Getting Healthy the Geeky Way

June 8th, 2006

Fat man before and after.Let’s face it. I live a pretty sedentary lifestyle and I eat as if I were a linebacker. I was the kind of guy who lost weight on his mission because that was the most exercise I’d ever gotten in my life. I like food. I don’t like exercise. My hobbies include reading, playing video games, and programming. Geocaching is good, but that’s not even close to enough exercise to do me much good. Since getting married I’ve taken to eating two servings worth of everything Krissy and I cook. When I went to see the doctor for a physical his exact words were: “You don’t smoke. You don’t drink alcohol or coffee. You don’t lead a risky lifestyle. Nope… weight will be your nemesis.

My cholesterol is too high and I need to lose weight. Krissy and I attended a class this evening aimed at educating unhealthy people about healthy eating habits specifically geared toward lowering high cholesterol levels. We were given a charge to document all of our food intake in a week and to then compare that to our goals and see where we might improve. They gave us a sheet of paper upon which to track our eating habits. There was no way I was going to let things go on paper where the information would languish in uselessness. When we returned home I immediately set out looking for Free Software to track my food intake and my progress over the next few months.

The first thing I found was Gnutrition. This software looked promising at first. It includes information from the FDA on over five thousand different foods and allows one to track progress and plan meals. Unfortunately the most recent release of the software was in 2001 and I couldn’t even get it to compile. I found a few other applications for nutritional information, but none of them allowed tracking of eating habits, which was what I really wanted.

When I first thought about using my geek talents to get healthy I thought that there ought to be a website that would allow me to keep track of these things no matter where I was so I could hop online and update it. I thought that something like a “Google Diet” sounded like a good idea. I guess I wasn’t the only one that thought that might be a good idea. In searching for Free Software I found a free website called FitDay. FitDay is a free online nutrition and exercise tracking system. It allows setting goals and seeing how much fat, calories, and nutrients are being ingested.

As far as exercise goes, I am a complete novice. I have no clue where to start, what to do, or how long to do it for. For people like me RunFatBoy.net was created. The site’s not quite done yet, but it looks like it’s just what I need to get started and to get my stomach to stop spilling out over my pants.

Getting in shape and healthy may not be fun, but it can be just as geeky as you want it to be. And if you’re me then that’s very geeky indeed.

3 Responses to “Getting Healthy the Geeky Way”

  1. Jamie J says:

    Good luck! Hope you and Krissy can stick to a healthy eating lifestyle. Burning more calories than you eat is the key. If you have any questions, I might be able to help. After all, I did major in Exercise Science in college.

  2. Jim Jones says:

    I appreciate the mention of RunFatBoy. If you’re interested in beta testing, you can sign-up for an account here. Thanks again.

    Jim

  3. abdul ghaffar says:

    Hi there i am wroking on my ict project wich we need to find a good image to show a difference in staying fit and eating healthy.i was wondering if i could has download your picture to put on my project,it will really help on my course work,please send me a message of an image of you before and after shown on the top of the screen as well as a right to have that picture.Bcause our techer told us to get hold of copyright free images only however if you say i have a right then i can you this picture thank you.
    heres my email abdul_jack@hotmail.co.uk

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