Using Your Phone to Help You Lose Weight

If you’re like me, you’ve got your phone with you ALL the time. Admit it, it’s sitting next to you right now! Mine, too! Since we’ve always got it with us, why not put it to good use? I’ve made a list of my favorite free health and fitness apps for iPhone. I know there’s tons of these lists out there, but I’m going to spotlight the ones I personally use on a daily basis and would recommend to my friends.

(I think most are also available on the Android Market if that’s your platform, and some are even available for use on a computer.)

Nutrition Trackers:

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Lose It! is a great app for tracking calories in and calories out. It has a large database of foods (including popular restaurants) and even let’s you add a custom food if you can’t find what you’re looking for. You can either search for your food or use the barcode scanner to automatically pull up what you’re eating. Once a food has been logged, it will be added to your “recently eaten” log and will be available to you via quick access from the “my foods” tab. You can create recipes to add a large amount of foods at one time, too. You can also track other nutrients like fat, carbohydrates and protein, etc by turning on the nutrient tracker. Logging exercise is simple: just search through the database of exercises to track what you’ve done, or manually enter your workout if you know the number of calories you burned. The app features a weight tracker to record your weight as often as you like and has a nice graph so you can visually see your progress. It also will take the guesswork out of determining your caloric budget: just answer a few questions at start-up and the app will suggest the number of calories you need to consume to lose weight (this number can be adjusted to your liking as well). And, if that wasn’t enough, you can use the “motivate” tab to allow you to set up reminders to log your food and exercise, email reports, and connect with other Lose It! members to join a community of people also working to lose weight. This app is available on Android and desktop.

I primarily use Lose It! for my nutrition-tracking needs, but I want to list some other options that are available as well, though I’m not as familiar with them. Use one, or all, and you’ll find the one you like best.

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My Fitness Pal

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My Plate by Livestrong

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Spark People

Weight Tracking:

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I love Target Weight for tracking weight loss. Start by adding your height and current weight and then set up your goal and deadline. You can create your own deadline or use the options for “healthy”, “typical”, or “aggressive” weight loss. The app will tell you your BMI and has a nice graph to show your progress over time for both BMI and weight. My favorite feature? When you exit the app, a notification bubble will appear that shows you either the number of pounds you have left to lose or the days remaining until your deadline. That way, you’re always aware!

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Body Log will allow you to take pictures of yourself so you can see your progress over time. It’s a great way to stay motivated even if the scale isn’t moving. Tracks front, side and back views.

Running:

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If you run, or jog, or walk, or cycle, or skate, or ski, etc, use Run Keeper to keep track of the distance you go. There is a lot of other things you can do with the app, but I primarily use it for tracking my distances.

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Fit Radio is not just for running, but anytime you want some upbeat and fast-paced music to listen to while working out (or anytime for that matter!). Choose from a variety of music styles and get to work!

Training:

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If you need a new workout or are on the road, use Nike Training Club to get your heart pumping and your muscles working. The description says it’s workouts for women, but honestly, these workouts are just as good for a man as well. Choose from almost 100 different workouts, grab some equipment (or none at all) and start burning serious calories!

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If you’d like a quick, body area-specific workout, check out the Daily Workout apps. Choose from abs, arms, butt, legs, cardio, yoga, or an all in one routine to find exercises to get you in shape. The workouts are guided and show video of proper form, so there’s no excuse to get moving!

For the Soul:

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Gotta be well-rounded, right? Treat your mind and soul with a guided meditation from Silva. This app offers a few meditations that are incredibly relaxing and will help you relieve stress after a long day.

Get those phones out and get to downloading! It’s for your health! And it’s free!

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3 thoughts on “Using Your Phone to Help You Lose Weight

    • Yes, of course! I actually put a link to My Fitness Pal! We’re on the same page. I tried a few different trackers and found I’m a Lose It girl, but I put a few different links because I know it’s all about finding what works for you.

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