Post # 1
So I just started using the MyFitnessPal app yesterday. So far I have mixed feeling on it. I like the tracking calories part, although I do have a quesiton about that – how do you track calories when you go to a restaurant? Is that information available somewhere? Or when you eat at someone else’s house, how do you track it?
Also – how do you track exercise? I do the P90X workouts, and I’m not sure how to track the ‘core’ workout…it’s more of a strength workout, but there are a bunch of exercises (it’s about an hour long) and there aren’t specific amounts of reps for some of them.
Thanks for any help you can provide!
Post # 3
If it’s a big chain restaurant, the nutrition information is generally published on the internet if you google. If it’s a smaller place that doesn’t post that info though, all you can do is your best guess.
As for exercise, I found MFP grossly exaggerates what you burn, so when putting in something from their database, I always cut the calorie quantity in half. I track calorie burns with a Heart Rate Monitor so I get the closest to accurate reading of a calorie burn as I can.
Post # 4
Re restaurants: as @abbie017: said, most chain restaurants will have nutritional information and calorie content published on their websites. Also, you can usually search and it should be there; eg we have an Italian chain over here called Prezzo, and all their dishes are in the app, so, I just search for, say ‘Prezzo prawn risotto’ and it will come up; simple.
If you aren’t going to a chain, you can usually guestimate. Eg lets say you have steak with vegetables and a peppercorn sauce: you just seach for each ingredient separately and add them.
We eat out at least once a week and I find it very simple. I also tend to eat similar things when I go out, so if I’m feeling lazy I just do a ‘quick add calories’ as I know the calorie content of most things I eat now without having to look it up.
Re exercise: I personally don’t bother inputting strength exercises as they burn very few calories, and the main thing I use My Fitness Pal for is tracking calories; I don’t use it to track reps (I’m sure there are other apps better suited to this so it might be better to use something else if that’s what you want to do). I just use it to track calorie-burning exercise eg swimming/very brisk walking.
Also, one word of caution: the exercise section isn’t always accurate, as the calories you burn depend on what you weigh eg someone weighing 240lbs will burn way more calories in an hour of swimming than someone weighing 120lbs. I have to set my minutes of exercises at about 20% lower on the app to account for that (eg if I have done 60 minutes of swimming I input 48 minutes as that gives a more accurate number of calories).
Post # 5
I didn’t even track the workouts. There’s no way to know how many calories you’re burning really. I would give myself an extra 100-200 calories if I did an hour workout. MFP really did work for me.. but I fell off the wagon. :/ Good luck!
Post # 6
@HappySky7: That’s what I do lol.
They reckon you burn around 480 calories and hour swimming, but I usually allow myself about half that on top of my regular allowance. I’ve found that’s worked for me in terms of weight-loss.
Post # 7
Thanks for all the input! I don’t think I’ll track my exercise calories after all. I think I’ll just do food, seems easier that way!
Post # 8
@barbie86: Yeah exactly. I have not been swimming in … forever. I should start going again…. and I should start using MFP again. OK you ladies have inspired me. 🙂