Looking to get fit in time for the holiday season? We have you covered. One of the best ways to get fit is by taking a walk, jog or run. With phones getting more advanced each and every year comes new applications to keep you healthy. Integrated GPS, pedometer, accelerators and a number of other sensors make it easier than ever to track one’s activity on the go. Now all can be done through a single application on your phone. Across Google Play, there is a variety of apps associated with getting fit through running, tracking your progress to achieve goals. With that said, here are the best apps for monitoring runs.
The widely used Runkeeper is available free of charge, garnering over 10 million installs on Android alone. This app uses your smartphone’s integrated GPS sensor to track your runs, jogs and/or walks. In addition, Runkeeper offers a feature that many similar apps do not: tracking hikes and bike rides.
With other integrated sensors, the fitness app can track your running pace, time, speed, route, distance traveled, elevation, calories burned and more. Everything is right at your fingertips and can be adjusted, renamed and categorized by the calendar date. Runkeeper can also show your path using Google Maps.
All data and history is stored within the app in an organized manner. The coaching feature can be enabled from the settings menu to give fitness tips and keep you on pace, achieving goals with an extra push. Runkeeper also gives users a suggestion of installed apps on his or her device to listen to music while out on the road. Users also have the option to add core sessions and yoga as well as additional cross training of their choice right within the app, thus keeping a full log of all your physical activity.
Runkeeper is great for all ages. Whether you’re trying to finish your first full mile or run a marathon, Runkeeper can provide one useful tips. Android users have the power to keep track of their activity right from their home screen using a widget that comes installed alongside the app. Best of all, it will adjust in real-time.
Unlike many, Runkeeper supports Android Wear and wireless GPS. This means you can use your Android Wear device (so long as it has a GPS sensor) to track runs without the need to bring your phone with you. Once you complete your activity, all the details will automatically sync over to your smartphone once reconnected. For even more connectivity, users can sync up their data from other applications such as MyFitnessPal, Garmin Connect, Fitbit and Google Fit. By monitoring your weight, sleep, and step count, Runkeeper is perfect for just about anyone looking to track their physical activity.
Runtastic, which is owned by Adidas, has both free version and paid versions, the latter costing $4.99 with in-app purchases unlocking even more capabilities. Runtastic recently surpassed 10 million installations and has made a name for itself in the best fitness apps available. Just like Runkeeper, Runtastic offers many of the same capabilities. It also supports Android Wear; however, it’s yet to bring standalone GPS compatibility to take advantage of your smartwatch’s built-in GPS. You’ll have to bring your smartphone with you in order to fetch accurate data.
As expected you can track your run, jog, walk and more with Runtastic and the service’s assorted apps. Runstastic’s interface offers Material Design and an easy glance view showing your pace, duration, average pace, calories burned, distance traveled and a map representing current location. If you get stopped at a light, you can easily stop your activity with the slide of a finger. Playing music, listening to coaching tips and monitoring heart rate are all here, so you’re not missing out on any goodies. Following the end of an activity, users can view all their stats and history for free. Viewing routes, though, is a premium feature.
Unlike Runkeeper, Runtastic has an option allowing users to see the current weather status for of a location without the need to open a separate app. You can also record these weather conditions for future reference. Runtastic’s built-in sharing option lets users quickly share their progress or a recent activity he/she is proud of to all their social media accounts. Runtastic is available on smartphones in addition to tablets, which offer a great experience as well.
You should know that Runtastic is an Editors Choice in the Play Store, making it a reliable pick for anyone.
Nike+ Running is a bit more conservative and focuses on the basics. One of the strongest points of Nike+ Running is being able to use a large variety of accessories. Some of Nike’s accessories make for the most accurate results. Some include the company’s fuel bands and Nike+ wearables. In addition, users can use his/her smartphone to capture data using its integrated sensors.
With Nike+ Running, users can get coaching tips using the newly released Nike+ Coaching program built directly into the app. Just like many other running apps, Nike+ tracks your time, distance, avg. pace and route. All of which can be viewed during the exercise or after. In addition, Nike+ brings fuel points and achievements that help one stay on pace to achieve their goals. Users can share their runs with others and try to compete with each other on a variety of social networks. Nike+ also brings an easy option for listening to music during one’s exercise with a built-in music player.
As a result, Nike promises that tracking your progress with Nike+ Running is the easiest and most accurate way to achieve one’s fitness goals.
With Strava, users get a dose of everything. Strava works for running, jogging, walking and cycling using a device’s in-house GPS sensors. Once initially set up, Strava will automatically track your runs and rides beginning when the user presses start. Users can build different routes and courses to follow along with or just in case you get lost. It tracks key statistics such as distance, pace, speed, elevation and calories burned. It can also store data taken on a connected heart rate monitor that is sold separately.
One of the best things about Strava is the whole user experience. Users can browse new locations and nearby locations and even view pictures taken there. If you’re looking to explore a new area, no problem! Strava includes some of the most popular sites nearby and shows one how he/she can get there. Users can then go on to create their own route using the built-in mapping system.
Strava is always worried about keeping you fit. It highly encourages users to beat out the competition using social leaderboards. Users can challenge their friends, locals and even professional athletes. Users can also set their own monthly goals to push them even further. Following friends has never been easier than on Strava. Members can poke at each other and motivate others to exercise through the app and then share activity once done. For an extra boost of functionality, members can post on each other’s behalf and comment on profiles.
Strava is free, but the premium version will take the experience even further. Strava also has support for Android Wear, but it’s yet to take advantage of some of the newest smartwatches that have a GPS sensor installed. Overall, Strava is a great app for those looking to track their physical activity and its built-in sharing options and leaderboards make exercising a bit more fun.
Although not the most accurate when it comes to statistics, Map My Run rounds out the top five because of high compatibility and built-in workout trainer. While free, this app has in-app purchases from $5.99 all the way up to $29.99 for bonus features.
Map My Run can track your running, jogging, walking, workouts and calories burned. Differently, Map My Run originated from a web-based app and offers nearly all of its features on the web. What does this mean? Taking your Map My Run profile across devices is probably easier than any other service. What makes Map My Run even more unique is its ability to connect with over four hundred devices to import and analyze stats all in one convenient place. Additionally, those who have an Android Wear watch will be happy to know it’s supported. Not only does Map My Run record one’s fitness data, it also has a built-in section for nutrition because maintaining a healthy diet while exercising is key in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Users can also sync their account with other health apps such as MyFitnessPal and Google Fit. Newly enhanced support for Gear Tracking lets users be more precise when tracking mileage by connecting their athletic shoes. It will also give users updates as to when their shoes need to be replaced.
A cool feature called Live Tracking has been included so that you can track your location from the web if something happens to you. Just like many others, members can also share their activities with friends and family all within the app and comment on performances. Graphs show one’s bumps in heart rate as well as any vary in elevation or sudden pace changes. If you want to look at your workout history, it’s all possible with Map My Run because everything is kept within a log inside the app. One can even put in their calorie intake using the ‘Log Food’ section.
Hands down the best part of Map My Run is the ability to choose from a wide selection of workouts. With a built-in trainer, the app can give one suggestions to installed workouts based on what they have been training for and what they need to improve upon. There are over six hundred different workouts to choose from so one could never get bored with the options. Instructions can be provided on-screen or through audio.
For those feeling like this isn’t enough, users can train like a profressional with an MVP membership to Map My Run. This supply’s exclusive offers and promotions in addition to an ad-free experience with access to special features that are unavailable in the free version. To find out what comes free and what doesn’t, you can look under the app description or try the app out for yourself at the download link below.
There you have it! All of the aforementioned apps receive frequent updates to ensure the experience is always at its best. Running (but really health and fitness in general) has been a major focus among many manufacturers and app developers in recent years, and we’re hoping the growth doesn’t stop here. Feel free to drop a comment below on a running app you’re currently using and how you’re liking it.