By Sam Davis, BHS, CPT, FNS
The more accessible technology becomes, the more we find ourselves glued to our smartphones, and with everything we could possibly need at our fingertips, why wouldn’t we be? Studies show the average user spends three hours and fifteen minutes on their phone every day, while the top twenty percent of users spend more than four and a half hours a day. That is a whopping one third of our day. What if we could redirect that time toward something more useful?
If you’ve read books like “Thinner, Leaner, Stronger,” then you know that many people use a lack of time as an excuse. Consequently, we neglect our daily exercise, replacing it with at least three hours of staring at our phone screens. Why not use thirty minutes to an hour of that time to work on our health?
There are plenty of apps out there that we can access from our iPhone or Android to give us a quick sweat. They even allow us to stay committed to our nutrition, and, at the very least, offer a variety so we can keep our exercise routine new and exciting. However, sifting through the choices to find the best fitness apps can be a daunting task.
I’ve researched the top apps on the market. Whether you need to get a quick sweat in under thirty minutes, or simply want to spend your screen time educating yourself on what works exclusively for you, we’ve got you covered.
This app is one of our favorites. You can choose which routine works for you—strength, cardio, yoga, or simply stretching—then input how much time you have. Whether you need a seven-minute workout on your lunch break or sixty minutes before your Netflix binge, this app will create a video-guided, timed workout that helps you lose fat, put on muscle, or maintain your overall health.
As a certified coach, I stand behind this app as it is the only one on the market that aligns with the American College of Sport Medicine’s training guidelines. The app combines all components needed to create an evidence based workout such as aerobics (or cardio), strength training, and flexibility. It was developed with the new user in mind, including safety measures, beginner workouts, and how to establish a safe starting point.
This is an awesome app for fun and effective workouts while completely erasing time as an excuse to help you reach your weight loss or fitness goals.
As one of the top-rated fitness apps in the Apple Store, and with over three million downloads, Fitbod is seamless. It was designed with the weightlifter in mind by creating different, goal-oriented workouts every time you step in the gym.
Fitbod is hardwired with artificial intelligence, or AI, to create an even better user experience. It removes your uncertainty by telling you exactly what to do and how to do it. Every time you log a workout, the app improves its service by tailoring your future programs to your level of fitness, likes, and dislikes. This mimics the effects of having your own personal trainer at the gym.
While Fitbod is not a free fitness app, the monthly subscription is well worth it. Instead of relying on personal trainer fees, spending hours researching exercises, and dragging around your pen and paper in the gym, you can use Fitbod to do all those things seamlessly.
8fit is for the person who wants the all-in-one package deal when it comes to their fitness and nutrition. It’s like having both a personal trainer and nutritionist at your fingertips. After you enter your current stats, goals, experience level, how many times you can hit the gym per week, and how many meals you can get in each day, 8fit pumps out a completely customized fitness plan.
The app is comprehensive but super simple and will take care of all the organization and calculations for you. Don’t mistake simple for not being challenging—the intermediate level averages just under twenty minutes, and your muscles will most definitely be sore. The majority of the workouts are built around the high-intensity interval training style which allows you to get a lot done in a short amount of time. It’s perfect if you’re a busy bee or someone who needs to be mindful of their fitness on the go.
On-demand, instructional workouts are quickly growing in popularity. The Peloton was the original on-demand, class type fitness setting. With it, you could either stream the class live, or watch the recorded version later. NEOU brings this idea to the screen of your iPhone or Android.
There are hundreds of live classes uploaded to the app so you never get bored, and you also have many options as to what kind of class you can take. From HIIT to boxing, or just a quick core class, there is something for everyone on NEOU. The professional instructors design their own workouts that don’t require any equipment (although you do have the option to add resistance with a set of dumbbells or bands). The other feature we love about NEOU are the class time options—you can choose a class that’s as quick as five minutes or as long as ninety, which again, eliminates any “time” excuse.
NEOU has incredible device compatibility as well. It functions well with Apple TV, Roku, and Amazon Fire Stick as well as any Android phone or iOS mobile device. You can download the app for a free one week trial, and if you choose to commit, it’s only $8 a month.
Any of these iPhone and Android apps will efficiently help you take your fitness and health to the next level. It’s time to direct some of your screen time to bettering your mind, body, and soul.