Some fitness apps have been around for a few years, but there's no doubt that devices to measure health, activity and fitness are becoming increasingly popular. For years, My Fitness Pal, a smart phone application, has been a friendly tool to help track calories in and calories out, but you used to have to physically log everything by typing it in.  It also allowed you to share your info in a network of friends so that you could share your progress or have friendly competition. Nike also developed an app that helped track your running by monitoring a chip placed in the heel of the sneaker.  For runners, it was great. It could track your activity and log all of your miles. The new trend is wearables. From the Fitbit to any Android compatible device, like the Galaxy Fit, this is the new way to hold yourself accountable.

As long as the wearable is synced to your phone, it can track everything from steps taken, calories burned and even monitor your sleep. Each device or app has it's own benefits, depending on your fitness goals and budget. Here is an overview of four different devices and programs to help you keep your fitness or weight loss goal for 2015

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    My Fitness Pal

    This app can be downloaded to any smart phone absolutely free. My fitness pal is a food and exercise diary that lets you not only manually enter your workout and log food intake, you can also find out from the app how many calories each activity burns according to your fitness profile.  My Fitness Pal also has nutrition information for almost any food imaginable.  And if you can't find what you're looking for in the food database, you can enter the food and nutrition information where it will store it for future use. This tool is a diary.  You will have to log your info as it will not do it for you, but it does not require any other gear.

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    The Fitbit

    Designed as a wrist accessory to monitor activity and sleep, the Fitbit offers various versions that go from basic to fancy, depending on your intended use.  The great thing about the Fitbit is that it is compatible with many apps where it will record the info for you such as My Fitness Pal. Depending on the model purchased, the Fitbit can include more features such as a stop watch. The Fitbit apps are available for Apple and Androids alike and can retrieve data from your fitbit to store. This app also allows you to network with friends who can help keep you motivated by seeing their activity as well.

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    Apple phones with IOS 8

    If you're not into the idea of a wearable, just keep your Apple device in your pocket. Any Apple phone with operation system 8 will include their health app.  If you're looking for a pedometer that's already integrated into your phone and doesn't require much more than inputting your physical profile for accurate caloric burn measurement, then just turn it on if you have an Apple iPhone. You can also log your nutrition info, but if you're thinking lower maintenance "how many steps do I take a day," here you have it.

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    Samsung Gear Fit bands

    This is Samsung's answer to the Fitbit.   If you own a Samsung device, the SHealth app is can sync to your Gear Fit band and store your health information. The Gear Fit will track steps, monitor sleep, provides a stop watch, bluetooth connects to the music on your phone so that you can control it from your wrist and also sends notifications to your wrist such as incoming texts and calls.  It is a fitness device as well as a notification system worn on your wrist. This device is also a touch screen device.

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