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Get in Shape Today with the 15 Top Fitness Apps

Get in Shape Today with the 15 Top Fitness Apps

Are you ready to crush your fitness goals in the New Year? If so, it might be smart to equip your phone with a fitness app that is suitable for your needs, goals, and experience level. Regardless of your favorite type of exercise or activity level, there is something for everyone in this list of top fitness apps that help you get in shape.

NOTEFor best results, your fitness plan should be consistent. Don’t download every app on this list, because that will overwhelm you. Just pick one or two apps (one for training and one for nutrition would be smart), follow the routine as instructed, and stick with what you’re doing for at least six to eight weeks before changing to another fitness plan.

Wanna improve your endurance and/or prepare for a race? Check out Couch to 5K.

apps1

    What Is It? A nine-week plan for people who are just taking up running. Workouts occur three times per week; last 30-40 minutes each; and include walking + jogging / warm-up + cool-down. Features include custom motivational tips to help you stay encouraged, easy-to-use workout logs to track your progress, and a built-in music player so you can jam to your favorite playlists.

    Who Should Use It? Beginners who don’t have a gym membership, enjoy jogging, and/or would like to prepare for a race.

    Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

    Would you like to stretch it out anytime and anywhere? Try new poses with Pocket Yoga.

    apps2

      What Is It? A self-guided yoga practice that you can customize to fit your schedule and experience level. Features include detailed voice and visual instructions that guide you through every pose, 150 illustrated pose images including correct posture and positioning, and a workout log that tracks your progress to encourage consistency.

      Who Should Use It? People who would like to try yoga but are intimidated by a class setting; people interested in improving flexibility, balance, and stability; people who would like a quick home workout that could help them relieve stress and improve their sleep.

      Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

      Does the possibility of winning a bet motivate you? Put your money where your mouth is on GymPact.

      apps3

        What Is It? A bet-driven app where you can make money if you commit to your workouts and others don’t. But the reverse is also true: skip too many workouts and you might have to pay up.

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        Who Should Use It? If the thought of losing a bet is a strong motivator and/or you’re a closet gambler, this might be for you.

        Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

        Note: Reviews of the recent update of GymPact are quite negative as compared to reviews of previous versions. Consider this your heads-up just in case that makes you want to wait until they release an update correcting some bugs.

        Would you like to geek out over data related to your runs? Track your results and improve your performance with RunKeeper.

        apps4

          What Is It? A workout-tracking program that offers detailed stats about things like pace, distance, time, and calories burned. Features include detailed fitness plans to help you achieve a variety of goals (lose weight, improve endurance, run a race, etc.); real-time audio coaching to keep you encouraged; and built-in social sharing tools (so you can brag about those workouts with ease).

          Who Should Use It? People who are super interested in running, jogging, biking, hiking or walking and would like to geek out over performance stats about their personal bests.

          Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

          Confused about what to buy in the grocery store? Make better decisions with an assist from Fooducate.

          apps5

            What Is It? A database of nutritional information for about 200,000+ unique products. Scan the barcode of any item and receive instant access to the ingredients used, nutrition facts, and healthier alternatives. Features include fitness, progress and food tracking tools and grocery shopping lists.

            Who Should Use It? People who  would like to make better decisions in the grocery store.

            Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

            Need some music to get motivated? Get moving with Fit Radio.

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            apps6

              What Is It? A free music-streaming service that provides non-stop, high-energy, workout music to keep you motivated while you exercise.

              Who Should Use It? People who are moved to train with more feeling if music is playing and/or people who have listened to their existing workout playlist a million times and would like to add fun to their daily routine.

              Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

              Want to become ridiculously good at push-ups? Crank up your upper body strength with Push Ups Pro.

              apps7

                What Is It? Input your age and body status to receive a training plan customized for you. Workouts include six levels of exercises friendly for any fitness level.

                Who Should Use It? People who would like to build a stronger upper body; people who would like to become able to do an impressive amount of push-ups; people who train at home and need support to stay consistent.

                Where Can I Get It? Android / Not available on iPhone, but you can find a similar app from Runtastic here.

                Have a hard time keeping up with your intake? Simplify your nutrition tracking with MyFitnessPal.

                apps8

                  What Is It? A ridiculously massive food database (3,000,000 foods!) that helps you track your diet. Features include a barcode scanner (useful when grocery shopping), exercise logs, support community where you can connect with friends, and charts, graphs and reports detailing your progress.

                  Who Should Use It? People who are going to count calories even though I tell them not to.

                  Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

                  Want to get in shape without using any equipment? Achieve your fitness goals with an assist from Workout Trainer.

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                  apps10

                    What Is It? Fitness training app that comes equipped with thousands of free workouts designed for a wide variety of fitness goals, experience levels, and personal preferences. Features include a virtual fitness consultation to personalize and improve your experience; instructional photos, videos, and audio cues that illustrate every exercise; online support community; and a built-in music player.

                    Who Should Use It? People who work out at home and would like to add variety to their training.

                    Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

                    Does turning fitness into a video game sound like fun? Level up with Fitocracy.

                    apps11

                      What Is It? An RPG (role playing game)-like app that allows you to earn points and level up during your fitness journey. New friends and accountability buddies will cheer you on in an online social community that’s like Facebook but for fitness.

                      Who Should Use It? If reading the above sentence caused a nerdgasm, you’d probably like it.

                      Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

                      Is walking your exercise of choice? Make every step count with MapMyWalk.

                      apps12

                        What Is It? A simple progress-tracking app that keeps up with your route, time, distance, pace, and calories burned in real-time.

                        Who Should Use It? People who would like to find new routes to walk or challenge themselves to beat previous best times.

                        Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

                        In a constant state of fight-or-flight? Manage your stress with Breathe2Relax.

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                        apps13

                          What Is It? A portable stress management tool that will help you improve your mood. Features include breathing exercises that will help you reduce stress; audio instructions to guide you; and background music to help you relax.

                          Who Should Use It? People who want to free themselves from stress and anxiety.

                          Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

                          Do you feel groggy before the day is half done? Connect the dots between your habits and your energy with Juice.

                          apps14

                            What Is It? A fun and easy-to-use energy tracker that encourages positive habit change. Choose to track things like your sleep, exercise, nutrition, mood, relationships, stress, work/life balance, energy level, and more. You can also set reminders to encourage consistency.

                            Who Should Use It? Ambitious folks who want to improve the Big Picture of their health and wellness.

                            Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

                            Note: According to some negative reviews, this app could have bugs on certain types of phones. I’d encourage you to scan the reviews to make sure yours isn’t one of them before downloading.

                            Have a hard time getting a good night’s sleep? Improve the quality of your Zzzs with Sleepbot.

                            apps15

                              What Is It? A smart alarm that gently wakes you during your lightest sleep. You can also record audio and movement while you snooze, resulting in guidance that will help you wake up better every morning.

                              Who Should Use It? People who would like to wake up feeling refreshed and ready for the day.

                              Where Can I Get It? Android / iPhone

                              Are there any top fitness apps that you think should be a part of this list? If so, feel free to name them in the comments. What’s your favorite health or fitness app and why?

                              More by this author

                              Daniel Wallen

                              Freelance Writer

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                              Last Updated on January 17, 2019

                              8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

                              8 Simple Mindfulness Exercises to Bring Peace and Happiness to Your Life

                              In life, we all need to be conscientious of what we are doing. You don’t need to live a life of stress if you don’t want to. You can achieve peace and happiness in life by carefully building mindfulness exercises into your life’s routine.

                              Exercising mindfulness isn’t rocket science and as importantly, you can do it. It will, however, take a few tries to get into the groove of things but once you get it, it is like riding a bike, you will never lose it.

                              Trust me. It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. In this article, I will share with you 8 mindfulness exercises that will help you to boost your energy, vitality and live a more peaceful and happier life.

                              Why Is It Hard to Live A Peaceful And Happy Life?

                              Our Habitat Has Become Too Technological

                              The world has accepted the idea that technology is often the cure for all evil. We have accepted, as a society, that everything technological will make us live a better life without fully investigating the many side effects that modernity brings.

                              There are a number of technological side effects that have a tremendous impact on your life that the media rarely tells you about.[1] Some of them include self-harm, economic inequality, having less sex, and even suicide. The global community is becoming less happy because of technology.

                              How can anybody live a peaceful and happy life when they are depressed? Technology advancements, ladies and gents, is a major reason for why we are living a poor life because it has infiltrated our lives too much.

                              According to my research, Americans spend an average of 8 hours a day looking at the computer screen — The average screen time spent on smartphones alone is about 20 hours per week. That’s a lot! No wonder why living a happy and peaceful life is so difficult these days.

                              Too Many People Don’t Want to Unplug

                              Americans check their phones an average of 80 times during vacation.[2] Some admit to checking their smartphones 300 times every single day. In countries like Brazil, India and China, the situation is no different.

                              The reality is that people are constantly plugged into technological devices and this behavior is literally making people all over the globe fight an inner war with themselves, which consequently makes them very sad. As we know, war is the enemy of peace which won’t make anybody happy.

                              Listen carefully:

                              We have a global anxiety epidemic because people don’t want to unplug from their smartphones and most people aren’t doing anything to fix it. It is a sad state of affairs but very real. This obsession with technology is turning us into perishable robots who live terrible lives.

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                              The era of anxiety is here to stay. There is little doubt about it. We can, however, fight back with the best remedy of all — We call it mindfulness!

                              Thank God there is an antidote to this whole technological madness. Without further ado, let’s go straight to the mindful exercises.

                              8 Mindfulness Exercises to Start Practicing

                              There are tons of mindfulness exercises available for you to engage with out there.[3] In the paragraphs below, I will include the best ones I’ve personally tried or have seen my close friends and family members try.

                              Are you ready for it? Let’s go!

                              1. Pray Daily

                              You should pray on a daily basis. Why is that you may ask — Well, because science has told us to do so.

                              When people pray, they feel peaceful, almost eliminating anxiety. Worries become secondary, and often gives people energy and hope to cope with the difficulties of life.

                              Prayer can make you more confident and focused. Prayer also helps you with self-control, helps to control pain, and can protect you against illnesses and disorders like cancer and high blood pressure. At least, this is what researchers from Harvard Medical School have said.[4]

                              Pray. You won’t regret it.[5]

                              2. Pay Attention to Your Inner Thoughts

                              A lot of people allow themselves to be influenced by their negative thoughts. Be different and resist believing in them. It is a bad habit that can lead to unhappiness.

                              By the way, if you do feel this way, chances are high that somebody other than you put these thoughts into your head.

                              Here is my secret to combat this cancer — look at things objectively. I bet that if you look at things as they are, you will realize that most if not all of your negative thoughts are only inside of your head.

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                              If you pay close attention, you will quickly realize that these voices aren’t worth your time. Believe me — Ignoring them and looking at things with objectivity is often the best course of action.

                              This article can guide you to beat negative thoughts:

                              How to Stop Automatic Negative Thoughts When You’re Overwhelmed

                              3. Smile Often

                              Smiling will slow down your heart. It will also relax your body because when you smile, your body releases endorphins which in itself has a number of positive benefits for you as a person.

                              Smile often! You may want to smile early in the morning, during the day, and late in the evening. It is amazing what happens to you when you decide to smile instead of being grumpy.

                              Surrender your problems to a nice smile. You will notice two things. First, most people just don’t which makes them live a miserable life. Second, if you decide to smile often, you will eventually smile unconsciously which is the ideal.

                              The moment that you smile unconsciously, you then know that you are truly happy.

                              4. Organize Your Working Desk

                              A messy desk will make you less productive and can agitate and overstimulate you. You don’t want that.

                              When you clear your desk, you engage in deep inner-thinking and your systematic decision making ends up becoming therapeutic.

                              Most people realize that they are most creative when their creative space is clean and organized. The former often makes people more aware of what they are doing which lends to less stress and more productivity.

                              Organizing your desk will also make you more energetic and focused because order often decreases chaos which is a condition that often slows down daily progress.

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                              5. Celebrate Your Friend’s Victories

                              I love this mindful exercise. One of the best ways to live a happy and peaceful life is to celebrate the victories of others. When you do that, you automatically make your friends in a better mood which makes you in a better mood, as well.

                              Happiness is contagious! We might as well celebrate others as much as we can. If you find out that your peer has won an award, celebrate with him! If your friend is the recipient of a local charity award, celebrate with her!

                              What is also awesome is that when you celebrate with others, they often celebrate with you in return. This, ladies and gentleman, will make you feel fantastic. You can’t go wrong with this one, period.

                              6. Listen to Your Spouse/Partner

                              God put someone in your life for a reason. You might as well listen to him or her.

                              I listen to my wife everyday. In fact, I often ask the following question to her, “Amanda, what are your thoughts about…” or “What am I missing about…” It is shocking what I hear back from her. Without her having much context and perspective, by the art of observation in my own nonverbal behavior and the behavior of others, she accurately gives me incredible insights which helps me out with living my life to the fullest.

                              I’m a firm believer that spouses are supposed to engage in interpersonal communication every day. I most definitely do and will continue doing it. You should do the same.

                              7. Give Yourself a Break from Technology

                              You can’t be in total equilibrium if your computerized devices control your life. You must get away from technology on a daily basis.[6]

                              How do you do that? This is my formula:

                              First, take this smartphone control test. It is only ten questions but this test will place you somewhere in the human robot cycle continuum.

                              If your score is between 25-30, take a break from the computer (or smartphone, pad, laptop/desktop) every twenty minutes and stop being on a computerized device after 8:00pm.

                              If you score between 30-35, still take a break every 20 minutes but stop being on these devices at 5:00pm.

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                              If you score more than 35, you need to take action immediately.

                              Limit computer use as much as possible throughout the day. Give yourself as many breaks from the computer as possible. Are you ready for the challenge?

                              8. Go Exercise

                              Go exercise at least three times a week. I don’t care if you need to workout early in the morning, late in the evening, on the weekends or during work days. Working out is absolutely imperative for you to live happy and peaceful life.

                              The stresses of the modern world are too much for you to neglect this important mindfulness exercise. When you go to the gym, you burn calories, focus on activities one step at a time, your mind relaxes, anxiety decreases, you sweat and often think about topics unrelated to your work place among many other benefits.

                              You must exercise at least three hours each week for optimum results. Why? Just take a look at all the benefits of regular exercising:

                              12 Benefits of Regular Exercise You Should Know

                              The Bottom Line

                              It’s in your best interest to learn and put these mindfulness exercises into practice. Now that our habitat has become too technological and many people just don’t want to unplug, engaging in daily prayer, celebrate your friends’ victories, and listening to your spouse are among the best ways to be mindful about what you are doing and how you are living.

                              It is possible to live a happy and peaceful life. It only depends on you.

                              Go exercise! Take a break from technology and invest in you! Life is too short for distractions.

                              More Resources About Mindfulness

                              Featured photo credit: Lesly Juarez via unsplash.com

                              Reference

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