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How Wearable Fitness Trackers Work: Smart Watches to Fitness Rings

Fitness trackers were first invented in 1965 by Dr. Yoshiro Hatano, while he was researching ways to combat obesity. He proposed that walking 10,000 steps a day would provide the correct balance of caloric intake and activity-based calorie expenditure to maintain a healthy bodyweight. Fitness trackers still tend to use 10,000 steps as a benchmark today. So, let’s get into the nitty gritty of how fitness trackers actually work and how accurate they are. How are steps measured? A fitness tracker senses the movement of the body on a 3-axis accelerometer which tracks movement in every direction. Some trackers also come with a gyroscope to measure orientation and rotation, which is helpful in accounting for more complex motions. The altimeter...

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Training Habits of Top Athletes

There’s a lot we can learn from professional athletes. Most of us don’t have the time to implement a full-on training regime, but here are four simple habits that we can easily integrate into our daily routines, even if we’re not professionals. Be Consistent Iwan Gwyn Thomas is a Welsh sprinter who represented Great Britain and Northern Ireland in the 4x400m relay at the 1996 Olympic Games. In 1997 he won a World Championship gold. He credits his success to his consistency. After his first stint at the Olympics, he had a four-year gap to train for the next games. For those four years he trained consistently, rather than choosing to cut back on training for three years and then...

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The Benefits of Running

Today is Global Running Day, a worldwide celebration of running that encourages everyone to get moving. In the spirit of Global Running Day, we wanted to highlight some of the key benefits and some that you may not have known of before. Runners High Running has mood boosting effects. When you run your brain pumps out feel-good chemicals, which act as a natural pain reliever, helping you to exercise for longer periods of time. These feel-good chemicals are endorphins and endocannabinoids. A type of endocannabinoid called anandamide is found at high levels in the blood of people who have recently completed a run, and research suggests that anandamide may trigger runner’s high, releasing short term positive effects such as reducing...

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The Importance of Rest Days

Once you start running it can be hard to stop. When we see ourselves smashing our goals, whether it be improving stamina, distance, or time, we don’t want to slow our progress. However, rest days are equally as important as training days if you do want to progress as a runner. You need to give your body time to recover for it to get stronger. When you run you are causing microscopic tears in your muscle fibres. As you can imagine, your body doesn’t enjoy this, so it responds by rebuilding your muscles to be stronger. However, this is only possible when you rest. The body can take anywhere from 36 to 48 hours to recover, and without the rest...

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How Strength Training Can Improve Your Run

A common misconception is that weight training will make you bulky or that in order to lose weight you should only do cardio. However, neither of these ring true and there are so many ways in which strength training can benefit you when running. Preventing Injury Strength training helps to prevent injury by, you’ve guessed it, strengthening the muscles. When you run the force of roughly three times your body weight is placed through each leg. By building muscle you are better able to absorb the force of each step which will reduce the strain of your joints. It’s particularly important to incorporate strength training if you plan to increase the distance or pace of your runs in order to...

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