By Michael Brown, PT, DPT
Finding time to exercise is a challenge for most people. By the time you commute, run errands, and complete whatever other daily chores you may have, no time remains to go to the gym. Other times, you simply may not have the energy to plan a good exercise routine after a long, stressful day at the office. Several apps available for your smartphone or tablet can help you move past these barriers to put you on a road to a more healthy lifestyle. While options abound, the list below offers unique features and are completely free!
- Home Workouts by LeoSites – This app for Android provides a variety of workouts that can be performed at home and do not require any equipment! The app comes preloaded with a variety of workouts to choose from or has options to create your own.
- Nike+ Training Club – This app for iOS and Android allows you to follow workouts created by some of Nike’s most famous trainers or athletes. The workouts are a variety of time lengths ranging from 10-15 to 45+ minutes. Additionally, the workouts come in a variety of levels, can be adapted based on your goals and exercise experience.
- Charity Miles – This app of iOS and Android allows you to raise money for charities just by running, walking, or cycling! Simply select the charity you want to support from the app’s list and a corporate sponsor will donate a few cents a mile. Every little bit helps!
- FIT Radio – Not interested in working out to the same old tunes? FIT Radio for iOS and Android solves this problem by creating a playlist for your next workout. The app uses DJ-created mixes to provide a consistent beat to your workout. You can browse the music by workout type, by DJ, or by genre. A free version is available, and a premium version is available for purchase that allows for a wider range of options, the ability to save favorites, unlimited skips, and of course, no ads. Either way it’s a great option for some new workout jams without worrying about putting the effort to make a new list yourself. For those already paying for Spotify, that app also has pre-programmed workout mixes with a consistent beat to help keep you going strong.
- Touchfit GSP – This app was created by Mixed Martial Arts World Champion George St-Pierre who leads viewers through a variety of workouts lasting 20, 40, or 60 minutes. The programs require simple exercise equipment, such as a resistance band and a mat. The app asks you to complete a few preliminary exercises and rate their difficulty and then customizes the routine for your current fitness level. While, the app is free, a $9.99/year (or $3.99/month) subscription is encouraged.
- Zombies, Run! – Just when you thought the zombie craze was over, they have infected the fitness app world! While this app does not track your data, it is designed to motivate you. Participants complete different “missions” during a run with your earbuds telling you when the zombies are on your tail! If you are looking for a different exercise experience, this may be a good option and they offer a free version!
Consult your health care professional before starting any new exercise program. PhysioPartners offers complimentary injury screens to reduce the chance of injury with a new exercise program and keep you going moving toward your fitness goals! Sore after your new workout? Book a massage with Patty Oria in Lakeview or Shelby Kavanaugh in the Loop!