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Apps for Weight Loss Part 1

30 Nov

On the advice of a friend I installed two new apps on my phone, both are geared towards helping you lead a healthier lifestyle, one is for your eating plan the other is for your fitness. I thought I’d review the apps, give some deets on them and what not but in the effort to not make yet another horrendously looooong blog post I am giving each app it’s own post.

App numero uno!

Lose It!

-disclaimer, the app title uses the exclamation mark, that is not me trying to make it sound more exciting lol 😉

This app is free and is very user friendly. I had it before when I was still using my blackberry phone but I didn’t have it on my blackberry because that phone was a piece of crap and couldn’t handle, well…anything 😛 So I had it on my iPod touch, it worked ok on the touch, it is one of those apps that once it is installed you are good to go, can use it anywhere, you don’t need a data plan or to be hooked in to wifi to use it so that was nice. As far as I can tell (I’ve only really played around with this new version a bit here and there) it is still the same, you install and are good to go. 🙂

This version has some new things that I already love but before I start explaining those let me give you a quick run down of what the app does.

This is a food tracker, so goodbye little notebook that I used to take everywhere and write my food and drinks in to, now it can be conveniently written down in my phone which, being the person that I am, is never far from my grasp lol.

When you first set up the app you tell it how much you weigh now, what your goal weight is, your height, your gender and your age, it then asks you how quickly you want to lose the weight and gives you options to choose from (if I remember correctly the options are 1lb a week, 1.5lbs a week, and 2lbs a week…hmm, I think I am missing an option, I’m sure there were four to choose from…I know it topped out at 2lbs a week so it does try to make sure you lose the weight at a healthy rate). It then very nicely calculates how many calories you can eat per day so you achieve your goal 🙂 Oh! and it tells you when  you will reach your goal by if you follow the amount of calories it says to eat.

The main screen shows the current day, how many calories you are allowed, how many you ate, how many you burned and your net calories for the day. There is also a bar graph that goes from 0 to 2500 and it has a line marking how many calories you are allowed, as you add food to the tracker the bar lights up to show you how close you are to your caloric limit.

The next screen is your Log screen, it shows in detail the food and exercise you have logged for the day, you can toggle back to look at previous days. Along the top of that screen it shows your allowed amount of calories per day, how many calories you ate, how many calories you burned and your net total. It also has a box that tells you if you are over or under your calories for the day…if you are over that box is bright red so you can’t miss it…no matter how hard you try 😛 When you input the food you put it in as breakfast, lunch, dinner or a snack so when you read your food log it shows the food separated by what meal you ate it in. You can select any of the foods on the list to bring up a detailed nutritional information screen, that screen also lets you adjust the quantity of food, so say you put down that you ate two pieces of bread but you actually only ate one, you can go fix it. 🙂 This is also where you enter your exercises for that day, you can select from a database of exercises (the list is quite extensive) or you can enter your own exercise. For all that the list of exercises is long and varied it still doesn’t have dragon boating, sigh, maybe one day…

After that is the Motivate screen, this one will require you to be hooked in to wifi or have a data plan. This is new (to me anyways, maybe it has been around a while) and I like the idea of it even though I haven’t used it that much yet. There are Challenges that you can sign up for which, depending on the type of person you are, could really help to motivate you. I signed up for one, it is a Holiday Workout Challenge, it was made by an American so it says there are 33 days from Thanksgiving till Christmas and the challenge is to keep active as much as you can in that time frame despite all the extra festivities you will be attending. You can invite friends to join the same challenges as you, you can see how well other people are doing (currently the leader in this challenge has logged 32 workouts – don’t freak out! She is logging “real” exercises  as well as things like housework and shopping) and you can even earn badges, ooOOOooh! Ok, so I’m making fun of it a bit *rolls eyes* they are virtual badges, I mean come on, are you gonna show your friends your phone screen and be all “look, I earned another badge that in the real world means absolutely nothing!” lol I’m thinking no!

The next page is the Goals page, this is the page that shows you your start weight, your goal weight, your daily calorie budget (just can’t get away from that!) and gives you an option to modify your program. There is also a snazzy chart that shows where you started weight wise and as you lose weight the line will go lower on the chart till it gets to your goal weight, the dates are along the bottom and the weights are listed at the side. I remember this chart from last time I used this app and I loved it! I am fairly visual with most things and seeing the line going down down down on the chart made me feel so good about the progress I was making. 🙂 Go line graphs!

There is of course a More page where you can change  various settings for the app, read summary reports an stuff like that. What I like about the More page is you can create custom foods (so, say you drink a protein shake everyday and you make it the same way every time, add it in there and when you are putting in the food log that you drank the protein shake you don’t need to put each and every individual ingredient, you just put in the shake that you saved to memory, easy peasy!) You can also add recipes, pick which nutritional info is entered and tracked, see a list of all the foods you’ve entered in to the app previously, update the list of foods in the app, all that kind of stuff.

Something I absolutely looooove is the new ways to enter a food in to the tracker. you can search the database for the food you ate, you can take from the list of foods you have entered previously, you can take from your recipes or your previous meals, you can search brand name foods ooooooor, the best part, you can scan the freakin barcode!! Oh yah! I think this is sweeeeet and the best addition to the app that I have discovered so far! I tried it by scanning the bottle of wine I was drinking and it was brilliant! It seemed even more brilliant then it is at the time due to just how much of that wine I had consumed teehee. 😉

One last thing, when you are on the main screen you can change it so you can see how you are doing that week (a basic over/under for each day and by how much) or you can look at a macro-nutrient breakdown of the current day and the week so far. So, if you are trying to be low carb or high protein or whatever, this will help you to follow that. It’s pretty amazing how quickly some of the things add up, like carbs, there are so many carbs in veggies that if you are going low carb you can totally go over your carb intake for the day just by eating a quarter cup extra of veggies that day, crazeeeee!

So this is my explanation of the app, long enough for you? lol Hey, I tried to make it short, sorta…there’s just so much info in this app! I would highly recommend this app if you are tracking your food and/or exercise, it is easy to use, it’s on your phone which odds are is with you all the time, there are lots of different options for how to enter different foods, every screen shows you the important info so you don’t have to toggle from one screen to another all the time. All in all, it is great…long as you use it! If you install it and then just let it sit there, well, don’t go complaining you aren’t losing weight cause oddly enough, it only works if you work, go figure! 😉

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