Sure, your smartphone is good for all the regular things – checking your text messages, taking pictures of your lunch, playing games while you wait in line at the grocery store. But it’s also your secret weapon when it comes to living a healthier, more active life.
Whether you’re trying to lose weight, gain muscle, sleep better or get faster, there’s an app that can help you reach your goals.
1. Run for your life
Ready to sign out of Netflix and get off the couch…but not sure where to start with running? The widely known Couch to 5 K app offers beginning runners step-by-step guidance through an eight-week learn to run program. By the end of the eight weeks, you’ll be running five kilometres!
If you like the idea of a couch-to-5K app but need a little narrative excitement in your life, check out Zombies, Run! This program offers a similar learn-to-run program – with the added element of a zombie story. Your daily runs aren’t just exercise; now you’re outrunning zombies and searching for supplies to help keep your community alive.
2. Eat better
It’s widely acknowledged that eating healthily is key to maintaining a healthy weight and keeping yourself free from chronic disease. But where to begin? One place to start: the grocery store.
Identify your healthy-eating goals, then use Shop Well to help ensure you’re making the best choices as you cruise the grocery store aisles.
If you’re tracking your calorie consumption but finding all that math to be a burden, check out My Fitness Pal, which enables you to track and count the calories you take in – and the ones you burn through exercise – quickly and easily.
3. Get more restful sleep
It’s widely acknowledged that getting a good night’s sleep affects more than just your mood when the alarm clock goes off: being well rested can also help you maintain a healthy weight, support your mental health and avoid chronic illness.
If you have a hard time putting down your smartphone, tablet or laptop the recommended two hours before bedtime, try Twilight, an app that dims the screen on your device with a red filter. This blocks the blue light that has been shown to delay sleep by up to an hour, meaning that you’ll sleep better, sooner.
Fine with putting your devices down, but unable to cope with neighbourhood traffic, construction or regular household noise? You might benefit from SleepBug, a white-noise app that will help you (or your little ones) sleep undisturbed.
4. Track your progress
The best motivation is healthy competition – with yourself! Track your stats and work for personal bests by using an app like Strava, specially made for cyclists, or clip a FitBit to your belt and watch your daily step count climb.
5. Get a flexible body and a resilient mind
You’ve heard it before: flexibility is key. And with Yoga Studio, it doesn’t matter where you are – there’s always a yoga workout at your fingertips, no matter the hour. With 65 different yoga workouts (more than 24 hours worth of classes) available, there’s something for everyone.
If you’re more concerned about maintaining a flexible state of mind, consider studying mindfulness. One app that makes mindfulness meditation easy is Calm, which walks you through a variety of meditation exercises. Whether you need just a minute to regain your composure or a 20-minute meditation to help you wind down at the end of the day, Calm has something that can help.
Your turn: What’s your favourite healthy-living app? Share with us in the comments below.
Want more information on healthy living and health-care delivery sent directly to your inbox? Subscribe to our newsletter and get all of our content first!