Mobile apps are the perfect health and fitness companions. They never say no to meeting you at the gym, they don’t judge you for logging that donut you’ve just finished, and they are clever enough to help you make the best decisions about what you eat and when you exercise. With your mobile phone in hand, you are able to run faster, get stronger, eat smarter, and connect with people around the world that have the same fitness goals that you do.
Fitness apps have revolutionized the way in which we keep an eye on our health and stay fit. Whether you are looking to shed a few extra pounds, create some consistency in your work out, or just increase your total amount of daily movement, a program that is always in your pocket—and connected to a network of supportive people, can do wonders.
Here at Creatine Marketing, we took the time to review many of the best and most unique fitness apps on the market. We focused on the app’s ratings, whether or not it was user friendly, and if it was reliable rather than glitch-y. While we’re aware that there are some that haven’t made the list, we tried to cover various interests and choose apps that are reinventing the way mobile phones can help us lead better lives. And what’s the best part, you ask? They’re free!
The Concept: You get paid for working out, and you lose money when you skip a work out. Slacking on your exercises is risky when there’s cold hard cash on the line!
Why we love it: GymPact lets users tie a monetary incentive to working out. When you arrive at the gym, you check in with the app and get to keep your money, while those who miss a workout lose a predetermined chunk of change. The application also features integration with one of our other favorite apps, RunKeeper for at-home workout options!
The Concept: MyFitnessPal lets users record each meal, drink, and snack that is eaten throughout the day. The app offers a caloric value for over two million food times (yeah, million), and not just American brand name foods. The platform can be used with all diets, whether you’re eating low carb, high-protein, or just trying to keep track of your intake in order to raise or reduce it.
Why we love it: The app also lets users record the amount of water they take in daily, and the levels of exercise they have committed to. Various activities can be located using the app, whether you’ve just done 30 minutes of circuit training, or spent an hour on the elliptical. Also, the app has a social factor—when your friends join, you can track one another’s progress, make it a little competition, or just support their effort to get healthy. The app shows your improvement or reminds you to check in if you have a few off days, and congratulates you for consistency!
The Concept: Heading out for a run, walk, ski, bike ride, or swim? RunKeeper will track the duration, length, calories burned, and more while you participate in your favorite physical activity.
Why we love it: If you are running, the app tracks your route, and lets you share all of this with your social media networks. You can add your workout play list and the app will start the music when you start to work! RunKeeper logs all of your previous activities and motivates you to beat your last time, or conquer a farther distance.
The Concept: This application encourages healthier eating. Zipongo offers discounts for healthy items, contains a meal planning program, and a healthy reward system backed by employers and insurance companies that incentivizes better choices.
Why we love it: We’ve had enough of the food politics. Taco Bell meals are cheap while organic and healthy food is far too pricey, Subway sandwiches are easy—while preparing a healthy meal can be complicated and time consuming. Well, not any more! Zipongo helps lower the cost and provide planning for healthier meals and better grocery lists. The rewards system helps loop in employers, so even your boss will care about your well-being.
The Concept: Cardiio gives users insight into their health and fitness via one simple tool: heart rate monitoring. The app’s dashboard allows viewers to track their heart rate throughout the day, before and during various activities, and across the course of weeks, months, and years.
Why we love it: The app works by what we can only describe as “magic”… or you know, super advanced technological wonders disguised as mysticism that we don’t totally understand! To measure heart rates, users simply look straight into the front camera of their phone. There are no chest straps or finger clips involved. Cardiio also analyzes the person’s heart rate data, assigns fitness level ratings, and allows him or her to set personal resting heart rate goals. And this is the crazy part, it can even estimate potential life expectancy!
Smartphones put vast amounts of information at our fingertips—and our biceps, triceps, quads, gluts, and abs. Its time we start moving, and using these apps to aid us in reaching our goals of physical refinement! From precise calorie calculations to GPS services that can figure out exactly how much ground we cover on a run, to tracking food intake or total exercise—fitness mobile apps serve as a constant reminder to stay healthy and live wisely.