Current Top 10 (Free) iPhone Fitness Apps In Review
Use technology to take control of your fitness
I just recently became the proud owner of an iPhone. I know I know, a little late in the game right? Well I'm only 2 months into my relationship with my new iPhone, but I can already tell you one of my favorite features: the Apps. Before my days of owning a smart phone (or my dumb phone days as I like to call them) I would have told you Apps are overrated. I would have said they are a huge time-waster and too many of my friends spend more time playing Angry Birds or Draw Something than engaging in actual human interaction. These statements may still be true, but at the risk of sounding like a hypocrite I try to refrain from getting on that soapbox these days. All that being said, Apps seem to have gotten a bad rep (some parents are even suing Apple due to their "highly addictive" Apps for children and game currencies) so I set out to explore the top 10 fitness-friendly Apps on the iPhone - keep in mind I only looked into the free ones, this girl's all about frugal fitness!
1) Calorie Counter & Diet Tracker: The name of this App is pretty self-explanatory, however, Calorie Counter offers much more than just tallying your daily caloric intake. This app allows you to set goals, track progress, search for and record exercise and more. I have personally downloaded this App and have found it to be quiet useful, the only trick is you really have to USE it to get the full benefits. This requires you to add all of your meal information and exercises on a daily basis, which can be especially challenging when you have a meal with a lot of ingredients (the food "library" can only do so much). All in all however I would say this is a solid App and it received 5/5 stars in the App store.
2) Map My Run: This App is meant to help route and track your runs (though they have it available for rides and walks too). With information such as pace, maps, distance, calories burned, elevation, nutrition and a social factor, this App seems to have thought of everything! With 4.5/5 stars in the App store, there weren't many complaints,but a few did mention user interface issues. However, the majority of users found Map My Run to be motivating, helpful and accurate. Did you know Map My Fitness is an Austin-based company? Check them out here!
3) Self-Hypnosis for Complete Relaxation: This App is available for free for one week only, so get it while you can! It provides you with a 15-minute relaxation session meant to help you unwind and de-stress. Self-Hypnosis for Complete Relaxation claims to lower blood pressure, lower risk of stroke and heart attack, improve mood and more. The App has received 4.5/5 stars, however, some reviewers complained that the man's voice in the App is too robotic and not "relaxed" enough, but the majority seem to really enjoy it!
4) Lose It!: Similar to Calorie Counter, Lose It! is a weight loss App that tracks nutrition and exercise. Lose It! also provides a food/activity database which you may add to as well as recipes. The App received 4/5 stars in the App store and many reviewers boast of their weight loss success through its use.
5) Weight Watchers Mobile: Because Weight Watchers claims to have over 1 million members worldwide, it's no surprise that their App shows up in the top 5 in the fitness category. With the official Weight Watchers App you can veiw daily recipes, create shopping lists, find Weight Watchers meetings in your area and more. Subscribers to Weight Watchers Online or eTools have even more options with the App such as point calculations and weight tracking. This App is great for those of you who are strict followers of the Weight Watchers program, but the 3/5 star rating in the App store tells us there are a few bugs that need to be worked out.
6) iTriage: This App was created by two ER doctors to help answer medical questions such as where you can go for treatment or what condition you may be suffering from (Web MD anyone?). Great for Moms, city newcomers and hypochondriacs everywhere and boasting 4.5/5 stars, what are you waiting for?
7)Pedometer FREE: For those of us who can't seem to part with our iPhone (literally), then this App is a great way to keep track of our daily activity. You can set and track your parameters, calculate your BMI or simply see your distance or calories burned. The App has 4.5/5 stars but a few comment that it uses battery life fairly quickly and doesn't work when the phone is in sleep mode.
8) Healthy Grocery Recommendations - ShopWell: Ever find yourself at the grocery store wondering what you can get that's "good" for you? This App by ShopWell can help. Use it to scan barcodes at the grocery store and find what foods match your needs, set health goals, steer clear of unwanted sugars and fats and more. And you'll never have to worry about grocery list again, just pull out your phone! 4/5 stars.
9) Fooducate: Similar to the ShopWell App, Fooducate provides information on grocery products by a simple scan of the barcode. The scan can tell you highlights of the product, compare it with others or select healthier alternatives. The 4.5/5 stars says it all, an informative and helpful App!
10) Weight Watchers Bar Code Scanner: Much like the previously mentioned Apps, but provides point values for those Watching their Weight out there. This App is geared specifically towards Weight Watchers, so if you're involved with the program it's even more personalized for you! However, with only 2.5/5 stars it seems reviewers are saying there are a few kinks to work out.
Note: AFM has done our fair share of App reviews, but these things change so often you've got to keep up! Here are a couple of past articles/blogs that might interest you as well!