Thursday, April 1, 2010

New Beginnings

I love the first day of a month. I don't know why, but it always seems like a fresh day to start something new, like a clean slate. Today I made a new beginning and added something new and important to my health and fitness routine. I am counting calories. It sounds easy, but I've decided it's about time I be more mindful of my actual daily caloric intake. I have been pretty diligent about working out 4-5 days a week for the last couple of years, and figured out a long while ago that burning calories through these workouts wasn't enough of a change for me to get to an ideal weight and the older I get, the harder it's getting. I do know that I am in better cardiovascular shape today than I was six years ago, but it's still not enough. Over the last couple of months, I have made efforts to increase my fitness levels even more by adding the running and aiming for 5-7 workouts per week, but it has been challenging getting those few extra workouts scheduled in each week. So the bottom line is that I really need to eliminate more calories from my diet to make the healthy changes that I want. It's not a new revelation for me, but a simple lack of discipline to just do it. Well today is the day I pulled some determination from somewhere within and decided to put myself to task.

Today I started using the Lose It! app on the iPhone that I downloaded months and months ago to create a diet program. I know I've only used it for one day, but I'm pretty excited about this app. It was so easy to set up and start using right away. By entering my current and goal weights and the number of pounds per week I want to lose, the program came up with a daily caloric limit for me. Then I log whatever I eat that day and the app tracks the calories for me. There's a huge database of foods available to choose from or you can customize your foods and enter the nutritional information yourself. So many foods are already in the database though, it's pretty neat. For example, the Lemon Zest Luna bar I ate this morning for breakfast was right there in the Lose It! database and all I had to do was click on it and the basic nutritional information was added to my daily log. Pretty easy!

In addition to logging calories you consume, you can also enter your workouts for that day and those calories burned are subtracted from your daily calories. Just like the food, there are activities already available to choose from, but you can also customize your own workouts and the calories you burn for those activities yourself. Using a heart rate monitor that calculates this during your workout is a great way to get that information.

If nothing else, Lose It! is going to keep me honest with myself about whatever I eat and make me think twice about "cheating." I did have a mid morning and mid afternoon snack today, but I really thought about the quality and quantity of what I was grabbing knowing I was going to have to record it.

If you have an iPhone and want to keep tabs on your calories in and calories burned, check out Lose It! You've got nothing to lose but unwanted pounds! Ha ha. So clever.

For more information about Lose It!, visit iTunes or check out the Lose It! website at The site has a lot of different screenshots of the app there that showcase its usefulness. Oh, and did I mention the app is FREE?

As much as you all know by now that I love to talk about running and biking here on my blog, after this post, any diet talk will be over on my little fitness blog that I've been silently maintaining since January. It's called See how she runs... Stop by and visit me there if you're looking for some motivation or inspiration to exercise or if you see me slacking, please get on my case, okay?

If all goes according to plan, and the Lose It! app is as effective as I hope it as at keeping me on task, I will have reached my target weight by December 23, 2010. Wouldn't that be the best Christmas gift I could give myself? :)


  1. Good luck! I've been weight-watchering for a few months now and lost a good amount, but I'm having a little trouble at the moment. I'm missing my junk food.

  2. Ohh good luck with losing weight and getting healthier!! Definitely a great goal to set yourself and an even better christmas present!

    I just download Lose it! because I really need to follow your steps *_*
    me tries but me does not like. me likes eating junk food way to much!

    Take care hun!

  3. Nicola, thanks! Good luck to you, too, getting back on track. I'm expecting to have good results in the beginning and then hitting a plateau or two along the way. I set up this program with a weight loss of 1.5 lbs. a week, when I know in the long run, 1.0 lbs. a week is more realistic. I'm hoping to jump start myself and then if I'm struggling, set my expectations a little lower... or should I say longer? and go to 1.0 lb. a week.

    Hilda, thanks!! Let me know what you think of Lose It! Don't be like me and download it and then not use it for a year. LOL. It's really easy to use, although I imagine the food database is based on american food, not asian food, so you may find yourself entering a lot of custom foods in yourself.
    Good luck! :)

  4. I agree, Lose It is a great app. I had some real success right after Christmas until I fell off the wagon, AGAIN. The only time I ever have success is when I record what I eat. Good luck to you and stick with it.

  5. I've been using Lose It too and find it very useful. Good luck on your journey!

  6. I eat better in the summer and have more time to exercise. I need to find that time in the winter as well. *g* Best wishes and good luck on your path of losing weight!

  7. Great post Christine and a great time to start on a new routine. :-)

    It's such a perfect time to enjoy more outdoor activities too, now that the spring weather is here and I know you enjoy your garden!

    Good Luck..

  8. Good luck Christine! Sounds like a very good idea...and a lot like what the nutritionist does for me, food diary and all :) And you're going into spring/summer, which will help - all that fresh fruit and vegetables on ofer :)

    I had a very bad food day least tomorrow is a new day.

    Keep us posted?

  9. Good luck Christine!! I really admire you, you're really taking steps to become healthier. I should do the same, I keep saying I want to lose weight, but hasn't taken any action towards it. Sigh.

  10. Phyl, that's so cool that you use Lose It, too! I'm just using it without making an account. I didn't think I'd need it, but was curious if you tried it?

    Linda, another Lose It user! What about you... did you set up an account?

    Good luck to you, too! :)

    Brandy, I agree about eating better in the summer... less carbs and more fresh fruits and veggies! As for exercise, I actually end up going to the gym less in the summers because my kids aren't in school. And I don't know how I'll like running in 90 F, 90% humidity either. I have a feeling I'll like running in January better! LOL. But still... I'm looking forward to doing more outdoor activities!! :)

    Lea, thanks for the luck! I'm going to start cleaning up the yard and gardens today! I can't wait to start growing things again!

    orannia, I'm still so impressed with your dedication to your recent nutrition and weight loss program. You've inspired me to do the same. :)

    nath, thanks! Maybe my success will inspire you! :D

  11. You signed up for a triathlon, right? Or am going to? The best thing about the Y in the summer is the pool! *G*

  12. Good luck, Christine! This is a great way to keep track, but I know you can do it! :)

  13. Brandy, I didn't sign up for the triathlon yet. I think I'm going to do one in September 2011. Did you sign up for one? Does your Y have an outdoor pool? Mine has two indoor ones that are open all year long, but I never use it. One of my friends is a lifeguard there and I'm actually thinking of asking her for swim lessons. I mean, I know how to swim, but I could improve my stroke and breathing techniques.

    Hilcia, thank you, my dear. I've had several different conversations with people over the last couple of weeks that have inspired me to make a stand and do this, one of those conversations is the one the four of us had last weekend when we met. :)

  14. Christine, I am no where near ready for a triathlon. We have two indoor pools and I take the kids all the time in the summer.

  15. Brandy, I'm not either. I think I could do fine with the running and biking (just got home from our first bike ride of the season... husband and I did 17.4 miles with some hills), but the swimming is a whole other ball game.

    Is there a Danskin triathlon in your area? That's the one I'm going to do next year. :)

  16. I looked at the date of this post and it was the exact day I downloaded Losit! on my iphone! Isn't that cool? We were insynch. I love it when those things happen! I haven't used it yet, but after reading your enthusiastic post, I will start!

    Good luck to you!

    When I started running, I found myself gaining a half a pound a week!

    i was building muscle in place of fat... but i now can see my body changing shape a wee bit and i'm liking the changes. (still no real weight loss yet). :O(

  17. I've used something like the Lose It app in the past called My Food Diary (.com). I love just adding my food and it keeps track of it for me. No worrying. AND the fact that I earn calories by working out? Almost worth working out for me! lol

  18. Shawn, our synchronicity is uncanny! LOL. Definitely start using the app asap. It's so easy and REALLY makes you be honest with yourself at what passes your lips. Let me know if you decide to create an account with the website. Then I'll make one, too and we can friend each other and keep tabs on each other.

    You know, I've seen photos of you ... where are you storing those apparent extra pounds? You look fantastic.

    I thought I would have lost an extra pound or two when I started running last fall, too, but I think you're right in that we gained muscle. :)

  19. Ah, I have this app but I was too lazy to enter information on it. I wanted to be able too just pick and choose from the list of foods. Or maybe some sort of bar scanner...

    But I wish you the best of luck and hope you'll stay healthy and doesn't drag yourself too much with exercise and diet, co'z you already look good the way you are now.

  20. Natalie, the bar scanner idea is a good one. I think there's already a scanner app, but we could expand on that to include the nutritional information to load right into the Lose It app. We could write the code for that app and sell it on iTunes. LOL!

    Seriously, though, I will give you a personal tutorial the next time we get together at B&N for fat free sugar free latte. Boo!

  21. That sounds like an awesome app one that requires some computer savvy. (sigh) though I love the Luna Bars. ! Yum!
    I am having issues with my left foot, thinking a heel spur. I know, fun right? So I can not even imagine running or exercising heavily right now. :(

    I can't wait until I can go swimming. Swimming I can do!

    Good luck to you darlin'

  22. Michelle you are so silly. :) There are no apps for the iphone that require computer savvy. Apple products are like technology for dummies. =) But you do have to have an iphone or ipod touch to use the Lose It app. I'm sure there are other very similar programs or logs that you can use online.

    Anyway, that is so weird that you mention you are having heel spur issues. My right heel started to really ache yesterday evening and still hurts today. I was hoping it was because of the new flip flops I wore all day yesterday, but now you've got me thinking I should wear my sneakers all day tomorrow to see if it goes away or not. I hope it's not another injury issue... I've already been laying off the running for the last 10 days to nurse some shin splint pains. :(

    Thanks for the luck!


Leave a comment! I love to hear what YOU think.
[I apologize, but I've had to disallow anonymous users to comment on my blog due to an influx of spam. I'll change it back as soon as I can. Thanks for understanding.]