My WODs App

Using the MyWODs App to Track your CrossFit Workouts

MyWOD.jpg.jpg 500x500 Using the MyWODs App to Track your CrossFit Workouts

When I started CrossFit 10 months ago, one of the first things the coaches told us to do was track our workouts. They didn’t care if it was in a plain spiral-bound notebook or one of the fancier WODbooks they sell, the important thing was writing down the weights and time to track your progress. I ended up buying a WODbook sports journal because it was tailored to CrossFit and had some really handy info listed like common CrossFit workouts (the “girls” and hero WODs) and travel WODs. My WODbook led a short life until it drowned in spilled iced coffee and dried in one big clumped page, never to be opened again.

Seeing as I love all things technology, I looked in the App Store for CrossFit workout trackers. The one I downloaded was the MyWODs app (which they developers stress is NOT affiliated with CrossFit HQ). For just $1.99, I was on the road to tracking my progress in an efficient way. I’ve used MyWODs for close to 10 months now and here are some of the reasons I love and highly recommend the MyWODs app:

  • Import your box’s feed directly (no more copying down the WOD for every workout)
  • Gives you an easy way to track your completed workouts and the data behind it
    • easily record your max records for every movement (can also add custom movements)
    • includes an easy percentage calculator (a big fav of mine since I have a terrible time doing math in my head)
    • easily mark when you have a PR or Rx a workout
  • Search past WODs to look up your time or weight (better than flipping through a notebook)
  • Share your WOD results with friends (what CrossFitter doesn’t love to share)
  • Back up all of your data via iCloud, Dropbox, bluetooth or email it to yourself

If you’re going to use MyWODs, here’s a quick, 4-step tutorial on setting up the app to import your box’s WOD feed automatically. It is available for Android since I have an iPhone the screen shots are from the iOS version.

  1. Go to the “Common” menu on the bottom of your screen. It may be in a different place because you can customize what order items show up.
  2. Click the + sign in the top right-hand corner to add your box’s feed.
  3. Select the “New Feed” option.
  4. Type in your boxes name, mine is “No Risk CrossFit.” Below it you are going to type your box’s feed url. This is geek-speak for the part of their site they publish the WOD on. Nine times out of ten it will be examplesite.com/feed; for example No Risk’s is “http://noriskcrossfit.com/feed” Click “Done” and you’re good to go!

When you want to import the day’s WOD, you’ll go to your box’s feed under “common” and select the day you’d like and press “Add to Completed WODs” when your box’s website shows up.

importfeed1.jpg 506x899 Using the MyWODs App to Track your CrossFit Workouts

importfeedstep2.jpg 506x899 Using the MyWODs App to Track your CrossFit Workouts

importfeed step 3.jpg 506x899 Using the MyWODs App to Track your CrossFit Workouts

import feed.jpg 506x899 Using the MyWODs App to Track your CrossFit Workouts

I have no affiliation with MyWODs, I just love the app and wanted to share with my friends!

Check MyWODs out on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/mywod.

Bust Cubby

Going Hands Free with the Bust Cubby

bustcubby.jpg Going Hands Free with the Bust Cubby

Who likes to listen to music when they work out? I know it is a must for me because it keeps me focused and simultaneously distracted enough to complete the task at hand. I have separate playlists for different activities: running outside, running on a treadmill and skiing. Fortunately our Crossfit coaches have the perfect mixes for our workouts and loud speakers so the need for headphones is null and I can use my iPhone to record my WODs using the MyWOD app.

However when I’m running outside on the street or trails to train for a Spartan Race, I’ve alway faced the dilemma of what to do with my phone. I can’t stand to have anything wrapped tight on my arm so the phone cases that you wear on your arm have never worked for me- they just slide down as soon as I sweat and I spend more time stopping to fix them the entire run. For the past few years I have just held onto my phone with a death grip but on more than one occasion it has flown out of my hands and skidded across the pavement. I’ve been fortunate enough to never crack the screen (knock on wood), but my cases always look like they’ve been through a woodchipper. Holding a phone while sweating and running is not a good idea.

A few months ago, a friend of my cousin emailed to let me know about a product she has invented called the Bust Cubby.

Screen Shot 2014 03 06 at 9.55.49 AM 500x231 Going Hands Free with the Bust Cubby

Brilliant! This was the perfect solution for what I needed when working out. Not only is its water and sweat resistant liner protect my iPhone, it doesn’t strangle or slide off my sweaty arm. It clips right onto a sports bra or tank top, really anything: belt, purse strap or lanyard.

The Bust Cubby can be used for much more than working out; you can use the Bust Cubby to carry your cell phone, credit cards/driver license, pepper spray, insulin pump, epi-pen, passport, keys, tampons – just about anything you could fit in a wallet! This is a great way to eliminate the need for carrying a purse when you go to girls night out or anywhere that you don’t want to lug a purse.

I’ll be using my Bust Cubby next month when we surprise our kids with a family trip to Disney. There’s no way I want to carry a purse around the park & I just need to carry my phone and Disney card so the Bust Cubby is the perfect solution. I’ll be using the large size because my phone has a giant battery case but I’m giving my mom a medium for her iPhone.

Kelly Smith, the Bust Cubby’s inventor, mother of two and runner, has thought of everything when she developed the Bust Cubby. There is a separate, smaller front pocket to keep ID’s and cash that can also hold an optional radio frequency (RF) shield that blocks 99.9% of the RF signals from your phone (read more FAQs on their page).

If you like to keep things simple when you’re out and about, check out the Bust Cubby to hold your phone and other small items. You can learn more about the Bust Cubby here:

 

Thank you Kelly for providing me with the Bust Cubby to review! 

Staying Fit with the Polar Loop vs. the FitBit Flex

loop vs flex 660x531 Staying Fit with the Polar Loop vs. the FitBit Flex

I love technology. Since my first computer at 4 years old, I have always enjoyed trying out the latest and greatest in technology. I am grateful that technological advancements have made huge strides in everything from baby monitors to fitness tools. I used a FitBit to shed the last few baby pounds back in 2012 and loved seeing how many steps I was taking (or not taking). Being held accountable for how active I was each day was a huge motivator.

Now that the baby weight is off and my main goal is improving my fitness, I wanted to see more data than my steps per day. I tried the FitBit Flex but got frustrated when it failed to sync on more than one occasion. I gave up on it for a few months but then dug it out of my desk and contacted the company, who promptly troubleshooted and mailed me a new one (great customer service).

Apparently, I’m the Goldilocks of fitness devices because it still wasn’t what I wanted. Then I heard about the Polar Loop on twitter. The Polar Loop is an activity tracker bracelet that does everything my FitBit Flex does, except it has the additional capabilities of syncing with a heart rate monitor (not included with the Loop) and wearing it swimming. Polar was kind enough to send me a Loop to try out and I have really loved it, especially since “Santa” brought me a heart rate monitor (Polar HR7) for Christmas to pair with it.

My first impressions were that the Loop is the better made bracelet. It seems sturdier than the FitBit Flex and has a small amount of chrome detail which dresses it up a little. It’s also customizable (you have to cut the bracelet to your wrist size) instead of the two different band sizes you can get with the FitBit Flex. Another reason it feels sturdier to me is that it has a nice metal clasp instead of the Flex’s knob clasp which sometimes came undone on mine and would fall off. So for hardware design, Loop wins.

One area I think the Polar Loop can improve on (which they say they are working on) is the software and app design. It definitely has potential, but the FitBit’s app is a little more user-friendly.

However, as soon as I got a heart rate monitor to pair with the Loop, the Loop completely pulled away from the Flex and is now my favorite. I really like seeing a record of my CrossFit WODs (in addition to the MyWOD app) and what my heart rate was during the workout, especially the metabolic conditioning segment at the end. Here’s an example of today’s training using the free Polar Flow app:

hr 336x899 Staying Fit with the Polar Loop vs. the FitBit Flex

Pretty cool, right? The Polar Flow app & website definitely has some areas that could use improvement, but I am excited for the potential they have and the hardware design is the best.

If you’re looking for another tool in recording and analyzing your workouts, I highly recommend the Polar Loop activity tracker, paired with a heart rate monitor for even more data. If you’re on the Polar Flow site, follow me here and I will follow you back! icon smile Staying Fit with the Polar Loop vs. the FitBit Flex

You can find out more about the Polar Loop here:

Why I Quit Facebook

Facebook 660x250 Why I Quit Facebook

I’ve been addicted to Facebook since I first received an invite at my college ufl.edu email address. Since 2005, I’ve been checking a website for updates on my family and friends. Instead of sending an email or actually picking up a phone or stopping by someone’s home, I clicked “like” on their new baby’s picture. I “liked” pictures of weddings and vacation and perfectly executed Pinterest creations while my “friends” number soared to over 900 people. Nine hundred people who I was trying to keep in touch and interact with while I managed to lose myself.

I lost myself while reading perfect mothers boast about their perfect family’s life while running a triathlon and winning the mayoral race and here I was struggling to get my laundry done and keep the house picked up. How do these people do it? Am I doing something wrong? Balance is an important part of a healthy life and I had simply lost my balance and began questioning my worth. It’s ridiculous because I know we are all doing the best we can in this life.

I realized Facebook wasn’t healthy for me when I rolled over to my iPhone at 3am this morning when insomnia struck and scrolled through Facebook. I didn’t get a warm & fuzzy feeling while reading it but instead got hit with a pang of anxiety. If Facebook was a boyfriend, I would have broken up with him 6 months ago with the old “It’s not you, it’s me” line.  Today, I broke up with Facebook in the passenger seat while we drove to my in-laws.

It’s true, it’s not Facebook’s fault. Facebook has been a great tool to get in touch with family and college roommates whom I probably wouldn’t have been able to find otherwise. I’m going to make an effort to still keep in touch with those I love. I’m going to FaceTime, call, text, maybe send an old-fashioned card in the mail. Facebook is a great place for people who can control their urges and log in every couple of days. I’m not that person, I have an addictive personality when it comes to certain things like Facebook  so I know it’s my time to take a break. I’m not sure if the deactivation will be for a month or more permanent. Maybe someday Facebook and I will be just like Gotye’s  song “Somebody That I Used to Know.” I’m looking forward to 2014 and seeing my friends and family in an entirely new, Facebook-free light.

Cheers to a happy New Year!

Keeping it Simple with “Yale Real Living Key Free Touchscreen Deadbolt”

I have been eying home automation systems for as long as they have been available. When they first came onto the market, they were priced way out of my price-range but fortunately they have become much more affordable in recent years. When we built our house, we put a keypad on the garage door so we could come in and out easily without a key or garage door opener. The only downfall is that our garage is on the side of our house and are many times I wish I could have just exit out the front door and lock it without having to lug my keys.

Screen Shot 2013 07 02 at 3.54.05 PM Keeping it Simple with Yale Real Living Key Free Touchscreen Deadbolt

The solution to my problem came in an email asking if I would like to review a Yale Real Living Key Free Touchscreen Deadbolt. I actually squealed out loud when I read it because I am such a tech nerd and LOVE things like this. A week later, a small box showed up at my door with some instructions on how to install the deadbolt.

If you are semi-handy around the house, you can install the deadbolt yourself without a problem. I wouldn’t recommend starting the project if you’re short on time because it’s not something you want to rush into, however the project took me 30 minutes from start to finish (with one call to their help line because I had a wire laying where it shouldn’t). If I hadn’t waited so long to call the help line, it would have taken 10 minutes to complete.

We have lived with the touchscreen deadbolt for a few weeks now and we absolutely love it. My favorite feature is that I never need a house key  and I can set up a new access code to give to someone who might need temporary access (a pet sitter, etc), no need to ever re-key or worry about someone copying our key.

yale.jpg 409x600 Keeping it Simple with Yale Real Living Key Free Touchscreen Deadbolt

If you’re looking for a safe update to your home security, check out the Yale Real Living series. Here are some additional features of the Yale Real Living Key Free Touchscreen Deadbolt:

Design Features

  • Available in both durable acrylic touchscreen or simple, elegant, tamper-resistant keypad
  • Illuminated touchscreen and keypad for night time access
  • For use on all standard interior and exterior doors
  • Tapered bolt accommodates misaligned doors
  • Available in ZigBee or Z-Wave configurations
  • Sleek aesthetics
  • Operational efficiency
  • Completely eliminate the need to manage keys
  • No need to ever re-key – just set up a NEW access code
  • Increased security

 

Find out more information about the Yale Real Living Key Free Touchscreen Deadbolt at YaleResidential.com.