I have been on a lifestyle improvement program. Part of this program is to pay more intention as to what I ingest and how active I am. My body has been a low priority over the years, and despite a couple of false starts in previous years I have decided to give this another go. Being a geek of course I have looked for ways to leverage my existing technological investment in iOS devices (iPhone 4 and iPad 1) further to assist me in this journey, I hate using that word but it fits (pardon the pun).
The first App I became aware of, thanks to Mr Dan Hughes from Lee and Dan’s Midnight Movie Club, was Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker by MyFitnessPal. MyFitnessPal is a site that has a large (and dynamically growing) database of foods and exercises and is a combination of website and iOS App. Basically after putting in a current weight, a goal weight, and a timeline to achieve the goal it works out a daily calorie goal. This goal is adjusted as cardiovascular exercises are added to your daily diary, strength exercises can be recorded, but have no bearing on your suggested intake.
The downside I find to the App is that the calorie’s burned for cardiovascular exercise is guesstimated based on user input. For example, for a walk you enter the amount of time you walked for and a rough speed estimate. The burn is then worked out according to an arbitrary formula and takes into no account the inclination and declination of the travel. Surely both of these are key factors in getting an accurate reading. As such the calories burnt can only be thought of as a guesstimate.
Technically the App is not needed as all can be done on the website, however having the App in my pocket gives me the ability to see at a glance my calorie intake and guesstimated calorie burn for the day. This helps me make smart decisions, and gives me a way to monitor what it is I am eating. The site does have a social aspect to it as well with a reasonably active forum of like minded people becoming more active.
It’s a good idea and could well be expanded upon and improved further. If you are in the market for something like this then give it a go.
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