The Best Fitness iPhone and Android Apps of 2014

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  • Importance of Fitness

    Importance of Fitness

    Fitness is an important part of long-term health. If you’re in good physical shape, you reduce your risk of developing chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. Physical fitness can also improve your mental health by keeping symptoms of depression at bay.

    Read about this year’s best fitness apps on your journey to improve your health. They may boost your motivation and give you ideas for inexpensive, challenging workouts that you can do wherever you are.

  • Fitbit

    Fitbit

    iTunes – 4 stars with 20,728 ratings – Free

    Android – 4.1 stars with 28,681 ratings – Free

    If tracking all your activities seamlessly in one app helps you stay on the fitness bandwagon, choose Fitbit. You can use the app to map out routes to follow no matter if you run, hike, or cycle. And you can pair it with a Fitbit activity device to count your steps, how you sleep, and more. 

    You can also track your calories from over 350,000 food items stored in Fitbit’s database and see how many you’ve burned. Access graphs and charts detailing your active minutes, weight, and other stats with just a swipe of the finger.

  • Couch-to-5K

    Couch-to-5K

    iTunes – 5 stars with 263 ratings – $1.99

    Android – 4.5 stars with 2,320 ratings – $1.99

    The award winning Couch-to-5K is designed to help new runners ease their way into exercising with baby steps. With training programs developed by fitness professionals, Couch-to-5K lets you choose from four different virtual coaches who will give you tips and the motivation you need to get off the couch and get moving.

    Audio cues help keep you on track, and an in-app music player provides tunes for motivation. Map your routes and log your workouts. See your times drop as you become stronger.

  • 30 Day Fitness Challenges

    30 Day Fitness Challenges

    Android – 4 stars with 686 ratings  – $2.99

    Access a variety of fitness activities that ensure you won’t be bored doing the same workout all the time. Planks, squats, jumping jacks, and the “little black dress” challenge are just a few of the programs you can choose to complete.

    Each challenge features an instructional video to teach you the correct (and safe) way to do each exercise. Track your results over the course of the month and share them on your favorite social media platform.

  • Map My Run

    Map My Run

    iTunes – 5 stars with 93,424 ratings – Free

    Android – 4.5 stars with 66,691 ratings – Free

    If running is your go-to fitness activity, take a look at Map My Run. This handy tool does much more than just track your distance. The app computes your pace and heart rate, and it updates real time stats as you work out.

    Concerned about your diet? Track your nutrition and calorie intake too. Listen to music, take phone calls, or share your progress with your friends. The app will keep tracking as you do it all.

  • Fitness Buddy

    Fitness Buddy

    iTunes – 4.5 stars with 2,423 ratings – Free

    Android – 4 stars with 9,380 ratings – Free

    The wide variety of exercises, videos, and full workout routines available on Fitness Buddy will indeed make this app your new best friend.

    Choose from more than 75 customizable workouts, 1,000 videos, and 1,700 exercises to find the one that matches your lifestyle, goals, and fitness level. Over 4,000 photos help you learn the right way to exercise without the threat of injury.

    Tracking software lets you assess your weight and body measurements in easy-to-use graphs.

  • BodySpace – Social Fitness

    BodySpace – Social Fitness

    iTunes – 4.5 stars with 1,859 ratings – Free

    Android – 4 stars with 4,550 ratings – Free

    BodySpace combines a collection of top-rated workouts designed by professional trainers and athletes with a large online community of like-minded fitness enthusiasts.

    Choose the workout that appeals based on your age, fitness level, gender, and goals. Watch videos and read instructional guides to learn how to exercise safely and communicate with the BodySpace community for motivation and tips. Track your stats and times and share content on Facebook.

  • Jillian Michaels Slim-Down

    Jillian Michaels Slim-Down

    iTunes – 4 stars with 5,221 ratings – Free

    Android – 4 stars with 1,318 ratings – Free 

    Fitness guru Jillian Michaels created the Slim-Down program to motivate you to change your life through weight loss (when needed) and muscle toning. The app features food and fitness journals and a calorie counter to make following a healthy diet easier to manage.

    Tracking your fitness has never been simpler. Meal plans, recipes, and fitness routines help you create your own healthy lifestyle. Listen to podcasts for additional incentive and information. Each exercise has a video to help you learn how to not get hurt. 

  • Workout Hero

    Workout Hero

    iTunes – 4.5 stars with 1,536 ratings – $2.99

    Called out by the media as being a top-ranked fitness app, Workout Hero couldn’t be easier to use. Select your workout of the day from more than 700 options, log it, and follow your progress.

    A tap of your finger delivers progress reports and shares your results on social media. Tools include stopwatches, alarms, calendars, and heart rate monitors. Watch how-to videos and find a local gym if exercising at home leaves you wanting more.

  • JEFIT Workout

    JEFIT Workout

    iTunes – 4.5 stars with 1,854 ratings – Free

    Android – 4.5 stars with 29,468 ratings – Free

    JEFIT Workout is a bodybuilder’s dream app. Design your own workouts or use the pre-loaded weight training routines loaded on JEFIT. Track your sets and reps with a mere touch. The calendar feature helps you plan rest days.

    Don’t worry if weight lifting isn’t your exercise of choice – JEFIT tracks cardio workouts and yoga too. Connect with others to stay motivated, trade workout tips, and share your progress.

  • RunKeeper

    RunKeeper

    iTunes – 4.5 stars with 29,770 ratings – Free

    Android – 4.4 stars with 174,835 ratings – Free

    Workout styles vary from person to person. Some enjoy the solitude of a quiet run, while others perform better with encouragement and coaching. No matter what your preference is, RunKeeper fits the bill.

    Choose from pre-planned routes or map your trail for running, walking, or biking. Audio coaching helps keep you informed of your mileage, heart rate, pace, and calories burned. Track your gym workouts and other forms of exercise to keep your results compiled in one place.

  • Jawbone UP

    Jawbone UP

    iTunes – 3 stars with 2,481 ratings – Free

    Android – 3.8 stars with 8,954 ratings – Free

    Jawbone UP is a wristband-and-app combo that tracks your sleep patterns, diet, and physical activity all in one place. Alerts and alarms remind you to get moving so you can reach your daily step goals. 

    Use the innovative food and drink log to photograph and get nutritional information about your meals. Tracking your weight and mapping your run are just two of the many features of this popular fitness app.

  • Fitness and Safety

    Fitness and Safety

    Although fitness apps can offer helpful tips that may prevent injury during a workout, they’re not meant to take the place of medical advice.

    If it’s been a while since you’ve exercised, discuss your fitness plans with your doctor, or seek the advice of a personal trainer before you begin. Together, you and your healthcare team can develop a fitness plan that incorporates your favorite apps — and helps you stay safe.

  • Methodology

    Methodology

    We selected these fitness apps based on their potential to develop and track fitness goals. Additional factors considered in selecting these apps include user ratings, affordability, accessibility, format, functionality, and relevance to leading a physically fit lifestyle. Together, this collection represents the gamut of helpful iPhone and Android apps that are successfully designed to make keeping fit safe and fun.

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