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Weeks 5 and 6: Transforming into a FitGeek …

July 30, 2012

Well, what can I say – I’m a geek. So last week (week 5 of my weight loss experiment) I decided to log my food intake and activities in a more efficient way. I first tried loseit.com, which is a very nice website – if you’re from the USA. If you’re not, you pretty much feel like an outsider there – even if you’re fine with the english language and imperial measurement units. But on loseit.com there were some advertisements which caught my attention – one for the Withings WiFi scale, and another for the FitBit Tracker. Long story short – I ended up ordering both on Amazon. My old scale was broken anyway – it still measured accurately, but the plastic surface was cracked.

The Withings Wi-Fi Scale

Very nice. I could also have gotten the FitBit Aria scale – but the ratings favored the Withings scale, so I ordered that one. Setting it up was very easy and straight forward – you insert the batteries and connect it to a computer via USB, and a little helper application detects your WiFi. And of course you create an online account with Withings, which your weight records are uploaded to. There’s also an iPhone app, but you can connect your account to other services – such as FitBit.com.

FitBit Tracker Ultra

This is essentially a step counter gone mad – it’s a very light weight device which measures acceleration and changes in altitude. You typically wear it around your belt or in your trousers pockets – the more tightly it is attached to your body, the better. Anyway, every time you make a step it detects it and from that data combined with step frequency, changes in altitude, your age, your weight etc. it estimates expended calories. The data is wirelessly synced with your account at FitBit.com, and since I also connected my Withings account, my FitBit profile contains both my weight and my activity information. I also log my food intake there now, which is also quite easy.

Have a look at my profile:
http://www.fitbit.com/user/23FYKC

FYI: I changed the privacy settings for the duration of the weight loss experiment – when it’s done I might change some of the data back to private status, in particular the food and weight.

Unfortunately the daily calories bar chart from the dashboard page is not available in the profile – it shows that for week 5 and 6 I managed to stick with the concept that I had come up with in my concept v4 post. Monday, Wednesday and Friday caloric intake was very low, while Tuesday and Thursday were normal, and Saturday and Sunday a bit too high. This accomplishes two things:

  1. Periods of (severe) caloric deprivation never last longer than one day (at the most 36 hours, from dinner to lunch)
  2. On a weekly average, the caloric deficit is substantial

Weight Loss Results

At this point you may ask: That’s all fine and well, but is he really losing weight? You can look at the weight graph on the fitbit profile – last week was a bit inconclusive, but if you compare mid July weights with end July, there’s a noticable drop from around 105kg to around 104kg. One pound per week is a nice, sustainable rate, and I’ll be quite content with it in the long run. Also remember that one pound of body fat equates to 3,500 calories, and that roughly equates to the deficit that’s created by the three restrictive days during the week.

But there are some things that I’ll tweak for week 7 – so stay tuned for version 5 of my weight loss concept!

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From → WL Experiment 1

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