I am by no means a fitness fanatic. I love my food, my couch, my bed and my “me” time. But here’s the thing… I’ve had four kids. I’ve tried fad diets and have dropped weight quickly only to have it come right back. I have been a YMCA member and worked out like a mad woman with little to no lasting results. I also have a fun little thyroid disease to throw on top of all that which makes losing weight an uphill battle, to say the least.
I’m not going to launch into all my issues with weight gain and weight loss or my history of fitness. I will say that after baby sis was born last year, I had a resolve that I can only say must have come from the Lord… a resolve to take an example from the tortoise and go slow and steady in the weight loss/ exercise race. I resolved up front to know that results wouldn’t be instant or significant. I resolved to stick with exercise and portion control (I’m not going to say dieting… because that’s not really what I’ve been doing). Here I am 8 months and 20 pounds less… still going… slow and steady. I had hoped for more result by now, but that’s just not the case.
Two apps have been extremely helpful in keeping me on track.
The first is My Fitness Pal
This is a calorie counter/ food and exercise journal. You start by putting in your stats, your goals and how much you’d like to lose (or gain) per week to attain that goal. After entering your information, you find out how many calories you should eat in a day to reach your goal. It breaks things down into how many fats, carbs, etc. that you need.
You can record your foods into this free app (it’s also on the computer… so you can still use it if you don’t have a smart phone or tablet). It has a huge data base of so many brands, restaurants, etc.
One of my favorite aspects of this app is that I can plug in my own recipes and it tells me all the nutritional information. I can save my recipes and favorite meals in my account so I don’t have to keep putting in the information.
The exercise journal is nice too and has a huge data base of exercises as well. Plug in your workout and it will tell you how many calories you burn!
Now… I haven’t lost a pound a week, even though that’s my goal… but I chalk that up to my thyroid. My husband, however, has had great success as he has stuck to his plan. He did in fact lose 1- 2 pounds a week!
The other app that I have used it Sworkit.
This is a circuit training app. I was explaining it to someone and he said “oh… it’s like having crossfit in your pocket.”… I’ve never done crossfit, but I suppose this is like it.
The app has a rotation of exercises like lunges, push ups, burpees (I hate these), mountain climbers, crunches, jumping jacks, plank, etc. You can set the app in 5 minute increments. You can choose your focus area… core, upper body, lower body, full body, stretching or yoga. The thing I like about this app is that it is never the same workout twice. The order of exercises is random. Each exercise lasts 30 seconds. Every two minutes, you take a thirty second break. I think the idea is to do as many reps as you can in that thirty seconds. You can get Sworkit Free or Upgrade to Sworkit Pro and hear the exercises called out as they change as well as track your progress and calorie burn.
I use sworkit to supplement my workouts. It’s nice for rainy days, but my go to workout is to run up and down stairs for 5 minutes, then sworkit for 5… I repeat this rotation for about 35-45 minutes.
What are your favorite fitness apps?