We’re well into 2014, which means most of us have long given up on the New Year resolutions we created. But that doesn’t mean we can’t start now in our desire to get fit and healthy. Sometimes all you need is a little help from a friend, or a bar chart showing you just how out of shape you are, to spur you into action. Then, when you see how far you ran and how many calories you burned, it provides that additional motivation to do it again. So, whether you’re a fitness enthusiast or looking to become one, check out some of the best fitness apps available.
RunKeeper currently has 28 million users. As the name suggests, it is an app that will track workouts and keep track of pace, distance and time. It is particularly popular with athletes who are training for races who want an easy way to track their progress.
With a five star rating, Cyclemeter provides a perfect alternative to RunKeeper for cyclists. The app is highly comprehensive and customizable, allowing the user to select which stats he or she wants to see. The app will track, map, and record a bicycle ride and compile the data into graphs and tables. In addition, if you like to add a little variety to your workout, the app can also be used for other sports, such as skiing.
3. Fitness Buddy
The Fitness Buddy App acts as your personal trainer and comes with more than 1,700 exercises and 1,000 HD videos. It offers comprehensive exercises for all of the typical gym equipment, from barbells to resistance and stability balls. The app also categorizes workouts based on what you want to work out, such as your lower body or cardio.
4. Endomondo Sports Tracker
Endomondo is an all-purpose tracker, whether you’re cycling, hiking or even kayaking. The app gives you audio feedback for every mile you go and will give you live pep talks from friends. Your friends can write a short text online that will then be read aloud to you. The app also lets you compare your performance to your friends and see their workouts in real time.
This all-inclusive app helps you lose weight by tracking what you eat, as well as your activity level. The app will make personal recommendations based on how much weight you want to lose and your current activity level. You can then selects the food you eat throughout the day from the database and can sync the app with Fitbit or Jawbone in order to track activity.
Fitocracy is a fitness social network. While it’s lower on the list due to complaints about bugs, many users stick with Fitocracy because the game-like setup keeps them going. The app offers challenges to beat, much like you would beat a level on a video game.
MapMyFitness offers tracking of more than 600 activities. It will map the route you take and keep track of time, distance and several other statistics. Be aware that some of the features of this otherwise free app are kept behind a subscription wall.
This app is currently only available for Android, but it provides a unique form of motivation. The app has you put your money where your mouth is by having you and your friends place a wager, and the friend who checks in at the gym the most wins the pot. Using real money is optional.
9. Lose It!
Lose It is a website and app that is compatible with a number of fitness devices. The app helps you to count calories, log exercise and reach those weight loss goals.
10. Pear Training-Intelligence
If you’re willing to pay for the pricey heart rate monitor that goes with it, Pear Training-Intelligence is a great option for those who like to focus on heart rate during their workout. The app coaches you through your workout as it uses your heart rate to determine if you need to speed up or slow down.
While these are some of the most highly rated and popular apps, the hipster in you may be looking for something a little less well-known. If this is the case, consider checking out Moves, a newer app that turns your phone into an activity tracker. The Nike+ app provides a nice alternative for those Nike fans out there looking for a fitness and calorie tracker, as does the TR90 app, which tracks food intake and exercise.
Featured photo credit: Joggers via farm3.staticflickr.com