Are you ready for another Booty Blast Sunday? I’ve definitely seen a difference in the firmness of my glutes and thighs since I started doing these workouts. This wasn’t my main area of concern, but it definitely needed some work, so I’ve been very pleased with my progress in this area. How is everyone doing with today’s workout? Anyone have a favorite out of these videos today?
Yesterday was my 2nd round of my new Plank Challenge, and I was able to make it about 15 more seconds than the 1st day. It was definitely a struggle, but we’ll see if I make any more progress today. My friend Cindy told me she tried the plank challenge to see how long she could hold a plank and was disappointed with herself on her first try… But guess what? I was exactly where she’s at about 3 months ago! Everyone starts somewhere!
My Top 8 Fitness Apps:
I’ve been thinking about this for a few days, and decided that I would post my favorite fitness apps that I like to use to keep track of things or to use while working out. I have found various apps that have really proven helpful, informative, and/or motivating in some way for me, so I thought I’d share them with you. They are all FREE to download, so if you haven’t already, give them a try. Here they are (in no particular order):
1. My Fitness Pal
This app is probably one of the top-used and top-rated apps available for health and fitness. Not only does it count your calories, scan bar codes of the foods you eat to automatically add and calculate them, and let you know how many calories you should eat for whatever goal you set for yourself (i.e. maintain, lose, or add weight). This app also connects with a list of other fitness-related apps (including some you’ll see below) to integrate and collaborate the information. Bonus, you get these motivating little messages now telling you when you made a good food choice, such as, “Well done! This food is high in protein.”
The next on my list, and my personal favorite “top pick” is the Fitbit app. Of course, this app will work a whole lot better when you actually have a fitbit, which keeps track of how many steps you take daily as well as the level of intensity and how many calories you’ve burned. Sync this app with your MyFitnessPal app and it will incorporate how many calories you’ve taken in versus how many you’ve burned for the day. It keeps track of your sleeping patterns, how much water you drink each day, and shows you a chart graph of your weight and body-fat percentage (assuming you enter the amounts or integrate it with the Aria scale.)
This app is great for people who like to run, jog, or even walk. There are options for GPS tracking and also for running indoors on a treadmill. You can integrate your music and select a power-song to play when you need an extra boost. Invite your friends to participate in a Nike+ challenge to see who can get to a set number of miles first, and who can complete them by a particular deadline. This app can be very motivating to get your cardio in, for sure! Turn on “cheers” so that your friends on your linked Facebook or Twitter accounts can see it, like, or comment, and you’ll hear a cheer for each one during your run! You can adjust the settings to notify you at varying intervals of your progress – I like to know when I hit each quarter of a mile. It also tells you your average pace, and tells you when you’ve set or exceeded your own records for time, distance, and more.
Next on the list is, of course, the Blogilates app, available in the Google Play store and the iTunes App Store. The free features of this app include the Blogilates YouTube Videos that you can search by series or even the body part you want to focus on for a workout. It also contains free and easy healthy recipes, a link to the Blogilates shop, and of course, the forum with various topics, including Before and After, Getting Fit, Food Log, Motivation, and more. The best part of the app, in my opinion, is the feature containing the monthly calendars complete with a list of the daily workout videos you can link directly to from your phone and check off as you complete them. This option is only $0.99 per month, and well worth the money if you take your workouts to the gym like I do sometimes. Bonus – each month’s calendar has a secret video that you can only access through the app.
This app, available in the Google Play Store and iTunes App Store, is a great tool for High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) exercises. You can set your own intervals of rounds and rest, how many rounds you want to complete, and can even change the settings for appearance, sounds, and how many seconds you want a warning for on rounds starting and finishing. There are several apps available on the market that are similar to this one, but I’ve found this particular app to have the easiest user interface as well as the most appealing look. And if you’re not doing HIIT, you should give it a try! You can get more results in much less time with the science to back up its effectiveness!
This app is another good one to take with you to the gym or use for a home workout routine. You start out by selecting your goal: Get Lean (cardio drills to slim down), Get Toned (lift weights to add definition), Get Strong (increased weights/reps to build strength), or Get Focused (target specific areas). Then you choose your fitness level – Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced, and it will give you a list of several different workouts you can choose from, varying anywhere from 15-45 minutes. This is a great way to learn new moves (or be reminded of old ones) and do different workouts every day so that you don’t plateau. Create a program that will put together a whole month’s worth of routines for you. Each workout shows you how to do every move and times everything out for you. Just hit Start and go!
Of course no workout is complete without a good playlist of your favorite music playing in your headphones. I use this app to maintain all of my music files and create playlists for specific workouts I’m planning on doing, including a Running Playlist, a weight-lifting playlist, a yoga/stretching playlist, or just a general Workout playlist! For me, like many people, music can be very motivating and can give you that extra boost you need to go hard or put you in the mind-frame you’re aiming to be in. If you have an Amazon Prime membership, you also now have access to hundreds of songs for free. Browse the free music by genre and add it to a playlist for easy-access when you need it.
Ok, this app is seriously cool. I recently heard about it, and had to add it to my fitness app collection. You basically become a sponsored athlete any time you want to walk, run, or bike using this app. For each mile you go, corporate sponsors will donate a set amount of money to a charity of your choice. You just go in, choose what charity you want donated to (a few big names include Wounded Warrior Project, ASPCA, Habitat for Humanity, Alzheimer’s Association, the Michael J. Fox Foundation, Special Olympics, Stand Up to Cancer, Autism Speaks, and more), indicate whether you’re walking, running, or biking (indoor or outdoor), and START! Biking will earn your charity $0.10 per mile, and walking or running earns $0.25 per mile.
Let me know if there are any of these apps you haven’t tried yet, and let me know what you think of them once you have tried them! Are there any other apps that you think should have made the list?