After much procrastination and finally tired of looking at my jiggling belly I decided I need to get back into shape. I’ve been using the food diary software for the iPhone from Lose It, but felt that I needed more data. You see most of these food diary programs use standard equations to calculate your daily caloric amount. And if you don’t fit into the equation, you don’t lose weight. Now all hope is not lost. Most of these many tools can have more data input into them, input it into the equation, and it will be more accurate.
So here are the tools I’ve acquired for this experiment.
FitBit – www.fitbit.com
I first wanted something to measure how active I am on a daily basis. You wear the tiny little device on your waist and it will track how many steps you have taken, how sedentary you are, even monitor your sleep patterns.
There is also a companion website that automatically tracks all of your data and real time updates it for you. The biggest plus to the FitBit site, is that is links with so many other products such as Microsoft HealthVault, Endomondo, and Lose It!, which are also being used in this trial.
Endomondo – www.endomondo.com
I’ve used this software in my on again off again relationship with exercising since Windows Mobile 6. At the time it was the only free GPS enabled tracker for WinMo. Now that I have an iPhone the app has become my goto tracking app because not only does it integrate well with FitBit but it also integrates well with my next tool which is awesome.
Polar H7 Bluetooth Heart Monitor – www.polarusa.com
I like a lot of people were wondering what was the point of Apple including Bluetooth 4.0 and its low-power mode into the new iPhone and iPad. This device is the reason. It is a inexpensive Bluetooth “Smart” heart monitor. Using the low-power mode on the iPhone it integrates with Endomondo to monitor your heart rate while you exercise. No more janky dongles to support ANT+, it just pairs with the software and works.
Lose It! – www.loseit.com
Having all this great workout data is worthless if you don’t track what you eat. While most apps like this are of limited use because they don’t have the food your eating built in, they updated their iOS program to have barcode scanning built in. Just go to add a food, touch scan barcode, the camera comes on and voila. It is pretty accurate although I have found a few foods that are way off so it pays to check.
Health o Meter Scale – www.healthometer.com
Lastly I need to see if I am actually making progress or not. This is where the scale comes in. Using an old analog rotary scale makes it almost impossible to read what your weight is. And I’m not about to spend north of 100 dollars for a Wi-Fi enabled scale, as cool and simple as they may be. This model, BFM884, not only measures your weight but also takes body fat %, hydration level, BMI, and saves weights and your target goal.
I’ll be posting up more detailed write-ups of the FitBit and Polar H7 shortly.