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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 March 13, 2019

              How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

              How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

              Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

              You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

              Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

              1. Work on the small tasks.

              When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

              Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

              2. Take a break from your work desk.

              Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

              Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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              3. Upgrade yourself

              Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

              The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

              4. Talk to a friend.

              Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

              Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

              5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

              If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

              Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

              Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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              6. Paint a vision to work towards.

              If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

              Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

              Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

              7. Read a book (or blog).

              The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

              Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

              Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

              8. Have a quick nap.

              If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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              9. Remember why you are doing this.

              Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

              What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

              10. Find some competition.

              Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

              Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

              11. Go exercise.

              Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

              Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

              As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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              Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

              12. Take a good break.

              Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

              Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

              Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

              Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

              More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

              Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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