I’ve written before about my weight loss journey last year where I lost 50kg through mostly watching what I ate and starting to exercise.
The main “trick” I uncovered is simply to plan meals ahead. It sounds boring, it sounds annoying, but really its such a tiny effort for such outsized and life changing rewards that it should be a no-brainer.
The existing tools I found were more focused on tracking after eating which is great in terms of capturing data and measuring over time, but I found really didn’t help me with locking in a routine. I wanted to fix this and bring some of this planning side along with tracking into an easy to use app.
So this is what I’ve been working on in my spare time!
After some research I decided 1500 calories would be a good target for me, and committed to myself I’d keep within that limit. As mentioned above, planning for me was key. It’s pretty typical if you don’t have the ingredients for a healthy, satisfying meal to hand then you’ll gravitate to poor choices and snacks and that was my main problem. That plus snacking late at night.
To fix this I made a simple web prototype with Ruby on Rails, and found really quickly that making a plan for the week, then shopping for the ingredients so they’re ready to hand in my fridge at meal times was a game changer to get into a routine and sticking to it!
In the last month or so I’ve really doubled down on the project, expanding it into an iOS app built with Turbo Native that connects with Apple Health, so calories I burn from walking or exercise are automatically tracked from my Apple Watch and iPhone, and incorporating that with the meals and food from my plan.
Procrastination and Next Steps
I’ve shown this to a few people in person and received some great feedback but going from “fun app I use myself” to a “real” product for others to use is a big step, at least in my mind. There are lots of rough edges and while years of experience has shown me releasing early and getting products into the hands of users is key, I’m procrastinating on this. Aiming to push it over the line by posting this sneak peek, so watch this space!
One thing I am looking for help with is meal ideas. Specifically, what kinds of healthy lunches and dinners do you love that you could see yourself committing to eat regularly and know you will enjoy? For me its salads, omelettes, fish dishes, tofu curry, but I know that won’t appeal to everyone.
If you are interested and have some ideas, I’d love to hear your feedback through this quick 3 minute survey or if you want to be the first try out the app drop me a line. I’d love to hear what you think!