My 4 Favorite Fitness Apps

At work, I have a desk job. Well, not entirely. I'm out and about in the community quite a bit talking with people, but also at my desk quite a bit. Getting in exercise during my workday (and even weekends) can sometimes seem daunting.

In Reno, we joke about how the weather has ADD. It just can't make up its mind and then - squirrel! Plus we tend to have higher-than-normal-and-I-hate-them winds.  The expressions go:  If you don't like the weather in Reno, wait 5 minutes.  I have mentioned that I do have the luxury of taking a run during the day, however, I don't ever want to abuse that privilege.  Plus, I change my clothes, come back a bit sweaty and it does take a bit of time - even if it's only 45 minutes.  The problem, though, is that I get a little stir crazy and need a break to shake things out.

Even at home, it can be a challenge finding time to get in a quick workout.  Fast forward (well, for me it's fast-forwarding - I'm not tech-savvy!)  to phone apps.  I found one accidentally and used it a few times.  I really liked it but it made me wonder what else was out there....... So I did some research on free apps for my iPhone and downloaded my little heart out.

Here are my top 4 fitness apps:

  • SWORKIT lite was the one I accidentally downloaded.  Auto times at 5 minutes, but you can have it on up to a 60-minute timer and change the workouts.  I didn't mind the 3-second countdown or the 3-second break to show you the next workout.  It doesn't have a way to increase your fitness level which is partially why I started looking elsewhere.  The Pro version is $.99 but I'm not sure how much more the upgrade would give.
  • Gain Fitness was harder for me to navigate, but has set workouts and workouts you can plan.  The workouts go up to 80 minutes (not a quick blast at work!).  The settings give great options for what equipment you have, your location (on the go?), links to Runkeeper's health graph and you get to choose your fitness level.  It also asks what your goals are - fat loss, building muscle, etc...
  • Runtastic 6 Pack Abs allows you to connect a heart rate monitor, plays music.  and targets - well - abs.  It starts you on day one and my complaint is that if you're at a higher level, you have to go through from day 1.  Not a huge deal - I use it with the other apps and not as a stand-alone so it's a good addition.
  • Johnson and Johnson 7 minute workout - apple health can link and assist you in creating a workout and personalizing it, it sets your fitness level and asks your motivation.  You can do the standard 7-minute circuit, the smart circuit, or a custom workout.  You have the option to skip the warm-up and cool down as well which decreases the time down to the 7 minutes.  I  set my fitness level to moderate just a bit lower than expert and it kicked my butt in under ten minutes.  It also has an option to create your own workout and has a "thumbs up" and "thumbs down" on each exercise to remember your preferences.

I'm still working on all of these to find which one fits me best.  What I like is that I have choices to motivate me and get moving for a few minutes during the day.  No exercise is a waste of time and getting a quick burst of a workout is better than nothing.  I love that these apps are all geared for people that are on the move with little time but want to get something done.



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