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Life Hacking Through Self-Tracking

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With the summer fast approaching, the Olympics and Jubilee season upon us, the web-savvy amongst us are turning to 'self-tracking' to get the most out of our time. The new trend of using apps, gizmos and lifehacks is a lot more than just being techy though: it's giving people the ideas for working smarter.

Self-tracking is all about making the most of everyday life through using the tips and tricks readily available and capturing all the data that certain apps and websites churn out. If you're on a fitness drive, the Withings scales will digitise, analyse and even tweet your weight.

If you like getting a good night's sleep, the Sleep Cycle phone app wakes you up at the optimum time, which it works out just by tracking your movement through the night. And the endless array of apps that help you to track your exercise, from RunKeeper to the new Nike+ and Nike Fuelband, which can help you scrutinise and share the data you're generating when you burn off the calories. Quora has a thorough thread of self-tracking technologies that you can try out, which you can read here.

But it's not just about what apps and gadgets to use - it's what you do with them that counts. With the impending death of free space, free time and sanity in the 'Jubilee season,' and with the Olympics about to descend, here are five self-tracking top tips for coping with office life and life in general:

1. Power-meetings: tired of company meetings lasting all day? Try having a power-meeting with colleagues while in the gym. With most office workers sharing gyms with at least one or two colleagues, this new trend is reported to be an energising alternative to boardroom blues. Cancel out a few long meetings in the office by killing a few birds with one stone - and killing a few calories at the same time.

2. Take time out: did you know it's mild month in May? Yes, mild. CAMRA, 'The Campaign for Real Ale' is encouraging pubs to stock mild throughout the month of May, so take some time out and try a new tipple, it might be a refreshing alternative to the pale ales and 'cidres' on ice that are filling the tables down the local.

3. Team-building: with such a tussle over the top spots in the football and rugby premierships and both seasons coming to a close, live sport is making a comeback. If you're a Newcastle fan and your goal of the season wasn't televised (as happened this week), then hurry out to experience it first hand with your colleagues. It's just weeks until the seasons come to a close so hurry along.

4. Seize the moment: location-based social networks and priority experience services are all the rage. Treat yourself to that last minute Swedish massage for ultimate relaxation when you have a moment spare. Just download one of the most relevant apps on to your phone that can give you priority access or discounts, or try adding location info to your social networking, and you'll soon be taking advantage of promotional offers left, right and centre.

5. Chill out: the Flat White was the must have hot drink of the summer, and as things hot up outside, they're cooling down at Starbucks. Try some iced coffee, which will be just the ticket for surviving the eventual heatwave (we hope). Waitrose has just begun stocking the new must-have brand of Jimmy's Iced Coffee which is worth hunting down if you can find it.

Around the Web

Self-Tracking | Quantified Self

Quantified Self | Self Knowledge Through Numbers

The Technium: Self-Tracking? You Will

Self-tracking: Down, and roll me 20 | The Economist

How Self-Tracking Can Benefit Business | Inc.com