Guest Author: Sheila Johnson
Check out more of Sheila’s content at WellSheila.net.
While getting fit may make you feel more comfortable in a swimsuit, the benefits go beyond the superficial. Research shows that exercise can positively impact your mental health and extend your life expectancy. In fact, a study by BYU researchers found that those who frequently engage in intense exercise have cells that appear to be nine years younger than sedentary individuals of the same age.
Although many people want to get in great shape, money can sometimes get in the way. A Myprotein survey found that the average American adult spends $155 per month on fitness in categories including gym memberships and personal trainers. However, if you have a limited budget and you wish to get in shape and care for yourself, the latest apps can help you reach your fitness goals without spending a fortune.
Apps for Your Smartphone
Whether you have an Android or iPhone, you can find apps for your smartphone that will assist you in getting fit. Since you already take your smartphone wherever you go, using fitness apps is a convenient way to stay on top of your exercise goals. Here’s a few good ones:
- Freeletics is an app that gives you personalized bodyweight workout routines that don’t require a gym membership or any gym equipment at all. The premium version of the app includes a fitness coach powered by artificial intelligence that can track and adapt your routines as needed.
- Runkeeper uses GPS technology to track your activity: walking, biking, jogging, or running. The app lets you set goals, chart your progress, and even create or join running groups to stay motivated.
- While there are many yoga apps, Simply Yoga is highly rated and the free version includes numerous features such as video demonstrations, audio-driven routines, and workouts that vary from 20 minutes to an hour.
Apps for Your Smartwatch
A smartwatch can take your fitness tracking to the next level. The latest Apple Watch, for example, has apps to track your heart rate and even conduct an EKG to measure the electrical pulses of your heart. It automatically detects the start of your workout and tracks more than ten activities — from cycling to swimming and from hiking to running.
Streaks Workout is an Apple Watch app for all ability levels that puts a virtual personal trainer on your wrist. All the workouts only require time (at least six minutes) and space on the floor to do the exercises. If you can’t afford the latest Apple Watch’s upfront cost, your phone carrier might be able to get you an installment plan. Alternatively, a Fitbit Inspire is reasonably priced and will track your activities, estimate the number of calories you burn, and more. A Fitbit Inspire HR costs slightly more money but will also track your heart rate.
Apps for Your Smart Speaker
If you have a smart speaker, like Google Home or Amazon’s Alexa, don’t overlook their ability to help you attain your fitness goals. For example, Google Home has a Fitbit-related app called Fitstar that guides you through a workout using verbal commands, while 5-Minute Plank helps you master plank exercises. Amazon Alexa has an app called 7-Minute Workout that includes more than 40 different exercises and multiple types of workout styles. Additionally, it can even play energetic music during your workout.
While getting fit is very important for your short-term and long-term health, you might not have room in your budget for a fancy gym membership or an exclusive personal trainer. Thankfully, helpful and inexpensive apps are now readily available for use in the comfort of your own home that will help you do everything from getting workout ideas to tracking your progress. Whether you want to use your smartphone, smartwatch, or smart speaker, there are apps ready and able to help you achieve your fitness dreams.
Photo via Pexels
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