Prompt: How has wearable technology, such as heart rate monitors and other activity trackers, changed the way you approach your fitness?
“Wearable heart monitors, blood oxygen readers, and activity trackers have extremely changed the way I see fitness. They have given me more areas to be aware of as well as a better range of goals to improve upon. These technological advances have helped me with personal fitness by showing me where I am in my breathing and heart rate ranges. It has helped me to improve myself by lowering my resting heart rate and my running respiratory rate. There are many reasons it has helped me.
One major key to improving my physical fitness is to figure out where to start. Originally, I had no clue as where to even begin. What I did next was I started to research. I knew that if I didn’t know where to start, then I could find the answers to my inquiries through the internet. That’s what I did. I had looked online for my BMI and my basal metabolic rate among other things such as heart rate and respiratory rate. Then I had researched on what machines to use to improve these values. I had started out with a resting heart rate of 100 bpm, a starting respiratory rate of 18 breaths per minute, and a body mass index of 16 which classified me as underweight. After looking through many wearable fitness technologies like a Fitbit, Apple Watch, and Nike+iPod, I had found an alpha version of a popular activity tracker which had helped me track my pulse and respiratory weight. These devices had helped me lower my resting heart rate from 100 to an average of about 70 to 78 which is a very healthy measurement. I had improved my cardio health so much so that in combination with my heart rate, my respiratory rate had dropped from 18 breaths per minute to about 12 to 14 breaths per minute. These measurements have given me proof as to how my fitness has improved. My improvements have gone further than just cardio health. They reach to muscular strength as well.
These portable fitness trackers have helped me with my muscular health also. I had downloaded an app that had helped me measure my body fat percentage and my muscle to fat ratio. I had to then research on how to lower my body fat percentage and increase my amount of muscle. I had found a few tips online, as well as a few good apps that would help me achieve my goal of gaining more muscle. I had gone out to get some pre-workout and post-workout protein, as one of the apps had advised. I had also started a healthy carbohydrate and protein diet to help give my muscles more energy. I had started bench presses at a comfortable weight, pushing myself up 5 pounds higher each week. I had ended up reaching my maximum amount of bench press at 180 pounds and I had maxed out my squat goal at 320 pounds. That is exceptional for a small framed individual with low weight such as myself. I had then increased my starting weight of 120 pounds to 140 pounds in a matter of six months.
All I have to thank are these tips that my activity tracker and fitness tracker apps have given me. Through these resources I had improved my body to a fitness goal I could have only dreamed of if it wasn’t for these wearable fitness trackers. They have done so much to help me reach higher than my fitness dreams and I think in the future they will do much more for others like me.”
-Keith Milks, Biology Major at Indiana University Bloomington