Ever since I got my first smartphone, I have tried to use it for as many things as possible. There are a few things I tried and failed (like the calendars and such - I’m truly a paper girl!), but one thing that really helped me was health tracking apps. After coming back a good 20 pounds heavier from Europe, using my phone made it easy to keep track of my diet and exercise and keep myself accountable. It became almost a game to make sure I was logging in and tracking - and I tell you - the results came! Today I wanted to share with you some of the apps that I tried, those I loved, and those I didn’t love as much. And no, no one is paying me to say all these things. I just wanted to share some of the tools I use/have used to be intentional about my health.
My Fitness Pal
My Fitness Pal was my best friend for a few years! By keeping track of what I ate, how much I exercised, and setting goals (and keeping them), I was able to lose 20 pounds easily. Now, I am able to maintain my weight. It’s not some magical tool that makes you do that - you do have to input everything you eat. It’s basically a food log, but instead of writing everything down in a notebook, you can carry it on your phone. If you eat something out of a package, it’s easy to scan it, and if you make a recipe, you can input that too! You can even copy and paste meals to make it simple. I have recently stopped using it as much, but I still recommend it to others (and I hear back from them with happy results).
Verdict: Great if you have the time to input your data every day, but I’ve moved on.
I have used Runtastic for a long time too! I love it for tracking all of my walks and runs and other exercises and keeps me motivated. It shows lifetime kilometers or miles every time you log in, which is fun, and connects to My Fitness Pal so you can seamlessly add your exercise. I now use Runtastic Pro (that I got for free during a promotion a few years back) and I love how it tells you every time you’ve hit a km. It keeps me on track when I’m doing long runs - and it helps me pace when I do races.
Verdict: I still love and use this app after years of use!
I know there is a lot of controversy about cycle tracking apps and how they do not work. I switched to GLOW almost a year ago from another app that I had been using, and I am pretty impressed. You can track everything from your Basal Body Temperature (BBT) to your moods. Patterns are then created and you can look back and see when you’re more likely to have different symptoms. It also predicts (quite accurately!) your upcoming periods - which helps with planning certain things like trips and activities. It’s not as accurate as the tracker I used last, but I still like it more.
Verdict: Love how simple it is to log information and the accuracy of the predictions! I’ll keep using this.
Dr. Greger’s Daily Dozen
This is a fun, streamlined, and creative way to keep track of your fruit, veggie, and legume intake. Each time you have a serving, you can easily add it to the app so you can see how you are doing on that given day. The only downside to this app is that you can’t keep your information from day-to-day to look back at your progress. Instead, it resets every day so you can add your new information. It’s still a cool way to see what you’ve eaten every day and gauge the areas you need to improve in.
Verdict: I love the concept and simplicity for logging necessary food groups as opposed to actual meals and calories (and prefer this actually). If they would change it so you can see how you did in the past, I would love it more.
Now that I have jumped on the Fitbit wagon (my husband got me one for my birthday!), I now use the Fitbit app. It’s fun to keep track of my steps and be reminded to move on days I have off. The Fitbit itself tracks your steps, distance and even sleep, to name a few features (depending on the model you get). But I’m talking about the app. You can add your water and food and create and achieve goals and set alarms and reminders to assist with that. It also links to My Fitness Pal, which is an added bonus (but I’ve since replaced My Fitness Pal with this app because it pretty much does the same thing, and I like to simplify my life as much as possible instead of using 500 apps when I could use 3). The best part is the community of other people with Fitbit devices. You can challenge and encourage each other, which is a lot of fun.
Verdict: I would say this app is a win. Easy and fun to use.
What apps do you use to track your health? Any of these?