I signed up for SparkPeople again. I tried it once before, but I wasn’t as committed to my health and fitness as I am now, so I’ve got a new login, and a fresh start. This site works a lot like Weight Watcher’s Tools, but is FREE!!! The whole site is free! You can use just the portions you want, or you can utilize the entire site, which is so full of helpful information, motivational tools, excercise plans, articles, message boards, medical information relating to diet and exercise, logs for nutrition, exercise, weight and measurements, your own personal Spark Page where you can blog and track your goals, etc. It’s really quite amazing!
I LOVE the Nutrition Log. I enter everything that I put in my mouth, including tea and water. It will either calculate the calories and other nutritional information, or I can enter in something that is not yet on their site, using the nutrition information on the package. I can save my favorite foods so that I don’t have to work so hard to look them up each time. If you want a diet set for you, there is that option as well, including shopping lists to purchase the required food for the recipes that they’ve set for you. Oh, and the RECIPES!! I’ve tried a few and they are delicious!
I also like the weight/measurements log. I try to weigh every day and log it. That works for me, though I know that weighing each day isn’t for everyone. I haven’t decided on how often I will do measurements, but probably about once a month.
You can get an exercise program, custom made for you, by you on SP as well. They actually demonstrate the proper way to do each exercise and give you an idea of how many reps/sets you should do based on your fitness level. You can log this on the site as well. So you know what you’re doing and it feels good to track it and mark each exercise off as you do it.
There are message boards for every thing you can imagine. I found one that I especially like with other folks who have problems with their thyroid. They have been a wonderful source of support and information. There are boards for people who like photography, bookworms, seniors, new mothers, people who have a certain amount of weight they want to lose and so much more! You can also start your own board if you don’t see what you’re looking for.
I’m really loving this website and I wanted to share it with the blogosphere for those of you who haven’t heard of it, and for those who maybe have heard, but haven’t checked it out yet. It is, in my humble opinion, the best free tool on the web for health and fitness.