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adidas miCoach Pacer tracks your heart rate, helps you get fit at your own speed

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Against all the odds, I have found something genuinely interesting at CES. (Seriously, if you don’t like 3D TV you’d better go home.) It’s the adidas miCoach Pacer, a handy little device that measures your heart rate while you exercise. The device records all sorts of data, including calories burned, miles walked/ran, and stride length, and then syncs that to the miCoach Web site. From here you can customize your workouts to plan and execute healthy a nice little routine for yourself. It’s primarily aimed at runners, but can be used anytime you get your heart a-pumpin’.

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The device itself is fairly small, about the size of my watch, as you can see here. You clip that to your person, or stick it in your pocket or whatever, and then place a sensor in your shoe. And then you connect the heart sensor. It literally takes a couple of seconds to get everything all set up (beyond the initial battery charge, which happens via USB.)

As I learned in this morning’s press conference, researchers have found out that people respond very well to coaching. That is, you could be a more effective runner if you have some guy telling you what’s what than you’d be if you were to try to fly solo. The Pacer does that! Vocal feedback (sorta sounds like a GPS system voice) tells you to speed up when you’re running too slowly, or to slow down when you’re pushing yourself too hard.

The miCoach system works by having you train at one of four different intensity levels, given the metaphor of blue, green, yellow, and red, red being the highest level of intensity that one could run. Blue is for building up your cardio, green is for optimal calorie burning and extending your endurance, yellow is for like green but more, and red is if you’re pushing yourself crazy hard. Maybe you need to make weight for an MMA fight?

The Pacer should be available nowish and costs $139. I really do think that, once I get back from CES, I’m gonna set up miCoach for myself and do like a weekly update on my progress. Should be fun~!

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