Ever wondered why there is usually a surge of interest and sales in health-related products and apps around February. By now itís probably obvious that itís usually a guilt-induced urge brought about by months of binging on holiday treats. Of course, staying healthy is a year-round commitment and you donít have to wait for next year to get started. Heck, you donít even have to enroll in a gym. To help get the ball rolling, here are 8 apps, available on both Android and iOS that are not just meant to keep you healthy, they can be pretty fun too.
J&J 7 Minute Workout
Not everyone has the luxury of time to spend on full workouts every day. While some might argue that you should actually make time for it, reality is, some really have less than 15 or even 10 minutes to spare. Fortunately, there is now a new rage for a ďscientificĒ 7-minute workout that you can do any time. And, as you probably guessed, thereís an app for that too. Well, apps actually, but few probably carries the same weight as the one from Johnson & Johnson. Because brands.
Those who can actually get out there and invest more time and effort in keeping fit will still be in need of guidance. Unless they can afford a personal trainer. For those who canít, Endomondo is one of the top-rated personal trainer in your pocket apps. While it tracks your runs and rides just like any other fitness app, it offers one critical feature: guidance. The app tells you your performance, when youíve met your goals, and when you need to do double time to keep up. And it lets you compete with both yourself as well as other Endomondo users. Or cheer other up at least.
For some, self-motivation and competition are enough to drive to fitness. Others, however, well, they need a stronger nudge. And nothing nudges stronger than losing money. Thatís the idea behind Pact, which, in a nutshell, is like betting on your health. You earn money by meeting your goals or lose by skipping the gym. No cheating either, because you have to check into those locations to actually ďscoreĒ. That said, you donít really need to involve money to use Pact, but, then ag
Others need nothing more than music to keep them from getting bored while working the treadmill or running down the hard trodden path. When it comes to streaming music, Spotify is undoubtedly the household name. But did you know it also covered running? And, no, weíre not just talking about a playlist fit for running, though of course it has that. Spotify Running actually keeps track of your pace and selects the perfect music tempo to match it. And it never runs out of music to play, even when you run out of breath.
Staying healthy isnít just about exercise. Itís also about keeping tabs on the food you eat. But, letís face it. Counting calories is no fun, especially when you donít have a handy reference available. Fooducate can do that for you. Simply scan in the barcode of the food youíre buying or eating and itíll do the research for you. You can also log in food, hunger levels, and mood. Fooducate will collect that data, analyze it, and offer suggestions to best help you meet your fitness goals.
Another popular food-centric app and service is MyFitnessPal. Unlike Fooducate, which is totally about food, this app also takes into account your exercise and activity, making it a well-rounded app. Track calories, exercise, weight, and compare notes with other users. Plus, MyFitnessPals integrates with leading apps and fitness devices so you wonít have to manually input data all the time.
Exercise doesnít have to be a drab affair. It can be fun. Or it can be horrifying. The latter is the effect that Zombies, Run! is aiming for. Well, sort of. Of course, youíre not really going to get chased by zombies (hopefully, at least not any time soon), but it does try to immerse you in the sounds of running for your life. The exercise game, because thatís really what it is, also has some fictional goals to add to your motivation. But if zombies arenít to your liking, thereís always the next best thing.
OK, Pokemon Go isnít exactly a fitness-related app, but the pseudo AR game has already been credited for getting people to walk outside again. Of course, itís also been credited for accidents and maybe even deaths. You definitely wonít lose weight or gain muscle just from playing, but walking is far better than doing nothing. You can always add it on top of real exercise and mindful diet and have a bit of playful fun on the sides, too.
Bonus Round: Apple Health and Google Fit
You donít really have to sign up for any of the services above to keep track of your health. If you have any modern Android or iOS device, chances are you have the basic stuff you need. Yes, weíre talking about the stock health apps from Apple and Google. Even without a fitness tracker, you can already keep track of steps. You can also input data like calorie and water intake. But you do lose out on some of the automated features, coaching, and eccentricity of the other apps.
Health is a combination of exercise, diet, and rest. Of course, no app will be able to do those for you. They can only help you keep track of yourself (if youíre honest), inform you, and motivate you. It naturally falls on you, the user, to actually get moving or eating right. And you donít have to live like a hermit either. So do enjoy the holiday festivities. Just mind the waistline.