Summer is here and if you are still trying to achieve that illusive beach bod fear not, as our fitness guide is here to guide the way. In this guide you will find in-depth reviews of Fitbit’s Charge HR, JML’s Blitzer and also our favourite items from Helly Hansen to get you on your way.
Helly Hansen Fitness Clothing
Helly Hansen is a world renowned high-performance outdoor clothing brand with a heritage which stretches all the way back to 1877. Since then, this Norwegian influence brand has become synonymous with quality and premium outdoor wear. We can’t think of many (if any), outdoor brands with such prestige. Helly Hansen more recently has combined cutting edge technology with high performance clothing for the best results. We were lucky enough to try two of their latest items and we loved them…
Helly Hansen Ahiga 2 Trainers (£80)
If you are in need of some high-performance running shoes then the Ahiga 2 Trainers are streaks ahead of most on the market. Firstly, the striking colours and eye-catching design make them more appealing than your typical pair of trainers. However, the aesthetics are only the beginning with these trainers. The trainers have been designed to perfectly fit and support the anatomical shape of the typical foot. For example, there is C-Zone cushioning and a decoupled flexible soul for the ultimate comfort. Also, the EVA midsole and strategically placed podular rubber out soles improve this comfort further.
Aside from comfort and support, there is also a fully breathable membrane to the trainer and a quick dry mesh, therefore making it practical for all temperatures and weather types. To finish off the trainer there is also Helly Hansen’s own HellyGrip rubber and HellyWear rubber to give traction on the move.
The Ahiga 2 Trainers were perfect in our testing and made for a highly practical, supportive and comfortable training shoe. They also have that built to last feel, as you would expect from any Helly Hansen product. For £80 they are great value too. Find out more here.
Helly Hansen Odin Enroute Shell Jacket (£300)
Training and generally getting out and about in Britain can often be an uphill task due to the weather. Rain, rain and more rain seems to be the order of every season and even the Summer doesn’t seem to be bucking this trend. Therefore, we think the Odin Enroute Shell Jacket might be a great jacket for you to consider in all your outdoor activities. Super light, breathable and yet waterproof, this jacket may just give you that extra boost you need as you trudge through a summer shower, a long hike or an evening jog in a thunderstorm.
This hard wearing jacket is at the higher end of Helly Hansen’s price range (£300) and that is down to a raft of craftsmanship which has been ploughed into its design. Created with Helly Tech professional construction, this jacket features an air permeable flow membrane with a 3 ply lamination for the ultimate in breathability. For a jacket with such high levels of waterproofness, the feel remains light and airy – quite a feat we think! Part of the reason the waterproofing of this jacket is so good is down to the YKK Aqua guard on each zipper and pocket, this reduces the chances of water passing through and provides a water tight seal. Totally windproof and waterproof, this jacket is a marvel. This is the ideal jacket for long treks across mountains, rambling or evening if you are just out camping. If you are looking for the ultimate jacket, then this is the one.
Fitbit Charge HR (£119.99)
One very modern way to enhance your fitness regime with the help of a Fitbit Charge HR. This versatile device gives you a range of data and functionalities which can improve your fitness regime ten-fold.
Inside this sleek looking gadget is a range of mind boggling technology, such as an optical heart rate monitor, a 3-axis accelerometer, an altimeter and a vibration monitor. All of these gizmos combine to track every nuance of your daily movement and also constantly measures your heart rate. No more need for those pesky over the chest heart monitors here, as the device will track your heart rate via contact with your wrist and all data is then kept so you can analyse it later. This simple to wear and fun device, is a great addition to your exercise regime, as it gives you oodles or data on your activity and yet doesn’t get in your way one bit. Want to see which exercise gives you the optimal heart rate for fat burning, well now you can and it’s easy.
Aside from tracking exercise, the device also tracks steps, distance, calories burned and floors climbed during typical daily activity. Furthermore, the device allows you to track how active you were throughout the day, when you were most active and when your heart rate was most conducive to fat burning. This 24 hour tracking allows you to see just how sedentary your daily routine and this allows you to focus on how and when you could maybe up your calorie burning times to become more active. One other benefit is the device’s auto-sleep detection setting which makes it easier to track how you sleep. This was very useful for us and allowed us to better understand why were so tired some mornings and energetic others. There is also food diary integration and the ability to count consumed calories too, albeit manually.
The device is fitted with a neat screen and this in itself has other benefits outside the health benefits. For example, you can see who is calling you, tap your screen for stat updates and works as a great watch too. The battery lasts between 4-5 days and is chargeable via a USB cable provided with the Fitbit.
Once your device has managed to sync all of the data with your phone it then turns your activity in to user friendly graphs and tables, therefore making it easy to see which activity best at raising your heart rate to a fat burning level and which activities failed to cut the mustard. All of this data is viewable in the fantastic Fitbit app and this is free to download.
It may not be waterproof and usable in a swimming pool, but other than that the device is a fantastic addition to any workout regime. Accurate data is collected with ease and with minimum impact to your efforts. A wonderful device and one that we can no longer live without. Available here in six colours for £119.99 with free delivery and a 2 year warranty.
JML Nutri Blitzer (£79.99)
One of the best ways to get in shape and to pack a lot of nutrients into your diet is by using a blender. Blenders, or in this case a “blitzer”, allow you to combine great natural flavours quickly and easily. The Nutri Blitzer is a direct competitor to big name products on the market such as Nutri Bullet, but offers the same results at a more palatable price. Does it pull this off, we certainly think so!
For under £80 you get the full kit needed to becoming a blitzing champion. The precision made-steel blade spins at an astronomical 19,000 rom, creating a powerful pulverising motion to give you a great, smooth blend. Additionally, the set includes a 160-page recipe book featuring ideas from Olympian endorser James Cracknell and nutritionist Natalie Alexander, a range of different cup sizes with drink handles, re-sealable lids and a couple of extra blades too.
The results are tremendous – whether you want to make a fruit smoothie with your favourite berries or a vegetable and nut super food smoothie, you can do. The Blitzer is very easy to use, easy to clean and also delivers smooth results too. The taste of the drinks we tried from the recipe book are fab. Plus, you can rest assured that the nutrients of each constituent element are retained. We were blending novices and this feels like the perfect start to our blending future (if you will); as it’s easy to use and fun too. The only slight grip is that the base unit (where the motor is housed) is quite large and takes up a lot of work top space, so maybe consider this if you have a dinky kitchen. Buy one here.