Things Ian Likes – April 2010 Edition

So this is my new thing, Tanya loves to make fun of me because I go through periods of being obsessed about things and then research them to death and then she laughs at me.  It’s pretty funny, so maybe every so often I’ll do a big review about the current things I’m obsessed about and you can chuckle to yourself and maybe benefit from techie awesomeness.

Nike+ Sportband / Nike+ Shoes

Nike+ Armband Review
Tanya and I have been in workout mode lately for some odd reason.  First we picked up Nike+ Sportband pedometers which are awesome because we have this little pooch who has excessive energy and if you don’t take him for epic walks then everyone in the house knows about it.  So this Nike+ arm band connects with this little sensor in your shoe basically tells you how far you’ve walked, how long, how many calories you’ve burned, etc.  The best part really though is the online interface where it keeps all the stats up for you and can join all these challenges.  The best way to keep me motivated and most guys in general I think is to have stats.  Lots and lots of stats.  That way you don’t feel like you’re wasting a whole lot of time messing around and you can see the direct result of all this time you’ve wasted.  That’s my two cents anyway.  Nike has built up an amazing site around these things and you can buy their special ‘+’ shoes that fits the little sensor directly under your shoe cushion.  Very cool little product and we both love it.


Schwinn 431 Elliptical

Schwinn 431 Elliptical Review
So while we like this whole pedometer thing, we’ve been doing that for a good long while now and really not seeing a whole lot of results.  Granted, if we did more running instead of walking [this is mostly the dogs fault, running is not one of his stronger skills- stopping and smelling is] we’d probably see more results, but anyway we decided to pick up an Elliptical.  I did my research before we decided on one, and this was what the consensus seemed to be from the experts.  It is a chunk of change however, $800 to be exact, but we’ve plopped this thing directly next to our couch, so instead of sitting and watching TV now we can watch our favorite DVR shows!  The machine is great and the both of us have been using it every day and working up disgusting sweats that only our pet collection should ever see.

I’ve been tracking all our elliptical workouts using the iPhone/iPod Touch app called RunKeeper.  It’s great, free, and easy to input all your workout stats quickly.  The elliptical even has a little iPhone stand thing where I just keep it on a day to day basis so I can enter in stuff on a fly.  Everything is kept on RunKeeper’s website so on any given day I can go check in and see how long I’ve worked out, how many calories, etc.  Pretty excellent.


The Schwinn 420 is a bit cheaper and has similar features as well.


Withings WiFi Scale

Withings Wifi Scale ReviewWithings Wifi Scale ReviewThis is seriously the coolest thing I’ve seen in awhile.  So with all this workout stuff, you really want to start seeing direct results right?  We actually had a scale we bought like two weeks prior to me finding this, but when I started researching this I knew it was exactly what I was looking for.  So this scale is pretty insane.  Basically you stand on it and it first automatically recognizes who you are [after you set it up on your computer].  After that it takes your weight, measures your fat and lean mass content, and then comes up with your body mass index.  Most fancy scales already do this, but the unique thing about the Withings is it then sends all your info over your home Wifi to their server where it is all plotted on a graph along with however many users you have.  So I can go in there and see Tanya and my graphs, and you can set weight objectives, etc. and all tracked over time.  Stat heaven!  They’re also constantly updating the features, like they just made it so you can sync with Google Health and also created a iPhone App [free] that you can see all your results in real time.  So hopefully we’ll get to see all this hard work [I mean it’s mostly to keep in shape] in true awesome graph form over time!



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