ShapeUp Club brings deep nutrition data to the Health Graph

ShapeUp Club (@shapeup_club), one of the top three teams from last month’s Health Hack Day in Stockholm, recently launched the integration of their popular calorie counter with the Health Graph (@healthgraphapi). Learn how users of RunKeeper, ShapeUp Club, and other Health Graph partner apps such as Withings (@withings) are all benefitting from the collaboration.

BD: Please tell us about yourself and ShapeUp Club.

ShapeUp Club: Hi! We are Tove and Martin, the founders of ShapeUp Club. We built the original ShapeUp Club app back in 2008 as a side project during our studies in computer science (Martin) and biomedicine (Tove). By combining our knowledge we created ShapeUp Club – an interactive calorie counter that you carry in your pocket. A winning concept when it comes to weight loss.

In the beginning we planned to run this project in parallel with work and school. But we realized pretty fast that wouldn’t work, ShapeUp Club demanded too much time. The hobby became our job (hurray!) and today we are a team of five people working fulltime on ShapeUp Club.

BD: What is the “elevator pitch” for why someone should use ShapeUp Club?

SC: ShapeUp Club is a calorie counter for iPhone, Android, and web. Get a personal weight loss plan, track nutrition, exercise, and weight. Get shaped up with ShapeUp Club now!

BD: Can you tell us a bit about your users? How many do you have? How active are they? What kinds of things do they do with ShapeUp Club?

SC: Our app has been downloaded more than 1.7 million times. We have achieved top 10 App Store-placements in countries all over the world. ShapeUp Club has more than 350,000 active users per month and we are growing with 5,000 new members a day.

Daily feedback from our users proves our concept: The average users loses about 9 lbs. We also have a lot of success stories about users who lost more than 100 lbs. (Wow!)

Based on body features (such as weight and height), age, and daily activity level, ShapeUp Club calculates a personal weight loss plan for each user. The user then follows this plan by tracking what they eat and how much they exercise every day. A color-coordinated calorie bar visually displays how many more or fewer calories the user should eat each day to reach their target weight. A yellow bar indicates you should keep eating (need more calories for your goal), a green bar indicates you’ve eaten the perfect amount for the day, and a red bar indicates you’ve eaten too much that day.

BD: How did you get started using the Health Graph API?

SC: We attended Health Hack Day in Stockholm in May. Bill Day from RunKeeper was there to present on the Health Graph platform and serve as a jury member at the hackathon. We had already heard a lot about the API, and were excited to try it out.

During the hack we created ShapeUp Club Challenge, which would let the ShapeUp Club users connect, compete, and compare progress with each other. The API was super easy to integrate with our code, and we managed to create an app ready for launch in just twenty-four hours. The achievement placed us third in the competition.

A few weeks after the hackathon and our first encounter with the Health Graph, we are proud to announce that ShapeUp Club is now connected to Health Graph! As a first step we are letting our users import their RunKeeper and Withings data into ShapeUp Club, as well as upload their nutrition information from ShapeUp Club into the Health Graph.

BD: How is using the Health Graph benefiting your business?

SC: The combination of ShapeUp Club (nutrition tracking), RunKeeper (exercise tracking), and Withings (weight tracking) is perfect for people who wish to lose weight. Nutrition, exercise, and weight are the three key values people consider when trying to lose weight. By making the tracking of these three factors friction free we believe we are one step closer to the creation of the perfect and sustainable weight loss service. Our users have asked for this possibility for some time now, and we are so happy to finally be able to provide them with this.

BD: Which portions of the Health Graph API do you use, and why?

SC: We are one of the first partners who will share deep, personalized nutrition information with the Health Graph. We are also letting our users access weight and exercise information from other apps as mentioned above.

BD: What do you like about the Health Graph? What would you like to see changed?

SC: The possibilities to very easily combine different services with your own service and health tool is perfect. The API is easy to use and fast to integrate. The only change we would like to see is more focus on the nutrition part of the Health Graph. There’s a lot of more information we could share with the Health Graph if some additional fields were included in the API.

BD: Can you share any future plans for ShapeUp Club? What’s coming next that your users will be excited about? Does the Health Graph play a role in that, and if so, how?

SC: We are planning integration and partnerships with other great Health Graph integrated services.

We also want to improve ShapeUp Club core features. Integration of social tools is a next step, bringing our users closer together, making it possible to interact, motivate, and share information with each other. We believe this will create a whole new weight loss experience. Challenges, recipes, and groups are other things we are planning.

BD: Is there anything else we should know about you or your application?

SC: If you are serious about losing weight, ShapeUp Club is the perfect tool to help. It’s knowledge, inspiration, and motivation in your pocket. Download ShapeUp Club now and join our fast growing community! For news and more information about us, check out our blog at http://blog.shapeupclub.com/.

Bill Day (@billday) is Platform Evangelist for RunKeeper where he helps developers learn about and use the Health Graph.

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Gym Hero makes tracking workouts easy with the Health Graph

In honor of our participation in Health Hack Day (@healthhackday) in Stockholm later this week (watch this space for slides and more details), I’d like to feature some European Health Graph (@healthgraphapi) partners over the next couple of weeks. This time, let’s look at how one of our newest strength training partners, Berlin-based Gym Hero (@gymheroapp), is using a streamlined approach to workout tracking coupled with the Health Graph to help people improve their fitness.

Bill Day: Please tell us about yourself and your work.

Gym Hero: We are Jannik and Jannis, the founders of Big Mike Alright, the small but nice company behind Gym Hero. Gym Hero is currently a side project we are working on in addition to our day jobs and college. We both love sports but are especially addicted to kitesurfing!

BD: What is the “elevator pitch” for why someone should use your app?

Gym Hero is a gym workout tracking app that learns from you while staying out of your way as much as possible. The user interface is streamlined and optimized to be used while you work out, even with shaky hands. Workout routines are automatically learned as you go, so you never have to enter a weight or name twice. You are free to name your workouts and exercises however you like – full flexibility instead of endless searching and browsing in predefined, fixed lists. Each of your workouts gets its own webpage (if you want) with all the details, so you can share, compare and discuss with friends.

BD: How did you get started using the Health Graph API?

We both have been using Runkeeper tracking for our cardio activities for quite some time now. Being data and statistics junkies, our weight goes into the Health Graph via a Withings scale, and our blood pressure is monitored and sent to the Health Graph via a Withings blood pressure monitor. We track our runs and the bicycle commute to work with RunKeeper.

Because we also love to work out we wanted to add our gym workouts to our Runkeeper profile as well. When we heard about the Health Graph API we wanted to join. Quantify yourself!

BD: How is using the Health Graph benefiting Gym Hero and your users?

The Health Graph community is a place where sports enthusiasts of all types meet to motivate each other, exchange, discuss and most of all track and measure their performance. It’s a great place to collect all your sports and health related data. So obviously, we wanted to allow our community to join the Health Graph family and vice versa.

And for the programmers reading this: The Health Graph really is easy to use and embed into your applications. Go try it out!

BD: Which portions of the Health Graph API do you use, and why?

Since Gym Hero focuses on doing one thing only, but doing it really well, we use the strength training portion of the Health Graph API. We feed full workouts including workout notes and exercise names into the Health Graph. We don’t track cardio or time based training (yet).

BD: What do you like about the Health Graph? What would you like to see changed?

We love the idea behind the Health Graph. Bringing together such a great variety of health data is simply awesome. On top of that it’s a breeze to integrate into other applications. Just keep up the great work!

BD: If you could request any new feature from the Health Graph, what would it be? How would you use it?

We would like to see a little more flexibility when it comes to defining muscle groups for each exercise. Our basic idea for Gym Hero is to give our users full freedom in naming their exercises/workouts. We would love for this to also be possible for muscle grouping.

BD: Can you share any future plans for your app? What’s coming next that your users will be excited about? Does the Health Graph play a role in that, and if so, how?

We’ve been updating every five to six weeks with new features and improvements, but there are a lot of updates still to come. We will extend the workout summary view for a better performance check, add data sync with iCloud and a workout timer to name only a few upcoming features.

Our users can also request and vote for new features. They can do this by clicking on the speech bubble in the app or by going here. Please help us build the finest workout app ever by making your requests. We love to hear from our users!

BD: Is there anything else we should know about you or your application?

If you want to track your gym activities and are looking for a slick app which is not blown up with useless stuff check out Gym Hero. Never leave without flexing!

Bill Day (@billday) is Platform Evangelist for RunKeeper where he helps developers learn about and use the Health Graph.


Health Graph update from Le Web (video)

Our CEO Jason Jacobs (@jjacobs22) provided a great update on the Health Graph (@healthgraphapi) in his discussion with Leo Laporte (@leolaporte) at Le Web (@leweb).

Click here or watch the video at:

http://www.ustream.tv/embed/recorded/19007839

Bill Day (@billday) is Platform Evangelist for RunKeeper where he helps developers learn about and use the Health Graph.


Fleetly delights users via Health Graph integration

I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Geoff Pitfield (@gpitfield) of Fleetly (@fleetly) about his company and their new Fleetly app release which now includes support for RunKeeper users via Health Graph (@healthgraphapi) integration. Here’s an inside look at how one developer keeps their users happy and healthy with the Health Graph.

Bill Day: Please tell us about yourself and your company.

Geoff Pitfield: We’re currently an angel-backed team of two. I’ve been making mobile stuff since the days when that meant doing your own hardware, and have been working on Fleetly since early 2010. I’m a Product Design grad and MBA, but I’d never really coded so I taught myself in order to build Fleetly, which has certainly been interesting. Fleetly’s the first app that lets you check in on your fitness and evaluate your overall Fitness Level, based on all the exercise that you do, from weight training to long distance running. I got started on the app when I couldn’t find anything fun to use that supported the variety of activities I was doing to train for a triathlon.

BD: What’s the “elevator pitch” for why someone should use your app?

GP: It’s a fun, social way to stay motivated about your fitness *and* get meaningful insight into what you’re doing. When it clicks for people, they end up doing things like an extra 20 pushups or running another mile just to pass their friend on the leaderboard. That’s a great thing.

BD: How did you get started using the Health Graph API?

GP: Our users started vigorously and repeatedly demanding RunKeeper integration!

BD: How will using the Health Graph benefit your business?

GP: We think it will both increase our user base and increase retention, because Health Graph integration makes it much easier for people to use – they no longer have to enter their data into multiple applications.

BD: Which portions of the Health Graph API do you use, and why?

GP: We use the Fitness Activity API, because that’s the part that fits in with what we’re doing, as well as being what our users demanded. We might add weight tracking at some point as well.

BD: What do you like about the Health Graph? What would you like to see changed?

GP: It’s fairly easy to use and is comprehensive. It would benefit from better delete tracking, and should also support an identifier for originating source on entries. Otherwise, you run into problems if someone has cross-linked multiple services. For instance, we already integrate with Health Graph partner Withings (@withings). If someone’s linked their Withings account to the Health Graph, there really should be a way to tell that a given weight entry originated as Withings ID XYZ to avoid duplication. (Editor’s note: De-duplication today falls on the app developer.)

BD: If you could request any new feature from the Health Graph, what would it be? How would you use it?

GP: Off the top of my head, I’d rather see continued focus on making the API as robust, useable, and open a platform as possible. I don’t have any blindingly great feature ideas, per se, other than what I mentioned above which I think is really important. A push update service would be nice to reduce the need for polling.

BD: Can you share any future plans for your app? What’s coming next that your users will be excited about? Does the Health Graph play a role in that, and if so, how?

GP: The really cool stuff has to remain secret. 🙂 We’ll soon be introducing some new types of challenges that we think are going to be great, and very much focused on the same Fitness Activities we’re linking via the Health Graph. Also, we’ve always had our own little API but never done much to promote it, and we’re eager to help anyone who’s interested. The second most requested thing after RunKeeper is an Android app if anyone wants to play!

BD: Is there anything else we should know about you or your application?

GP: We’ve been doing a cool challenge with Lifehacker (click to access), and also have a badly under-promoted startup challenge (click here for startup challenge), both of which might be of interest. And the app’s available at www.fleetly.com/ios, so check it out!

Bill Day (@billday) is Platform Evangelist for RunKeeper where he helps developers learn about and use the Health Graph.