Around 9 months ago, I started using Myfitnesspal to log my food. I did it with discipline, but not with joy.
I am an entrepreneur in the “quantified self” space, so I always up for trying things, especially when it comes to tracking health and fitness data. For me tracking my food was a test and the result was negative. I simply didn’t like logging my food, not even with MyFitnessPal, the market leader in food tracking.
Why I start tracking food again
I wanted to lose some weight. I weigh around 207 pounds (94 kg), but some months ago I was at 194 pounds (88 kg).
I track my weight with a device I personally love: the Withings smart body analyzer. Therefor, I decided to give logging my food another go.
What happened when I started again?
As soon as I started using MyFitnessPal again, I connected my Fitbit, my Withings and my Runkeeper to it. The cool thing is that the data from these services all comes together in MyFitnessPal.
How Withings data flows to MyFitnessPal
My Withings weight data get automatically synced with MyFitnessPal and this allows me to follow what’s happening with my weight right in the Myfitnespal app.
How Fitbit data flows to MyFitnessPal
My Fitbit data get automatically synced with Myfitnesspal and it also has a calorie adjustment, which adds calories to my daily calorie consumption target. This really got me moving more as I knew that my data from Fitbit would be used in Myfitnesspal. It’s also cool that you see the additional calories you can consume immediately.
How Runkeeper data flows to MyFitnessPal
My Runkeeper data gets automatically synced with MyFitnessPal and the calories I burn from a workout are added to my daily calorie consumption. This really got me going more to the gym, as again my data from Runkeeper would be used in Myfitnesspal.
Another thing that happened is that my girlfriend started using MyFitnessPal as well and loved it. So it has become kind of a daily routine to be checking on another.
More value to my data
Will I continue using MyFitnessPal? Yes, because my data now has more value.
If I forget my Fitbit Flex at home I will most certainly go back and get it. I want to have those calories burned on MyFitnessPal!
I have less trouble now with the hassle of logging my food, because I get more value out of it. Sometimes I have nothing to log but I still open up MyFitnessPal to check how many calories I can still eat.
Here is what I was left on a day after gym exercise and a normal day of activity:
The connected context is important
In the past I have argued that we don’t need more wearables, we need more context. I think the right thing to say is that we need a connected context. My example here is only one of many.
Imagine external datasets like weather data, or personal datasets like our driving data, being put together to serve us, the user, instead of serving us an aggregated message or a number.
It might sound scary to connect all your data, but I don’t think there was a point in history where technology wasn’t scary or contradictory. For example, in 1959, in Vancouver, there was an advertisement calling for the city to go back to the “…horse and buggy days…” criticizing the congestion caused by cars.
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