We’re all aware that technology is a constantly evolving part of 21st century living and, therefore, our lifestyles have been changed by its progress. Our transport, healthcare systems, education and even our social interactions utilise technology not to mention the countless devices, appliances and virtual assistants we rely on to accomplish everyday tasks. Nowhere is the rise of technology more apparent than within the fitness industry, from watches with built-in heart rate monitors, bands that track our workouts and sleep cycles as well as apps designed to help us keep track of calorie consumption.
A quick app store search reveals fitness trainers, numerous trackers and even costly bodybuilding programs so it can, at times, be hard to know which to choose. We’ve collected some of the best fitness and health apps out there and compiled them into an easy to understand guide that’ll help you pick the best ones for you and your individual fitness goals.
Flickr Photo: Westbroek
This app is ideal for those who are relatively new to the world of fitness or those who’ve never tried running before. Couch25K does exactly that, thanks to a carefully structured guided fitness program the app will have you running five km in just nine short weeks. If you’re out of shape or you’ve never run before the three times a week workouts will help to increase both your speed and stamina while improving your muscle tone and overall fitness level. The app also has plenty of ideas for healthy eating, other activities you might enjoy and even has an oh so catchy soundtrack which alternates with the upbeat, friendly instructions from Laura your instructor.
One of the ways you can increase your chances of a successful workout is by being able to track your progress easily. Enter Athos, wearable tech clothing specifically designed to work with the Athos built-in mobile app. These incredible garments have high-tech sensors in that monitor a whole host of things, including your biometric output, so it sees exactly what your body is doing, which muscles are working and how much effort you’re putting in. The app then collects all the data and seamlessly displays the results, Athos tracks, measures and saves your progress before delivering the information instantly to your smartphone.
Deep Sleep With Andrew Johnson
Andrew Johnson has been helping individuals to unwind meditate for over twenty years and currently his relaxation apps are the best selling ‘self-help’ apps with over ten million downloads so far. Andrew offers a mixture of free and paid-for programs which are compatible with both Android and Apple devices. His sessions vary from helping to lower depression, lose weight, quit smoking, feel less stressed and improve insomnia. The deep sleep program will slowly, calmly relax you while the soothing voice of Andrew lulls you into a deep, unbroken sleep before you awake feeling relaxed, refreshed and recharged.
Unlike many celebrities not all of us can afford a personal diet coach or nutritionist but thanks to Rise all is not lost. For only $15 per week this clever app pairs each user up with their own nutritionist, where, each day, you’ll send them photos of all your meals. Depending on what your target is, whether it’s to lose weight, tone up or improve your existing diet your personal nutritionist will be able to offer advice, suggest helpful menu tweaks or offer healthy alternatives to your favourite junk food snacks. It’s quite similar to the meal plan advice provided in the
bikini body guide by kayla. Your nutritionist won’t judge you, but they will help you to make good, healthy choices that, over time, will increase energy and concentration.
What’s the point of getting fit if you can’t have a little fun at the same time? Escape hordes of imaginary undead while improving your muscle tone with this really cool running app. Not only will you carry out missions, hear the thrilling escapades of your military base comrades and keep civilians safe but you’ll also be able to track your progress as well as unlock bonus stories. If finding crucial medical supplies, saving kids from escaped monsters and, oh yes, hearing the very realistic moans of shambling zombies right behind you in your ear doesn’t make you run faster we really don’t know what will! To date Zombies Run! is one of the highest grossing fitness apps and has converted loads of people to running quicker than you can say The Walking Dead.
My Fitness Pal
One of the best apps for helping to keep track of your diet is MyFitnessPal, a worldwide healthy eating phenomenon, boasting an extensive database of over six million foods. Just search for what you ate or wish to eat, say for example ready salted chips and MyFitnessPal will show you every chip brand that makes salted chips. Select the bag you have and the screen will display the number of calories per serving and bag, nutritional information and even how much salt you should eat per day. The app is specifically designed to help you make lower calorie choices as well as show you in black and white how much you’re consuming on a daily basis.
It’s important that when we’re looking to improve our physical health, we don’t neglect our emotional happiness either. Happify works by you selecting a particular track, or emotional state that you believe you need help with such as lowering stress, eating better, getting more sleep and even finding more time for yourself. The app will then offer you challenges, expert advice and different activities that’ll help you to help yourself. Happify has been created by a team of scientific researchers that really understand the complex world of emotions, and through meditation, games and mini-assessments can pinpoint the problem.
Lack of sleep can lead to decreased concentration, a negative mood and even cause headaches and nausea. Discover exactly when you should be going to bed and getting up thanks to sleep cycle, a useful app that tracks your sleep rhythm, clearly identifying when you’re in the deepest phase of sleep before waking you at your lightest point, around thirty minutes before your alarm would usually go off.