Using the Personal Challenge Feature

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The personal challenge feature lets you structure a block of time within the Heads Up Health software to track changes in your body over the course of a specific health experiment. Examples of how this feature can be used include:

  • Giving yourself a challenge to quit a certain behavior or habit (e.g. smoking, consuming alcohol, consuming sugar etc.) and observing any changes in your health (improved sleep, lower blood pressure etc.)
  • Tracking changes in your body (e.g. weight, body fat or BMI) while testing a new diet (Paleo, Atkins, Vegan, Ketogenic etc.)
  • Tracking changes over the course of a vacation
  • Tracking the effects of a new medication or supplement
  • Setting up your own custom experiments and using Heads Up Health to track changes

Step 1: Create the challenge

Use the “Add Data” button and select “Personal Challenge.” In the example below, I’ve setup a custom challenge to track changes while I test a ketogenic diet:

Create the challenge

Figure 1: Create the challenge

 

The challenge will show up as a card on the dashboard (figure 2) and will count down the time remaining in the challenge.

Track changes using the Analyzer

Figure 2: Showing the challenge on your dashboard

Step 2: Track changes using the Analyzer

As you enter data over the course of the experiment, you can use the Analyzer to zero in on specific areas of investigation. In figure 3 below, I’ve set the date picker to show the 30 days prior (9/10/2015 – 10/10/2015) to the ketogenic diet experiment and my average fasting blood sugar was 91.5 mg/dL.

Changes in fasting glucose during ketogenic experiment

Figure 3: Changes in fasting glucose during ketogenic experiment

I then set the date picker to show when the ketogenic experiment started (10/10/15) and also show fasting glucose which has now decreased from 91.5 mg/dL to 80.3 mg/dL, just within the first week of the experiment (figure 4). The “Personal Challenge” displays a shaded area on the graph showing the duration of the challenge.

How the ketogenic experiment has impacted other health indicators

Figure 4: How the ketogenic experiment has impacted other health indicators

I can easily look at other health metrics that have changed as well such as weight, body fat, BMI or even blood chemistry (cholesterol levels, glucose, inflammation etc.). Sharing this information with your health care practitioner of choice can be very helpful when working on specific health goals.

The same techniques can be used regardless of the challenge or experiment. It could be as simple as tracking weight gain/loss over the course of a vacation or as advanced as tracking several variables as part of a new lifestyle change.

Currently it requires some manual work, changing date ranges and data sources to extract the information you want out of the Analyzer. However, in the near future we’ll be able to automatically generate a report to tell you exactly what changed over the course of the experiment.

We hope you like this feature. Decide on your own personal challenge and Give it a try. If you have any questions, please e-mail support@headsuphealth.com

About the Author


Dave Korsunsky is a technologist and health tracking enthusiast. He is also the founder and CEO of Heads Up Health.

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