in my work industry. It is like a set of very specific tools you choose to solve problems. I apply the same principle in my fitness journey.
Do you want to be in your prime of fitness? Sure. A good starting point is to plan each and everything including how much progress you want to see every week.
Fitness gadgets are certainly not bare necessities, but believe me, this combined with proper exercises and diet can make a difference. They help you see your progress in numbers so that you can stay motivated along the way.
1. Smartwatch/Fitness Tracker
Who wouldn’t love to have a small mobile device that tracks how many kilometers you ran or how long you slept automatically?
A smartwatch or fitness tracker would help you escape from the guessing game and see the actual amount of work done. Most of them come with detailed reporting so you can always look back on how good you were in a period of time. If you are a parent, a smartwatch could also be your secret weapon for encouraging your kids to move more.
The first question you might have in your mind is that why I have written Smartwatch slash Fitness Tracker in the title. I think it is redundant to have both unless you have money to spare. One is a just little superior to the other while they both more or less serve the same fitness purpose.
Fitness Trackers feature tracking for various activities, for example, running, swimming, cycling. Smartwatches (at least most of them) also boast tracking features like fitness trackers, plus some connectivity features. It is a matter of what you need and how much money you want to spend.
1.1 What I Use: Emporio Armani Smartwatch 3
Emporio Armani Smartwatch 3 maintains a good balance between design and performance. It is a flagship product from the designer brand Emporio Armani whose hardware comes from their partner, Fossil.
What do I like about this product? Unlike most smartwatches, Emporio Armani Smartwatch 3 looks and feels more real while it also offers really good software technology from Fossil.
Putting the basic features aside, one thing that is very unique here is that you can talk through the watch. It has an internal loudspeaker with a microphone. This means you can talk with somebody from your wrist leaving the phone in your pocket.
This watch comes in a number of colors and variations. The best-looking and rare combo to me is the black stainless steel case with an aluminum bracelet. This is the one I am using right now and cannot be more satisfied.
- Luxurious design
- Wear OS by Google
- Works with both Android and iOS
- Ability to talk through the watch
- Water resistant up to 30m
- Battery drains up quite fast
- Have to leave the app open in the background to keep it connected (on iPhone)
1.2 Other Recommendations
2. Smart Weight Scale
It is like a ritual for fitness enthusiasts that they have to weigh themselves first thing in the morning. I do it every single day because a tiny bit of change on the meter apparently motivates me.
What gives smart scales an edge over normal scales is that you are no longer limited to just weighing yourself. You can see on the scale what is your approximate body fat percentage, BMI, water level, fat, and so more.
However, there is an informant catch and people often confuse the actual usage of this product. Aside from weight, none of the other measurements is one hundred percent accurate. It is because those scales use bio-electrical impedance which works differently from person to person’s physique.
The companies are trying to reduce the fluctuation and the inconsistency in the results. You can, of course, expect a very close to accurate result if you go with a reliable company.
2.1 What I Use: Renpho ES-CS20M
Renpho ES-CS20M is a battery-powered multi-functional smart scale that is available as a USB rechargeable version as well.
This scale can measure thirteen important body metrics and send data to a smartphone. And all of this happens simultaneously so once you finish measuring your weight, the data should be ready in your app.
How does this scale work? It sends our bio-electrical impedance up your one leg, through the pelvis area, and coming back down through the other leg. Since human body composition is different from person to person, the measurements should be considered close to accurate.
One more good point about the Renpho ES-CS20M is this data can be synchronized with the popular fitness apps out there including Apple Health, Google Fit, Samsung Health, and Fitbit.
- Automatic data synchronization
- Beautiful mobile app with data charts
- Measures thirteen body metrics
- Third-party app synchronization
- Recommended BMI in the app is slightly under the standard
- Only weight measurement is displayed, other measurements are in the app
2.2 Other Recommendations
3. Kitchen Scale
One of the most prominent mistakes in the fitness industry is that people believe they know how much they are eating.
Some unique people’s bodies can react defensively to changes in calories. But for most people out there it could ruin a well-planned diet.
Eyes are not a good tool for measuring food. If you really want your efforts to reflect one hundred percent in your results, a kitchen scale would be your best bet.
3.1 What I Use: Adoric Hangable Kitchen Scale
Adoric Hangable Kitchen Scale has a nice stainless steel finish which no one would expect from its price tag. It can be hung on the wall as well to save valuable space in your kitchen.
It is often questioned how accurate the measurements are. To test the accuracy from time to time, I usually weigh small grocery items with weight labels. This scale has passed all of them for me so far.
I am a big admirer of its TARE function. After you set a bowl on the scale, you can press the tare button to subtract the bowl weight. To say it in a different way, It will basically zero out the scale to give you an accurate weight of the food.
- TARE function
- Automatic switch-off
- Easy cleaning for its stainless steel platform
- Hangable design
- Prone to scratches
- 5kg weight limit
3.2 Other Recommendations
4. Noise Cancelling Headphone
When you are exercising, your entire focus should be on what you are doing. Just imagine you are in the gym and a guy next to you lands the dumbbells, or the person, who is bench pressing, is raving.
It is super useful to use noise-canceling headphones at the gym. You will be able to isolate yourself from the crowd and focus on your reps. Plus, headphones can improve the quality of sleep if the right one is picked.
Usually, I take my headphone with me when going to the gym. For an experiment, I decided to see check much difference it makes without it. So I went there for two days without the headphone and found myself losing a lot of time talking to people and checking out noise sources.
Besides, whether it is cardio or weight training, music has proven to improve exercises. So if you were not already incorporating that in your workout sessions, you are missing something valuable.
4.1 What I Use: Sony WH-1000XM3
Sony WH-1000XM3 is by far the most popular headphone on the market. If you are a little bit into the headphones industry, you probably know about this already.
You might be curious to know in short what the fuss is all about. This headphone offers an immersing music experience. This means once you turn on the active noise cancellation and play music, you will hardly hear the surrounding.
If you are thinking about getting a headphone like this, you are just at the right time. The new Sony WH-1000XM4 is out which packs significant upgrades. If you are interested even a teensy bit, I recommended you to check out our post on how good this headphone is for exercising.
- Best active noise cancelling headphone on the market
- 30 hours playback on a single charge
- Foldable and rugged design
- Quick attention mode for conversation
- No protection against water
- One device can be paired at a time
4.2 Other Recommendations
5. Calorie Counting App
Not really a gadget but I could not resist the temptation of talking about it after looking back at how much it helped me during the transformation.
Reading labels, weighing food, and logging calories are the bare bones of a good diet. Missing just one of them means you are not doing it right.
Calories can be logged in different ways. You can always go with the traditional pen and paper method, but that is just way too inconvenient in this day and age.
A calorie-counting app not only allows you to log your calories, but some of them also come with a database of food from which you can select and insert data without inputting manually.
5.1 What I Use: MyFitnessPal
MyFitnessPal is popular for its gigantic food database that houses over 11 million foods. This means if food has a label on it, it is probably in their database. And of course, all the regular food items are there in different sizes and portions.
The feature I like the most about MyFitnessPal is that I can create my own meals and recipes once and use them later. So if you are like eating some specific set of foods every day, you can create a meal out of it and log it as a group.
The nutrient and macros overview is also very helpful. You can see from it how much carbs, proteins, or fats you are consuming. Those values are calculated from the food you added, so no need to add them manually.
- Massive food database
- Own meals and recipes
- Barcode scanning
- Nutrients and Macros analysis
- Limited features in a free account
- Cannot log food that is not available in their database