Technology has made it much easier to be fit and healthy. There’s no app that can make you exercise or put the right foods in your mouth – you have to do that yourself. But, there are now some brilliant products and apps that help to take some of the friction out of the process.
Here are seven health and fitness apps that, with the exception of one, I use every day:
I’ve used Whoop for nearly four years. I use the app a handful of times a day and have referred many people to it.
It’s a wearable that tracks your sleep, recovery, and daily effort. It tracks all of the usual health markers – heart rate variability, resting heart rate, skin temperature, blood oxygen and respiratory rate. They also have proprietary recovery and strain scores which help you understand when to push and rest.
I love their sleep tracking. Sleep is a massive focus for me and I like to understand how long and well I’ve slept the night before. More recently, I’ve also been using their live activity feature for heart rate zone 2 training sessions.
One of the other reasons I love Whoop is because of the insights it gives you on your behaviours. Use whoop for a few weeks and you’ll realise how terrible alcohol is for your sleep, heart rate variability and resting heart rate. You’re almost guaranteed a red recovery score the night after a few drinks. That was a huge eye opener for me.
If I could only keep one of my health and fitness apps, I would choose Whoop – hands down.
I’ve been using MyFitnessPal for the last six months or so. It’s a food diary that makes it super easy to track your calories and nutrients. You can scan the barcode of any food, or search their crowdsourced database.
I use it to track everything I eat. It helps me stick to my target calories and macronutrients (protein, fat and carbohydrates) each day. It also gives me a nice previous seven day trend of how things are going. Even for someone like me who has a very good understanding of what foods contain, it steers my decisions for food daily. Tracking my food intake more closely is easily the most impactful thing I’ve done for my health in the last 6 months. I’m making better choices. I’m also lighter, leaner and feel way better.
Apple Health has only been something I’ve been using for the past 6 weeks. The only thing I use it for is to track my daily steps, which has become a recent focus of mine. And it does that nicely!
Pliability is one of two apps I use to take the guesswork out of mobility. It focuses on static stretching routines, combining mindfulness and breathing techniques too. Kinda, yoga’ery.
It has a mobility test you can do, which then personalises your experience. It also has a new session that appears every day, as well as a number of paths you can follow too (lower back, upper body, ready to run etc.). The standout aspect of Pliability is quality. The app is well put together and the videos and narration is super high quality.
I tend to just dip in and out of the daily sessions, but will sometimes follow a path if I get a specific injury.
GOWOD is the second of two apps I use for mobility. It works much the same as Pliability in that it has a mobility test, personalised experience, daily sessions and paths you can follow. But, it’s more focused around dynamic exercises, and incorporates some tools like foam rollers, massage balls, bands etc.
The other cool thing about GOWOD is it can build a personalised warm up for your training session. You can select what exercises you are going to be doing, and it will give you a personalised warm up for that session.
GOWOD is a great compliment to Pliability. Between the two, my mobility needs are nicely covered!
TrueCoach is a platform / app that’s built for personal trainers. My personal trainer (Jamie) uses it to lay out all of my training sessions for the week. It’s easy to follow the workouts, record your results and look back on previous sessions too (super useful to remember last week’s progress).
You’ll only find yourself using TrueCoach if you have a personal trainer who is using the platform. But, I wanted to give it a mention, because it’s a really nice app.
I use Forth to get my blood work done. Their health tests and platform are very slick. I had my blood taken at a nearby SuperDrug and within 72 hours, the results of 44 biomarkers were available – with notes from a GP. Their platform (website and app) shows everything really nicely and there’s a lot of advice on how to interpret and improve your results.
With health as a big focus of mine, getting blood work done has become something I’ve prioritised in the last couple of years. And Forth makes everything super easy and affordable.
If you know of a good health and fitness app that I’m missing, I’d love to hear about it. Let me know 🙂
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