by Danielle Clark-Fox, DPT
I have come across many smart phone applications and inernet sites geared towards giving your workout routines a boost lately so I decided to dedicate a blog to putting them in one accessible location!
A couple months ago I tried jog.fm and am in love! This website helps you create the best music mix for walking, running, cycling or any other workout you need a play list for. You can enter your mile pace for suggestions on songs with a beat to compliment your pace! You can also view other people’s play lists they have decided to share on the website. You can save your own play lists in the favorites section for future reference or save other people’s. There’s also a map section to route your workout. There are links to iTunes and Amazon MP3 if you would like to purchase one of the songs. One of the things I like best about the site is it’s not just current top 40 suggestions, there’s everything from the Beatles to Kings of Leon to suite everyone’s taste.
An app for your phone is imapmyfitness, and it’s free! This application uses the GPS in your phone to help track your outdoor workouts, but it’s much more comprehensive with subsets for diet/nutrition, logging your workout history and syncs for online viewing with imapmyfitness.com. The feature that most caught my attention was the real time tracking of your workout. There’s a voice feedback option through your headphones to update you in about distance, pace and speed. It will also log elevation information. You can manually enter your gym routines to create an accurate workout history. There aren’t many customer reviews yet as it’s relatively new but current feedback is positive. After exploring the features myself, it feels like the big brother of mapmyrun.com since it will sync phone/computer all into one.
An app more geared towards diet/nutrition is MyFitnessPal, which is also free. What really caught my eye with this one is the bar code scanner! Yup, that’s right- you can scan the bar code of the Cliff Bar you just ate to add it in to your daily log! The database has over 1 million types of food items in it, pretty much guaranteeing you will find what you ate for the most accurate caloric picture. You can also create custom foods, perhaps something you whip up yourself in a craving, to store in your database. It will also store recipes with their calorie information for future eating reference. It will also help you break your food intake down for fiber, protein, carbs and other nutritional information. There is no internet connection required for most of its uses so you can really track your nutritional progress anywhere! The current version of this app has more than 20,000 positive reviews, so this one is definitely worth checking out.
I know there are thousands of website and apps to track everything from body fat to steps you take in a day, but I picked out a few of the ones with the most comprehensive functions and best reviews from users, including myself. Give us a shout at BSM if you have found a site/app you can’t live without, we’d love to hear about it and check it out!
Dr. Fox is a physical therapist at Boston Sports Medicine