Friday, January 13, 2012

Favorite Things Friday - Calorie Counter....

I don't usually use my blog to tout products or websites, and this time next week this website may have fallen off my favorites list.

I took a suggestion from a fellow blogger, DJan, about writing down everything I eat. I'm still struggling with it overall, because I tend to eat things and then neglect to write them down if they will negatively impact my efforts. Note that I don't hesitate to EAT them; I just don't write them down.

One of my co-workers told me about the Calorie Count website. There are a gazillion websites out there for counting and tracking calories, and there are probably a ton of them that are better than this one. I go back to what I said a few weeks about about the concept of "favorite" being a fluid situation.

I like this site because it's user-friendly, it allows you to track activity AND food, and it has the usual communities and message boards for support. I'm a techno-geek, though, so the feature that I found coolest was the fact that you can download the app onto a smartphone and scan the barcode on a packaged food to add it to that day's log. I was at school when I downloaded it, so I walked around my classroom trying to find things to add to my log. Books, boxes of pencils, anything that had a barcode. If any of it had registered, I would have been forced to eat it. The one food item that WAS in my cabinet was sugar-free instant spiced apple cider. Its little barcode wasn't recognized. Buttheads.

There are quirks with the site. In the first place, when I entered my personal data, it suggested that I weigh 120 pounds. Hello? Did you see my birthdate? Do you really think a 50-year-old who has struggled with her weight all her life will EVER weigh 120 pounds again? I mean, without several amputations?

The site also suggested I stick to a diet of 1200 calories. And that was after I told it I was "moderately active." I can't stay under 1200 calories by 11:00 AM.

It was possible to change both the goal weight and the daily calories, though, and even with those changes the website said I could reach my goal weight by May 14. Of this year.

You knew I would find something to snark at regarding this site, though, didn't you?

You know how some websites take keywords and then related advertisements pop up in the sidebar when you're finished with whatever you're doing? I've noticed it on Blogger, on message boards, and now on the Calorie Count website. What I don't understand is where they're getting the keywords.

Today alone these advertisements appeared in the sidebar:

  • Special K Challenge (twice - duh, it IS a calorie counting website)
  • Why Men Lose Attractions: 10 Ugly Mistakes Women Make (I don't have a webcam at school, so how did they know?)
  • Prepare to Be Shocked: Take the FREE RealAge Test (I'm not ashamed of my age, so why do I want to take your dumb test?)
  • Fun Brain Test Games (maybe they knew I was a teacher and, surrounded by teenagers, my brain has become mostly mush)
  • Negligencia Medica? (uh...I've got no clue on this one.)

And the two most shocking suggested advertisements of all:

  • 2012 BCS Champion Gear
  • The University of Alabama

Have they freakin' MET me? Maybe they hijacked my computer and knew I was going to Tuscaloosa this weekend.

As a matter of fact, even as you read this, Katydid and I are on the campus of the University of Alabama for a gymnastics meet.

But that doesn't mean I'm going to buy any of their stinkin' championship gear.


DJan said...

Calorie Count is the one I used, too. It really helped me to see what the nutritional wrap for the day was. I found a few ways I could save calories without much pain. I tried 1500 calories, no way I could have done 1200. I agree with you on that score!

I'm watching to see what happens here with your new adventure into calorie counting. I didn't know about the barcode feature... I pretty much eat the same stuff every day, with the variations just in the green or protein variety. I always counted in my 7 oz. of red wine. :-)

Kelly said...

I use to track my food the old fashioned way with a notebook and pencil. These days I use the "Lose It" app on my iPhone (the icon is a little scale) and I'm very happy with it. I've lost 35 pounds since I've been using it!

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