“New year, new you”…easier said than done. Waking up for that 5 a.m. spin class seemed quite a bit more doable last night at 11 p.m. New habits can be hard to form, but 2017 has arrived with a crew of high-tech motivators to get you moving and keep you grooving all year long. Whether zombies are chasing you or a smart-mouthed coach is serving up motivational sass, these 9 fitness of the best apps and gadgets will be your new favorite workout buddies.
Personal Trainer in Your Back Pocket
Gone are the days of shelling out the big bucks for a personal trainer. There’s no need for an IRL trainer when you can get a gym app on your phone for a monthly fee that’s equivalent to a grande latte. Fitness apps like Sworkit, FitStar, and Carrot are revolutionizing the virtual trainer concept.
FitStar, created by FitBit, helps you achieve your fitness goals in record time for only $7.99 a month. FitStar’s catalog has more than 40 themed workouts with different trainers who offer video demonstrations and step-by-step coaching.
Ironically, Sworkit is the buffet of all fitness apps: you enter the type of workout you want (strength, cardio, yoga or stretching) and the amount of time you have (from five minutes to an hour) for a personalized workout that requires very little pre-planning. Sworkit is free, but for $4.99 a month, you can get ultra-personalized by determining the areas of your body you want to focus on even setting the number of reps to want to do!
Last but not least is cheeky Carrot—the trainer that dishes out serious sass. For only $3.99, Carrot provides hilarious workouts that include moves like “Dragon Mating Dances.”
REAL-GIRL TIP: If you do decide to take the DIY route to getting fit, good music is a necessity. From an unprofessional athlete’s point of view, more volume = more sweat. Drop the bass and give me 20, pumping your virtual coach (and maybe some Drake) at full volume through these Nyne speakers. These sleek accessories come packed with sweet features: Bluetooth connectivity, built-in USB charging for your phone, a hidden carrying handle, and a built-in microphone.
Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve…or Wrist
Achieving goals is much easier when you set measurable goals that you can gauge your progress against. Rather than vowing to “walk more” you should say “I’m going to walk 3 miles every day” or “I want to burn 900 calories every week.” Keep your eyes on the prize with a TomTom smart watch, which gives you live stats about your heart rate, distance traveled, pace, and calories burned. TomTom is even GPS enabled so you can keep track of your favorite running routes. At the end of the day or week, you’ll be able to #humblebrag about your leaps and strides. For more about eBags’ best fitness trackers, check out Rebeccah’s roundup.
Run Like Your (After) Life Depends on It
Seriously. Run. Run like humanity depends on your survival. Feeling motivated yet? If you can’t find your running mojo unless zombies are chasing you, there’s an app for that: Zombies, Run! This workout app has 200 award-winning missions designed to get your heart pumping by fleeing the undead. You can walk, run or jog away from the flesh eaters, captivated by the audio story and music rather than thinking about side cramps.
Scared of zombies, even virtual ones? Perhaps a simple soundtrack will do the trick. Spotify Running gives you a non-stop mix of music it knows you’ll love (choose from hip-hop, electro, pop or “recommended for you”) that changes to match its tempo with your pace. Running in time with music helps raise energy and motivation levels so you can go faster and further than ever before.
Long Live Logistics
Sustainable fitness goals start with solid logistics. First, let’s find a class you like. Enter ClassPass, which aggregates all of the workout class options in 36 cities nationwide. Rather than entering into a committed relationship with Zumba, the ClassPass monthly fee lets you date around: maybe you opt for hot yoga one morning, but head to kickboxing the next night. This is awesome for avoiding too much repetition and finding your perfect fitness fit.
Once you’ve finished a workout, log it on your Workout Calendar—an app that’s as straightforward and simple as it sounds. The calendar displays check marks for days when you exercised and, upon tapping, shows details like the number of reps, distance, and other inputted notes.
Cheers to a healthier you and habits that really stick. Technology seems sedentary by nature, but we know these innovations will get you fired up and off your duff—so prepare yourself to look great, feel fantastic and absolutely slay your fitness goals in 2017.
Annie’s based in Los Angeles but hails from Portland, Oregon. Sort of. She moved to six states by the time she reached middle school, and continues to move around the US and abroad – call her a nomad, but she prefers “Location ADHD.” After studying abroad in New Zealand, Annie circled the globe, graduated from USC, and circled the world once again. For one year she lived out of a backpack everywhere from The Philippines to Nepal to Slovenia to Norway. She’s a curry connoisseur and passionate explorer, taking the road less traveled, the “trail” covered in vines and swarmed in exotic bugs. Foreign lands feel like home, and Annie loves encouraging more and more people to utilize their passports and experience a new culture.