Weight loss is a major goal for a lot of people and a medical requirement for some, but getting around it can be a problem. The traditional way seems to be gritting your teeth and going out and doing it on your own or with a couple of friends. Now, mindlessly toiling away, hoping you don’t lose your motivation and having someone work you like a horse in a gym isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. A good general uses any means necessary to create an unfair advantage for himself, and he comes out victorious with as little effort as possible. It’s about working smart instead of working hard as they say. So how does a smart man go about losing weight? Why I’m glad you asked hypothetical reader. He does so by using all of our modern technology to aid him, using gadgets and apps to plan workouts and track progress, using social media to connect with people, get advice and organize group workout sessions and by planning ahead. Let’s check out some of the options modern technology gives us by way of these useful apps to help you lose weight.
Useful Apps to Help you Lose Weight
Weight Watchers Mobile – this is a great way to track your Weight Watchers point, an easy reference system that helps you figure out how much and what kind of food you should eat. In addition it has a ton of useful recipes, so your healthy food doesn’t have to have a bland taste and you don’t end up eating the same food all the time.
Tap & Track calorie tracker – the best thing about it is that it can be used while offline and has a huge database of different foods with all sorts of nutrition facts about each of them. You can track your calorie intake from the foods, the calorie loss through exercise and your daily weight measurements, and compare this to the recommended calorie intake based on the specific factors related to you personally, so you can make a decent diet plan.
iMapMyRun – it will help you create a running track or simply figure out what distance you’re covering in certain areas in your town where you like to run (you can measure the distance in miles or kilometers). You have a map and you simply find your town, zoom in and map out a route. You can be very competitive with your friends even if you can’t run together, you can write down your score for a certain track you have designated for your little competition and then see how fast your friend can run it when he gets the time.
Get running (couch to 5k) – it’s there to get you started, no matter how lazy or how big of a noob you are when it comes to running. It is highly motivational and gives you simple workout plans you can follow to gradually improve as a runner and lose weight.
Fitness Pro – it has a large database of useful workouts with tips on how to perform them properly and has the option of tracking your runs, so you have an app that will have you covered no matter what.
Useful Gadgets to Help you Lose Weight
Fitbit One– is a wireless activity and sleep tracker, which basically means that it keeps track of the number of steps taken during the day, the distance traveled and calories burned and at night you strap it to your wrist to get a little insight into your sleep patterns. Its sleek design allows it to be easily strapped to clothes and remain out of the way. It has a base station where you can recharge it and all the collected data is sent to the internet which then spits some charts at you so can get a sense of how you are doing and make your whole weight loss initiative seem more professional.
Withings Wifi body scale – it measures not only your weight, but differentiates between lean mass and fat mass which it presents through a very easy to navigate graphical interface. It can accommodate up to 8 different users, creating graphs and storing their data on the computer or phone (supports android and they provide a free iPhone app). You can later share this data with friends to keep track of each other’s progress, or even have it handy when visiting a doctor.
Adidas miCoach Pacer – it will keep track of a bunch of things like the speed your where running at, your heart rate, the distance you’ve crossed and make an estimation on the calories lost. In addition to all this you can hook it up to your MP3 player and it will basically yell commands at you like a real personal coach (hence the name), telling you how much time you need to run for and whether you should slow down a bit or pick up the pace.
Omron Fat Loss Monitor HBF-306C – it’s relatively small and simple to use. It looks like a video game controller on steroids and will hit you with a weak electric current to estimate your body fat percentage, as well as giving you a reading of your BMI. If you’re a fan of the sci-fi genre you will find this item incredibly amusing as well as useful.
Using social media to find support and motivation
There are millions of people out there with similar problems, a lot of them hooked on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and other similar social networks, so why not use social media to your advantage? There are groups on Facebook that were made for the specific purpose of providing support and advice to fellow weight loss amateurs. You can get first hand product reviews, detailed information on specific exercise and how it will affect you, the ins and outs, pros and cons of many aspects of the game. You can even make it more local and/or personal, by sending out a message to all whom it may concern, that you need a training partner.
There are a whole bunch of people who want to start running, working out at the gym, or just having regular long walks at the park. They just don’t want to be that lone fat guy ruining for 30 seconds and then gasping for air while everyone points and laughs, or that skinny guy at the gym who keeps lowering the weights on the machines and bench presses barbell with no weights on it. A group gives you strength, you might suck at exercising, but there’s a whole bunch of you that suck at exercising and you all seem to be enjoying it and having a laugh – it’s like a thing that you do, no worries.
I’ve had running sessions with people who couldn’t go a quarter of a mile without lighting up a smoke or pausing to drink some water, and they always ended up making fun of me for taking it too seriously. When there’s 10 people, guys and girls, who work as much as they can, and then poke fun at themselves for being so out of shape and overweight, the guy in the corner doing 100 pushups starts feeling left out of the fun, and moderately fit people find it easier to make friends with them than with the Workout Freak who makes them feel inadequate and won’t stop giving advice and showing off.
No matter if you want to exercise at work or at home, you can post a video of your workout to see if you are doing things right and get some correction from people who are more experienced. I used to do this with a friend of mine who is an amateur boxer. I had a lousy left hook and didn’t feel like going to the boxing gym since they had gotten pricier, so I just taped myself doing it and then sent it to him for review. He would then upload a video of himself doing it the proper way on the bag, and in a couple of months I had actually gotten quite good at throwing the left hook.
Posting pictures on a regular basis will also give you a good insight into your actual progress and serve to motivate you. People you haven’t seen in a while will be commenting and asking: “did you lose weight?” giving you additional motivation to keep on going. Once you get into a routine of daily running or walking sessions, the people from your group will be prodding you along, getting cross with you if you start to slack off.
Even when I just used to just post details of my daily routine on the wall of a group a couple of us neighborhood buddies formed, as soon as I missed one “Going for a run; going to try to go for 2 miles this time” post two of the guys started asking me about it on Skype. You can get out of going to work by playing sick and fooling your boss, but you will never make your friends believe it’s anything other than you being a lazy old sloth when you ditch a workout.
Bringing everything together, apps, gadgets, social media and some internet research you can get properly motivated to begin to train and have incentive to continue working on losing weight even if things get tough. The little technological advances of our modern world will make it easier than ever for you to take a step towards a healthier lifestyle.
Author Bio: Ivan Dimitrijevic is a blogger who writes on various topics. He enjoys to blog about health related topics such as nutrition, exercise and diet plans. He has contributed to many quality social media and weight loss blogs. Ivan thinks that the healthy way of life is highly important, which is the foundation for his passion. He is married, with a daughter, and likes to spend time with his family.