Some may know that I recently lost a LOT of weight (well over 100lbs) and I have a bit more to go. During that process, I learned a lot, as you might imagine. One main thing I learned is that it was critical for me to track my “project”. If I didn’t write down and analyze how I have been doing, then how could I possible succeed? That would be like preparing for a marathon but never timing yourself or calculating how far you’ve run! You have to have SOME sort of metrics to understand if you are making progress or not.
In my case, I used an Excel spreadsheet. I tracked body weight, body fat %, and body water %. From those numbers, you can extrapolate what percentage of your body is fat, versus lean-body-mass. Your weight, by itself is a somewhat meaningless number. The water you retain for example, could be as much as +/- 4lbs – depending on salt intake, hormones, and for women, their cycle.
All my point is, is that if you have health goals – it is absolutely critical – to track some metrics. Well, since I knew what I needed, I set out to write something. For Phase II of my project, I wanted to see if I could build something better than my spreadsheet. This started off as a website and I was of course going to make a companion Windows Phone 7 app for it too, at the very least. So, I started designing and developing this application.
Well, last week I was introduced to http://www.fitbit.com
They basically did almost everything I was going to do, they did a great job and took it much farther than ever I had thought. With a FREE account, you can track your weight, activity, food/water intake, sleep, etc. They even sell hardware that automatically syncs to the website. For example, they have a bathroom scale that automatically uploads your numbers to the website. The “activity monitor” that tracks activity, much more accurately than a pedometer, and also uploads the data automatically.
Lastly, if all of that wasn’t enough, they have really great companion apps for Windows Phone, iPhone and iPad.
This post is a bit off-topic from what I normally write about, but as technology-people, we sit on our butts for a big chunk of the day. It’s a good idea to make sure our health doesn’t fall by the wayside – and apps like this make it a little easier, in my opinion.
By the way, I am in no way affiliated with FitBit, I am just really pleased and impressed with their offering and I want to help spread the word. So, if you have health and fitness goals, you should check them out!