Information Junkie

Even though I’m not great at math, I love numbers. Even more, I love when said numbers indicate I’m burning calories and ripping through my weight loss goal. Short of being addicted to the digits, I would said I have a hard core need to know the stats.

In order to get the information I need, I rely heavily on my Polar F11 Heart Rate Monitor Watch. Not only does it give me my actual heart rate (transmitted from the chest strap to my watch), the F4 actually calculates my target heart rate zone and blinks like crazy when I am over or under. At the end of a workout, it triumphiantly displays total calories burned, average heart rate, heart rate high (my personal favorite), and total workout time. At the end of a week like a prize, it sends you an email with your total calories burned as well as accumulated work out time.

The great thing about the Polar F11 is that it guides you when you are up, or down. For example, when you attend your spinning class religiously and burn between 7 and 800 calories in the hour, you are a happy watch wearning work out junkie in receipt of a watch email with some crazy high numbers. Conversly if you are a lazy slug, the F11 reminds you that your total calorie burn was a big fat ZERO and you are growing fatter by the second.

Even more exciting than the weekly email, I enjoy looking down at the F4 mid-workout. Sometimes in the middle of spinning, I’ll take a quick peak to make sure my heart rate is under 200 and I’m not in jeopardy of heart explosion. If its a new instructor, I’ll also look down to make sure I’m not just skating through class and hovering around 120.

In addition to the all time favorite Polar F11 Heart Rate Monitor Watch, the information junkie in me enjoys:

Ketosis Strips for Uralysis:

Yes thats correct, there is actually a product you can purchase for use in your own home and urine stream! There is nothing quite as exciting as pulling out the ketosis strip and watching it turn dark purple. For all the Atkins lovers out there — you get it. When your body burns fats, it releases ketons. The uralysis strips measure the amount of ketons in your urine and thus give you a pretty good idea of how much fat you’ve been burning. Taupe = no fat burned. Purple = fat burning junkie!

Pedometer:

For some reason I received a pedometer with my company logo emblazoned on it. I’m sure its something to do with a rebate from our insurance provider based on our overall health assessment. Either way, I decided to give it a go. Enclosed in the package was a “step it up” guide. As a general rule you should take around 6,000 steps daily. For weight loss you should aim for 10,000. After one day I realized I was taking around 2,000. I felt a little sad – then I remembered the pedometer came with the company logo — and I work in an office and sit all day long.

Weight Watchers E Tools/Food Journal:

I think I’ve heard a million times before that if you want to loose weight, you gotta write down what you eat. Its actually quite interesting: if you try to recall everything you ate yesterday, studies show you’ll be between 500 and 1000 LESS than what you actually consumed. And I’m thinking thats probably on a week day.

I recently started attending weight watchers meetings. As a free gift with my American Express credit card number and monthly payment, I was automatically enrolled in E Tools. Now, for an information junkie and someone who is in front of a computer all day — nothing could be better. Not only does e tools keep track of what I eat (and adds in the weight watchers obligatory points), it also publishes charts and graphs of my food intake, weight loss, and fitness regime. Its awesome!

If you can’t get e tools, I strongly recommend writing down what you eat. For the first day, try to eat as much as you can. Then when you start a diet you will be truly amazed at what your body can actually live on.

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