Project ‘Get it Together’: Smart Apps

Ah, technology. Plenty of things that you can say against it. But when it comes to our quest for a healthier life, we’ve made good use of technology.

There are a number of smart phone apps that we use to help us keep track of things.

My Fitness Pal (MFP): This app and website work great for setting goals and keeping track of calories burned and consumed. You enter your basic info (age, height, weight, etc.) and create a goal based on whether you’d like to gain weight, lose weight, or maintain. Each day, I can input what I eat, and any activities I complete (outside of routine things like walking to the store or cleaning the house). The activities actually come from the next app on the list, Runtastic.

MFP has probably been the most helpful app for us. I have a daily calorie goal. Thousands of foods are already in the database, so it’s easy to find the foods you eat and add them to your daily food diary. You can also connect with friends, so that you can encourage each other. It’s a great app for keeping track of your progress.

SIDE NOTE: I recently read an article that listed the ‘skinny rules’ from The Biggest Loser. One of those rules is “Stop Guessing About Portion Size.” So in order to really utilize the app and get a better understanding of what we were putting in our bodies, we also invested in a food scale. It was really inexpensive. I’m not obsessive about it, but it really does help to see what an actual portion of something looks like. Bonus: we can use it for measuring out coffee!

Runtastic: We use this app to track our physical activities. Like walking, running, hiking, biking, cardio. The cool thing is that this app works with MFP, so once linked, whatever is input here goes right into MFP. Just like MFP, you can add friends and cheer each other on. You can also set goals for yourself. You can manually enter activity, or track activity live.

iDrated: an app for monitoring water intake. Zack uses this one and really likes it. Water goal is based on gender, age, height, etc.

FitBit: I just started using this app, connected to my FitBit band. I’ll be doing a separate post about our fitness bands soon. But I really like this app. I can keep track of everything from MFP, plus water intake, steps, and heart rate.

Do you have any apps you use to help with your activities and health? What keeps you motivated?

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