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Review – Lose It

Review – Lose It

In the new year, my focus has been the bulging waistline that’s burdened me since high school. While I have made a huge number of very small changes over the past two years, I never had a focused plan to lose weight.

I changed my eating habits. No longer is my freezer filled with frozen food. The number of times I eat out in a month is much smaller and when I do, I pay attention to what I eat. I no longer drink non-diet soda and cut back the amount of all soda significantly.

    I drink more water. I drink less juice. My wife and I make a meal plan for the week ahead. When we shop for groceries, we have a list and a plan in mind. This doesn’t make up everything we buy but it makes up the majority. As a result we’re less likely to wander into junk food aisles.

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    Recently everything changed. I found the Lose It website and mobile app. The idea is simple: Eat fewer calories than I need everyday. Cutting back on the calories I eat results in weight loss. There is no secret, no gimmick and no crazy food restrictions. Just eat less food.

    The mobile app is where Lose It really shines. The application is free. The web site is free. It has a huge database of food. It has options broken down by restaurant or grocery store if I’m looking for a specific item and I can enter in an item that’s not already there.

      Bar Code Scanning

      First, it can scan bar codes and return the nutritional information. The Weight Watchers app *needs* to have this. It makes eating anything from a container so easy to enter you won’t think twice about it.

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      For example, if I’m making spaghetti I can scan the box. *Beep!* Scan the sauce. *Beep!* Scan the sausage. *Beep!* I have my ingredients in the application. I now know exactly how many calories are in the total meal. The division to figure out how much I eat from there is easy and I didn’t have to type a single number.

      Recipes

        Once I have my ingredients added, I can make a recipe. The recipe is exactly what it sounds like. I add a collection of ingredients into a single item. Set the number of servings I’ve made and I’ll have the caloric content of each plate I dish up. The recipes are wonderful because I can reuse them when we make the same meal or tweak the ingredients when we do something similar.

        Sharing

        Once I have the recipe made, I can share it with my wife who is my friends on the application. This is as simple as selecting recipes, share, choose a person. Click.

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          She will then be notified by email there is a new recipe waiting or she can open the app, open Shared Items and add the new recipe to her list of foods. Now we’ve made dinner and don’t have to duplicate efforts entering numbers and scanning containers all over again.

          Reminders

            Lose It will allow you to set reminders, which the app calls Motivators, to log your meals and snacks. I currently have four. One for each meal and an end of day reminder at 11pm to hopefully catch any missed snacks or meals I did not document.

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            Syncing

            The app now syncs up with Fitbit to allow syncing of your steps to Lose It. This will allow Lose It to react to the level of exercise for a given day. This is nice because you’re not left with the same number of calories at the end of the day whether you sit on the couch all day or go for a walk.

            Lose It also syncs to the Withings Scale and offers a coupon for 7% off. The scale also syncs wirelessly and automatically to Lose It. Between tracking exercise and weight automatically, the application is even more useful because it allows you to focus less on the mundane and more on your goal of losing weight.

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              Last Updated on July 10, 2020

              How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

              How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

              We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

              We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

              So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

              Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

              What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

              Boundaries are limits

              —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

              Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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              Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

              Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

              Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

              How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

              Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

              1. Self-Awareness Comes First

              Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

              You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

              To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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              You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

              • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
              • When do you feel disrespected?
              • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
              • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
              • When do you want to be alone?
              • How much space do you need?

              You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

              2. Clear Communication Is Essential

              Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

              Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

              3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

              Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

              That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

              Sample language:

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              • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
              • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
              • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
              • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
              • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
              • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
              • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

              Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

              4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

              Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

              Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

              Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

              We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

              It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

              It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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              Final Thoughts

              Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

              Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

              Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

              The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

              Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

              Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

              They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

              Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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