11 No-Cheat Diet and Fitness Gadgets

Whether you want to cut calories, increase activity, or get more from your workout, these state-of-the-art gizmos will help you reach any goal

July 1, 2011
Working out with technology
1/12 Hilmar Hilmar
Lose Weight with Technology

Experts agree that keeping tabs on what you eat and how hard you work out can help you shed more pounds and boost the effectiveness of your workout. Research shows that stepping on the scale at least once a week can help you lose more weight and keep it off. Tracking the number of steps you take every day gets you to move more. Even writing down what you eat can double weight loss. So it's no surprise that the latest crop of high-tech diet and fitness gadgets are designed to make tracking stats like these easier than ever. Here's a roundup of 12 top-notch devices that will help take the guesswork out of shaping up so you can achieve undeniable results.

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Nike sportwatch
2/12 Nike.com
Best Instant Fitness Feedback

Nike+ SportWatch GPS ($199.00, nike.com)

Thanks to a partnership with GPS power-player TomTom, the Nike+ SportWatch GPS provides route tracking capabilities and online mapping for runners. The three-button sports watch tracks your speed, distance, time, pace, heart rate, and calories burned, and syncs easily to Nike's digital network. Although the gizmo works with Nike+ sneakers, running in them isn't necessary. (More: Running drills that will kick your butt)

Adidas miCoach Pacer
3/12 Adidas.com
Best Digital Trainer

Adidas miCoach Pacer ($139.00, adidas.com)

This pedometer syncs with your MP3 player and offers real-time audio coaching while measuring heart rate, speed, distance, stride rate, and calories burned during a sweat session. Whether you're training for a 5-K or conditioning for football, the miCoach Pacer develops a personalized cardio, strength, or flexibility plan. Although wearing the heart rate monitor and strap combo may feel uncomfortable--like wearing a too-tight sports bra--the feedback you receive will be worth it. The gadget instructs the user to speed up or slow down during a run, and counts down the minutes remaining. (Related: Want to become a runner? Try the 5-K jump-start program!)

Sportline HRM
4/12 Sportline.com
Best Strap-Free Heart Rate Monitor

Sportline Solo 925 Women's HRM ($79.99, sportline.com)

An integrated pedometer that provides accurate ECG (electrocardiography, also known as EKG) readings, the Sportline Solo 925 Women's HRM is a wristwatch-like gadget that uses S-Pulse technology to measure your heart rate without uncomfortable chest straps. During a workout, the device measures calories burned in addition to distance, speed, and strides. (Up Next: Walking mistakes that can hurt you)

5/12 Tweetwhatyoueat.com
Best Use of Social Media

Tweet What You Eat (Free, tweetwhatyoueat.com)

A 21st-century spin on ye old food journal, Tweet What You Eat (TWYE) lets users broadcast food consumed and calories ingested in real time over Twitter. The food diary uses the "CrowdCal system," a user-generated calorie database. Although the database doesn't store caloric values of all branded food products, the TWYE social community holds you accountable--what's eaten must be tweeted--and acts as a supportive source of motivation.

Bathroom scale
6/12 Omronhealthcare.com
Best Bathroom Scale

Omron Fat Loss Monitor with Scale HBF-400 ($59.99, omronhealthcare.com)

The HBF-400 doesn't just track weight, it also logs the body-fat percentage and body mass index (BMI) of up to four people and saves records of previous weigh-ins. Most important, weight readings are spot-on--measured in 0.2-pound increments. (Video: Blast stubborn belly fat)

7/12 Shopwell.com
Best .Com Source

ShopWell.com's Trade Ups (Free, shopwell.com)

ShopWell.com, a food information website, helps upgrade your grocery cart. Enter your age, gender, and health goals as well as a list of dietary needs (like calcium, fiber, and low saturated fat) and things to avoid (like added sugar, high fructose corn syrup, and trans fats). Based on this data, ShopWell assesses a product's ingredient list and nutrition label to determine if it's a strong match and also suggests healthier alternatives. (Search: How to read nutrition labels)

Edge 800
8/12 Garmin.com
Best Cycling GPS

Garmin Edge 800 ($449.99, garmin.com)

The first touch screen GPS designed for bikes, Garmin's Edge 800 helps track where you are and how hard you're pedaling. Ideal for various types of cycling, the gadget has a built-in base map, which pinpoints roads and cities, offers detailed street maps, and gives you turn-by-turn commands. The device is rugged enough to withstand rough rides on rocky terrain without sacrificing technical precision in measuring speed, distance, location, altitude, and heart rate. You can also use the device in conjunction with the Tanita BC-1000 body composition scale to track your weight, body fat, and body water. (Related: Bike off your bulge)

Fat loss monitor
9/12 Omronhealthcare.com
Best Instant Reading Gadget

Omron Fat Loss Monitor HBF-306C ($39.99, omronhealthcare.com)

A game controller-like gadget, the HBF-306C provides fast readings of your body fat and BMI anywhere. Like its HBF-400 counterpart, the Omron Fat Loss Monitor estimates body fat percentage, in addition to BMI, by sending a weak electric current through your body. While the body fat percentage readings themselves aren't as accurate as more expensive full-body scans, generating a reading at the same time every day will yield consistent percentages. (Related: Turn up your fat burn and lose 10 pounds in 28 days)

S2H Replay
10/12 S2H.com
Best Reward System

S2H Replay ($19.95, s2h.com)

A wristwatch-like activity tracker, the S2H Replay monitors physical movement and generates a reward code for every 60 minutes of accumulated activity. This system awards gift cards from national chains--including Best Buy, Kmart, and Sears--after a user earns a certain number of points. (Related: Get moving with these four moves to boost your booty)

11/12 Fitbit.com
Best 24-7 Tracker

Fitbit ($99.95, fitbit.com)

The Fitbit, a thumb-sized clip-on motion sensor, does it all: tracks calories burned, counts steps taken, and measures distance traveled. Not only does the Fitbit monitor daytime activity, it also records when you go to bed, how long it takes to fall asleep, the amount of time spent in bed, and the amount of time slept. (Search: Dos and don'ts for better sleep)

12/12 Muveinc.com
Best Exercise Reminder

Gruve ($199.95, gruve.com)

The Gruve, a clip-on pedometer, measures a user's nonexercise activity (NEAT, or physical movement) throughout the day. Although it doesn't have a display screen, the gadget uses lights to visually track progress. The Gruve illuminates a red light at the beginning of the day, which transitions to yellow, blue, and green as the user moves and burns more NEAT calories. If your activity plummets throughout the day, the Gruve will start flashing. If this visual reminder doesn't prompt you to get up and move, the device begins vibrating like a ringing cell phone does. (Video: 2 Exercises you should be doing)