My Favorite (Free!) Fitness Apps

Smartphones do it all. From mobile banking to shopping, it makes sense that there are now tons of apps available to help you reach your fitness goals and improve your physique. Here are a few of my favorites

1. Nike Training Club 

Only got 30 minutes to work out? This app will kick your you-know-what in 30 seconds flat. The app offers four types of workouts: Get Lean, Get Toned, Get Strong, and Get Focused, and these are available in both beginner mode, intermediate mode, and advanced mode. Word to the wise, these are tough workouts (the highest I do is intermediate, and even those workouts can leave me sore for days) so don’t feel discouraged if these workouts can be difficult to get through. Workouts are available in both 30 minute and 45 minute sessions. It’s available free on the Google App Store and Apple’s App Store.

2. PumpUp 

PumpUp is by far my favorite strength training app. It builds a workout for you based on the equipment you have available and the areas of your body you’d like to work. It offers interactive pictures and instructions for each workout move, and you can plan your workouts in advance. I use the free version of PumpUp, but there is a paid version available with vocal coaching (the free version is quiet). Currently PumpUp is only available on the Apple App Store, but it’s supposed to be coming soon for Android.

For paid apps I also enjoy Nike Plus ($2.99 available for both Apple and Android) which I use to track and pace my runs and CruiseControl ($4.99, only for Apple) which finds songs in your music library to match the pace you’re currently running, or want to run.

What fitness apps or techniques do you like to use?

June Running Playlist

Happy early Fourth of July! Although it’s supposed to be rainy, there’s nothing better than spending the 4th of July with friends and family. I’m looking forward to grilling out with my family and a party with friends later in the evening.

I’ve been trying to cut back on running long distances, as my right knee has been giving me issues in terms of pain while running. I’m hoping to avoid a trip to the doctor, so I’m upping my strength training.

As promised, here’s my top five June running jams

1. Till I Collapse- Eminem

An oldie but a goodie, this song is great for the tail end of a run. 

2. Bang Bang- will.i.am 

From the fabulous Great Gatsby soundtrack (which I honestly think was better than the movie itself), this song has a fun beat and a good pace for running

3. Runaway Baby- Bruno Mars

Every song by Bruno Mars is catchy and run-able.

4. I Don’t Feel Like Dancing- Scissor Sisters

The only issue with adding this song to your playlist is that you may end up dancing instead of running

5. Kickstart My Heart- Motley Crue

Every good running playlist needs an 80’s jam

What songs do you like to run to?

 

An Easy and Free Way to Give Back on Memorial Day

ImageHappy Memorial Day! I hope your weather is better than ours here in Central Illinois. It’s a cool 55 degrees with lots of rain! On the bright side there’s no chance of pool time distracting me from finishing packing 🙂

I wanted to share one of my favorite running app’s that offers a way to give back through working out. Charity Miles is a free app available in the iTunes app store and the Android platform that gives 25 cents for every mile you walk or run, or 10 cents for every mile you bike to 1 of the 21 charities you select yourself. There are a wide variety of charities available (My go-to’s are the World Food Programme, ASPCA, and GirlUp), and you can choose a different charity each time you work out.  The app doesn’t take up a lot of your phone’s battery life, and I like to run it concurrently with Nikeplus. CharityMiles does ask that you share your results with your Facebook friends and/or Twitter followers, but this is  a very small price to pay for the use of the app.

The Wounded Warrior Project is another one of the charities available to select on CharityMiles; its mission is to honor and empower wounded warriors through programs such as combat stress recovery programs, economic empowerment programs, and more. Why not give back to those who give so much for our country this Memorial Day by walking, biking, or running a few miles today through the CharityMiles app and selecting The Wounded Warrior Project? It’s a free easy way to give back and exercise at the same time. 

 

What are your plans for Memorial Day?