Tech Trends

Weight Loss, Music, USB Charging and Humidity Sensors; They Do Go Hand in Hand

Keep your New Year's resolution by staying charged, cooled, and in control of your mobile devices.

It’s a New Year.  It’s time for those New Year’s Resolutions.  At the top of more than half of America’s list is weight loss.  I know that’s true for me!  It is every year.  And while this is always the talk of the New Year, what’s going to change in 2018?  Anything?

It seems like year after year we write weight loss at the top of our list in some form or another.  It may be eating healthier or exercising more, but they all have weight loss in mind.  For Christmas we get gym memberships, a treadmill, or a juicer to jump start our resolution.  But eventually the days go by and many people slip back into their old habits in spite of their efforts.  So our new year’s resolutions become renewals of the previous years.

Weight loss systems

Hopefully by now we all know that the best way to lose weight is to clean up your diet.  Eighty percent of the work is in diet.  Weight Watchers is my favorite program because it teaches you about what you eat.  It goes deeper and educates and you really take the time to read labels and differentiate between ingredients.  In my years as a personal trainer, I saw the most lasting results in people who did Weight Watchers.  Atkins, the Dash Diet, and Jenny Craig are all also popular options.  When it comes down to it, learning how to lose weight relies very heavily on learning how to eat right. Learn what your body needs, how it reacts to different things, and create something that works for you.  That’s the ultimate plan. Then you balance that with good physical exercise.

Gyms across the country look forward to January.  The first half of the calendar year in general actually is the best time for gyms.  They run their New Year promotions for memberships, they throw in free personal training hours, extra classes, new schedules and new hours.  They catch people in their New Year renewal spirit and hang on for as long as possible.  Usually that’s about a month or two. But then in the Spring you get another wave of people preparing for swimsuit season.  After that, things really die down until the next New Year.

Weight loss gyms

The good news is you can take advantage of the membership savings now.  If you’re a Costco member, the best offer is a 2 year membership to 24 Hour Fitness starting at $369.99.  No initiation fees or hidden charges.  Others like to go to LA Fitness, where current initiation fees start at $25 and monthly fees start at $29.99 per month.  Planet Fitness is growing and their $10 per month memberships are really attractive. Gold’s Gym is another way to go but individual gyms vary in pricing so go in to get the current promotions.

It is a proven fact that music can have a positive impact on your work out.

jogging and working

It motivates you, puts you in the zone, makes you want to move, helps you keep pace, and is a good distraction from everything else.  It is rare that you see a person working out at the gym without something plugged into their ears.  Most of us rely on our phones for music.  Not many gyms these days offer Wi-Fi.  That stinks. So we stream music over data.  That is, assuming you have enough battery life in your phone.

If you’re working out indoors, many elliptical and treadmills and even stair climbers offer USB charging right on the machine.  So if you don’t remember to charge your phone before you go to the gym, you’ll still be able to power up a little.  At least, on cardio you can.  But weight lifting is a different story.  That equipment is not electronic.  You’re not going to plant yourself in one place so that you’re near an outlet.  That’s not an effective workout plan.  Why don’t you take a few minutes before you leave the house to fast charge your device?  The Topgreener TU21548AC is a USB outlet with ultra-high speed charging power.  It is a wall outlet with a Type A and reversible Type C USB outlet, plus two regular tamper-resistant power outlets.  You can get up to 2.4A of charging power per port.

Topgreener TU21548AC

If you’re not in need of a Type C USB port, the Topgreener TU21548A has two Type A ports.  The USB ports still get up to 2.4A of charging power each.  You can super charge your iPhone 8 in just 35 minutes. Drink a pre-workout while you wait, then go to the gym fully charged, both in body and in portable electronic device, and get the most out of your workout.

As we all know, going to the gym requires effort and comes with a set of pain points.  You have to plan your day around the open hours of the gym.  Not just that, but if you go in during peak hours you end up spending more time waiting for the equipment you want than actually using it.  I am an avid gym patron, but I cannot stand when I go in and every piece of cardio equipment is either broken or in use.  When I go to the weights side, I can never find 2 of the same weight dumbbells.  Or someone is using the one smith press they have in the entire gym for his entire workout session.  And I can’t tell you how many times I go to a machine only to see someone sitting on it but not using it!  They’re either talking to someone else or playing on their phone, which then disrupts my routine and forces my heart rate to drop in between exercises as I look for an alternative and I gradually lose momentum.  What’s a girl to do?

A big trend over the recent years has been to install home gyms.  Investing in versatile equipment and things that you know you’ll use is practical and effective.  It doesn’t take much as long as you have the space.  A treadmill or an elliptical for cardio is sufficient.  Then get a system like the Bowflex or Total Gym for your weights, along with a set of dumbbells and maybe a Bosu Ball or Yoga Ball.  That’s really all you need to get going.

My friend Kristi Brewer is a working mother who happens to also be a world record holder master weightlifter.

Kristi Brewer - weightlifter

She built a gym in her garage.  This way she didn’t have to worry about child care.  She could work out at her leisure.

Home workout area

I could go into detail about what kind of gym equipment is best, which floor mats to use, and what setup is most ideal for a home gym, but there are many people out there who could do a far superior job.  There are blogs and YouTube tutorials galore that walk you through designing and setting up your home gym.

So what am I doing?  Well I’m hoping that you’re going to be one of the few thousand Americans who actually sticks to their New Year’s resolution.  Whether it’s to lose weight or be more active, both great goals, I want to plant in your mind something you’re probably overthinking.  With all this working out, you’re going to need to shower.  You might find that you shower more often because of the added activity in your day.  That means more moisture in the air, and greater chance of mold and mildew build up.

If you have a fan in your bathroom, use it.  It’s best to start the fan up before you even turn on the shower.  Then, you need to let it continue after your shower is done until the coast is clear.  But how long is long enough?  When does “long enough” become “too much” and begin wasting electricity?

A good idea is to use a countdown timer switch. The Top Greener TGT08-4 is a good option with 8 time delay options ranging from 1 min – 4 hours.

 Top Greener TGT08-4

The Enerlites HET06 is another good option with countdown options from 5 min – 4 hours.

Enerlites HET06

With each of these switches you can use it to turn off your fan after you leave the bathroom, so that you don’t have to worry about remembering to come back and turn it off.  These are both good ideas.

A GREAT idea, though, would be the Top Greener TDHOS5.

Top Greener TDHOS5.

This is a humidity and passive infrared (PIR) sensor in one.  It controls both a fan and a light.  With the fan it works by detecting moisture in the air to automatically turn the ventilation fan on or off based on the moisture level.  The ventilation fan will continue to operate until a preset humidity level is reached.  For lights, it detects motion and controls light when motion is detected.  This is perfect for your bathroom.  It gives you one less thing to worry about.

The DTHOS5 has a humidity range from 45%-80% RH and PIR coverage of 600 square feet.

You can customize all the settings including time delay, user modes, and humidity levels. This makes it great not just for the bathroom, but for laundry rooms and your home gym if you decide to build one!  On top of all this, it’s a good thing to use for home health care to maintain medical equipment.

So here’s to a New Year. Keep to those resolutions.  Vow to eat healthier, and keep yourself active.  Then, after all is said and done, take a shower.  Use that fan.  Control the humidity.  Activate the sensor switch so that each time you work out, you can shower in a clean mildew-free bathroom.