Useful Tools

There are all sorts of tools available to help people to track their progress today, or to keep track of calories, carbs, sugars and fluid intake. Back in the 70s, there wasn't much. Books, charts and paper notepads were pretty much the extent of it.

With today's busy population, most people don't want to sit down with books and pens. For those who have smart phones, there are many decent apps you can use and some are free.

The popular MyFitnessPal can be downloaded from the Google Play Store, but the MyFitness Pal website offers several other options as well, from MapMyRun (my oldest daughter uses this) to UnderArmour Record. You can get their MyFitness Pal app from their own site as well.

Weight Watchers has one of the world's biggest followings, so their site offers a mobile app to track all your counts online too.

Both of my daughters use FitBit - a popular accessory for the workout crowd. Apart from the mobile version, they have a variety of devices you can wear to track your progress and numbers.

Online you can track your progress on sites like LiveStrong with their "MyPlate" web app, or WeightWatchers online web tracking (need an account and be logged in).

AndroidWear offers devices that can make use of a lot of apps available in GooglePlay, including the fitness apps. If you haven't seen Moto360, you might want to take a look. (I've got one of these).

It would be nuts to try and list all the available apps out there. Try some, see what you like and keep the ones most useful for your journey.

Me, well when it comes to tracking things, I'm a bit of a "stick-in-the-mud". I still use a notebook and pen (just bought several of Google's recycled paper notepads with pens - Item # 10 55327), but I also use a free software program which I've found pretty handy.

Diet Organizer tracks macros if you use them, tracks daily goals for those macros, has a general list of foods with ingredients and servings and allows you to add your own foods and individual products into the the list, which I really like. A lot of online ones I've tried don't let me add my own foods.

You can also track your exercise and calories used and get daily, weekly, monthly reports and track your weight loss and inches, and besides the computer software there is an app (there's always an app these days!)

I will say that in all honesty, I don't do nearly as well in sticking to things when I'm not doing the tracking. Somehow, the tracking actually does make you accountable - almost as if you were reporting to a leader or trainer.

Since there are so many options available to help, it's really worth taking the time to have a look for the one that best suits you and your needs and goals.