The mantra repeated every January – “new year, new me” – is once more being chanted. People want to better themselves by eating right, exercising more, and simply living a healthier lifestyle. Transforming one’s life though takes persistence, accountability, support, and motivation. It’s not easy, which is why app developers are creating ways to make it easier. But not only are they making a healthy, active lifestyle simpler, they’re making it fun. Check out some of the most trending apps right now and see which one will help you achieve your 2017 health resolutions! Also, don’t forget to check out Empower Brokerage’s app, available on iPhone and Android, for quick and easy insurance quotes!
KaleKam – (free for IOS only – coming soon to Android)
Instead of calorie counting, this app assigns points for healthy eating based on the photos you upload. Users simply snap a photo of their meal and the program is able to determine the nutritious value of what’s pictured. In addition, KaleKam is a social app. Users can challenge and compete against friends. For instance, who can eat the most fruit and veggies in a week? Teams can also work together to achieve a common goal. Ultimately, the points, as well as photo log, track your progress to a healthier you.
Food Trainer (free for Android only – coming soon to IOS)
Psychologists at the University of Exeter discovered the power of a game that trains the brain to crave healthier foods. Of the 83 people tested with the game, all showed weight loss and a significant reduction in caloric intake. The games success lies in taking away the ‘mental reward’ of sugary and fatty foods, which reduces caloric intake. Because sugar and trans-fat release dopamine and endorphins, thus causing feelings of pleasure, as studies show, people become addicted and continue to crave what is bad for them.
Simple enough, the 10-minute game consists of flashcards that either shows healthy or unhealthy foods. As the cards flash, the user – in order to score points – must only select the healthy foods. The researchers and game developers found that ignoring unhealthy foods activates that brain’s reward system for healthy foods. People ultimately begin to crave healthier food.
Aaptiv (IOS and Android – $10/month)
As an ex-athlete, I miss the direction and motivation of a coach. They pushed me past my limits and helped me achieve my goals. With Aaptiv, it’s like having a coach in the palm of your hand. So whether you’re looking to train for a marathon or stretch your limits with yoga, Aaptiv has a personal coach for you!
Spotify (free for IOS and Android)
The most popular music app has one amazing feature that’ll make you look forward to running: custom running playlists to match your tempo perfectly. Spotify automatically detects a runner’s pace and chooses songs accordingly. Moreover, since Spotify syncs with Runkeeper, users also have the option to track their progress.
DietBet or Pact (free for IOS and Android)
Motivation and support are both key when trying to lose weight. Now there are two apps out there that do both! DietBet and Pact support users by creating a fun, online community, who all have the same goal – weight loss. Then, then apps motivate users through competition with others on the app by incentivizing weight loss with money! While both apps involve betting on yourself to lose your goal weight, each app does so differently. Check them out to see which one will work for you!
Shop Well (free for IOS and Android)
The ultimate accountability partner. Shop Well removes the stress of keeping the fridge and pantry stocked with healthy food. Users simply have to input their dietary goals, needs or restrictions, and the app creates a custom shopping list. While at the store, users can scan foods with their phone, and the app will rate the foods between 1 and 100 based on your profile. So if your food choices score low, then the app will suggest similar, but healthier alternatives. If you have a food allergy, this app is great for you!
Yonder (free for IOS and Android)
Do you like the great outdoors? Are you always up for an adventure? Then, Yonder is the app for you! This app notifies you of outdoor activities based on your interests and location. Activities include backpacking, biking, skiing, swimming, and much more! Yonder not only urges you to stay active, but it also keeps you engages with nature. As a social platform, it also enables you to write reviews of excursions to share with other users.
Headspace (free for IOS and Android)
Headspace is a guide to maintaining balance by providing 10-minute meditation training. Taking a few minutes out of your day to meditate has been shown to help people sleep better, stress less, and exercise more. Celebrity moguls like Emma Watson, Gwyneth Paltrow, Richard Branson, Arianna Huffington, as well as Fortune 500 companies swear by the power of meditation and the effectiveness of Headspace.
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Workout Apps
Wahoo’s 7-Minute Workout (free for IOS and Android)
These workouts are based on the 7-minute workouts published in the American College of Sports Medicine Journal and the NYTimes so they’ve been proven effective. Since the workouts are portable and quick, they can be completed anytime and anywhere.
CARROT Fit (free for IOS only)
While Wahoo’s workouts may be more original and professional, CARROT Fit offers a fun spin to the HIIT workouts. CARROT Fit relies on satire and dry humor to motive users and keep the workout interesting.
Keelo (free for IOS only)
Not only does the app offer quick workouts that fit perfectly into your busy life, but it also creates custom workouts based on your goals. It also outlines the workout so you know what to expect before you begin. Lastly, it syncs to Apple Health so that you can track your health and have access to a virtual coach.
Superhero Workout (IOS and Android – $2.99)
Train to become a superhero and go on epic missions in this fun videogame spin on the popular HIIT workouts! Through motion tracking, the app monitors every rep so that you can fully immerse yourself in the interactive game.
Sworkit (free for IOS and Android)
Like Wahoo’s 7-Minute Workout app, Sworkit is approved by the American College of Sports Medicine Journal. The beauty of this workout app is that it is completely customizable. You can create a custom routine as easily as if you were building a music playlist. On the other hand, you can also subscribe to playlists created by fitness professionals. The choice is yours!
Zombies, Run! (free for IOS and Android)
From the creators of the Superhero Workout, Zombies, Run! is an interactive app that makes running fun! The premise of the game is that you’re a survivor of the zombie apocalypse. Your mission in the game is to collect supplies, rescue other survivors, and defend the world’s last remaining outpost. While running, the app issues instructions and plays music, as well as sound effects, to keep you motivated. For added pressure, the zombies chase you so don’t lag behind!
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