Track All The Things

Do you know these people? The people that track their lives? That track meals, miles run, sleep, weight, blood pressure, inches, pounds lifted, habits changed? If you’re new to the quantified self movement, check here:

Self Ethnography and the Quantified Life
Quantified Self: the Tech-based Route to a Better Life?
and the mother site,
The Quantified Self

I have to treat tracking tools with moderation or I’d shamefully spend far too much time logging minute details of life for no apparent reason. I do get to indulge just a tiny bit on the fertility front, though. If you’re trying to conceive at all, you’re tracking something. But if you wanted to track everything, you totally could.

I rely on an app to track cycle basics but I’m sure there are more sophisticated ones out there. I refuse to pony up though, so this free one is what I work with. When D was pregnant, we must have used something similar, although it happened so quickly we didn’t do much long-term tracking. It’s all I need really: Here’s when you might ovulate. Start checking and…go! On the other hand, it’s fun to indulge (just a little) in symptom spotting once the deed is underway. Enter Countdown to Pregnancy.

This delightfully free tracking site lets me moan about all my symptoms each and every while I wait to see: pregnant or not? There’s a social aspect to it, which I haven’t used, and plenty of calculators to encourage you to hold off just one more day on that pregnancy test. But really, it’s the symptom checkboxes are my favorite. AND you can compare day-to-day symptoms from cycle to cycle. Love, I mean seriously, LOVE. It’s the thing that let me know, clear as day, yes, I do in fact feel pregnant on days 9, 10, and 11 because of a totally normal progesterone surge but that it doesn’t (obviously) mean I’m pregnant.

Speaking of ovulation, I’m starting to get antsy about it. The last three months, I’ve ovulated on the 16th day of my cycle like clockwork. Tomorrow is the 16th day and there’s…ahem…no sign that it’s going to happen. Could it be the clomid? And how could something I stopped taking more than a week ago still be having an impact?

11 Responses

  1. I am totally a tracker! I track my cycles on TWO apps – Fertility Friend and Period Tracker. I track to food and workout habits on two apps (Fitness Pal & Lose It). I track like a mad person. I prefer to think of it as a healthy addiction. Oh, and my Dr told me that Clomid can stay in your system for many weeks after you take the pills. Here’s hoping to a successful cycle for you!

  2. As for your clomid questions, 1) I have no idea and 2) basically because it’s a long-term feedback/negative feedback cycle in which what happened before *does* affect what happens next. So it’s something like, the clomid makes you make more A, which causes more B to happen, which leads to more hormone C than usual, which leads to ovulation. (Except more complicated).

  3. Re: clomid, totally messed with my normal fertility signs. U/s showed I was ovulating, but I would have had no idea.

    Re: tracking, did you read that article on the Atlantic site about the parents who track everything their child does? Amazing. Someone needs to get them a Skinner Box for Christmas. I did track all my eating for part of my pregnancy, and it was very satisfying to see the massive number of calories I consumed and the massive number of grams of protein, but I don’t think I could do it as a general lifestyle choice.

  4. I try to track certain things in my life…but when it would have to be a bad recording of something (blood sugar, exercise) then I just don’t do it. So what’s the point? I’m so lame.

  5. I totally signed up for countdown to pregnancy today, ironically right before I read your post. If this cycle didn’t work it will be nice to be able to look back and realize what I’m feeling is not necessarily pregnancy. It’s super addicting. My favorite thing is to look up the stats for symptoms based on DPO.

  6. Sometimes, I am totally overwhelmed by the fertility tracker thingies. SO MANY OPTIONS to track. Ugh. I try to stick with the basics, but it’s easy to get carried away. I use Fertility Friend and there’s something seriously gratifying about looking at completed charts.

  7. I tracked my stuff on Excellent site and well, I give it all the credit for our getting pregnant first shot. That and … well, I don’t know, it was kind of a fluke!

  8. I have no personal experience with Clomid, but Femara messed with my cycles. The cycle I got pregnant this time I was pretty dubious about, because my cervix didn’t look like “usual”, and everything was a little weird. But the result of that cycle is currently making my abdomen twitch and dance, so obviously *something* worked.

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