I love to exercise (as long as it’s fun) and I love gadgets (as long as they’re easy to operate). I also have a surprisingly short attention span, so gadgets, apps, fun classes, etc… help keep me motivated during the winter months when I choose to not be outside as much.
As with any exercise program or equipment, please consult your doctor to make sure that they’re right for you. Everything I’ve listed below is my own personal opinion, and you shouldn’t get all your health advice from someone who used to eat popcorn out of her bra.
I have the Gaiam 12″ foam roller that I take with me whenever I go on road trips. I suffer from sciatic pain when sitting for long periods, so this is a nice compact size that I can use in the hotel room when we arrive. I find that foam rollers are great for relieving muscle soreness after workouts, increasing flexibility and range of motion. They come in various sizes, densities and finishes, so make sure you find one that’s right for you. I would not recommend the deep tissue rollers with the bumpy grids to start with though since they do take some getting used to. I am currently in the market for a longer one as there’s certain exercises that I do that would be more comfortable with the added length.
I ordered my Yoga Wheel from amazon. It’s a 13″ diameter with a 5″ wide cushion. It took some getting used to and I don’t do anything super fancy on it other than try to open up my chest and shoulders. I do a lot of exercises that use a lot of chest muscles, and unless I spend the time on my back and shoulders, I am quite prone to rotator cuff injuries and sore back muscles. It also helps improve my posture, and sometimes after sitting at a computer all day, I find myself gravitating to my workout area to use my foam roller or yoga wheel.
Wandering the aisles of our local Winners store I happened to find a Pilates ring. I have the Pharmedoc brand and love it for many different exercises, but leg abductors and adductors are my absolute favourite since it’s such a hard muscle group for me to hit effectively. You can find lots of these rings on amazon as well, but my particular brand is a little pricier than what I paid at Winners. As with the other two, there are plenty of exercises on YouTube.
30 Day Fitness Challenge App
I love this app! It is easy to use and instructions are clear and easy to understand. If you need to modify any of the exercises due to injuries, just know that you will have to know your modification yourself since the app does not give you any. You can set your level of difficulty though, and with anything, if it’s uncomfortable or painful at all, you need to stop or modify the exercise to suit your ability. I also like how it sends me reminders when I haven’t used it in a few days. It shames me into exercising and gets me off of the couch when I need it. Available on google play as well as iTunes. I currently have the free app, but if the ads bother you, you can get the paid version.
Stretching and Flexibility App by Fitify
This app is for android and ios. Again, I have the free version from Google Play, and for what I need it’s great. You can set the app for how long you want your stretching session to be, and you can choose between full body, upper body, lower body or back. It’s perfect for me before and after workouts.
I have become a fan of online exercise classes because I’m not tied to a schedule and can watch the video as much as I want to during the week. I have taken fun classes like chair dancing, twerk class and pole, but my favourite of all is Flow Movement with Marlo Fisken. She is absolutely amazing! Check out her videos, you will not be disappointed. With any fitness class, online or not, make sure your instructor is certified and knows what they’re doing!
Do what makes you feel good. Whether you want to feel more energetic or relax with a good stretching routine, there’s an app, online class or gadget out there made just for you. Maybe it’s even in your closet or under your bed already! Dig it out and search out some new YouTube videos to see if you can rekindle the romance and get back to the feeling you had when you first laid eyes on it.