Resolution Apps

My husband is from Vermont.  With its Green Mountains (and corresponding coffee) and long stretches of dairy farms, it is beautiful.  Really beautiful.  But Vermont at Christmas time?  Well, it’s cold. And the drive is long.

So, I’ve had lots of time to consider some of my favorite adult apps of 2013.  These are not apps for the kiddos.  These are the two apps that helped me feel my best physically in 2013.  Parents, teachers, friends,  these apps are for you:
MyFitnessPal:  2013 ushered in another year of keeping my eating under control.  I have such a sweet tooth!  MyFitnessPal is an awesome, simple way to keep yourself accountable for your food intake.  Simple scan the barcode of your favorite foods, select the serving size, and voila!  Your calories and fat intake have been entered.  The database is filled with popular dishes from most chain restaurants too, so you can’t claim ignorance after scarfing down that Big Mac!  It will tally all of your meals, snacks, and even exercise daily.  Want to lose a pound each week?  MyFitnessPal will calculate a reasonable caloric goal for your gender, height, and age.  It is so, so, simple to use and stores favorite meals, so you don’t have to keep entering items individually if you are like me and eat the same thing for breakfast every day!  Best of all, it syncs to your computer and it is FREE.
5K Runner:  Those of you who have known me the longest know that I am really truly not a runner.  Sure, I’ve lead a somewhat active lifestyle, but running has always been an enemy activity.  Something in my mind would not let me give up on this roadblock.  I WANTED to be able to run.  So, I grabbed this app and headed to the trail.  The transition from walking to running is steady but slow.  I started with the free version but quickly upgraded to the full version ($2.99).  The best part?  You can play your own music!  So, I streamed two of my favorite “secret” Pandora stations that I discovered on Pinterest:  Pop Fitness Radio and Country Fitness Radio.  Running became much less painful, if not downright enjoyable!
May you find much success in 2014 – Happy New Year!


Age Scale: 8-14

Device: iPad, iPhone, iPod

Quick Line: Get Moving!

What Educators Need to Know:

Looking for a simple, effective way to show students the importance of exercising?  Try Eat-and-Move!  This tool allows students to compare the calories eaten with the time it takes to burn them off exercising.  Students can choose from a number of favorite foods including potato chips, cake, ice cream, apples, and chicken nuggets.  The number of calories for such a food is listed as Calories IN.  Select an activity such as baseball, trampoline, or playing video games.  The app will automatically calculate the time it would take to burn the calories consumed with the selected activity.  Big learning moment?  You burn about the same amount of calories while watching TV as you do while resting!

Price: FREE


Eat-And-Move-O-Matic - Learning Games Lab, NM State University


Age Scale: 9-18

Device:  iPod or iPhone

Bottom Line:  Biting into this app will lead you to further educational buffets

What Educators Need to Know:

I love Fooducate.  After I got over scanning everything in my pantry, I started to think of how this amazing app could be used at school.  Reading food labels can be confusing.  Fooducate does the work for us by giving foods a grade.  Now, just in case you don’t trust their evaluations, they give a bulleted list behind their ratings, and it is based on fat content, the amount of processing the food has undergone, additives, etc.  It also provides better alternatives and the opportunity to compare food products.  How to use it?  Without explaining the purpose of the assignment, I had students write down five of their favorite snacks.  They plugged them into the app, and wrote down their grades.  They were learning how to find the mean of numbers, so the students found their Snack GPA.  This was a simple way to combine Health and Math!  Students could do this for a whole day.  Or they could take a Healthy Day challenge pledging to eat only foods that earn A’s or B’s.  There are many, many possibilities!

Price:  FREE

Fooducate - Fooducate, Ltd.