Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Gettin' Daft Punk'd! 3 Free Fitness Apps up for appraisal. A phone app review...

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I'm so very pysched today! I was able to accomplish something that I didn't think I could EVER do. 

Butttt... before I get to that... a little fitness history per se... went from tree climbin', bike ridin', roller skatin', tennis playin' super tom-boy to ultra geek/nerd girl when puberty hit and I've never recovered.  I transformed into a total nerd and forgot about being outside.  My time was invested in books and movies and maybe a little dancing to Madonna or Van Halen.  Or perched in front of my uber cool TRs80 with cassette drive. Oh Yeah! Not to mention playing on the Atari 2600!  That is until my mom gave it away.  GRRRRRR! That's okay 'cause I eventually got a Saga Genesis and ran Sonic all over the freakin' place until the system died two days after getting it.  Sent it back and what did Sears send me instead... a Super Nintendo!  Move over Sonic;  Hello Link! Sonic might be a uber fast hedgehog and super cute, but Link is a fey with a super sexy green hat.  Yeah! Baby! And then... and then came Dungeon's & Dragons 3.0/3.5. (thank you, Neverness... I did resist or tried too...) I've played my share of elves, half elves,and halflings. Ultimately I was one kickass "primative gun" toting gnome. After a brief hiatus then came dun, dun, dun... 40K's Warhamer Fantasy & Dark Heresey where I've annoyed Da Masta Cheef with my Sister of Battle, Secunda... so much fun that... I've got a Wood Elf that can take down Dragons with a bow in Skyrim.  Wanna be badass in Borderlands.  Those character's had more strength, dexterity, and charisma than is even possible in real life. They are so bad-ass. They were all the me that I wanted to be and wasn't.  I've gotten a lot of game/life achievements since then. My working hours are spent in front of a computer or dealing with overly dramatic employees. I've logged several thousand hours on the 360 sitting in my husband's comfy chair. Or standing in front of the stove making something really tasty to eat.  Oh yeah, I love to eat... let me say that again... I love to eat good food.  That said, twice! I made some effort a few years ago, but when my workout buddy had a life changing event and moved away my motivation just fizzled out.  

I've found my motivation again and working hard at getting Daft Punk'd: 

- From their Discovery Album.

I have two fitness goals that I'm currently working on:

1. Couch to 5K - an 8 week program
2. Relearning to Bilaterally Free Style Swim.

I got myself back into the gym in February just to get used to moving again.  I've found 3 iPhone/android apps that have assisted me in making progress on my fitness goals.  I've tried several like:  Calorie Counter by Fat Secret and FitDay Mobile by bulletin solutions.  The three that I've stayed with are:

a. Endomondo
b. My Fitness Pal
c. C25K by Zen labs

 A. Endomondo - Free
     Endomondo tracks the duration, distance, and calories of your workout.  It has workouts from Badminton to Windsurfing.  You can choose what you're doing and it does the rest.  It will also track your routes for comparison if you have GPS enabled on your phone.  It will give you your average speed, max speed, hydration level, total ascent/descent, some weather info and min/max altitude. It keeps track of your workout history for you and you can also join community challenges.  You can also add gear to help you track your Heart Rate like the Jawbone Up. (I would love one of these bad boys, just sayin')  The Up is a bracelet style body monitoring system.  It will track your sleep patterns, how much you move, and how you eat. Also, it will connect to my next app... My Fitness Pal.  They make regular updates to the app, but the one drawback that is a little frustrating is I ran yesterday, it didn't track my distance quite right.  I know that has to be due to GPS and running in place so I can handle that until they fix it. And when communicating with My Fitness Pal it logged it as Walking 2.0 mph, slow pace.  Which I tell you was not the case.

 B. MyFitnessPal - Free
     It does all sorts of cool things for you.  From the apps home screen you get your daily summary: daily calorie goal, +food consumed, -exercise, and your net calories.  All at a glance! You can add friends to help you with your fitness agenda, to give encouragement
or challenges or fuss when you've missed a day or two.  It has a food dairy, with an extensive database for foods or you can add your own.  Build your own recipes to determine calorie content of your favorite breakfast muffin.  I use this feature alot!   You can track your weight or measurements and it will give you a graph showing your progress.  It will even give your nutrient details.  It was a shocker how much sugar is in things, random supposedly good for you food. This part of the app helped open my eyes to things that I was eating on a normal basis.  There are so many good things about this app that they far outweigh my one issue....1...  You can access your app data from the MyFitnessPal website. You can add to your diary, track cardio/strength workouts... whatever you can do on your phone you can do on the website, but there are adds and sometimes those adds will mess with Internet Explorer and Google Chrome, which on some days is annoying.  That's my only complaint... yeah adds.  chrome crashes hello! phone app...

C. C25K by Zen Labs - Free
C25K is an eight week program designed to get you from your couch to a 5k race. It is also a free app.  Zen Labs is a supporter of Breast Cancer awareness, which is totally cool in my book.   SAVE THE TATAS!

Before you begin you get a Motivational Quote, which I enjoy.  I save these away to use in my art journaling.  Exercise tips for lifting weights, walking, or running.  It will also give you a blurb on another of Zen Labs free apps or some of their pro apps like for abs and legs.  What the app does is start you out week 1 day 1 with a warm up walk and then alternates you for 60 secs of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for like 20 minutes. Once completed it moves you to week 1 day 2 and so on. So, you can see from the screen shoot that I've got check marks in the boxes for Week 3 Day 2 and Day 3. I've completed those.  The other cool thing is that I start Endomondo first and then I start this app and use both at the same time to track what I'm working on that day.  

You guys remember what I was saying at the beginning of this post... I'll refresh your noggins...

I'm so very pysched today! I was able to accomplish something that I didn't think I could EVER do. 
Sweet Victory - with sweaty flushed cheeks!
Even in high school I was never able to run the mile for Phys Ed without walking 95% of it. I made it to week 3 day 2 of this app before it KICKED MY TOOKUS all over the gym. I've actually repeated week 3 because when i got to Week 4 Day 1: 3 minute run, 90 sec walk, 5 minute run, 2.5 minute walk, 3 minute run, 90 sec walk, and 5 minute run. I THOUGHT I WAS GONNA DIE! I never made it to 4 minutes before my chest felt like it was gonna 'splode!!! I DID NOT complete that day. It defeated me that day. So after running through Week 3 again, which this app so conveniently lets you do and recommends it as well.  Yesterday, May 14, 2013, I, the non-runner, finally killed that 5 minute goal and the 3 minute and came so close to killing second 5 minute. If you wanna learn to run I highly recommend this app.  Just gather up 30 seconds of courage and do it!

When I'm not on the treadmill I'm in this pool.  I was on the swim team when I was a little girl and in the intervening years since then I've forgotten how to swim correctly.  Face down breathing out full tilt!  Its great to be back in the water.  There are days when the 'ole lungs don't work the way I think they should. Running is helping alot with my endurance.  The more I progress running the more I'm able to do in the water.  Very nice symbiotic relationship there.   

Anyways, if you're interested working on your fitness and/or eating habits check out these apps, I highly recommend them!

I've been working in my 2013 Mo Bigger Art Journal: 

Star Light Star Bright Last star I'll see tonight


  1. Awesome!!!! You are knocking it OUT lil' gnome!!! :)

    ...does this mean no more stuffed peppers? :(

  2. Curiously, unlike most people who trade playing outside for video games and full blown indoor geekery (and a penchant for tasty foods), you never ballooned into the couch potato-like physique (whereas most people would). That's something of an accomplishment right there, and certainly a significant head start on your new direction!