Monday, June 10, 2019

My Top 8 Health Apps and What I Love About Them

It seems like there are a million different apps out there for health and fitness. And I'm not a huge app guru. I'm not someone who will pay for any app or even pay to upgrade on an app. But I have a few fitness/running apps that I love and I wanted to share a little bit about each one so that if you're like me and you like free apps and you're feeling overwhelmed with which ones to use, you can see what I like about each one and maybe it will help you know what you're looking for.

I'm going to make this a list starting with the apps I use the least to the apps I use the most.

Interval Timer.
I'm sure there are hundreds of these types of apps. I use this when I'm structuring a speed workout on my own or for when I'm doing a Tabata style workout. You can create different timer lengths for your workouts depending on what kind of workout you're doing.  There is a different sound to let you know when to start and when to stop. This app also lets you add different cycles to your workout. So if you want to do an interval workout where you work your way up from short sprints to long sprints, or if you wanted to do Fartleks or any other kind of speed work, you can tailor it to that kind of workout. It makes doing speed without a track super convenient and easy. You can play music from your playlist while you use the timer, it will just ding over your music when it's time. It also keeps track of what workouts you've done on what days.

ACL Play It Safe
This is an app that my physical therapist had me download last year when I was having a hard time with knee injuries (Pes Anserine Bursitis, and ITband syndrome). There isn't a ton of stuff to explain on this app, It was made by physical therapists and rehab specialists to help athletes keep their knees strong and healthy. There are different workouts for rehab, or to just help you maintain once you've healed, and videos that explain and show how to do each exercise. This is my go-to anytime I feel an old injury flaring up a little bit. You can also request an appointment with a specialist through this app, but I can't review on that because The only feature I've used on this app was the rehab workouts. If you're struggling with a knee injury, this is a great app to help strengthen back up. Please remember to ask your doctor or physical therapist before starting something like this.

Sonicare Kids
I'm pretty sure I could do a whole post just on this. If you have a Sonicare toothbrush, you know that they clean your teeth way better than a normal toothbrush, every time. My dad is a dentist and so my kids were super lucky to get a Sonicare one year as a gift.  They have this app for the kids brushes to help teach them how to brush and to make brushing fun for them.  No more fighting with kids to get their teeth brushed, I actually have to fight sometimes to get them to use a normal toothbrush instead. You just need the Sonicare toothbrush and Bluetooth on your phone or Ipad for the app to connect. Your kid gets a pet cavity bug who they get to name. When the app is connected, the cavity bug's teeth get brushed as your child brushes their teeth. They earn prizes that they can use within the app like food, backgrounds,  and dress ups for their little pet. It makes brushing effective and fun for them. I'd definitely recommend this app (and toothbrush) especially if you have young kids that fight you on brushing their teeth. They also have something, similar for adults ;).

This is an app I've shared before. I use this a lot for planning where to run. It's incredibly simple and easy to use. You search for the area you're in, trace a running route, and it will tell you how many miles your planned run is and the elevation changes. That's it! I use it all the time to make sure I'm getting the right mileage in for each run. It's super handy, especially since I don't have a GPS watch. It's also very accurate.

So many people use Runkeeper. And there are a lot of options for these kinds of apps out there. I don't pay for the upgrade on this app so I can't speak for that or what functions that gives you, but what I like about runkeeper is that it's super easy to find your run's information. You can easily find your distance, average pace, splits, etc... all on your run summary.  You can also add notes about what the workout was, how you felt, what the weather was many things. It keeps track of you total mileage, weekly mileage, monthly and yearly mileage, and it helps you know what your fastest 5k up have been. And you can connect with friends and for me, it helps keep me accountable.

Like Runkeeper, there are a ton of people who already use this app. I, again, don't use the paid version of this. It has a lot of the same functions as Runkeeper. The difference that it seems a little harder to find your splits and other information. I use Strava more often because it connects with a couple of my other running apps that I'll talk about next. Runkeeper doesn't seem to do that yet.

This is a fun app. It's super simple. You don't have to upload anything so there's very little work on your part. The whole point of this app is that you can earn money by being healthy.  It connects to several different health apps, including your health app on your iPhone, and Strava to help you earn points to work towards your money.  You can also earn points by taking their surveys and reading articles that they post on the app. Every 10,000 points is worth $10. If you're being active anyway, you might as well get paid for it, and if you're not being active this is a good way to get some motivation.

Last but not least, this little sweety. I've talked a lot about Aaptiv before, but I'm going to talk a little bit about it again now. Aaptiv is a workout app that lets you work with tons of personal trainers.  The trainers record workouts and they go up on aapitv, you then pick your workout that you want to do, push play and it's like having a personal trainer walk you through your workout, or a running buddy running with you, the whole time.  It keeps track of how many workouts you've done, lets you download workouts so you can still do them even if you don't have internet service, you can rate the workouts, save the workouts in a favorites file so it's easy to find. They also have different challenges and training cycles. So many good things. I will recommend this app to anybody.  I do pay for this one. It's about $9 a month if you pay for your subscription by the year, a little more if you pay by the month. And it's totally worth it. It's cheaper than having a personal trainer and you can use it as many times a day as you want. There's every kind of workout from marathon training to meditation.

How many health apps do you currently have?
Do you have favorite workout apps that you love?


  1. I do love Strava And Garmin. My most used app is Peloton :)

  2. I do use Achievement

    I need an interval timer so I may try this one.

    At work we use Virgin Pulse to track healthy activities and make money

  3. Great post! I had not heard of Achievement - interesting concept! It's really amazing how many different types of fitness apps there are.

  4. Great post! The only app that I use from that list is Achievement so you gave me some new ones to test out.
    My most used health and fitness apps are Fitbit and Peloton.

  5. Great post! The only app that I use from that list is Achievement so you gave me some new ones to test out.
    My most used health and fitness apps are Fitbit and Peloton.

  6. Interesting list! The only fitness apps I use regularly are Strava, TrainingPeaks, and GarminConnect to spit everything to them.

  7. This is a great resource. I don't use any fitness apps LOL I recently got Strava but have not had time to play with it. I'm going to look at Achievement...sounds like it would be a great one without much of a learning curve.

  8. I love Strava. I have to look at Achievement - I mean, it doesn' hurt to get paid for moving, right? My Garmin app gets a lot of use, too.

  9. I love that interval timer app. It has so many features. I’ll have to try that footpath app. It would be great when I’m traveling.

  10. I confess that I really don't use any fitness apps on my phone. I do intervals with my watch though, so I may have to check that out.

  11. Oh wow! I haven't heard a lot of this. I'll have to check out the Sonicare App. My kids both have the Sonicare tooth brush. I use Strava sporadically but should use it more.

    1. The sonicare app is definitely a help when it's a fight to get them to brush.