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Brett Alan’s Top Apps For Exercise And Diet

Woman running with her dog
(Flickr.com user lululemon athletica)

When someone told me that there was a video game system that made you move your body instead of sitting on the couch and exercising their thumbs, I thought they were crazy. Fitness has taken on a whole new face and it’s including technology that fits in your hands.

Now that the weather is starting to get warmer here in Buffalo, you see a whole lot more people outside getting exercise.  Those of us that like to run, no longer have to be cooped up inside a stinky gym running on treadmills like rats in a lab.  We can put real miles on our shoes and take in some pretty incredible scenery while we do it.

As a country, most of us are way overweight.  I say “us” because I’m right there too.  However, there are tons of resources out there to help us get back on track and most of it is free.

In the last year, I’ve come in contact with a couple of great apps that can be downloaded onto a smart phone to help add up the exercise you’ve done, count calories, give us healthy recipes, or just great advice to make us healthier.  The thing that’s good about the apps is that if you’re not right next to a computer, you can still log information into them that will help you lose weight.  They’re essentially weightloss journals that are right on your phone.

Here are my top 3:

1. Sparkpeople (Sparkpeople.com)

This one would fall more on the diet side of fitness than the exercise side which makes it great for people who are a little less active.  It’s great because it helps you count up (and therefore see) how many calories you are taking in with a huge database of foods to choose from.  It also gives you inspirational quotes to keep you motivated.  If that’s not enough, it’s kind of like a social networking site where everyone has the same goal…get healthy! I actually used this one a lot when I was training for my half marathons. 

2.  MyFitnessPal (MyFitnessPal.com)

This app is similar to Sparkpeople in the sense that it’s a calorie counter and diet tracker but it’s got some extra cool features.  What I like the best about MyFitnessPal is that it has a barcode scanner that will bring up the exact food that you’re eating when scanned on the package.  It makes it really easy to add up your calories.  It also shows very obviously how many calories you’ve used and how many you have left for the day.  Then it’s also got a great section for adding up the exercise that you do throughout the day.  So if you can budget yourself, this app might work great for you.

3.  MapMyRun (MapMyRun.com)

This one is pretty sweet for people who like to run out doors.  Sometimes you just gotta break free from the gym and this app will help you do that.  It actually helps you track and log your runs from the pace that you’re running at to the distance you’ve run and the calories burned. 

It’s pretty amazing how technology has been integrated into exercise over the years.  Have you got a favorite app that you like to use to help you lose weight, get in shape, or get more out of your exercise?

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