The holidays are upon us! If you are anything like me, this means a lot of very tasty food is about to come your way. While the conventional wisdom of large weight gains due to the holidays may be exaggerated, many people do struggle with staying on top of their fitness goals this time of year. Thankfully, there is an app (or four!) for that. Here are a few apps we recommend to stay focused this, and every, time of year.
- MyFitnessPal – It’s hard to argue, though many do, with MyFitnessPal’s philosophy regarding the importance of tracking the foods we eat. It’s pretty straightforward; what you decide to eat each day has a huge impact on your health and fitness. Because the importance of food and caloric intake can’t be overstated, everyone should keep a detailed log of their diet. This isn’t to say we should stress over every calorie we consume, but a little more thought can do us all a lot of good. The app has a ton of great features which I won’t go into for time’s sake. Bottom line, go download the app and track every calorie you take in over the next week; you may be surprised by the data.
- Fitness Buddy – This is one of my personal favorites (enough that I bought the premium version). Long ago lifters kept journals (that’s man speak for diary) tracking their progress in the gym. Over a protein shake and a dozen raw eggs, they would analyze said data to see what worked and what did not when it came to their programming. This app simplifies that whole process. There are over 1,000 preloaded exercises available and the developers did a good job of sorting each movement out. You can customize your own movements or workouts as well. With the click of a button you are able to see your progress in a particular lift. This one is great for all the lifters who love to see the results (data) of their hard work. Just make sure you don’t become that guy in the gym on your phone longer than you lift.
- Fitbit – Ok, this is one that pretty much requires you to spend a good amount of money to buy a Fitbit tracker. I personally believe this app does its job and does it well. It provides motivation to keep moving and provides simple goals to achieve. The other data it provides (heart rate monitor, sleep tracking, calories burned, etc) is very useful as well. For those will a smaller budget, I recommend looking in the family of apps from mapmyfitness. They have free versions that will provide good info, though not to extent that the fitbit provides.
- Strides – So you download the above three apps, now what? Well, you get Strides to make sure you stay on top of all your goals, fitness and other. There are all sorts of preset goals you can choose from, or you can add your own. Remember when you said you were going to hit the gym every day this week? While, a reminder from this app may provide that little bit of extra motivation you need! We could all use a little nudge sometimes to help get it in gear. This app provides that nudge.
So there you have it. A few great apps, in my humble opinion anyway, that can help you make the progress you want. Keep in mind; these are just some tools to aid you along your journey. Ultimately it’s your mindset and personal motivation that will get allow you to reach your goals.