Calorie and nutrition trackers
Whether you’re trying to get stronger, build muscle, lose weight, or hit all your nutrition goals to be healthier, your diet is a huge part of your fitness and health journey. Ever heard the phrase, “you can’t outwork a bad diet”? Well, that rings true in all aspects. No matter how hard you work out at the gym, if you’re eating poorly, you won’t achieve the results you want or need for your health. Luckily, there are apps that will help to calculate your macronutrient or micronutrient goals, log your daily caloric intake, and track your progress throughout your journey.
MyPlate Calorie Counter
MyPlate is an app by LIVESTRONG, that provides more than just nutrition help. They’re focused on meeting health goals, not necessarily fitness goals by offering users customized meal plans, recipes, and workouts to help you along your way. MyPlate tracks daily calories, exercise, and progress towards your health goals, develops customized meal plans for your target macros, includes free recipes to inspire you to eat healthier, and short workouts and estimated calories burned per workout.
This calorie counter app is beloved by many for its interface, vast user-uploaded meals that make calorie counting a little easier, and ability to scan packaged foods and upload its nutrition into the app. Their premium version offers features like a macronutrient chart that shows you your macros by the gram or percentage in your diary, food analysis, CSV export, and more. However, the free version is tried and true and is great on its own!
For all you keto dieters out there, FatSecret helps you count your calories and your macros to ensure you stay on track. You can even connect it to your Apple Health app and Fitbit to sync your fitness stats with the app and keep everything in one place.
Carb Manager: Keto Diet App
Another one for you keto-ers and low-carb dieters out there. It tracks net carbs, macros and micronutrients in over a million foods, includes keto-friendly or low carb recipes, meal plans, shopping lists, and can be integrated with your Fitbit, Garmin, and other apps like Apple Health and Google Fit. You’ll be good with using the free portion of Carb Manager, but there is an option to upgrade to Premium which includes more recipes, exclusive premium recipes, personalized meal plans, unlimited logging and more. We’d recommend starting off with their free version if you’re just starting out on your keto journey and upgrading to the more robust Premium once you feel the need to kick things up a notch!
Free, Premium for $39.99 USD for 1 year
Strength training apps
Working those muscles? Us too. If you need a little guidance when it comes to weightlifting or strengthening and toning up, it’s important to keep in mind good form to avoid injury. Strengthening your muscles is not only going to help sculpt your body, but it will also help you build muscle tone that will help you get stronger and to burn fat. Ready to get really really sore?
Nike Training Club
Leave it to Nike to create a completely free fitness app that is actually really amazing. NTC is a beautifully designed app that’s easy to use and includes a huge library of workouts for all fitness levels, workout preferences, variable equipment (or no equipment so you can work out at home), and features workouts led and guided by their Nike Master Trainers and sometimes celebrity athletes. Each workout is guided by voice, includes video instructions on how to do each move, and sets the interval time for you so all you have to do is follow along. It really is like having a personal trainer with you. Nike is constantly expanding their library so now you can find everything from yoga to HIIT and boxing to bodyweight training.
Fitbod is a strength training app designed to guide you through your workout at the gym. It takes the planning out of your gym session so you can focus on getting those reps in and getting stronger. Their method is unique because it personalizes your workout plan based on your strength-training ability, studies your past workouts and maximizes the equipment available to you.
Available on: iOS only
Similar to Fitbod, Fitness Buddy is another great app for guidance at the gym. What we love about it is the animations (with real people) that show you how to do each move with the ability to select the type of equipment available to you. The app also includes curated workouts you can do at the gym or at home too! We’d recommend it for anyone who’s just getting started with weight training or cultivating an at-home gym.
The free version is pretty straight-forward and easy to use for guidance at the gym with free weights as well as machines. With premium, you get curated gym workouts, custom workout creator, exercise videos nutrition plans and more.
Premium: $9.99/mo; $29.99 billed annually
Whatever your fitness goals are, yoga is always a good idea to include in your workout routine. Why? Well, yoga focuses on strength and balance as much as it does on flexibility. It’ll help improve posture so if you’re working at a desk all day, you need yoga in your life. You’ll also find the practice of yoga particularly relaxing--maybe not at first as your body is getting the hang of the positions, but it is a nice change from your usual cardio or gym session.
Asana Rebel uses the foundations of yoga to bring robust yoga-inspired fitness to your workout regimen. You can find meditative yoga tutorials as well as fat-burning HIIT workouts using yoga moves you never knew could burn so much. The free version contains loads of yoga videos to follow along and do wherever you are--upgrading to premium unlocks even more variety of videos and workouts if you ever get bored of the free ones or want to deepen your practice.
Premium 3 months $43.99
If you’re looking for an all-around yoga app, look no further. Daily Yoga features a ton of guided yoga classes, meditation, work out plans, and even mixes in HIIT, pilates, and vinyasa to help you burn fat. You’ll stay motivated too with workouts and challenges that you can complete that will show up in your practice profile. It becomes really addicting once you have a few days logged and minutes. The app is free to use but you can upgrade to their Pro subscriptions for added features and more workouts.
Premium $12.99 - $19.99/mo
Meditation and wellness
Mental health and wellness are of the utmost importance when it comes to overall fitness. Studies have shown that exercise alone can help improve mental health, ease anxiety and reduce stress, but what about when you’re not working out? Meditation is great for your health and can help you develop a calm and mindfulness most of us desperately need. It’s not a cure-all for all mental health issues, but can be a solution and a practice that will help you make the days more bearable.
We love Headspace because of how it is set up. You can ease into your meditation practice if you’re a total newbie and you will feel better and better each day. It does take practice to truly be able to focus on meditation, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to use your practice whenever you’re feeling overwhelmed. It’s a great tool to have and Headspace will help you get there.
The free portion of Headspace includes the foundation of meditation and mindfulness that will help you get you accustomed to the practice. You can upgrade to the premium subscription plan that includes the basics, mini-meditations for busier schedules, themed meditations, mindfulness exercises and more extras that will deepen your practice.
Premium: $12.99/mo ; $7.99/mo billed annually
If you’re looking for a meditation app that also helps you get more restful sleep, Calm is it. The downside is, this app doesn’t offer a free version past its 7-day trial, but it’s a great app that we couldn’t exclude from this list. They’ve created a platform that masterfully combines methods to help you meditate and sleep better--something we all need--and even includes their unique Sleep Stories, which are basically bedtime stories read by well-known voices to help you drift off into a deep slumber. What are these well-known voices you ask? Let’s see… there’s Matthew McConaughey for starters--need we say more?
7-day free trial, then $59.99 USD billed annually
Running & cycling apps
OK, folks--if you’re running you need to use Charity Miles. With Charity Miles, you can select a charity ranging from categories like health, children, animals, environment, education, veterans and more to fundraise for. You can turn your evening jog, walk, dance or cycling session into a fundraiser for the charity of your choice by connecting in the app and tracking your activity. Every mile you log means money for your selected charity. If you needed the motivation to get moving, we hope you’ve found it here.
If you’re looking to track your progress and runs, map routes and discover new ones, Runkeeper does all that and more. Runkeeper lets you schedule your runs and helps you stick to your goals. If you’re training for something like a marathon, the app lets you set distance, pace or weight goals so you can stay motivated and on track. They even have audio cues to let you know what your pace, distance and time is without having to look at your phone. Keep in mind that the free version offers tracking and logging of activities and basic stats (that’s really all you need), but the Runkeeper Go--their premium version--includes the aforementioned progress insights, stats, tailor-made workouts, weather insights, live tracking and more.
Strava is a unique running and cycling app built as a social platform for athletes. Not only does it allow users to map routes, view popular routes, and track new ones, but it also includes a social aspect where users can share trails and routes, photos, cheer each other on, and meet new people. The complex GPS mapping system connects with your phone, GPS watch or head unit, heart rate monitor or power meter to record your stats and track your performance so you can focus on getting better.
The free portion of the app allows you to track fitness activity, record your run, map cycling routes, and analyze training with stats. With their premium upgrade called Summit, you can get a customizable workout and training plans, get live feedback on your training, and extensive performance metrics. There are three Strava Summit packs you can opt into for a fee: Training, Safety, and Analysis--depending on your needs you can sign up for one, two, or all three. Each offer different use cases like race analysis with the Training Pack and live GPS tracking for the Safety Pack.
Premium: 1-pack $24/year; 3-pack $60/year (17% discount)
Boutique fitness studio locator apps
As boutique fitness studios are becoming more popular, we wanted to include a few apps that will help you find a studio or fitness class you love. Not all of us enjoy lifting or going for runs and that’s totally okay. There are a ton of different workout methods you might enjoy that hit all your cardio and strength training needs without having to lift heavy weights at the gym or running on a treadmill. Some of these include kickboxing, pilates, yoga, barre, cycling--you get the gist. The following apps make it easy to find something you love and reinvigorate your enthusiasm for working out again.
Mindbody allows you to explore an immense library of fitness classes, studios and even salons and spa treatments around you easily and acts as a platform for reservations without the need for pesky memberships or complicated sign-up processes. The app even connects to your Fitbit if you want to track your workouts and heart rate from the classes you take all in the app! We love that it allows you to easily reserve classes instead of having to call or drop-in.
Classpass offers membership to users to access a wide array of fitness studios across the US without having to sign up for a bunch of different studios. If you’re still on the search for a workout method that you enjoy, or if you’d like to try out a bunch of different fitness classes, Classpass might be for you. You’ll also save money this way since you won’t be paying drop-in rates at all the fitness studios you’ll be trying.
You can find group fitness classes to attend last-minute at a discounted rate on Zenrez in major cities across the US. The platform includes fitness classes like boxing, barre, Zumba, Pilates, TRX and many more. They’ve built a network of fitness studios all over to make it easier for people to discover new fitness studios in their area. We love Zenrez for this reason. It’s easy to just jump into a class on a whim and try something new for a change. Who knows? Maybe you’ll find your new favorite thing.
Available on: iOS only