Staying on Track: There’s an App for That

By Kasey Elliott, Senior Program Director – Wellness and Aquatics, Kernersville Family YMCA

The New Year is here and it’s likely you made a resolution to be healthier. Maybe you resolved to squeeze in extra workouts, stick to clean eating, or perhaps start a workout and nutrition plan for the first time (or the second, third, or fiftieth time). All resolutions begin with a plan, but how do you stick to it? One tool to help achieve your goal is tracking your food and exercise each day. Keeping track of the calories you consume as well as how many you burn is important to weight loss and physical conditioning. For example, too few calories=fatigue; too many=weight gain. Recording your stats may seem like a cumbersome task but there are hundreds of apps and products out there to help you!

Some apps we like:

My Fitness Pal: With over 5 million foods in the database, My Fitness Pal makes it easy to find and record the foods you eat. There’s a recipe counter and once you’ve tracked food for a week or so, it adds your favorites to an easy to use list. There’s also an online community for support.

Map My Fitness: You can track your activity and courses for running, walking, biking, etc. You can also log your food and share your exercise routine with friends.

Argus: Tracks your activity for you as you move, including change in elevation and speed. Stays on in your phone’s background to track all daily activity.

Endomondo: Start with a fitness test and get a workout plan based on your favorite types of exercise. During activity, the app will tell you if you are close to setting a personal record or if you need to pick up the pace.

Noom Coach: Track your food intake with an app that estimates the calories in your favorite meals, including restaurant dishes. After inputting your meals, Noom recommends small changes to make healthier choices.

Most apps are free or cost a small fee. If you’re looking to invest a little more, a fitness tracker can move with you. Most track heart rate, steps, sleep, and include a stopwatch but check the specifics on each one to decide what’s right for you. Some suggestions to research and evaluate: Jawbone, Garmin Vivofit and Forerunner, Fitbit, Misfit, Microsoft Band, Mira, Withings, or Nike FuelBand.

Not into electronic tracking? You can always use old fashioned pen and paper and achieve many of the same benefits!

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Did you know the Y has an app? Visit ymcanwnc.org/mobile to download or search YMCA NWNC in the app store. You can view class schedules, register for programs, and more!

Not sure how to set effective goals? Schedule a uFit appointment today with a Wellness Coach.