By: Lisa Ng
Trying to get back into shape? Not sure you how to finally ditch those last five pounds?
When I decided to give food blogging a try, I started writing full-time from home. Which meant the minimal walking that I did was eliminated. Since I was writing about food and events, I was eating out almost 3-4 nights a week, usually at multi-course tastings.
I felt sluggish, tired all the time and my clothes were too tight. Even though I’m a go-getter and incredibly ambitious, I’m lazy when it comes to working out and getting to the gym.
So what’s actually working for me?
I downloaded these three smart phone apps to start keeping me in check. Now these apps may not work for everyone, but because I’m hyper-organized and very goal oriented – I do see results when I fall off the healthy wagon and need a hand getting back on.
1) Get Running – It’s essentially a couch to 5K app and the approach to running is slow and steady. You’ll start with running a minute at a time with walk breaks in-between. By the end of the nine weeks you should be able to run 30 minutes without stopping and be burning lots of calories because of it.
To help you stay motivated, sign-up for a 5K race. I recently ran the CIBC Run for the Cure and set a minimum time of under 45 minutes for my FIRST 5K run. I was so focused and motivated that it kept me training almost 2-3 times a week for only 30 minutes of my day.
Let me just clarify, I am not a runner. I’m the lazy girl who eats chips in front of the TV at night – so if I can do it, so can you!
2) MyShopi – So part of the reason I ate out so much was not just because of work events, but also because after a work event (full of hor’s d’oeuvres) I was too tired to go home and cook myself a proper meal. I would end up eat something totally unhealthy.
I downloaded this grocery app to keep me organized and my fridge full. If I had something healthy and delicious to come home to at the end of the day, I would be less likely to eat a greasy pizza or French fries. An empty fridge would pretty much mean sabotage and give me the excuse I need to order take-out. Don’t do it! Make a grocery list and a meal plan at the start of every week and stick to it as best as you can.
3) My Plate Calorie Tracker – As someone who has no idea about portion control and calorie counts, I needed this. This app is basically a food journal that helps you keep your intake and portion sizing in check. Once I saw what a couple regular days of healthy eating looked like, I didn’t need to calorie count everyday. But it was a good thing to try out for two weeks straight, just so you know what a normal portion size looks like and have an idea of how many calories you should be eating.
I gave myself days off every once in awhile from tracking – especially if I had a dinner out with friends. But since the app also tracks your exercise, I could gauge how much exercise I needed to do to make up for that plate of French fries. Most common foods are easily found in the app, and out of the many food journals that I have tried, this is the best one. There’s a free ‘lite’ version and then a $2.99 version if you prefer no ads.
What are your tricks to weight-loss? Have you found any apps out there that were very useful? Any that people should not bother with?