Track Yourself

 
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A year ago, I was creating a big poster to log my fitness and eating habits. The aim was to lose weight and to keep motivated. For each day I wrote down specific data:
•My weight in the morning
•My waist circumference

I wrote down the foods or dishes I wanted to have for breakfast, lunch, and dinner the day before. At the end of the day I could assess whether I have kept to the requirements and thereby get a plus or minus for each meal. Moreover I had to achieve the following goals:
•Drink at least 2 to 2.5 liters of water
•Be at least one hour physically active (running, swimming, aerobics, etc.)
•No sweets, no alkohol!

Based on my daily results, I achieved either a smiley face or a red dot at the end of the day. Additionally, I draw a line, showing the beginning of my weight, down to my desired weight. On this line I weekly marked my new weight with an “X”.

All those records helped me to keep track of my results. I liked that possibility very much, but after a while, a few problems occured:
•If my friends visited me, they could see all these personal data.
•My handwriting is terrible.
•I wasn’t very honest by rating myself.

My vision: There are already many fitness apps or nutrition apps on the market, but they are all very general. The most successful method has always remained the same over the years beside all the new tips, and researches: Eat healthy, exercise and you will lose weight! Basically everyone knows what kind of food is healthy or not. Sports and especially endurance sports does not need special instructions.

To put it briefly, I think that my experiment I described previous would fit perfectly in an app. The aim is to be monitored by yourself. Further statistics and reports can be generated subsequently or an alarm could remember you to enter new values.
These things are already possible today but they have also a high future potential.
For example, it is very important not to exceed a certain amount of calories. Therefore, future apps could scan the number of calories of the food and meals and write them directly into the app. Thus, it will save you a lot of typing. As an intelligent system it will give you tips, if you eat too unhealthy and motivate you. Also exercise data could be transmitted like pulse, lost calories, etc… Moreover the data of the scale could be connected to the app. The aim is to log all the data without a high expense and on a regular basis.

 

6 Responses to “Track Yourself”

  1. I would definitely use this app not only because I am a visual type of person but also because I like the idea of controlling yourself. This motivates you a lot more than just following rules generated by an app. It also gives you a great feeling if you can draw another smiley or an “X” at a lower weight-stage into your calendar.

    Because this app is really easy to use (especially if information like calories of meals or exercising time is obtained automatically), maybe also children or older people could use it to lose weight or just to obtain a better lifestyle.

     
  2. I think almost all of the described concepts are already implemented in some sort of app. Especially in those that allow you to track your nutrition and physical activity. Yet i think that there is a lack of an app that includes ALL of these functions. Right now you would probably look into different apps, one for tracking your physical activity, one for tracking your nutrition, etc. in order to get all of the desired functions.

    Since the concept of “the quantified self” is a few years old already, and all of the mentioned functions are definitely feasible (e.g. communication between a smart phone and a scale is already implemented in some apps) i think it probably won’t be too long until an app that offers all of the mentioned functions will pop up in the smartphone app-stores. The idea behind this vision isn’t the most revolutionary one, but implemented as a well designed app it’s definitely something that would get a lot of downloads!

     
  3. There are allready mobile apps available with all of these functions. But as most of us who are not willing to pay for an app, of course you will never get it ;)

    These apps are a good motivation for beginners to track there fitness and eating habits, i also had one fitness app long time ago and it really helped me to stay motivated and to get in the right direction.

    For more functional apps of course we have to pay to get it.

     
  4. As Justin said there’s already a wide range of mobile apps available. You have to pay for most of them, but I’m sure that citizens who have the strong will to change something, will spend their money on it!

    I for my person think that these applications are most suitable for beginners. People who do know little about the right eating habits and have a major problem in motivating themselves to exercise regularly. The app will encourage them and in further consequence could have a positive impact on their lifestyle. I’m confinced that if the users observe improvements, they’ll keep on working with it.

     
  5. In my opinion there should be more such apps. As you said it would be perfect do have an app whith which you could create your own training plan. Even your own habits should be inclouded. There should be enough space to create your own plan with your own experiences because every body is different. I agree with you that there is a high potential for the future.

     
  6. Like the others said, there are already apps available – I wouldn’t say that all are charged, there are many which you can use for free.

    I already tried some of them, but in the end it takes too much effort to type the needed information every day. From experience I can say that you’ll do that a few days, but then you can’t choose the activity you just did or the food you ate and then you start to disregard it.

    I always thought and still think that this concept works, but it would be nice if your phone reminds you every day to not forget the needed information. Also statistics would be nice – to see which progress you did.

    In terms of drinking more water – I think nearly everybody needs to do that – a alarm a few times a day would encourage and help oneself to drink more water.

    All in all – not really new, but definitely relevant!

     

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