If you ask my friends what I'm really into, they'll definitely mention fitness. As surprisingly as it sounds, this wasn't the case about ten years ago, until I decided I wanted to lose weight and start training more seriously. I've been able to achieve my goals and understand what I was doing thanks to a bunch of apps, and I wanted to share a some of them with you to help you get in shape or track your objectives in a way that matches your lifestyle.
I've compiled a list of apps with the help of our team, and organized them into categories, as not everybody has the same needs and ambition.
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An update to Google Fit began rolling out to both phones and Android Wear this week. In terms of changes, watches took the lead on this release with a short list of fairly significant additions, including audio alerts during runs, updates to the workout mode, a new screen for workout history, and even automatic heart rate tracking for some recent models. While phones weren't left out entirely, the only notable addition is a new app shortcut for handsets running Nougat and above.
A very long-awaited update to Google Fit began rolling out earlier this week, but it seemed to focus almost entirely on improvements to the Wear micro-app while the main app was all but ignored. As it turns out, that was a mistake. A fresh update to the app started rolling out yesterday and it brings the rest of the features that were intended for this release – and what a list of features they are.
Note: Everything here was about to be part of a teardown, but the update stole that thunder.
It's been a while since we've seen a true update to Google Fit – about 6 months if you don't count a version that turned up in the final M Developer Preview. You might even say the app got a bit flabby over the summer. (Sorry.) The latest version began rolling out yesterday and it's featuring a couple of big changes for Android Wear, including a brand new watch face and a trainer mode to help you get in shape. The main app also went through a couple of changes, but they're nothing to get excited about. However, check back later for a pretty big teardown – some big things are happening.
Runtastic knows that you'll be sitting on your ass for hours during Google I/O, watching the conference and gorging on all the news, so it decided to release a new app to... taunt you? Or motivate you to get back in shape once I/O is over? Whatever the purpose, Leg Workout Trainer is now available on the Play Store.
Leg Workout Trainer joins the previously released Butt Trainer in bringing a series of muscle-focused (or group of muscles-focused) exercises to your phone in video form, with step-by-step instructions and photos. It has predefined workouts (7-minute, Pilates, and more) and three levels of difficulty, but also allows you to customize the training to target a specific problem area in your lower body.
Are you willing to exercise to get in shape? I see some of you nodding your heads, but others look like they need more motivation. What if missiles were flying towards you? What if the fate of the world depended on you throwing just five more punches or hanging in there long enough for three more of your best push-ups? If that's the kind of incentive you need to start burning those calories, then developer Six to Start has the app for you.
7-Minute Superhero Workout gives users the kind of heart-pumping, jeopardy-based stimulation we've seen in previous releases Zombies, Run! and The Walk.
Active folks who fire up the latest version of the Fitbit app will see a new section tucked away in the sidebar: Challenges. Contained within is a way to take the fitness-minded company's Android experience and make it more social. Users now have the ability to challenge up to 10 people and compete with them in any of three contests.
Fitbit wearers can compete to see who can complete the most steps in a single day, over the weekend, or throughout an entire work week. Invitees have up to twenty-four hours to accept a challenge, and if they jump in after a competition starts, Fitbit will still count their data for the full length of time.
Few things motivate me to run more than the threat of disembodied zombies pursuing me through city streets. For a while now, escaping the undead has felt dull and repetitive, as if I'm just going through the same motions over and over again. Fortunately, Six to Start is back with a brand new season of Zombies, Run! Fans of the fitness game have been eagerly awaiting a new chapter almost as fervently as Walking Dead watchers crave their favorite AMC hit.
For owners of the app, this update brings a refreshed look to the UI, revamps the base-building experience, and adds seven new missions to the storyline.