The Hacker’s Diet with LibreOffice /

I designed these weight loss spreadsheets so that I could follow John Walker’s Hacker’s Diet using free ODS-compatible office suites, including LibreOffice / *

Weight Tracker ODS

My own spreadsheet to monitor daily weight change.


  • Records daily weigh-ins
  • Performs exponential smoothing to filter out daily variation
  • Calculates weight loss per day/week/month/year
  • Calculates how many Calories you’ve over/undereaten
  • Calculates your Body Mass Index or “BMI”
  • Forecasts when you’ll achieve your target weight
  • Graphs your progress

* Will not work on Libre/OpenOffice version 4.1 or greater.

Update 02/01/12: Version 2.2.4 of WTODS is out! Read the change log, or visit the Weight Tracker ODS site on Launchpad for more information.

Download Weight Tracker ODS v2.2.4 [89k ZIP] Computer Tools

My conversion of John Walker’s Excel Computer Tools into the OpenDocument standard. Includes everything except for the weight tracker and meal planner.

Download Computer Tools [310k ZIP]

69 thoughts on “The Hacker’s Diet with LibreOffice /

  1. Thank you for this!

    I’ve been hoping to find something tht would do this for OpenOffice, and I just found this today. (Using the new 3.1.1)

    So far I really like it. The Charts button seems greyed out but I’m hoping as I add more data it will eventually activate.

    Thanks again!

  2. The current version appears to start and stop in 2008. Is there a method I’m too dim to see to make this applicable to 2009 -2010, please? I’m new to Open Office (and Excel, for that matter) and don’t want to mess around with cells that are no doubt protected for very good reasons.

  3. Posted my dumb question too soon. I started pushing buttons on the main tab and found where one can add years. Will read the directions first next time.

  4. Thank you for working this up! However, I cannot get past Feb 2009. There appears to be a formula error on what would be Feb29 and every month thereafter has a #name error where the date would be.

    1. I am currently looking into that. For some reason the hidden “Total” sheet is not refreshing properly. When I delete and re-enter the formula, it works fine.

      Hopefully the next version will address this.

  5. Hi,
    I’ve been entering data in this spreadsheet for 2 weeks and have been trying to figure out why the delta change per week doesn’t coincide with what I’ve entered. It seems the delta change per week is based over the whole month even if you’ve only entered a few days of data. Wouldn’t it make more sense to base it over the time period entered instead?

  6. Hi, thanks for the update. delta loss per week is good now. There is a tiny bug in the chart in that it specifies the unit as “lbs” even it’s configured for metric.


  7. Not a bug, but the chart weight axis origin is zero. It would look better I think if the weight started at goal weight or current weight – 10% or something.

    1. I adjusted the Y axis by unprotecting the sheet, right-clicking the chart, selecting Edit, and then going to Format / Axis / Y-Axis. On the Scale tab, I unchecked Automatic beside the Minimum box, and entered the value I wanted (e.g. my goal weight – 10).

      Having it be a configuration variable (e.g. your goal weight, as mentioned), or calculated to something that doesn’t leave your data a narrow, fuzzy squiggle on the screen would be good, however.

      1. Yes, it’s a good idea and there’s defintely room for improvement for the chart. I released it as-is because I needed a new version out the door while I had the time to work on it.

        It’s definitely something I’ll look into for the next release.

  8. Have you seen the withings wifi weighing scale? I got one last week and can now update a spreadsheet automatically with weight and BIA readings. Though I don’t know what the formula is to turn those into body fat readings.

  9. I’ve been using an older version that didn’t graph, and didn’t total until the end of the month. V 2.2.1 RULES. Many thanks. I’ve hit my goal, and this program (along with, of course, exercise & changing my eating habits) was a major part of it; when people ask how I lost 30 lbs., I say the first thing to do is weigh yourself every day, and I point to the Hacker’s Diet and this program. Many thanks.

  10. I’ve been using it for about a year, and it’s great – but I recently noticed that the totals (delta weight, delta weight/week, delta weight/day, delta calories/day) for May aren’t showing (might it be related to my recent upgrade to Ubuntu Lucid 10.04?). They were working earlier this month, and they appear to work in all the previous months. Any ideas?

    1. Which version of the spreadsheet are you running? I’m using the latest (2.2.1) on Ubuntu 10.04 and my May values are showing fine. Do you mean on the May sheet or the May line on the Main sheet?

      1. Both the May sheet, and the May values on the main sheet. The version I was using was 2.2.1; I tried downloading a new 2.2.1 and importing the data, but I got the same glitch. I’ve been having no end of trouble with this new Lucid install, so I’d be happy to blame Canonical… except that before I upgraded to Karmic, the months would never show the data until the last day of the month had passed (that is, I could never get the deltas for April until May 1, for example).

      2. That’s strange. That bug was specifically fixed in 2.2.1. Can you tell me what your settings are in the Options panel?

  11. Feh. It’s working again. I’m thinkin’ it was an Ubuntu weirdness.

    In any case, Options:
    Trend line, star __ lbs. is blank, Smoothing 10%, Round to tenths is checked.
    Units: Standard
    Body Mass Index: height 70.7″, Show numerically
    Forecasting: Last month only, Goal 185 lbs, Slack 1.0 lbs (what’s that? I’ll see if I can find out)
    Theme: Default

  12. Hi,
    I just stumbled upon your weight tracker osd and I really liked the idea of it, but I seem to be to stupid to use it.
    So I entered a bunch of numbers, but in the “real” weight column it just puts down the same number over and over again.
    The first weight I entered to be precise.
    Since most of the functions use the “real” weight data there is not much going on.
    If it’s a bug I just thought I’d report it, if not maybe you could give me hint what I’m doing wrong.
    It would be much apreciated, because it seems to be a great sheed.

    1. What OS are you running? What localization settings? (I’m currently trying to track down issues with Mac users, or non-US number formats like 123,45 instead of 123.45.
      What version of the sheet are you using? What version of OpenOffice?
      Did you enable macros?
      Did you try putting in some extreme weights, and/or increasing the smoothing %?

      You’re free to file a bug at the site, preferably with a copy of the non-working sheet, or a screenshot of what you’re seeing.

      1. I’m running openoffice 3.2.0 Build 9483 on a Windows machine and I’m using the Weight tracker osd 2.2.1.
        macros are enabled, but even with extreme weights (I for example tried 10 and 150) it just lists 10.

        Not to shure about what localization settings are though.
        So I guess I’m to stupid after all. 😀

      2. I tried out a few more things and it seems as if this only happens, when I use the configure options button. even if I just change the theme.

      3. Regarding the localization settings.

        When i have the localization settings set to Swedish i cannot change the “Smooting %” value in the options. After I make a change and then open the options dialog again the value is 0.

        Thus i get the same behaviour as paul. the delta weight is always my starting weighth.

        When i set the localization to English (USA) i can change the value and everything works as expected.

  13. For those who find spreadsheets too tedious to work with, may I suggest they tried an online tool to do the same. Yet-another-diet-tool is something I made for my own use after I got tired of spreadsheets for weight tracking. It’s free, easy to use, and doesn’t ask for personal info. You can import data from spreadsheet and export back too. I hope you find it as useful as I do.

  14. Please upgrade to the new 2.2.2 release, I think it should resolve most people’s localization issues (well, except for translations).

  15. First thanks for your awesome software ,question is how to modify the goaldate as it it is not in the options dialog and the cell corresponding to it is not providing a format for the date

    1. You set your goal weight, and the spreadsheet forecasts the day that you’ll hit that weight, based on your trend (which you can scope by the whole year, the last month, or the current month).

  16. I’ve been using this in LibreOffice (and I tried it in a newer version of as well) but I am getting the error “Inadmissible value or data type. Index out of defined range.” and line 10 is highlighted. Any suggested fix for this?

    1. What office version / system OS are you running? Can you submit a bug on launchpad? It’s been a long while since I’ve used the spreadsheet myself (been tracking on my phone) and even longer since I upgraded my version of OpenOffice. If a bug’s filed I won’t forget to address it when I pick up work on the next release.

  17. weighttables become corrupted with libreoffice (and some versions before i think): no date-selection under the graph/chart

      1. me stipid should say whats wrong, right? ^^

        calculations seem ok.
        in the “main”-table the configure and import buttons are in the upper left corner overlapping.
        in the “chart”-table the start- and end-date selection is in the upper left too and i think they’re overlapping too.

  18. Strange, when I switched to a new Fedora 19, I see some macro errors, and can not setup ‘year manager’ in ‘main’ tab.

    1. It’s possible that something has regressed in newer versions of LibreOffice. Keeping up with their breaks (as a spreadsheet maintainer) is a constant struggle, and I haven’t had time in a long while to look at WTODS.

      1. I’m also getting macro errors in Ubuntu 13.10, LibreOffice

        (Also, thanks for creating this!)

  19. Jon – I want to try to figure out the smoothing part and add in Stones for a UK users. I have posted on the openoffice forum – did spot a tiny typo but it was in the Total hidden sheet.

    I am a little nervous using the smoothed numbers without being able to understand the code that creates them.

    Thanks for the sheet it has allowed me great highs and lows as I almost think I have figured out what it is doing – I have created a UK centric version – dumbed down so I can understand it!

    1. Adding a new measurement shouldn’t require anything to change in the main trending formula. As fas as I can remember, selecting Metric/Standard only affects the labels and how BMI is calculated. I don’t know how stone weights are normally used, if it’s just a decimal number it will be fine, but if you want separate columns for 15 stone, 4 pounds or some such, then yeah, that might be a lot more work.

  20. In OpenOffice 4.1.3, I get a macro error:

    BASIC runtime error.
    Object variable not set

    I’m sure that’s not very useful to you, but any ideas?

      1. Thanks for the info, we’ll see if I can find some time to take a look at the spreadsheet. To be honest I haven’t been using it personally for some time now, so I haven’t been keeping up on the issues with newer versions of Libre/Open Office.

  21. Nice spreadsheet, really usefull it seems… But same pb here with libreoffice on mac os x.
    it seems it is a pb with year setting… a date problem ?

    I don’t know (at all) these languages for macros… I tried to understand this error but with no success so far, I’m puzzled… I want to use it, pleaaaase 😉

    1. I checked today, and everything works fine on LibreOffice for Ubuntu, which is what I use. Or I would be, if I was still using this sheet regularly. Calc (like most spreadsheet apps) are a pain to keep up with as a spreadsheet developer, because they break compatibility all the time. WTODS is plenty complicated, and I don’t have the time to keep it working with every new LibreOffice. What I might do is release a new, simplified spreadsheet without macros that shouldn’t break so easily.

  22. I have determined why the latest version of the spreadsheet (2.2.4) doesn’t work under LibreOffice 4.1 or greater. In the tradition of all spreadsheet apps, they have decided to change some fundamental functionality (in this case, how Dates work in code) which breaks existing spreadsheets like mine. As of right now, I haven’t been able to restore the charting functionality using LibreOffice 4.1, and even if I did, it would then stop working in versions of LibreOffice prior to 4.1. I can’t have one spreadsheet that works in both versions, and since I don’t use 4.1 myself, it’s not my highest priority to get an alternate sheet working while I have other projects to attend to.

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