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No wristband required: 3 Great fitness apps

‘Tis the (swimsuit) season, and I’ve been looking for fresh inspiration to get in shape. Live trainers are great, but they mean scheduling, and piles of money. And while I love some of the fancy fitness tracking devices out there, sometimes, I’m just not in the mood to wear a wristband (or I forget to put it on). That’s where these clever fitness apps come in. All I need to get going is my phone and a pair of sneakers (I’m obsessed with my new ones). Try ’em out:

Carrot Fit
When a run-of-the-mill app isn’t offering enough motivation—or humor—to help me meet my goals, it’s time to bring in Carrot. This sassy download, dubbed “your judgmental fitness overlord,” helped me get my butt in gear with big laughs every time I weighed in. Expect exercises like “celebrity face punches” and “dragon mating dances,” and tongue-in-cheek insults to keep you with the program. When you make progress, Carrot rewards you with the Internet’s gold star equivalent: cat facts! And even if you’re not a cat person, this app is seriously funny.

Charity Miles
This app lets me do good for my body and for the world. I just check in with Charity Miles before I start a run or bike ride, and instantly become a sponsored athlete. I just pick from a range of charities (say, the ASPCA, Wounded Warrior Project, or Stand Up to Cancer), and after I’ve finished my sweat session and shared it on a social network, the app makes a donation of up to 25 cents per mile I ran or rode, thanks to corporate sponsors. Those miles add up fast!

Despite our habits Monday through Friday, it turns out people weren’t meant to sit for eight hours a day (who knew?). In fact, experts say we should be moving at least 30 minutes per day, which is why that’s the only number Human tracks on users. So easy! I just keep my phone on me throughout the day, and Human uses its accelerometer to track my movement. Once I’ve finished 30 minutes of activity, boom! Goal met.

Have you found a fitness app that kickstarted a health goal? Share it in the comments!

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