I switched to MyFitnessPal

I originally lost 70 lbs using the Noom smartphone app. It worked great. It was simple to use. It was always on my phone. They made recording exercises easy. Recording foods was relatively easy.

I was so happy with my progress that I even sprang for the “pro” version. This provided me more helpful articles and the ability to save common meals. A real time saver.

The smartphone app had things that I found useful and helpful. I enjoyed their articles and encouragement. For a beginner, they went slow (as I do with this blog) in getting you to lose your desired weight. They provided recipes and conversion of favorites to make the meal healthier. For encouragement, they provided success stories on their blog. Real people having success with Noom. After a 60 lbs loss, I became one of their success story blog posts.

I did find some features lacking. Noom only worked on my smartphone. I could not access or record on any other device (like my desktop). To make matters worse, I lost valuable history data when I upgraded my phone.

I can not lose sight that the Noom smartphone app did help me to lose 70 lbs! For that, I’m happy I stuck with them through their multiple “upgrades” in the software.

I used Noom daily. I recorded my:

  1. weight daily,
  2. meals 4x a day, and
  3. exercises (including the dreaded chore of housecleaning).

Recording food was easier when I “saved” common meals. My “go to” meals for saving daily calories was a time saver. It was a simple click to add the meal versus the time to find and add each food item. My calorie saving meals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner were all saved. A big time saver.

Their articles were interesting, informative, and convinced me to adjust what I was eating. All good, right?

Then noom changed

For two years, I used Noom. I adjusted how I used their app as their focus went towards corporate challenges.

I used to help many fortune 100 companies with strategy. I understand why companies change business strategies and the impact it has on their products. Companies look to focus on specific type of clients with more revenue. For Noom, corporate challenges were more their new customers than an individual who needs maintenance guidance.

Over the months I found the Noom app becoming increasingly frustrating.

  1. The foods I ate were not in their database.
  2. After adding the food information, it took weeks to get into their database (if at all).
  3. They upped the yearly price for pro.
  4. More bugs in the updated app prevented me from working easily with the app.
  5. They took away “saved” meals.

The last one did it for me.

If you are using Noom and are happy with it … stick with it.

If you are frustrated with it like I was, take the jump to another app. Yes, you will lose history. That’s okay. You’ll create a better you when you are not frustrated with what you are not comfortable with or find annoying. The goal is to pick a smartphone app you don’t mind using multiple times a day.

My Fitness Pal

I searched for another smartphone app and found MyFitnessPal. I started using the app a couple of months ago while still using Noom.

I used MyFitnessPal daily as well as Noom. I recorded my:

  1. weight daily
  2. foods 4x a day
  3. exercises (even separates strength training from cardiovascular)

MyFitnessPal also had a saved meal. The time saver that Noom dropped in the latest version. In fact, MyFitnessPal went a step further.

  1. Their food package bar code reader was much more reliable than noom.
  2. They have a much more extensive food database. They even have common local restaurants menus to help you know the calories and nutrient break downs.
  3. One could save commonly eaten meals (my “go to” meals).
  4. You could link or add recipes. A wonderful feature where MyFitnessPal calculates the calories for you. You can link to an online recipe or type in your own.
  5. Their app keeps a list of the foods (or meals or recipes) you commonly eat. You will find them quicker and can just click multiple foods at once to add to a meal. Noom required each item to be added separately. This turned out to be another big time saver.

And that’s not all! MyFitnessPal:

  1. Allowed you to recorded the amount of water (something that was a request on noom for two years).
  2. Allowed multiple goals beyond weight (think fiber).
  3. Worked with more commonly purchased accessories (ie: Fitbit). Noom linked with an uncommon bulky watch brand.

Noom was focused purely on weight loss. Not maintenance.

MyFitnessPal is focused on health:

  1. Weight loss or maintenance.
  2. Want to cut down on salt or carbs? Set a separate goal.
  3. Need more protein for bodybuilding? Set a separate goal.

MyFitnessPal smartphone app is made by the fitness clothing company Under Amour. That is important. A bigger company with a bigger development budget. Their business strategy goes beyond losing weight. They want the healthy person who will also buy their fitness clothing to find value from their smartphone app.

Being a fitness clothing company also meant they understood what more people wanted to record and how to record it. Noom focuses on the obesity. MyFitnessPal focuses on weight loss and fitness nuts. MyFitnessPal caters to people wanting to eat and live healthier lives.

Like Noom, MyFitnessPal articles are helpful. Noom focuses on people new to healthy living (the basics) they do not focus on the fitness crowd (think Crossfit fanatics) . MyFitnessPal goes beyond the basics. The exercises may go beyond where you are today. The articles may not include as much about heart attack risks due to diet. The recipes may include no-no’s like bacon.

One important feature lead me to drop Noom and stick with MyFitnessPalMyFitnessPal works on multiple devices. I have the app loaded on my smartphone AND access MY information via the web on my desktop. What a big help that is. Especially if you need a large screen to add recipes or click on multiple foods for different meals.

All is not perfect with MyFitnessPal

MyFitnessPal has more features and thus can be confusing to someone new to health apps. When you see all the “settings” you may become overwhelmed.

Take your time. Go slowly. Stick with the defaults and only change what you need at this time:

  1. current weight
  2. desired weight
  3. height

Set your calorie guidelines for each of your four meals as you calculated previously.

Set your issue as a guideline to watch. I watch fiber, carbohydrates, sugar, and protein.

Then start using MyFitnessPal daily:

  1. record weight
  2. record water
  3. record exercise (more on this in the next post)

Expand your use of MyFitnessPal after you have used it for a month. Save your commonly eaten meals or link to commonly cooked recipes.

I’m glad I switched and use it. I’ve learned more about where my diet needs to change. I was eating too much salt, fat, and sugars. I was very low on protein. I have switched some of my regular foods and am seeing results.

Try it

I do recommend you use a smartphone app for your get healthy journey. If you are happy with the one you are currently using, GREAT! If you haven’t started using one or are frustrated with the one you currently use, give MyFitnessPal a try.

Get Back In Shape To Do List

  1. Weigh In DAILY (recording the date/weight)
  2. Increase your steps every day by 250.
  3. Eat your meals within 12 hours.
  4. Drink 64 oz of water a day.
  5. Record what you eat.
  6. Know your meal-calorie guidelines
  7. Know what foods will heal health issues
  8. Snack on purpose
  9. Add aerobic exercise to your schedule
  10. Burn daily to earn daily
  11. Don’t cheat, earn your treat
  12. Develop a cheap calorie “go to” day of meals.

Motivational Reminders:

  • Healthy habits help you lose and maintain a good weight and health.
  • A scale is just the provider of information to help you make healthier choices.
  • Don’t just eat more calories; earn them!
  • Flush out the bloat.
  • Know your calorie boundaries.
  • Consistency matters.
  • Eat your way to better health
  • Exercise your heart
  • Over estimate what you eat; underestimate what you burned
  • Underestimate what you burned to record what you’ve earned.
  • Carrying over excess calories leads to weight gain.
  • Earn your treats.
  • Record your efforts in a manner you feel comfortable.

Welcome to the journey to better health! You can do it!

About Pat Ferdinandi

Digital Visuals Strategist & Creator

Viditude! Montclair NJ 973.619.9353 Talk2Me@PatFerdinandi.com