The holidays may be a time for overindulgence, but come the New Year, many people will set goals to lose weight, eat better or get back in shape. So you may be considering a fitness-related gift for your friends or loved ones. Whether they want lose weight, get in shape or just aim toward a healthier life, here are some standout fitness gifts. They run the gamut from sports watches to smart scales to gadgets you can take in the pool. There's even a fitness gift for little ones.
A fitness tracker that doesn't break the bank: Jawbone Up Move
The new Up Move from Jawbone is a fitness tracker for exercise newbies or those who just want to boost their activity. The Move tracks daily steps and calories burned, as well as sleep. It comes with a clip, so you can attach the device to your belt or jeans pocket. When you press the face of the device, a hidden LED display lights up to show your activity progress. And at $49.99 — less than half the price of some other fitness trackers — the Move won't break the bank.
For people who want to lose weight or maintain weight loss: Withings Smart Body Analyzer
No one likes stepping on a scale during the holiday season, but here's one that might actually help you keep your resolutions in the New Year. If you're looking to upgrade your old-fashioned scale, the Withings Smart Body Analyzer is worth considering. The scale calculates your body mass index (BMI) and fat mass, registers your heart rate, and even tracks the air quality and air temperature in your home. The accompanying app also gives you tips, such as the best time to measure your weight. And you can let your friends know how your resolution is going, by sharing your measures on sites such as Twitter.
A tracker for people who like to run or cycle: The Polar RC3 Multisport watch
Meant for a runners and cyclists, the Polar RC3 is a GPS-enabled watch that tracks speed, distance and route during training sessions. The watch also keeps track of calories you burn during a training session and comes with access to a free training website called Polar personal trainer. There, users can review their training data, or create a training program for running or cycling and download it to the watch. The RC3 can be paired with a heart-rate monitor, so that users can train more efficiently, and with the right intensity.
(Polar also makes a waterproof version, but it's pricier.)
For swimmers who want to track their pool time: The Misfit Flash
The Flash activity tracker from Misfit is waterproof, making it a good option for someone whose sport of choice is swimming.
The Flash includes the standard features of most fitness trackers; for example, it tracks your daily steps and sleep. But when you are not walking or running, you can use the "custom activity tag" in the app and set the device to track your movement as you are swimming, cycling, or playing soccer, tennis or basketball. When you are about to start your activity, you press and hold the button on the Flash, and the lights on the Flash will light up to indicate that you are in the correct mode. Then your movements will be registered as swimming or any other activity you have chosen on the app.
Affordable headphones for anyone who likes music during their workout: Sennheiser CX 685 Adidas Sports In-Ear Headphones
Working out can go to a whole different level when you can hear your favorite tunes, in good-quality sound, through earbuds that don't fly around. Sennheiser's workout headphones have sweat-proof earbuds, and great sound for their price. The earbuds stay in place when you're running thanks to eartips as well as fins that hook into the earlobes. The slide-to-fit mechanism lets you adjust them and find a comfortable fit.
For people who want to get the most out of their workouts: The Polar H7 heart-rate monitor
The Polar H7 is a heart-rate sensor that measures your heart rate and wirelessly sends that information to an app on your phone. The device is a chest strap, which is one of the more reliable ways for measuring heart rate. Coupled with its app, the device can function as an activity tracker, because the app uses the phone's capabilities to track your walking and running. The Polar H7 can also be used with some of the Polar products, such as the Polar Loop fitness tracker.
For kids who like to run around: LeapFrog's LeapBand activity tracker
Fitness trackers aren't just for adults. Several fitness trackers for kids hit the market this year, including the LeapBand activity tracker from LeapFrog, which is aimed at kids ages 4 to 7. This device has a colorful screen, and encourages kids to be active as they play with their virtual pets. Kids complete activity challenges, such as "wiggle like a worm," to earn points and unlock more levels of play. The device also tracks total activity with a green bar that fills will color. The LeapBand is water resistant, so it can withstand splashes.
For runners: Adidas miCoach Fit Smart Fitness Tracker
This newer activity tracker from Adidas is designed to be used only when you're working up a sweat. The device comes with a built-in heart-rate monitor, so you can track your heart rate from your wrist without needing to wear a chest strap. The Fit Smart uses your heart rate to provide coaching during your workouts, prompting you to increase or decrease your workout intensity to hit your desired training zone. You can easily see what zone you are in by glancing at the side of the watch, which has a strip of lights that change color (from white to blue to green to yellow to red) as you increase your workout intensity. At the end of a training run, the device gives you a "Run Score," which you can use to see if you're improving in your workouts, and also to estimate your race times.
For gadget geeks: Hexoskin Smart shirt
With this shirt, there's no need to strap on a fitness tracker. The Hexoskin shirt itself has three sets of sensors embedded, and it tracks body metrics including heart rate, breathing rate, breathing volume, steps, pace and sleep. The shirt is machine washable. You need to wear a small Bluetooth recording device to transfer the data from the shirt to the Hexoskin app. The data then appear in real time on your smartphone.
A headphone that doubles as a heart-rate monitor tracker for sport enthusiasts: Jabra Sport Pulse Wireless
In an all-in-one training gadget, Jabra offers the Sport Pulse wireless, which is more than just a set of headphones. These earbuds are equipped with a sensor that can monitor heart rate. The data is transmitted via Bluetooth to the Jabra Sport Life app, which is compatible with both iOS and Android devices. Users can track their heartbeats during workout sessions as they are listening to music or a voice coach that gives them real-time feedback on their workouts. The headphones are sweat- and weather-proof, and the app also provides the same information as a typical fitness tracker, such as distance taken, running speed and calories burnt.