JezzWarren.com

I would like, if I may, to take you on a strange journey.

fitness

Misfit Or Misfortune

I have had my troubles with fitness bands, trackers and motivational tech and last week was no exception. The Misfit Flash so appropriately named met on all the tech but lacked on comfortability and so tracking health and fitness came at a price, the cost of comfort and so another tracker bites the dust.
I have opted for the Jawbone Move, a similar bit of tech slightly cheaper but far more comfortable and a perfect substitute until the release of all the big named wearable tech in March/ April of 2015.
I was a bit disappointed that the Misfit Flash had so much going for it, it was stylish, compact, affordable and yet lacked in comfort after long periods of wear, the sort of thing you do not expect from wearable tech and for me clearly a Misfit or was it misfortune?
So the Misfit Flash has be returned and exchanged for the Jawbone Move, lets see how tiny tech does now.

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The Flash

The wearable has become the new bit of tech that the body conscious or those who are concerned that they be sitting on their arse a bit to much are using at the moment, but that is all set to change in 2015.
The tech on these fitness bands are becoming so advanced that more and more data about yourself can now be monitored, in some of these wearables sleep tracking is also an option.
Several years ago I had a Nike Fuelband and I think because at that time, wearables were in the early stages, it just did not meet the expectations that Nike had made the band out to be and the Fuelband was forever losing data in-between the sync relationship from phone to wearable, not a good start.
However the 2015 horizon is looking good for the best of the best.  Apple have jumped on to the bandwagon of wearables with its iWatch and those wearables that did not seem to come up to the mark now do.  Jawbone also had a misfortune in its early stages but now seem to be heading the way as wearers want more and Jawbone offer all that and more in its latest model the UP3, due to be released any time soon.
My only concern is what do you buy into in the meantime when you know there is going to be update soon for the bit of tech you really want?
I’ve opted for the Misfit Flash, the budget bit of tech that might be cheap but offers more than most for your buck and has released its latest model ‘The Flash’.

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Small and as colourful as you want it to be ‘The Flash’ is packed with preset features and is waterproof, lasts six months on a single battery, comes with a wristband and clip-on accessory, works with iOS and Android, and tracks steps and sleep.
The Flash is not just waterproof for the shower and the bath but to 3ATM, which means it can be worn in water down to 96 feet in depth (Note: water resistant and waterproof tech should never be worn in salt water, though). So you can wear it in the shower or while swimming. In the Misfit app it has a fitness tracking mode that recognizes swim activity.

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You click the Flash's soft-touch top to show daily progress as the LED lights complete a circle (for instance, if 6 of 12 dots are lit, you've completed 50 percent of your daily step goal). Afterward, it even tells the time via flashing dots for hours and minutes. 
Sleep tracking records automatically, just like on the Misfit Shine, and it does a pretty good job of guessing when you actually went to sleep. It records "light" and "deep" sleep plus the hours slept, which is not as rich a sleep-tracking tool as more advanced REM-sensing, heart-rate-enabled ones such as Jawbone and Fitbit's upcoming wearables, but it is fine for the price.  You can also set a smart alarm that wakes you at your lightest sleep pattern closes to your wake up time, a feature I tried out yesterday only to be woken a whole hour before my actual alarm clock, thankfully I did not feel groggy, so even though I was up earlier than I wanted to be I was not in a bad mood about it or wanting to go back to bed, The feature works.

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The Flash works via Bluetooth with the Misfit app, which is available for iOS and Android and soon for Windows Phone. You will need Bluetooth 4.0 to sync with the Flash: iPhone 4s or later, iPod Touch 5th gen, and iPads going back to the 3rd-gen Retina, or Android 4.3 or later phones. It syncs easily, and the Misfit app cleanly lays out daily progress in steps and sleep. It allows you to label activity sessions, and the app integrates with a variety of other ecosystems: My FitnessPal, RunKeeper, MapMyFitness, Walgreens and many more.

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It comes in seven bright colors. It's cute. Does it reinvent wearable health tech? No. Keep in mind that the Jawbone Move also costs about the same price and does nearly the same thing, but it's not water resistant and for recording sleep you will need the wrist band that is at, yes you guessed it, an optional extra.
I have used Jawbone apps and find that they go that bit deeper for information, but I like wearing my wearables in the shower, too. So until the latest UP3 is available this is the bit of tech for me.
Budget, but beautiful in every way.

Scheduled

Everyone who has ever tried to do something long term has probably found that the biggest challenge is not reaching your goal but maintaining a schedule to do the task in hand and when it comes to weight loss this is one of the biggest hurdles faced by most, since goals like that are not seen with quick results.
Last year I had sports injury that stopped me from running and so had to take a more sedated approach to keeping fit but unfortunate last year that did not happen and I fell more and more into a progressive slump.
This year I feel more motivated to want to lose the weight and keep fit and being an owner of a treadmill there really is no excuse to why I’m not at least using that, I cannot blame the bad British weather for not using that.
From experience I have noticed that when you become aware of your body shape and decide you really do not like what you see then you have two choices, you can shy away from the whole issue and cover yourself up in lose baggy clothing or take a firm stand and decide at present that you do have a curvy body and that the shapes do not quite fit into place so you set a realistic goal and a schedule to do something about it.
I have set a goal of 18 months to lose weight and scheduling a daily run for 30 minutes on the treadmill with the aim to lose enough weight that I am happy with what is see looking back at me in the mirror. I find setting a goal like this is realistic and something I will stick to, being told to lose X amount of kg might be a medical achievement for some but that type of goal is no good if you still look at your body and still know you are physically fat rather than medically fat.
I have tried lots of diet plans and as much as some are helpful in educating you to eat right the one thing they all have in common is that it is a complete change of lifestyle that cannot be maintained long term and you then understand why the diet industry is worth a staggering two billion a year in the UK alone, just on dietary products to help you maintain losing weight.
Luckily for us iPhone users there are applications that make tracking weight and goals a lot easier and making life that little bit easier to maintain your goal.

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I have been using a application called ‘MyFitnessPal’ and works well and is simple to use. After signing onto the program, you enter your weight, age and goal weight. The application asks you to judge the amount of daily activity you do. You can then choose how much you plan to lose each week. In addition, you set your exercise goal. Next, you are told the number of calories you should eat each day in order to lose that weight. Each day, you will fill in two daily logs: what you eat, and what you do for exercise. My Fitness Pal stores thousands of different foods, including many brand name items and wight he iPhone application you can just scan the bar code and enter how much you ate of that item or go wight he recommended does that the barcoding reports back. for those items without a barcode or un-scanable barcode you can type in a search term and choose the closest matching item. Your food diary on My Fitness Pal will save foods that you commonly eat, so after entering that food once, all you need to do when you eat that again is just check the item and add it to that meal.
Along with entering your meals, you can enter your exercise for that day. Just like the food diary, the exercise diary section lets you type in the type of exercise you have done and tell how many minutes you did. It will calculate the number of calories you burned and add those additional calories to the total amount you can eat that day if you so wish to, I however prefer not to.
When you have finished entering your log for the day, you will get a note which tells you how you are doing and what your weight progress will be in five weeks.
If that was not motivational enough of not clear enough then wight he new iOS 8 operating system the Apple ‘Health’ application lets works along side most diet application and shows in its main dashboard dietary and exercise information to keep you motivated.

Run Jezz Run

So far it has been all talk about wanting to start to run and doing it at home on the Wii is one thing but doing in practise with all the elements being thrown at you, well that is something else.
Today I downloaded the Nike+ GPS application and joined the online community and the world or running and fitness freaks, so far so good. I then looked through the Nike site and chose a goal to burn calories over a set period, that is when I stumbled on that there was more to this site than previously thought. I could start to train myself with a coached plan and luckily for me there was a twelve week beginners program that I am going to start tomorrow.
I thought that as the weather was good I would do a small jog around the lovely Beddington park. Well, I managed one and a half miles in thirteen minutes which I do not think is that bad for a first run, but by god did I know that I had done a run after. Full of phlegm, choking and a splutter afterwards and a very warm glow all over, but I did it.
I am hoping that as the days, weeks and months pass, it gets easier.

A Day Of Riches

Yesterday was quite, so I did not have anything to write about, but today has made up for it as it has been somewhat jam packed.
My day started off with an appointment at the clinic for my routine bloods and swabs as part of a general health check and all is good on that front. I then headed into town for a trip to sort out a banking matter and I did not feel my bank delivered the service I normally get, might have to look into that.
I am not sure if my expectations of service and customer care has increased anymore but I do think that because I do most of my shopping in Kingston and in department stores like Apple, Waitrose and John Lewis where customer service and care is of the highest standards everyone else seems to lack what they have and it really shows. Just walking through Sutton high street I could see the demise of what used to be a nice place to shop and now it is turning into a dirty, run down and frightfully full of common folk screaming out at their unruly children. I can safely add Sutton along with the likes if Croydon to the list of places I will not be seen shopping in again.
I have been slowly increasing my physical levels and now I have my new running buddy, I thought I would look about for some essential gear that would come in handy not just for my walks, runs but to use generally and as luck would have it I got some real deals today. I was in a retail park not far from home browsing in a sports shop when I cam across an array of Karrimor gear at silly prices so I had to treat myself. I got a pair of walking poles for under a tenner, an iPod sports armband for under a fiver, two pairs of sports earbuds (the over ear ones) both of which also under a fiver and then a water bottle belt pack and spare running bottle for under a tenner. Looks like I did well on that bit of retail therapy.
When coming home the news just got better, more treats. Apple announced it is releasing a new operating system 'Mountain Lion' just a year after 'Lion' OS X and as a taster before the release in the summer Mac users got treated to 'Messages' the new feature to replace iChat and make it more in tune with the iOS style of messaging. Slowly but surely I am seeing subtle changes since owning a Mac that OS X is merging with iOS to make a cross platform and universal application that works with all your Apple iDevices and big changes on how common tasks are now more integrated than ever before, like twitter and text chats that can then turn into video chats with a flick of a switch.
If your curiosity has got the better of you then click on the ‘Mountain Lion’ icon to see a short video of what you can expect this summer. If that is not enough for you and you want a little treat then click on the ‘Messages’ icon to download the Beta of ‘Messages’.

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To cap off todays events, was some offerings from the PSN as last months offering for PSN plus customers was not to great but yet again today showed they are making up for it as the latest content was the biggest. I have managed to download today a total of twenty-five dynamic PS3 themes, four PS3 full game titles and eight PSP titles all for the price of zero pounds and zero pence. Membership is showing some clear advantages and when my renewal comes up in the summer I will sure be subscribing for another year.