Smart Weighing Scales are one of the best lifelogging trackers for me. Keeping track of my weight & fat mass gives me a direct indication of my food intake and exercise. Everyone gets conscious of their weight at some point of time. I think of my weight in three phases:
1 Underweight and want to gain some weight.
2 Overweight and want to shed some weight.
3 Maintaining my weight. (the hardest of all)
Funnily enough, I’ve been at all 3 stages. I ended up gaining a lot of weight last year because of my exams and was desperate to lose some weight. Then, after the exams, my busy life started and I ended up shedding a lot of weight. Here, I was desperate to gain some weight. Now, I come to my present stage i.e. – trying to keep my weight constant. Keeping it constant has been quite hard, I managed to do it for 3 months now. Tracking my weight constantly was the reason I could do what I targeted in all 3 stages.
The most important thing to remember is that everybody has a different body type. So, everything you read on the internet may not necessarily work for you or give you the same results. A common factor for all is sufficient sleep. Sleep pushes us through the day to achieve whatever we want. Insufficient sleep disturbs our body parameters and ends up throwing us off balance.
Regularly checking weight & fat is crucial to see if the technique adopted is working or not. Smart scales come really handy as they motivate you to continue on the path. It helps us know the reality of how effective our efforts have been.
The Withings Body and Withings body cardio came out recently and they really taken over the smart scale market. These are devices that show all possible info based on your weight. The Withings Body Scale is capable is one of the most popular smart weighing scales.
– It shows us more than just our weight but, also the composition of the weight. It shows the Fat mass % for keeping track of our fat for knowing that our weight loss or gain is taking place in a healthy way. The muscle mass% gives us an idea of how effective our workouts are and so. It also shows the water content in the body to give us an idea of hydration levels of our body. The bone mass is also displayed. Though bone mass doesn’t undergo any changes on the day to day basis but, over a long period of time can give us an idea of our whole body status.
– The scale doesn’t just show our present reading but also displays 8 previous weigh-ins to give a clearer image.
– We can connect our phone to the scale using WiFi or Bluetooth. This stores all weigh-ins so that the info is available all the time and helps us to remain motivated to our goals in terms of weight and health.
– The application has really good features like calculating a calories budget. This makes it much easier to stick to targets. You just need to log in calories lost and gained to keep track. The precise calculation gives us a very accurate understanding of much to eat and exercise to reach our target.
– You can use it with many other popular applications making it easier to correlate the data
– It can also input info like weather and steps walked the previous day to plan our day better and to keep us motivated for better fitness
– It can store data for 8 people. It also recognizes the person by itself making it much easier for use.
– It’s battery powered by AAA cells which can power for close to 18 months making it hassle free to use.
This device will be available for $129.95 soon.
The Withings body cardio has the added advantage of giving us an idea of our cardio vascular health. The rest of the features are the same as mentioned above. It measures Pulse Wave Velocity (very accurately!) to provide us with the info. It tells us about our arterial health enabling us to reduce the risk of developing hypertension or any cardiovascular diseases. The app keeps track of all our data and judges the reading based on our age. It gives us tips to bring the Pulse Wave Velocity readings to an optimal level. This device will be available for $179.95. Both the devices are very sleek and look very stylish.
People who want to just record their weight and want to keep a track of it easily, can opt for the Mi smart scale by Xiaomi. This is available for only $17. It is the cheapest of the lot and does offer a lot for the price.This records weight quite accurately to give you a clearer picture. The smart scale connects to our smartphone to help us keep track of the weight every time we measure. It also recognise each person individually automatically to prevent mix up of the weights. This device looks stunning and is really ergonomically designed. It connects to our phones using WiFi.
One of the more practical smart scales available out there is the Fitbit Aria. It measures weight and shows lean mass and fat%. It also calculates and display the Body mass index which is quite a good measure to know if our weight is in control. This connects to our phone/computer using Wifi. This has a very big advantage if we use other Fitbit trackers as all the data is shown together on app. It recognises 8 people using the scale individually automatically.It is available for $108.
Apart from tracking weight- fitness, food and stress tracking are essential to keep track of weight. I analysed how to track and control these parameters for all three states.
If we are over weight, this tends to make us very conscious of ourselves. It affects our overall health in many adverse ways.
Fitness Tracking: Most of us want to lose weight the healthy way by eliminating fat and building some muscle or, just getting in normal shape. As to what most research in the world points, starving ourselves is a very bad idea. Its always better to lose weight the healthy way. The right exercises targeted at the right regions. In general, cardio helps to lose weight. As our stamina builds, we can increase the workout intensity. This is the best part because here we can keep pushing ourselves in the exercise. The fitness tracker keeps track of all this and comparing our daily stats we get a very good idea of how we are doing. Steps, walking time, running time and heart rate is essential to keep a track of.
Food tracking: This is the difficult part here. Our food intake has to be controlled here to a very large extent to make sure we are consuming only healthy food. The calorie intake is also to be controlled here strictly. It is best to stick to a diet plan made specially for our body type as it is most effective. Food intake can be tracked by logging data into an app.
Stress tracking: Some people tend to gain weight under stressful situations. There is also a chance of the person stress eating which is very harmful. Most of the food we stress eat are very high calorie fatty foods that we think can soothe us. But, in reality it doesn’t. Stress can be manually journaled here.
This is an uphill battle. Even if we gain some weight, our metabolism is fast to dispose it. So, here’s how self-tracking helped me to gain weight.
1) Fitness tracking: All of us probably want to gain weight by building up muscle mass and not just uncontrolled fat. If gaining some fat first and then building muscles is the target then, its important to make sure where in our body we want the fat to be. In both stages, exercise plays an instrumental role. Its all about keeping track of exercise and how to do it in the best possible way. There are many fitness tracking applications that provide coaches for your requirement. The trackers give you an idea of how much more or less you have to do of which exercise for gaining weight.
2) Food tracking: If you think pigging out on food is going to be the solution, you’re gonna harm yourself in the long run. Its very important to have a controlled diet. Calorie tracking comes in here. You have to keep tracking your calorie intake and also what kind of food it is. Keeping a track of what food you eat gives an idea of which foods are working and which aren’t. But, food tracking for gaining weight is relatively easier because can be a little loose on the diet plan.
3) Stress tracking: Some people tend to lose weight because of increased stress. Increased stress is not only harmful from the point of view of gaining weight but also, has adverse affects on our health and our mood. When I had lost sufficient weight (I was fat first), I tried to stop my weight loss but, I was in such a stressful situation, that it just did not stop. I ended up losing a lot of weight because of this (7 kgs more than what I intended to). I started tracking my stress later to help me.
Keeping weight constant
The hardest of all. This is because we lose the determination to some extent to remain fit. If we reach this stage after shedding weight, we tend to reward ourselves by eating unhealthy foods for a bit or start skipping exercise. If we reach this stage after gaining weight, we change our diets and start skipping exercise or so. While this in small gradual changes is okay, doing this suddenly can have adverse effects on your body. Again, body type matters here. Some people have their stable weight at the weight at their targeted weight. That makes it very easy for them but, for most of us, it isn’t.
Fitness tracking: We have to be very particular about our exercise patterns and routines to make sure we keep at it. This can only be accurately tracked using fitness trackers. They are really useful to make sure we are constantly exercising.
Food intake: Controlled food intake and very particular calorie intake is required. To stay at the same body shape it will be useful to log all the food intake.
Stress tracking: Stress under no situation is good. This can be the deciding factor here. Even if we work on our fitness and food intake diligently, this can be reason we are losing out on our balance.
Measuring your weight and fat mass on a smart scale on a weekly basis is highly recommended for weight management. Although these smart weighing scales aren’t always accurate with fat mass they add real good value.
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