Summer iPad Challenge #5: Get Fit Challenge!

Planning on taking some extra time this summer to resurrect your work-outs? Get back into shape? Why not try using the iPad  to log your workout?

One of the great things about the iPad is its ability to function as an organization tool. I guarantee the students will be using it as such for their school work- in fact- my own daughter is an avid user of the calendar app and the reminders app. Keeping track of your daily exercise is just a fun way of getting used to the iPad as agenda, calendar and schedule. It forces you to look at your device everyday as well as giving you the satisfaction of seeing your progress!

I saw this app, fitChallenge the other day, and thought it would be good for those of you who need to add a dash of competition to motivate you to get fit. Of what I understand, you pick a partner, then challenge each other with work-outs. When you do a work-out, your friend will get a push notification and vice versa. And for what it is worth, it was featured in Oprah’s magazine.

I repeat. For what it’s worth…

If you are not so interested in the whole competition idea there are plenty of fitness tracker apps that work very well and you can download for free:

Be Fit, Stay Fit Challenge

Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker by MyFitnessPal   (I’ve used my fitnesspal before and it is very functional)

Diet & Food Tracker by SparkPeople (this reviews for this app is mixed- people love it but there are definitely problems).

rAppido Review: Activity Snack

Along with the crisis in Syria, Global Warming, the political climate of our fair country, my children, the skinny jean fashion, etc. I worry a lot about my sedentary job and how it is negatively affecting my health, and consequently and worse, my productivity. I am all about productivity, yo. I have lists and feel an inchoate joy when I get to cross things off of it.  But my work takes place mostly on the computer, which means I am sitting for the better part of the day.

Now, this is a new anxiety, born out of articles like this one and this one that claim our sedentary life styles are killing us. And, as if the experts were speaking directly to me, they say that even if you exercise like a maniac in the morning, but then sit down at a desk all day, you are taking years off your life.

Huh. There goes my smugness.

But I think I knew this. At the end of most days, my legs are as swollen as a juicebox left out in the sun (you will know this phenomena if you have ever had young kids). I am sluggish. And lately, I can barely stay awake after lunch.

I am sure that many of you are undergoing the same thing, with your hours and hours of grading and comment-making.


My first stop? the iPad! I have a couple of friends who have installed on their computer an application that shuts it down at different periods of the day as a forced reminder to get up and do some exercises for a few minutes.

Now that is kind of drastic, so I thought I would see if there is anything similar for the iPad. You know- a gentle little ding ding?

And that is where I found Activity Snack.

Although it is more then just a tool to remind you when to get up and move around (tear yourself away from that screen! tear yourself away from it, I say!), that is the one I am more interested in for work.

But as you can see, you can keep track of all your activities, as well as map them (I really never understood this-I know where I am for the most part, why does my ipad need to know?). To set your reminders, tap on Settings, then on Days and choose the days you want to be reminded to get your butt out of the chair:


Then set the time you want to be reminded and save:

Unfortunately, each time you set a reminder, you have to re-do the days.

So I set a reminder for 9:20 and got a little ping. I decided to walk around the school, doing all of the stairs and all of the hallways. I chose walking from the menu:

I timed myself:

It took me four and a half minutes, which they rounded out to five. I also tried the submit a past exercise:

And voilà!

My only critique would be that you can’t change the sound of the alarm for the reminders- it would be helpful if it was different from the others so that you can’t ignore it. As it is now, the reminder is small and the sound unobtrusive:

See? The reminder might not be enough…