2016 New Year's resolutions made easier with wearable tech

Making and keeping resolutions for 2016 is easier than ever thanks to wearables
Resolutions made easier with tech

January: a time to take down the decorations, finish off the selection boxes and vow once again to have a healthier, fitter, happier 12 months before Christmas rolls round again.

The good news is you don't have to rely on your willpower alone to make sure your New Year's resolutions stick: a well-chosen wearable or two can make all the difference between success and failure.

We've picked out five of the most common resolutions, together with the gadgets that can help you stay on course.

1. Lose weight

Want to try and shed some of the pounds you've put on over the holidays? There are dozens of decent fitness trackers on the market to match any budget, so you can set yourself exercise targets and then check your progress on reaching them (or not as the case may be).

Fitbit Aria
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Amazon

If you want to track weight specifically, then Fitbit is one of the best options here: you can enter your weight manually in the smartphone app or use the Aria Wi-Fi Smart Scale ($129.95) to do it automatically. Aria also keeps an eye on your body fat percentage and body mass index (BMI), offering helpful suggestions and targets for you to aim at.

2. Stop smoking

Breaking a smoking habit is one of the hardest challenges you can set yourself for 2016 but the benefits are huge. Chrono Therapeutics is working on a SmartStop device and accompanying system that will give your willpower some help in the struggle to go smoke-free – it uses replaceable nicotine cartridges to help you wean yourself off the cravings in the same way as a patch does, while using some advanced algorithms on the back-end to help you effectively manage your daily dosage.

Reminders and motivational messages can be sent through the app and it's also possible to link up with other users to support one another. The device is currently undergoing testing and should be out in the near future.

3. Give up alcohol

Perhaps you've overindulged at Christmas or maybe you just want to give your liver a rest – whatever the reason, taking a temporary or permanent break from drinking or just cutting down can do wonders for your health and your bank balance. One way to tackle this is by getting an alcohol tracking app installed on your phone and reducing your intake gradually over time, and there are plenty out there to choose from: DrinkControl is one of the best ones that we've come across and it's available on iOS ($4.99) and Android (free).

Entering the drinks you're having is straightforward, as is tracking your progress over weeks and months, and you can quickly see how much money you're spending too.

4. Do a Couch to 5K

The Couch to 5K scheme from the NHS is a running plan for beginners that's designed to get people from sitting on the couch to participating in a 5K run in the space of nine weeks. There is an official app available but you can also improve your chances of success with a dedicated running watch to keep an eye on your jogging regime and routes.

5. Get a promotion

If you're going to get ahead at work then you need the right tools, namely a smartwatch that can manage your schedule and your workflow more effectively. Pick up any Android Wear-powered device and you get yourself voice control, smart alerts and instant access to your calendars and email from your wrist – and your boss is sure to make a note that you're one of the most tech-savvy, forward-thinking, sophisticated workers in the office.

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