Health, Fitness, and MyFitnessPal

Anyone who knows me even a little bit knows that I don’t take very good care of myself. I’m naturally slim with no glaring health problems, so I just never bothered. I’ve had spurts of exercise sprinkled in over the last decade or so, but nothing ever really stuck.

Then a few weeks ago, I heard of runDisney. It’s a…group? series of events? I’m not really sure what to call it, but it’s basically organized by Walt Disney World and Disneyland, and various races are held at the parks. There are multiple races every year for various levels of fitness. Now, anyone who knows me also knows that I loooove WDW and I’ve always wanted to experience the Epcot Food & Wine Festival, held every November(-ish). As it turns out, there is a Food & Wine half marathon, so I’ve decided to use this as an excuse to become some sort of a runner in time for the 2013 festival! My husband is already a runner, so I think we’re both going to participate!

Now that’s all well and good, but a half-marathon is 13+ miles, so training is involved. And with training comes developing healthy habits…something clicked that made me actually WANT to be healthier, instead of forcing myself. And since it’s 2012 and I have an iPhone…there’s an app for that.

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I started using MyFitnessPal about three weeks ago, and it’s really inspired me to get into better shape. Since I’m not looking to lose weight, my goals are kind of difficult to calculate, but by just paying better attention to the labels on the foods I eat I’ve lost 1/4″ around my waist…minor, but not bad considering that was never part of my goal (still not quite sure what that is). The app has a scanner to add food, which makes it even easier to be accurate. There is also a list of various cardio and strength exercises you can add, which will subtract from the calories you’ve eaten, thereby “allowing” you to eat more. The only thing I don’t really like so far is there is no where to add vitamins…I’ve just been adding them in the “notes” section of each day’s food diary. (I take a multi, calcium, iron (I’m anemic), and E (my nails tend to peel).)

I’ve since convinced a friend of mine to join the site with me, and she’s lost about 2 pounds in the past 2 weeks by keeping track! I’m still amazed at how awful some of the things I eat are…I still eat them, but in moderation. Or I can gorge on it and just exercise more that day. Eating healthy only has limitations if you’re lazy! Which is a rut I’m starting to get out of.

Do you use any sort of health & fitness tracker? Has it changed your outlook on your health?

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