Healthy Hack #7: Use Technology to Help your Journey

About Healthy Hacks

As you may already know if you have been following me, I made a decision that changed my life. I decided to escape from my lifelong obesity and to lose over 100 pounds in under a year.

My results significantly exceeded my expectations and I lost 100 pound in 9 months, 120 in the first year and am still going strong – 130+ pounds in 16 months to-date. The pinnacle of my journey so far was completing my first half marathon just 16 months after weighing in at 325 pounds!

Throughout my fitness journey I have been repeatedly asked the same question: what’s your secret?

While there is no true “secret” to successful weight loss there are some techniques that worked well for me. I am going to share these techniques with you through this Healthy Hacks series in the Operation Melt blog.

Please read on because I am confident that these hacks can become the “secret” to your success with your own health & fitness journey.

Use Technology to Help Your Journey

Technology has always been a big part of my life and my fitness journey is no exception. I leveraged technology throughout my journey and it helped me be more successful. In this week’s healthy hack I want to share 3 ways that I used technology (and you can to) to help me be successful with my fitness journey.

Tracking

In my Healthy Hack #1: My 3-step Weight Loss “Secret” I shared that one of my keys to my weight loss was data. The nearly constant stream of health data helped me know how I was doing and to make necessary adjustments along the way. Remember if you can measure it you can manage it.

This data is far easier to measure and manage if you use technology to help you. This is the first place I used technology in my journey – tracking.

  • I use an app to track all of my food and drink intake. Everything that goes into my body is logged including all associated nutritional information.
  • I use a wearable fitness tracker to track all of my activity data. This includes my exercise, my steps, my calorie burn, my sleep, my heart rate and lots of other details.
  • I also have a smart scale that interfaces with my other apps to track and log my weight.

Those are the key pieces of technology that I use to track my data to help with my journey. If I didn’t use technology to help with the tracking I would have to do it all on paper which would be annoying and I would probably have been far less successful

Insights

Once you start using technology to track your data you can use technology to gain insights from that data. When you have all of your fitness details in one place you can start noticing trends and patterns that you can either break or take advantage of to continue improving. Some apps will even start notifying you of some of those trends.

For example, because I log all of my food with nutritional information and my weight I was able to identify the impact of sodium on my body. On days where I have consumed a large amount of sodium my weight tends to be up the next day. I was able to correlate this information using the data and then do research to figure out how to better manage my sodium.

The sodium sensitivity is just one of many insights that I have been able to glean by using technology to collect and analyze my data. Just be careful that you aren’t identifying insights and correlations that aren’t really there. Use a critical eye and your best application of the scientific method.

Inspiration

Finally I use technology to continue to inspire myself to keep going and keep improving.

I share my goals and progress via social media to keep myself accountable. I also do lots of research to keep learning and identifying new things to try. I also use technology, social media again, to share my journey in near real time to help inspire others.

There are so many sources of inspiration available on the internet and technology is your gateway to find those sources. It is absolutely easier to keep going and to try harder if you find inspiration to help get you there.

I hope this strategy, that works for me every day, can also be beneficial to you. I want you to be successful with reaching your goals because the feeling when you get there is totally worth saying no to that cookie when it doesn’t fit into your plan.