My husband's dramatic weight loss over the last year has prompted a lot of people to ask how he did it. Well, here's the answer: Let's hear it for technology.
My husband is an introvert, so he probably wouldn't want me to crow online about how he has met his goal weight by losing over 80 pounds in just under a year. (But he did! And I'm really impressed and proud.) He started last Labor Day weekend, and has just completed this long journey.
But I'm sure he wouldn't mind my telling you how he accomplished it. Short answer: there's an app for that. Actually, there are several. The most popular is probably My Fitness Pal. The one he used is called Lose It, and like My Fitness Pal, it has a handy mobile phone version as well as the website.
Lose It asks you to record every morsel you eat and helps you re-educate (or educate) yourself about what a portion size is or how many calores a single maple leaf sandwich cookie has. (The latter is kind of shocking.) It has thousands of foods in its database, or you can enter nutrition info in manually, which is admittedly a pain. A major upgrade during the year my husband did this program is that Lose It got a bar-code scanner so that all he had to do was hold his phone up to any product's bar code and the program would capture the nutrition info automagically.
It's also equipped with the exercise info for hundreds of activities, so if you've just taken the dog for a 15-minute walk or fenced for an hour (as if), you just enter that in and the program does all the math for you.
The app is free, and includes the option of receiving little updates and motivational messages to help people keep going. If you forget to log in a meal, the app will text you to ask you to enter it in.
Don't get me wrong. Weight loss is incredibly hard work, no matter what tech you have at your disposal. Now my husband is on a weight-maintenance plan, and the program gives him a higher daily budget than he had when he was losing weight. He'll continue to enter his food and exercise into his phone. It's a long haul, but he feels better and healthier than he has in a long time.