The market is saturated with so many fitness trackers, apps and wearable fitness accessories, that it is a minefield that will leave most of us lost.
The simple fact is, humans have been getting fit and losing weight for decades before the evolution of all this tech. Trainers, the road and that was it. Now we are bombarded with adverts saying we need a heart rate monitor, top end trainers and apps galore. There is no need to go all out, you can get the best of both worlds with a bit of knowledge.
You can download lots of free apps and work out which one is best for you, and at no cost to you, it is win win.
Some of the best investments, in our opinion, are:
My Fitness Pal: The app that keeps track of everything you eat. It has an extensive database of food, so whatever you eat, it is likely in there. Or if it is a recipe that is your own, you can add that too. It runs over multiple platforms, so you can track on the go. It can also work with apps like Strava and FitBit, allowing you to follow all your progress easily.
A Fitness Tracker: There are lots out there, and the best one is subjective, and should be based on your personal needs. You can use free ones (like Strava) that utilise your mobile phone’s GPS and give you a fairly accurate indicator of how well you are doing. Or you can invest in something like a FitBit or Garmin. These give individual readings that can really help you see which areas you are weaker in and which ones you are excelling at.
If you don't want to use your phone, and fancy something a little more tailored, then something with a heart rate monitor will really help you. These usually work alongside an app and you can go online to see how you have done and what your heart rate is etc. This makes planning workouts easier. There are trackers that can be worn 24/7 (such as the Garmin Vivofit), which will vibrate if you are stationary too long and remind you to move. These also, usually, track your sleep, so you get a real picture of your activity.
Invest in some smart scales. These can help us keep track of any gains and losses in weight. These scales then wirelessly send the information to your phone and you can see real weekly progress. Some scales have a body fat indicator or body composition measurement. The benefit of this is that when you hit that plateau (and we all do) you can still see that your body is changing. You will see that whilst you might not be losing weight (because your muscle mass is increasing), your body fat will still be falling.
You certainly don't “need” any of these, but they really do help you keep motivated and inspired to keep going. Don't fall into the old trap of buying something and never using it. Start off with the free apps and upgrade as you workout more.