One of the hardest things about running is finding a good run -- when you're bogged down in setting up logistics for how long, how fast and how much you're hitting the streets, it's difficult to actually enjoy it and keep it going. Runkeeper, easily one of the most popular fitness tools online today, can help you with all of it by using your smartphone's GPS to gather helpful information about your daily run.
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You can also take advantage of Runkeeper's dashboard to see how your runs improve over time, run with a specified program (like their popular 5k trainer), and allow friends to send you encouraging messages while you run.
A great exercise routine can only do so much of the work -- it's also about what you put in your body that counts. MyFitnessPal is a straightforward, simple calorie counter that helps track food intake daily, setting caloric goals and factoring in exercise to give an accurate readout of how your diet shapes up every day.
Setting up a system is relatively easy, and it rewards you for staying on track by offering badges and challenges to loyal users. The app has a robust and fairly accurate pre-established database of foods -- even broken down to brands and menu items at popular restaurants. Comprehensive and simple, MyFitnessPal is a great way to get an idea of what your diet looks like and how you can change it over time.
Ladies: you're in luck. It's a challenge to find out a great workout for women, and Nike Training Club has fixed that with Nike Training Club, a big database filled with bodyweight exercise routines to get you moving quickly.
Users can select workouts based on their desired goals (sculpting, toning, strength and quick workouts that focus on different areas of the body) and relative fitness capabilities. This means that there is something for beginners and also fitness junkies looking to switch up their routines. You can also sync your own music to the workout, providing a seamless session that lets you get your sweat on.
4. Google Now
If you're all about making small lifestyle changes to help you lose extra pounds -- like climbing the stairs instead of taking the elevator or walking to lunch instead of driving -- then you'll be pleased to know that you can track it all without springing for a pedometer. Google Now quietly introduced a fitness tracking feature to its list of helpful information, so its simple to see how many steps or miles you've done in your day.
There's no extra features beyond a simple number, but sometimes that's all you need to get motivated.
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