Meditation Frustration

Started up a meditation practice again this month after trying out the Calm app. Really need the daily routine to just slow down for a bit, even if its only 10 minutes a day.

One thing I find a bit frustrating, not just with Calm but the idea in general, is the attention to the breath. I get why this is the “universal” thing to do but they always say “don’t control the breath, just notice the natural flow”. For me the problem is bringing my attention to my breath automatically makes me control it. Maybe there is a way around this but so far I haven’t found it.

Using a Scosche Rhythm+ with Walkmeter on iOS

As a bit of a follow-up on my previous article about using the Scosche Rhythm+ with iOS I wanted to do a quick write-up about using the Rhythm+ with my GPS/workout app of choice: Walkmeter by Abvio.

Walkmeter directly supports a list of devices that unfortunately doesn’t include the Rhythm+. This wasn’t an issue for me before because I was using the Rhythm+ via the Apple Watch (which is supported directly in Walkmeter). Now, since I’m not using the Apple Watch, I thought I was out of luck but there is a way to get it to work (and this method might work for other devices as well since it uses Apple Health as an intermediary). It turns out that you can use the Scosche Rhythm Connect app to connect to the Rhythm+ which starts saving data to Apple Health. Walkmeter will then read that data and populate it’s heart rate displays.

Here is how you get it to work…

Scosche Rhythm Connect

  1. Launch the Scosche Rhythm Connect app on your phone.
  2. We need to make sure that the Rhythm Connect app is connected to Apple Health so that data coming off of the Rhythm+ is saved to Health.
    1. Tap on the “hamburger menu” in the upper left corner of the screen (highlighted in orange below).
    2. Tap on “Configure Sharing”.
    3. Connect to Apple Health if it’s not already connected. When you connect it will pop up a permissions screen asking what data to share to/from Rhythm Connect. In the screenshot below I’ve already connected to Apple Health.
  3. Now go back to the main screen by tapping the hamburger menu and then tapping “Home”.
  4. Now power on your Rhythm+ and it should show on upon the screen like this:
  5. Tap on your device in the list and you should then see this (it might take a second or two for the heart rate to show up):

Now we need to head over to Walkmeter to finish the setup…

Walkmeter

  1. Launch Walkmeter then head over to Settings by first tapping “More” in the bottom menu then tap “Devices”.
  2. On the Devices screen make sure that “iOS Paired Heart Rate Monitor” is enabled.

Now you’re ready to go. If you tap on “Stopwatch” in the bottom menu your heart rate should show up on the main Walkmeter screen (again it might take a bit because the app is reading data from iOS Health and not from the device directly).

This is a bit more cumbersome than having direct support in the application but it works. Walkmeter is a tinkerer’s dream, it’s ridiculous how much data it shows and how configurable it is. I have not found anything like it on the App Store.

Using a Scosche Rhythm+ with iOS

This post is about the older model of the Scosche armband HR monitor but this very well might apply to the newer Rhythm 24 monitor that took its place.

Up until recently I’ve been using the Scosche as a replacement for my Apple Watch (Series 3) HR monitor during workouts. It has better accuracy and updates at a much faster rate (once per second) than the Apple Watch. I’ve always paired it directly to the watch and have only used it with the Apple Watch workouts. But lately I have not been wanting to wear the Apple Watch and have been experimenting with other applications on my iPhone to see how that all works together.

The one piece of advice I have is to ignore what is written in the manual and don’t pair the Rhythm+ with the iPhone via Settings->Bluetooth. That step is completely unnecessary and seems to cause problems when trying to get the Rhythm to work with other applications. I experimented with multiple applications (Scosche’s own Rhythm Sync, Polar Beat, and FITIV Pulse) since each has their own pairing setup.

If I paired the Rhythm+ with the iPhone first, the pairing in each of the apps generally would not work properly. Sometimes it would pair, sometimes not. If I forgot the Rhythm+ in the iOS Bluetooth settings then paired the device individually with each app it worked flawlessly when I switched between applications. I’m not sure why Scosche specifically calls out pairing with the iPhone first in their directions but it certainly isn’t necessary and causes problems using the device.

Silence is important

Came across this interesting (if old) article today on Pocket about silence. What I find amusing sometimes is when people do research into the obvious. It should be obvious to everyone that sometimes silence is necessary for healing, recovery, or just plain keeping our sanity.

This article felt so timely though because this year I’m volunteering again at a gymnastics meet soon and this year I’m prepared. Last year the whole idea of silence being necessary for us to be healthy came into sharp focus when I spent a whole weekend volunteering at the same gymnastics meet. 12 hour days of constant, loud, noise. Loud music, lots of people cheering, clapping, etc. It was a constant wall of noise. At one point I couldn’t take it anymore and went out to my car. I sat there in silence for 15 minutes and I was shocked at how refreshing it was. I was able to get through the rest of the day without losing it.

This year I’m planning on taking multiple breaks as part of the goal to keep myself healthy over that long weekend. Silence truly is golden!


Photo by Conor Luddy on Unsplash