Hi! Just to kick things off, why don't you introduce yourself Pris?
I am a fitness and sports blogger with a passion for endurance sports. I do especially running as well as cycling on a regular basis and I share my personal experiences on my blog, about races and events, as well as seeking comments and tips from elite and inspirational athletes, through interviews with them. At the same time, I also review sports related products ranging from sports headphones to running shoes, GPS watches, fitness trackers and other apparel.
My blog, PrisChew.com, is the winner of the 2015 edition of the Singapore Blog Awards [Judges Choice: Health and Wellness Category].
What training tips do you have for the average joe to keep fit and look good?
The most valuable training tip that I can give is: Stop procrastinating. This is because many people may have the intention to begin an exercise regime and get fit, but the problem is that many other factors such as work or family time may get in the way and so, they will tell themselves that they will start their fitness regime “tomorrow.” But “tomorrow” never comes.
Instead, set a date and time in stone to begin the fitness regime and actually stick to it. Before you know it, fitness will become a habit.
Another tip that I can share is to do an exercise that you love. With so many activities out there, ranging from endurance sports like running and cycling, to high-intensity session that are completed in 30minutes, as well as ball sports like tennis and squash, to water sports such as swimming, wake-boarding, dragon-boating and water polo, there will surely be a sport that you love. If you don’t enjoy it, you are less likely to stick to your fitness regime.
How important do you think monitoring your heart rate with devices like the R420 is when working out?
I think that monitoring heart rate is definitely important so that you don’t end up overtraining – which can lead to fatigue and in worst-case scenarios, injury.
Knowing your heart rate zones and working within these zones will help you to gauge the level that you are exerting yourself when exercising. You should also vary the intensity of your workouts so that the body has time to recover after exercise sessions. For example, after a hard workout where you are working close to your maximum heart rate zone, the workout the following day should be an easy recovery session where you are keeping to your easy zone and able to hold a conversation while exercising.
Trackers such as the LifeTrak Zone R420 will help you to gauge whether you are keeping within your heart rate zones, which is important for athletes who are unfamiliar with heart rate training and may not be able to gauge the level that they are exerting themselves at.
Training is only half the battle, keeping a healthy diet is important too!
What do you usually eat during the day and what advice do you have for people struggling to eat healthy?
I usually try and start my day off on a positive note, with fruits & nuts for breakfast. Sometimes if I am still hungry, I may also have some wholegrain cereals.
For lunch and dinner, I may either eat at home or outside. If I am eating outside, I generally try and choose the soupy options at hawker centres or food courts, such as yong toufoo, soup wanton mee or porridge. But if I am eating at home, lunch or dinner may comprise of wholemeal sandwiches with eggs, chicken and vegetables, or rice with meat and vegetables.
As I have a sweet tooth, I will eat desserts sometimes, but at the same time, I do not overindulge in terms of these. For instance, if I want to have some ice cream at home, I will eat it – but I will stop at one scoop and then put the tub away – rather than digging in and eating the whole pint.
For those who are struggling to eat healthy, the most important advice that I can give, is to eat in moderation. This is what I believe in. Eat everything but keep your portions small. Do not completely restrict yourself from eating certain foods that you love – the more you try and go cold turkey, the more you will end up binging once you lay your hands on those particular foods.
How do you think devices like the LifeTrak Zone R420 helps you to achieve your fitness goals?
As such devices give you an indication of health stats like your daily steps taken, daily heart rate, sleep and calories burnt, and I feel that it definitely helps to give you an idea of your current level of activity and thus, give you a goal to strive and work towards.
For example if you are currently doing about 5,000 steps per day and you wish to target a daily count of 10,000, wearing such a device may spur you on to go out for a short jog after work, in order to clock those 10,000 steps… instead of heading straight home to eat and sleep.
How has it worked so far? If your experience was great, why do you think it works?
In terms of the LifeTrak Zone R420, I reviewed it on my blog: http://www.prischew.com/social/review-the-lifetrak-zone-r420-fitness-tracker/
In a nutshell though, I feel that the LifeTrak Zone R420 is a value-for-money tracker that packs in plenty of useful features for a decent price.
What is your favourite fitness tracker? Is style or functionality a greater factor?
My favourite fitness tracker would be one that can give me plenty of features, such as steps taken, heart rate, sleep and calories burned, as well as ease of uploading and being light on the wrist without weighing me down.
To me, I would say that both the style and functionality of a fitness tracker must appeal to me. For instance, it has to look good, and at the same time, be lightweight.
Functionality plays an important part though – for me to justify using a tracker daily, it must be useful. If for example, it only calculates daily steps taken, then it may not be the fitness tracker to suit my needs. To me, some of the other features that I also find beneficial, would be 24/7 heart rate tracking, distance walked and measurement of quality of sleep. This is because knowing such statistics will give me an overall and well-rounded picture of my health as a whole.