Liz Gets Healthy Volume I: Tech Tools

Over the past two years, I have done a thoroughly sad and pathetic job of taking care of myself in more than one arena of my life. Part of this can be chalked up to typical sloppy-hot-mess-twenty-something behavior. A lot of this can be attributed to the high-stress, long-hours, dominates-my-life job I've mentioned...auditing is intense, campers. Another part of this clearly relates to the simple fact that I am a huuuuge foodie/lush, and am not what anyone would call a gym rat.  

These simple facts have, sadly, combined into the perfect storm. Over my senior autumn of college, I gained about 10 more pounds than I was comfortable carrying around, so my senior spring I busted my butt to lose those 10 pounds (plus 20 more). I'd never been in better shape or felt better about my health and physical appearance. Unfortunately, after starting my big-girl job, I took the "big-girl" thing to heart and quickly packed the weight (and then some) back on over the last two years. 

Now, for reasons that will be discussed soon, I've decided it's time to make the change again. Jon and I are both fully committing ourselves to regaining a healthy, fit lifestyle over the next months and getting back into a shape (and pants size!) we can feel proud of. To motivate myself, I've decided to make this a regular series on the blog, featuring progress updates, tips and tricks, and setbacks encountered along the way. The inaugural edition: tech tools to make my journey to health easier!

-Couch To 5K iPhone App


Let's get one thing straight, right off the bat: I am NOT a runner. I have immense respect for those who can willingly torment themselves in that manner (and let's not even get started on marathoners. Jesus.)...but I am a hot sick uncoordinated spastic mess in running shoes. Couch to 5K promises to change all that, and, literally, to take me from the couch (mmmm my favorite place!) to being able to comfortably and competently run 3+ miles consecutively. So far, I've made it through to Week 2 and have seriously noticed differences in my endurance (and enjoyment?) when running. I'll provide status updates as I progress further in, but so far, this lazy girl's intro to running is definitely living up to its reputation. 

-My FitnessPal iPhone App


The French have a word, "gourmand, " which literally translates to "one who enjoys the act and aspects of eating." Um, let's just say that when you look up the word in a French-to-English dictionary, it wouldn't be inappropriate to put my picture there. I looove food. Like a lot. Like...past the point of any reasonability. My FitnessPal has been a major reality check for me--I can bust ass all I want at the gym, but if I keep eating food that is horrible for me (and in excessive, restaurant portions, no less), I don't stand a chance of meeting my goals. Tracking portions and food choices, and being brutally honest about it, has been a great way to hold myself accountable and remind myself that dessert isn't always necessary. My favorite: the part at the end of every day where they project your weight loss over 5-6 weeks if you keep having the day you had. So inspiring...if you had a good day...and terrifying if you didn't! 

 -LFConnect iPhone App/Equipment Interface


Jon's and my building has a super high-tech fancy new gym, equipped with all this awesome LifeFitness equipment...and I am hooked. Every treadmill/elliptical/bike has a built in touch screen with TV, music, workout trackers, optional courses with visuals (i.e. you can pretend you're running in a jungle/city/mountain and the incline/intensity will match it!), and the best part: a USB plug-in. The equipment syncs with your phone via an app and will record your workout stats real-time as you complete the workout. This is so clutch. Every week, I can set a goal for minutes worked out, calories burned, and results from my workouts. By plugging into the equipment, it auto-logs my average/peak heart rate, calories burned and distance/minutes. Folks, I am obsessed. This is my lazy-girl fitness dream. The best part is I can also plug in my iPad and, while tracking, watch episodes of "Gossip Girl." How's THAT for a tech-fueled workout?!

Yikes. I may not ever want to run a marathon, but I sure can write one. Way to make it to the end of this beast...if you did. Can't wait to check in next week with more updates on my journey to getting healthy!