Like most folks, I've made "enthusiastic" commitments to be more resolute in staying healthy this year. Such crazy claims include getting off the buttocks and working out, eating healthy, and other life-changing nonsense. Recently, one of my friends started this diet called the TAO Diet, which stands for Ten and One. The premise is simple: You eat 10 salads and one meal of whatever you please. Then rinse and repeat.
I've come to realize that I'm an attention-seeking and easily distracted geek with a healthy track record of...falling off track. But rather than giving up that easily, here are three apps that I've been personally utilizing to keep myself in check and even make the process more bearable.
How can Instagram help with weight loss? Simple: accountability. One requirement of the TAO Diet is to post a picture online of every salad meal you have. Believe it or not, salads look damn pretty on camera. Take a picture, slap on a filter, label it, and post it online. It's obnoxious, but people will take notice to comment and like your photos. Community is a powerful motivational tool, so take advantage of your social network and leverage their short attention spans. The comments and feedback alone will hold you responsible to your word. Compliments can make you feel all warm and fuzzy and act as a positive motivator. Afraid of being obnoxious? Well, you're already on Instagram and people are most likely exposed to other faux-foodie photo streams anyway. Might as well do it for a health-conscious purpose.
Planning: Noom Weight Loss Coach
Weird name, but a great app. Your smartphone is a powerful tool for monitoring your overall diet and fitness progress. Noom is the Swiss Army Knife for health geeks: it's got a pedometer, weight log, meal log, workout planner, and even an active forum where users post tips or ask questions. If you're taking the time to check Facebook, chances are that you'll have time to spend a few seconds to log a meal. Keep yourself in check with this analytical tool to track your progress and let the numbers do the talking.
Execution: Zombies, Run!
Don't forget the exercise. "The Walking Dead" might be on a seasonal break, but zombies wait for no one. Zombies, Run! is actually a fitness app disguised as a game that motivates you to run for your life through an audio-immersive adventure. I can testify that the app is surprisingly entertaining; being chased by imaginative zombies is an effective incentive to run like hell. Zombie fans will love the story and achievement-oriented "gameplay." Your next jog around the block might be your last with this edgy app.