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The Smart Pedometer Revolution: Counting Calories And Staying On Top Of Your Diet

Want to know how much calories you are actually burning.
See how the new smart pedometers are both fun and could totally change your diet experience.

Whether you are girl looking to shape-up and get the figure you always wanted or are a man in your 40s just trying to shave off that unwanted belly fat, you may have heard about the gadget everyone is talking about. Although it may not have an app store, it's smaller and less expensive than your iPhone. What everybody is talking about is this little device called an activity monitor,or smart pedometer.

If you are someone who is currently using one, then you may already know what the difference is between it and a pedometer. In this column we are going to take a detailed look at what this little guy can do for you and your diet.

What is an activity monitor, anyway?

You may have just looked it up right now. I know what you're thinking. The answer is no. You don't have to be a computer geek to get it to work. Disregarding what it means to you if you happen to own a Mac, an activity monitor is a fully integrated lifestyle tool with functions that go way beyond what you get out of a pedometer.

Besides allowing you to quite accurately count the number of steps that you take every day and spit out the number of calorie burn, it allows you to measure the amount of calories you burn more systematically and autonomously containing specialized programs to measure almost any activity you do. Some devices even include programs for measuring activities such as watching TV and cooking. Not only does it do this, it does it with very little guidance from the user. You would be amazed what is available on the market nowadays. It also provides tools for managing calorie intake from the food you eat. An activity monitor can help you do this and so much more.

How does knowing how many calories you burn everyday help your diet?

If you are not sure how many calories you burn everyday, that's fine not many people actually do. Just so that everybody is on the same page here, let's say you do. In one hand you hold a paper containing the number of calories you burn everyday. "So, what do I do now?" you might be asking yourself at this point. Well, at this point you are going to take that paper and use it like a check, buying food that you eat throughout the course of the day. Now let's step back to the question we are trying to answer, how does knowing how many calories you burn everyday help you in your diet. By knowing how much you burn everyday, you also know how much you need to take in. Knowing this much combined with continued monitoring its possible to not only master calorie counting, but take full control of your diet.

Develop a working sense of the word calorie as it relates to you

When you hear the word calorie, it's hard not to associate it with food. Although it's nice to know how much calories you are taking in with food, it always feels like you are paying for it. How you cash in is by looking at the situation the other way around. For example, let's say you decide to go play basketball for an hour. Knowing that you just burned of 500 or so calories is more attractive than knowing how much is contained in a Big Mac. An activity monitor by allows you to visualize these calories giving you real-time feedback, which plays an important motivational factor in your diet along the way.

Choosing the right design and color that is right for you

When you think of a pedometer, you might not be able to imaging what it would look on someone young. However, the activity monitors being sold on the market today comes in a variety of designs and colors, making it easy to personalize – fit to ones own style.

Whether you are into a more masculine design, something with a feminine touch, or something in between it's out there. All you have to do is look.

Fully equipped work out buddy that's going to make your friends jealous

Although features may vary from product to product, activity monitors has all that you need to get your diet on the right track. Being able to calculate the amount of fat you burn and track your daily calorie consumption graphically is one set of features. Another helps you set goals before exercising to keep you on track, telling you how long you should run, and then even tell you when to stop. Having these features makes you less concerned of how it looks and more concentrated on how it can help you in your diet.

Staying in the safe-zone

While you diet, being able to grasp the amount of calories you burn daily helps you better understand the constraints you need to put on yourself. As important as matching your calorie intake with that of your consumption, it's dire that you remain reasonable, not over-limiting your food intake too much. Practically speaking, your body requires more energy that it is burning. The same goes for your car. You almost never put the bare minimum amount in your tank. This makes you prone to running out of gas. We don't want that to happen to your body. The negative effects that insufficient energy intake has on your body is that when, too close to your basal metabolic rate your body does the opposite of what you would expect. Your metabolism slows down, making it easier to get fat.

That is why instead of trying to match your calorie intake with that of consumption, its better to look at this as being a safe-zone. Being comfortable with the amount of calories you intake leads to less stress and increased diet success. Who knows? It might actually be fun for a change.

By Martin Nicholson

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