Lance Armstrong’s Livestrong fitness app needs toning

Aug 30, 2009
Health

Livestrong is a simple food and exercise diary. With a tap, you enter the food you eat and your daily exercises and Livestrong will tell you how many calories you have taken in, and hopefully, lost. It’s a useful tool; I’m just not sure I trust it. For example, I had a rainbow roll at […]

Livestrong is a simple food and exercise diary. With a tap, you enter the food you eat and your daily exercises and Livestrong will tell you how many calories you have taken in, and hopefully, lost.

It’s a useful tool; I’m just not sure I trust it.

For example, I had a rainbow roll at a favorite Chicago sushi bar recently and wondered about the calorie content. Livestrong said the roll had 500 calories, MensHealth.com said it had 470 calories and the waitress claimed 350 calories. Who is right?

The app is from the Lance Armstrong Foundation, headed by the bicycling legend. It pairs with the articles, quizzes and support groups available on Livestrong.com, making it a good reference tool if nothing else.

Grocery shelves worth of food brands are stored on the app, but if you prefer to dine off the beaten path, finding that nutritional information is difficult.

A missing feature is the ability to add your own foods.  It is tedious to search through the 450,000 foods offered to add individual ingredients from personal recipes.

However, a real plus is the numerous ethnic foods offered in the search menu.

For exercise ideas, there are more than 2,000 different activities to choose from. The activities aren’t limited to just those you’d find in a gym, either. Playing with Fido or the kids–even grocery shopping–can be added to your exercise log.

Livestrong will help users seek a balanced lifestyle, but as with any tool, trust and accuracy is as essential as performance.  Without assurance that stored information is correct, this app stops short of the finish line.

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