Both of these wearables come with accelerometers that track your steps (experts recommend at least 10,000 a day — how are you doing with that?). They also come with apps that offer advanced and easy-to-use food tracking services, so you can easily log and monitor your eating habits. And the Jawbone UP24 has the added bonus of buzzing you whenever you've been sitting on your butt for too long.
Fitbit Flex (left), $99. Get it here.
Jawbone UP24 (right), $129.99. Get it here.
2. To step up your running game: Garmin Forerunner 10
3. For better posture: Lumo Lift
4. For more efficient workouts: Athos Wearable Technology for Fitness
What you're looking at here might sound like science fiction — but it's real, and the products will start shipping to peoples' homes in January. On the left is the Core, which is what Athos calls "the brains of the system." On the right are some workout clothes that come with sensors that constantly track your muscle activity, your heart rate, and your breathing. They all connect to an app that tracks your progress, and gives you instant feedback about your performance — like say if your form was off in that last set you just did. Oh, and the workout clothes come with SPF 50 sun protection, and they're machine-washable.
Athos Wearable Technology for Fitness: Core, $199, and clothes, $99 per piece. Reserve yours here.
5. For spying on your dog: Whistle
Clue (pictured above) is a smart and useful app that helps you track your cycle and all of its intricacies — your moods, your pain, your fluids, your sexual activity, and more. It uses an algorithm that gets smarter and more accurate the more you use it, so it can better help you predict when your period is coming, when you're ovulating, and when you should prepare to hunker down for a few days with a tub of ice cream and a heating pad.
Kindara (not pictured) is a fertility awareness app that helps you learn more about your own cycle and take your reproductive health into your own hands. It can be paired with a tool called Wink that reads your basal body temperature (so you can find out if you're ovulating for sure), and automatically sync the readings to the app.
Clue App, free on iPhone and Android. Download it here.
Kindara App, free on iPhone and Android. Download it here.
Wink by Kindara, $79. Get it here.
7. For tracking your pregnancy: Glow Nurture
Glow is another fertility tracking app, like Clue and Kindara above. Glow Nurture is the app for when you successfully get pregnant. Glow Nurture helps you keep track of your prenatal appointments; tracks your weight; keeps a due date calendar and a daily health log; and it also connects you with a Glow Nurture community, where you can chat with other users going through the same things you are.
Glow Nurture, free on iPhone. Download it here.
8. For better focus and inner calm: Spire
9. To track your baby's sleep: Mimo Smart Baby Monitor
And one more to look forward to in THE FUTURE: Scanadu
Scanadu is a company working on building a suite of mobile health devices more impressive than anything you've heard of before. Pictured above on the left, for instance, is the Scanadu Scout, a sensor-packed scanner that you hold to your forehead to get readings of blood pressure, temperature, blood oxygenation, and more, delivered straight to your cell phone. Pictured above right is the Scanadu Scanaflo — a urine test kit that, among other things, can tell you if you're pregnant, or if you have a urinary tract infection (UTI). All of these devices are still under development, but the company has plans to seek FDA approval once they're all in working order... meaning that one day, we may not need to go to the doctor to get a routine diagnosis of UTI. Think of the possibilities.
And to learn more about the insane and exciting and occasionally troubling growth of self-trackers and apps, read all about the big business of the quantified self: Big Mother is Watching, by Anne Helen Petersen.