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12/25/13

Waste Line: Most fitness gadgets disappoint but some secure a passing grade

Fitness is anything but infallible. If anything, disbelief runs rampant when thoughts turn to starting a workout or exercise plan.
Most of that skewed view of fitness comes in the form of the workouts, equipment and diets that promise plenty and rarely deliver.
Consumers have finally learned to keep their guard up as far as being overly picky when it comes to piecing together a combination of exercise, food and gadgets that work for them. Those who produce, supply and manufacture these products also have moved in the direction of self respect versus scams.
That, of course, doesn't mean there still aren't a few charlatans combing the airwaves or internet in search of a quick payday, minus the payoff for the customer.
So that's why when you see varying fitness products put forth, you're totally justified in feeling a little underwhelmed and incredulous as you mull over making a move to buy something that is seemingly too good to be true.

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So what are the best fitness tools, tips and products to ensure success?
Much to our surprise, some of those products actually are pleasant surprises and should find their way into your shopping cart. The key to any gadget or product that centers on fitness is convenience. The product should make it easier for you to find time to get to the gym or learn how to clean up your meals and make dieting seem plausible, rather than pesky.
Take, for instance, the water bottle, something that everyone should have either at the office or en route to the gym. But that plain, old plastic container should be replaced by today's version of water bottles, some of which roll up within the confines of your gym bag, while others allow you to add fruit or lemon to your water without much resistance.
Umbra makes a citrus topper for your water bottle that allows you to forgo lemon juice in favor of squeezing fresh lemon to give your water a kick. Uncommongoods.com takes that thinking a step further with a water bottle that has a slot for fresh fruit that sits submerged in your water.
And if you have to have a simple water bottle, then at least find one that is a duel threat in the gym. The Contingo Water Bottle showcases a slot that holds a key, money or even a debit card. The downside to this device of sorts is that you'll start having to pay close attention to your water bottle, but then again isn't it always with you?
Another thing always by your side is your gym bag, but, much like the water bottle, your duffel bag better be more than just an old grocery bag or the same tote you used in high school. Again, convenience is king at Activyst.com, which sports a gym bag that finally fits your lifestyle with compartments for everything, including a Yoga mat or cumbersome tennis shoes that seem to never fit in your old gym bag.
Something else that never fits in your fitness routine? Taking healthy lunches with you to work. Instead, you're busy balking at the idea of packing a salad in favor of staring blankly at a burrito in a vending machine since throwing a little change in a slot sounds easier than making a salad at home.
The Black and Plum Bento Box makes piecing together a little lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and croutons a little easier since it includes compartments that allow you to separate your ingredients so you're not cracking open a soggy salad for lunch. There's even a spot, lid included, for your dressing.
It's important to always note that not everything that is fitness related is the Ab Circle, The Gazelle or any other device that is deemed disappointing. If you find the right item, you might find yourself more surprised than skeptical that you're in the midst of being ripped off.

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