Working out with your smartphone

Are you hitting a bit of a brick wall when exercising? Here are some top apps that can reinvigorate your workouts and track your diet.
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Working out with your smartphone

The gym can be an intimidating place. Not only is there lots of strange-looking equipment, but at times it can seem that everyone besides you intuitively knows what they’re doing – whilst you’re there doing star-jumps.

This is where your smartphone comes in. There is an array of helpful apps that can help you get the most out of your workouts. Apps that can show you how to perform each exercise properly. Or put together a workout routine tailored to your fitness goals. There’s even one app that motivates you to run by making you think you’re being chased by zombies....

Zombies, run! App

iOS (FREE) / Android (FREE)

Zombies, run! is for those of you who need a bit of motivation to get out jogging and don’t mind the idea of being chased by hordes of the brain-hugry undead.

The storyline evolves over the course of 200 missions that you listen to whilst running. As you progress over each jog, you acquire rewards and supplies to build up a base and protect yourself against a zombie epidemic. These can include better defences, new buildings or food supplies, which are updated depending on how well you did on your run.

Of course the best part of the game is that there are zombies (imaginary of course) lurking about the streets that you have to escape from, meaning you get a proper workout that varies in intensity.

Fitnet

iOS (FREE) / Android (FREE)

Fitnet doesn’t just have a stack of structured workouts videos from personal trainers; you can also use your front camera so that the app can check if you are doing exercises correctly. This means you will avoid injury and get the optimum benefit from your exercise sessions.

Fitnet provides real-time feedback so that you can be on course every step of the workout. And with workouts at just 5-minutes long, you’ll have no excuse not to give it a try.

StrongLifts 5x5

iOS (FREE) / Android (FREE)

If your fitness goal is to pack on muscle and get stronger, then StrongLifts 5x5 is a great app to steer you on your way.

Based on three 45-minute sessions per week, StrongLifts 5x5 will build strength and definition throughout your entire body. Exercises include the Squat, Bench Press, Deadlift, Overhead Press and Barbell Row, which are compound movements meaning they work more than one muscle group.

As you've probably guessed from the name, you do five repetitions of each exercise five times according to the schedule outlined by the app. You can get detailed information on how to properly perform each exercise on their website which also has detailed instructional videos.

If you stick to the plan, then you'll start to see results within a matter of weeks.

Check it out for yourself on iOS and Android.

MyFitnessPal

iOS (FREE) / Android (FREE)

Getting fit, building muscle and burning fat isn’t all just about hitting the gym – a large degree of your success will boil down to what you’re eating.

MyFitnessPal is a great way to track your daily calorie intake. Once you open the app, you have to log your weight, height and desired weight loss so that it can create a tailored calorie intake plan.

Not only does it have a large database of brand name foods that you can log instantly, you can also enter the ingredients of something you've cooked from scratch and the app will predict its nutritional value.

Once you've used MyFitnessPal over a period of time, the app remembers your favourite foods and you can enter them into your daily tracker instantly.

Available on both iOS and Android.

And finally…

Of course, if none of the above apps tickle your fancy, then you can always just download Eye of the Tiger from iTunes or Google Play Store– probably the most sure-fire method of getting you pumped up for exercise.

Have you got any better suggestions of how a smartphone can help you out in the gym? Let us know in the comments below!

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

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