Getting people fit any healthy is something I do every day. Putting someone through a workout in the gym, however, will never be enough to get results. To function at your best, you need to keep a lot of plates spinning across the spectrum of your life. Sometimes we need a helping hand, such as these gadgets and apps designed to help us lead stress-free and healthy lives.
1. The Lumie Alarm Cock
The Lumie Bodyclock Shine 300 has to be my favourite purchase this year. Getting out of bed in the morning has always been a struggle for me, especially in the winter months. I used to think I just wasn’t a morning person, and I’ve always been one for repeatedly hitting snooze, even after a solid eight hours’ sleep.
I’ve tried a number of strategies over the years but nothing has topped this clock. There are so many benefits to waking with sunlight at the start of the day, which helps to reset our internal clocks and cycles. Unfortunately in these winter months, we are required to get out of bed before sunrise, and The Bodyclock Shine helps to recreate the sunrise by lighting up the room gradually over 15-90 minutes. Waking up with gradual light has been proven to boost mood, productivity and energy levels, so that you feel brighter and ready for the day ahead. You can even replicate the sunset before drifting off to sleep.
2. Remote Coach (App)
We work with many clients who travel regularly. Unfortunately this affects their training and is often used as the excuse for not getting results. Remote coach launched this year and we are already seeing the benefits. It allows you to stay in touch with your trainer from anywhere in the world, sharing live health data and offering direct messaging and even live video conferencing.
One of our clients recently moved to Hong Kong and was worried about finding another trainer. So we continued to rain her through the app and she’s making great progress.
3. Ocushield blue light protector
Blue light is everywhere, its in sunlight and also in most of the screens we look at throughout the day. Too much staring at these screens means too much blue light and this can cause eye strain, headaches, dry eyes and blurry vision.
People in the City will look at an average of five different screens each day, making blue light hard to escape from. At night time blue light is especially bad as it blocks melatonin, the chemical that’s released to remind our bodies to go to sleep.
Ocushield is a company that builds products to can help you reduce the blue light from your screens. I have a screen protector case on my phone, so if I’m scrolling in bed it won’t necessarily keep me up all night.
4. Power Plate Pulse Gun
Vibration technology is being used more and more within the health and fitness industry. Powerplate is the godfathers of vibration training, originally known for free-standing machines used in the gyms. The Power Plate pulse is a powerful, portable handheld massager that helps relax and rejuvenate tight and sore muscles. It helps release connective tissue (fascia) and will promote blood flow to help you prepare faster and recover quicker.
Even if you don’t know the science behind the vibration training, it feels great when you use it on yourself and is a simple way to help recovery.
5. Polar Ignite Watch
This fitness tracker is amazing and I wear it every day. Fitness trackers have become hugely popular over the last few years, with top brands including the Fitbit, Apple and Garmin. but for pure fitness purposes, the Polar Ignite comes out top.
I have always been a big fan of heart rate monitoring when training. There is so much you can do with the information, and it’s a great way to keep you accountable and measure your progress. This watch has a very accurate heart rate monitor and if you take training super-seriously, you can pair it with a heart rate monitor strap.
It has built-in GPS, which is great for endurance sports like running or cycling. When I completed my Ultra Endurance race in September, I was able to see my exact location over the 11 hours, including how fast I was going and how high I climbed.
Another key feature is sleep analysis, showing you the different sleep cycles you have throughout the night, and any interruptions. I thought I slept really well, but after analysing my data, it flagged up how often I wake up, helping me to identify a mild form of sleep apnoea.
6. Insight Timer (App)
Meditation has completely changed my life over the last few years, helping me to deal with stress and anxiety. It has become a non-negotiable daily practice for me, with at least two 30 minute sessions when I wake and last thing in the evening.
But the benefits only come through consistency, which is where Insight timer comes in. There are thousands of types of meditation on the app, from mindfulness to guided. Find one that works for you and get into a habit of using it every day, starting small – even 10 minutes a day can make a difference – and building up.
My recommendation is the Shamanic Drums meditation. Before going into the meditation, tell yourself what needs to be completed, meditate to the drums, and when you finish, you’ll hopefully find you’re a more focused and ready to complete the task at hand.
7. Sony WF-1000XM3 Noise cancelling headphones
If you haven’t tried noise cancelling headphones before, they are amazing for blocking out everything but your playlist. I use mine to meditate, blocking out any distracting noise. If you find it hard to switch off, they are a great way to cut yourself loose from everything else that’s going on, and lets you immerse yourself into the moment.
• To book a session with one of the trainers at No1 Fitness, visit no1fitness.co.uk