Why Apple’s Thanksgiving Day Challenge could change your life

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Are you up to the challenge this Thanksgiving?
Are you up to the challenge this Thanksgiving?
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Apple is sending us mixed messages this Thanksgiving. On the one hand, it’s encouraging Apple Watch owners to get active with the Thanksgiving Day Challenge 2019. But on the other hand, it’s serving up new episodes of Apple TV+ shows a day early, so we can collapse onto the couch with full stomachs and do nothing all day.

If the couch sounds more tempting than a chilly November workout, you should think again. If you accept Apple’s Thanksgiving Day Challenge, it could be the most important workout you do all year.

How to edit Apple Watch workouts

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Apple Watch logged your workout wrong? You can still set the record straight.
Apple Watch logged your workout wrong? You can still set the record straight.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

When you finish logging a workout with Apple Watch, you can gloat over all your hard work in the Activity app on your iPhone. This provides all kinds of useful charts, maps and trends to show you how you’re doing.

But what if you logged that workout by accident? Or if you forgot to log a workout? You can’t edit Apple Watch workouts on your watch, nor in the Activity app on your iPhone. But fortunately, there is still a way to set the record straight. Here’s how to edit Apple Watch workouts.

iOS 13 wish list: Giving health & fitness a workout

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Will Apple move workouts to iCloud so you can browse them on any device?
Will Apple move workouts to iCloud so you can browse them on any device?
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

WWDC is less than a week away and there are already plenty of rumors doing the rounds on what new features Apple has in store for iOS and watchOS. Dark mode, a refreshed Reminders app and a new Find My app all look set to make an appearance.

But will Apple also be giving its operating systems a shot in the arm to improve their health and fitness as well? Here’s my top-ten wish list of announcements I’m hoping to hear during next week’s keynote. These features will get my pulse racing so fast it’ll trigger a heart rate warning on my Apple Watch.

Master the mysteries of ‘Other’ workouts on Apple Watch

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Apple Watch’s Other Workouts are a whole other ballgame
Apple Watch’s Other Workouts are a whole other ballgame
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Everyone knows you can do running, cycling and swimming workouts with your Apple Watch. But did you know you also can log sports like football, golf and boxing? There’s even support for pastimes as diverse as fishing, horse riding and fencing.

These workout types are not easy to find, however. Apple hides them in the “Other” workouts menu. With a bit of hunting around you’ll discover 60 additional options there to choose from.

So, if you’re bored with your regular workout and fancy trying something more exotic, why not give these Other workouts a try? Here’s how to find and use them.

10 awesome Activity app secrets [Cult of Mac Magazine No. 293]

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Get ready to get ripped with these hidden Activity app features.
Get ready to get ripped with these hidden Activity app features.
Cover: Graham Bower/Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

Dig into Apple’s slick Activity app and you’ll find some advanced metrics that can help take your fitness to the next level.

Get the lowdown on 10 features hidden inside the app — plus the week’s best Apple news, reviews and how-tos — in this week’s issue of Cult of Mac Magazine. It’s free and it looks the perfect way to enjoy some weekend reading on your iPad. Or use the links below to read the stories on our website.

10 hidden Activity app features that will take your fitness to the next level

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Discover the secrets of the Apple Activity app.
Discover the secrets of the Activity app.
Photo illustration: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

At first glance, the iPhone Activity app seems pretty simple. It’s basically just a calendar to keep track of your daily Activity Rings. But if you know where to look, you’ll find a surprising number of pro features buried beneath that slick, simple interface.

So check out our top 10 iPhone Activity app tips and discover some indispensable stats that will help take your fitness to the next level.

How to win Apple Watch Activity Competitions every time

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Apple Watch arm wrestling
Apple's Apple Watch business grew 50% last quarter.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Apple Watch Activity Competitions are a perfect way to fall out with friends and colleagues. Simply send a challenge via the Activity app on your watch and, if they accept, a seven-day grudge match commences.

With Activity Competitions, a new feature in watchOS 5, it’s not the taking part that counts. It’s the winning. The winner receives a shiny virtual medal to add to their awards, while the loser gets zip.

Fortunately, when you know how Activity Competitions work, you can maximize your chance of winning every time. Here’s how.

Get fit with Apple Watch and nail your New Year’s resolution

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How to get in shape with Apple Watch in 2019
How to get in shape with Apple Watch in 2019
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

If your New Year’s resolution is to get fit with Apple Watch in 2019, maybe I can help. I know from personal experience that it’s never too late to get in shape.

I’m a middle-aged guy, and up until a few years ago, I lived a very unhealthy lifestyle. I never exercised, I only ate junk food, and I was seriously overweight. Today, I have a six-pack, I run seven miles a day, and I even write about fitness for Cult of Mac.

The secret to my transformation is something I call “The Ratchet.” It’s a way of running that makes it so easy to get started that pretty much anyone who can walk can do it. All you need is your Apple Watch and a pair of running shoes.

So if you’re thinking about New Year’s resolutions for 2019, why not give The Ratchet a try? Here’s how.

How to start swimming with Apple Watch

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Apple Watch Series 4 loves getting wet
Apple Watch Series 4 loves getting wet.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

While many of us learn to swim at school, plenty of people never return to the pool as an adult. If that sounds familiar, but your shiny new Apple Watch Series 4 is tempting you to dip your toe in the water again, this guide to swimming with Apple Watch is for you.

We’ll take a look at what equipment you’ll need, how to use your watch for swimming, how to structure your workouts for maximum fitness gains, and how to track your progress in Apple’s Activity app.

Let’s dive in and start swimming with Apple Watch.

How to sync your Apple workouts to Strava automatically

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Sync Apple Workout app with Strava to get the best of both worlds.
Using Apple's Workout app with Strava gives you the best of both worlds.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

Your shiny new Apple Watch is great for logging workouts. But it comes up short when you want to review your training progress and share your workout history with friends. Everything gets bundled in the Activity and Health apps on your iPhone, which are pretty basic.

That’s where third-party apps like Strava come in. Strava offers all the essential fitness analytics that Apple overlooks. The trouble is, Strava’s watch app sucks for logging workouts.

If only you could have the best of both worlds: logging your workouts with Apple’s excellent built-in Workout app, then syncing the data automatically to Strava. Well, thanks to a brilliant indie app called HealthFit, you can.