Smartphone apps are making it easier than ever to keep up your training regime or new healthy diet. Armed with the right app…
- Runners can collect serious data about their performance
- Dieters can track calories and exercise plus find moral support
- Gym bunnies can hone beach bods without leaving the house
But which app is right for you?
1. Go from couch potato to 5K hero
Created by Public Health England and backed by the NHS, Couch to 5K is perfect for anyone just starting out on their journey to ultimate fitness.
The aim of the Couch to 5K app is to make fitness fun. You can choose from 5 familiar celebrity voices, like Sarah Millican or Jo Whiley. And your celeb trainer will keep you going with some friendly (sometimes witty) encouragement, all the way to your goal.
It eases you into your routine gently so you don’t get put off too early.
- Get a celebrity personal trainer
- Break down your goal into bite-size chunks
- Run a 5K in just 9 weeks
The app promises to get you 5K ready in just 9 weeks. So what are you waiting for? Get your trainers on and get out there!
2. Get the social fitness app
Whether you’re planning on cycling the length of the country, or just going for a leisurely stroll on a Sunday afternoon, Strava is a great companion:
- Track your routes
- Get data and charts on your activities
- Share activities with friends
- Take part in challenges
Strava syncs perfectly with apps from other big names like Garmin, Apple and Fitbit.
If you want to get started with Strava, the Fitbit Versa is the perfect partner. It has all the features you’ll need to track your fitness, like GPS, up to 15 exercise modes and a heart rate monitor.
Share your achievements with friends and get plenty of encouragement along the way.
3. Lose weight the easy way
Okay, maybe there isn’t an easy way to lose weight, but MyFitnessPal makes it just about as easy as it can be.
From your start weight, the app works out a plan to get you to your target. It logs the number of calories you eat compared to the amount you burn, and you’ll see throughout the day whether your activity has offset your calorie intake.
It might sound like a lot of inputting of data, but it couldn’t be simpler…
- You can scan barcodes on most packaged foods
- You’ll find the nutrition details for over 5 million items of food
- It automatically adds your activities via all major tracking apps, like Garmin Connect and Fitbit
With the Fitbit Aria 2 Smart Scale, you don’t even need to enter your weight. Just stand on the scales and everything syncs to the app where you can easily track your progress.
4. Runner training for first marathon
Whether you’re training for a big road race, or you like to go off-road and hit the hills, Map My Run is a great app for saving your favourite routes.
Set a personal training plan tailored to the distance you want to run and your fitness level. You can also find new routes in your area that other runners have recommended.
- Track distance covered, route, pace and calories burned
- Choose training plans like 5K, 10K, half marathon and full marathon
- Get graphs to map your progress and see your improvement over time
- Compare your progress with friends on the activity feed or share your new PB on Facebook
5. Get the ultimate motivation – to stay alive!
Lace up your running shoes, put your headphones on and step outside… if you dare!
Zombies, Run! is an immersive running game and audio adventure. Full of great stories that put you right in the middle of a zombie apocalypse. Start to drop your pace and you’ll hear them getting closer.
You can choose your own custom playlist and receive post-apocalyptic radio transmissions between tracks – adding to the tension and keeping you moving with messages like “don’t look back, they’re right behind you”.
Zombies, Run! comes with a few in-built features that are designed to make you do one thing… run!
- Activate Airdrop and recover a virtual supply drop by running to a location in the real world
- Collect virtual supplies and deliver them to local spots
- Turn on Zombie Chases to add even more jeopardy – can you escape every mob that comes after you?
As well as the fun element, it’s a serious running app too. You’ll see all of your data in detailed charts and route maps so you can track your progress.
But whatever you do, don’t study the map for too long…they’re never far behind you.
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