Friday 16 October 2015

Fitness Trackers

I think we all need a bit of a boost when it comes to measuring what exercise we do, the extra push to know we’ve nearly reached the 500 calorie mark or to know that we’re 0.1 off running 3 miles. Everyone is different I guess but the aim and target is there. Fitness trackers have definitelyy come into their element this year and there have been so many new ones released that choosing the right one can be quite confusing! 

A lot of Fitness Trackers come with extra, fancy-dancy gadgets that you don’t really need but hell, it’s good to brag about them, right? The NHS tells us that we should strive to get 10,000 steps under our belt every day to consider ourselves sufficiently active*. It seems there’s been a fascination with step-counting for hundreds of years, which has developed into the fitness tracker apps and devices we know and use today. But how far do they actually go in motivating us to get fit?

I actually own a Misfit Shine, a circular watch style fitness tracker that tracks calories burnt and steps took throughout the day and is also waterproof. It also tracks and logs your sleep to let you know how many hours you got and whether it was in peaceful or stirred sleep. I don’t actually wear it at the moment as I need to get a new battery (watch batteries are thing you can never seem to find in shops!) but I loved wearing it and it definitely made me more aware of what exercise I was (or wasn’t) doing. 
The Misfit can be worn a few ways too so if you work in a job where you can’t wear bracelets or bands around your wrist, you can wear it as a necklace, loose in your pocket or as a clamp on you clothing, but make sure it can track your movements else you’ll walk 10 miles and it’ll only track 2! 
Do you use fitness trackers in your daily life? Does it make you do more or less exercise? I’d love to know! Leave your answers below! 
*Sponsored post

Wednesday 7 October 2015

Winter Coats with Highcross, Leicester

Can you believe that we can finally say it’s nearly winter?! It seems like we’ve had no summer whatsoever and that we’ve skipped the hot weather completely, jumping straight into the season of coats! I don’t mind the cold weather to be honest, it gives me a chance to wrap up in hats, scarves and boots and be all cosy - nights with hot chocolate curled under a blanket come straight into my head! But one thing is for sure, you can’t get through the winter months without a decent coat or jacket to keep you warm and of course, on trend.
2015 is the year that we’ll see the faux fur coat make its big come back, military style jackets and coats are all around too, maybe helping you add just something different to your autumn wardrobe. White coats are also pretty big this winter but, of course, having a 2-year-old means that white is a silly, silly idea for me! Along with these, tweed and full-length coats are another two to keep an eye out for as the shops are starting to fill up on the winter essentials, and finally getting rid of the summer clothes that no one actually needed to buy - I guess we can blame the English weather for that!

So, on the prowl for my new winter coat, this year I headed to Highcross in Leicester to see what they had on offer and get my perfect winter coat before all the best ones sold out! I used the Highcross PLUS app (available on iTunes or Google Playto help me with my shopping experience, noting the shops I wanted to visit beforehand and using the map a few times to figure out where they were (I’m still trying to remember where all the shops are even though I’ve been more than 5 times!)

First up, I headed into New Look because as I had parked in the John Lewis side of Highcross, this was the first shop I approached. The brilliant thing about Highcross is that it’s open until 8pm every weeknight so I can pop over after work finishes and browse the shops when there are no queues, no-one trying to squeeze past me and ample room to try things on - a perfect time to go when you’re shopping for a coat! New Look has a brilliant range of coats in at the moment, I saw some military style jackets and coats, some full-length coats and lots of faux fur coats - not just full faux fur but also fur-collared coats which I LOVE! I tried a few on but nothing really stood out until I came across the beauty that I actually ended up buying... 

Debenhams also had an amazing selection of coats - I was pretty overwhelmed actually and came really close to buying a gorgeous blue military style coat but still had my heart set on the one I had seen back in New Look. Within Debenhams, Oasis had a fab range and a gorgeous faux fur gilet - although not quite a winter coat, it was so soft! They also had a lovely ‘Millie Cardigan’ which I couldn’t help but try on due to the name! Like I said, I had my heart set on the coat I’d just tried on back in New Look so I got the Highcross PLUS app out to find out where I could look next to see if I could find another contender.

Topshop, Next and River Island were my next stops, Topshop had some gorgeous faux fur coats in but a lot were jackets, not really winter-proof so off I went to Next and this is where I was a little torn between the coat I had already seen and a new one. A gorgeous grey tweed style coat with a white fur trim – absolutely GORGEOUS! River Island had a great selection but there were a lot of leather jackets rather than coats, they were beautiful but, like Topshop, they weren’t really winter coats. I just couldn’t decide so, I realised that I did the typical ‘Woman-shopping’ thing of walking round for 2 hours and decided to go back to the first shop that I went to in order to get the coat that I had set my eyes on to start with. 

Out of the 100+ shops available in Highcross, I’m pretty certain I went in every single one that sold coats and it was trusty old New Look that pulled through in the end. Take a look at the coat that won out of the 15 that I tried on and let me know what you think! Don’t forget that you can search shops on the Highcross PLUS app and also check out any offers that are current to save yourself some money when you next visit Highcross. (Download here for Apple and here for Android).