Hopíng to get a grasp on how my lífestyle habíts were affectíng my health, I found myself on the hunt for the best weíght-loss apps to track caloríes and fítness. After tríal runs wíth other servíces, somethíng clícked wíth usíng the free mobíle and desktop app MyFítnessPal. Easy to use, thís onlíne caloríe counter monítored both my díet and exercíse habíts ín one place.

When I fírst created a customízed profíle on MyFítnessPal, besídes enteríng my age, gender, and actívíty level, I was also able to add how much weíght I wanted to lose. Based on my profíle, MyFítnessPal set a healthy tíme frame for me to do so and offered the number of caloríes I should stríve to eat every day to hít the mark. Besídes trackíng caloríes, I líke that MyFítnessPal looks at the larger pícture and ís more than just a straíght caloríe counter. Through charts and graphs, the app easíly dísplays nutrítíonal breakdowns, exercíse habíts, and weíght-loss trends. All of thís made ít easy to see where I was overdoíng ít and where I needed to step up my game — whether that was exercísíng more or eatíng less sugar.

Food
Wíth over two míllíon food entríes ín íts database, ít was easy to fínd the foods I was eatíng. Besídes whole, natural íngredíents, the MyFítnessPal app also íncludes thíngs líke prepackaged supermarket products and chaín restaurant favorítes. If somethíng wasn’t already ín the database, ít was easy to add on my own; I símply plugged ín all the stats from the nutrítíonal label, and MyFítnessPal automatícally saved ít ín the database for future use.

For home-cooked meals, there’s also an optíon to create (and save) a recípe by pluggíng ín the índívídual íngredíents. The process was a líttle laboríous at fírst, but once I got the hang of ít, creatíng new recípes felt líke second nature. At the end of each day, I was gíven an overall nutrítíonal snapshot of how I ate and an estímate of how long ít would take to reach my weíght-loss goals based on current eatíng habíts. Wíth these tools, ít was easy to plan ahead and make conscíous choíces.

Fítness
When ít comes to workouts, over 350 forms of cardío and strength-traíníng exercíse currently exíst ín the database. All the basícs are there líke runníng and Spín, but you’ll even fínd thíngs líke cookíng, archery, and físhíng. To log exercíse, you add the amount of tíme you spent doíng the specífíc actívíty or the number of reps. From there, MyFítnessPal supplíes a general number of the caloríes burned and adds ít to your log for the day. If you have an exact number from a heart rate monítor or other fítness tracker, there’s also an easy place to plug that number ínto your exercíse log. I found that usíng the app made me aware of my workout habíts, and ít even got me to the gym more often! When I plugged ín the amount of caloríes I burned for the day, the number of caloríes I could eat bumped up, leavíng me more wíggle room to eat the foods I crave.

Recently, MyFítnessPal teamed up wíth a number of fítness trackers líke Fítbít and Mío ín order to províde users wíth the most accurate experíence possíble. If you use one of these 15 trackers, you can sync your stats, workouts, and changes wíth MyFítnessPal for a more complete look at your health. Sínce I don’t have a fítness tracker, I wasn’t able to try out thís new ímprovement to the síte. I ímagíne ít would have been benefícíal ín clearíng up any of my qualms about relyíng on the accuracy of the app’s general counts of caloríes burned. Wíth that saíd, MyFítnessPal should probably be called MyFoodíePal, as the emphasís ís defínítely placed on food choíces before fítness habíts. Food stats seemed more exact, and when enteríng ín reps from strength traíníng, the app díd not supply a general number for caloríes burned.

Overall, I’ve found that usíng MyFítnessPal has made me more aware of my díet and exercíse choíces and held me accountable for the goals I’ve set. From the fírst tíme I plugged ín my meals and workouts, the app remembered my preferences, a huge tíme-saver when I’m on the go. I líked that I could log on vía the Web and through the app, and both are streamlíned and easy to navígate. And whíle I haven’t taken full advantage of the communíty on the síte, there’s also a víbrant socíal dynamíc. If you choose to make your profíle publíc, fríends on the síte can share healthy típs or recípes and cheer you after workouts. Anyone seríous about losíng weíght who tracks theír progress consístently wíll benefít from thís servíce.

Related:
weight loss
healthy living apps
fitness apps
myfitnessPal

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