The Covid-19 scare: we are all deep in the middle of it. Social isolation has made working out a little more challenging for some. Others are finding deep refuge in the consistency of working out. Whether you are turning to workout apps to map your run, get yourself moving from Couch to 5K, or to replace your favorite class at the local gym, there is a fitness app out there for you and we decided to make a list of the best free workout apps according to our team!
Best Free Workout Apps
FitOn is an app made exclusively for Apple products. With over 65,000 reviews, it scores a 4.9 by users! This app advertises workouts across the exercise disciplines, including HIIT training, dance, and yoga. It even allows the user to search by body part, so you can tailor your workout regime to focus on a particular trouble spot.
Apple states you can, “Stay active, reduce stress, and feel good with 100s of workouts that are always free with celebrity trainers & advice articles on taking care of yourself both mentally and physically.”
Another app created for Apple, Fitbod’s goal is to make participants stronger. This is a weight training app that collects data to help you move toward personal gains. The algorithms in the application are constantly adjusting your workout plan regarding reps, lifts and weight used, in order to safely help you reach goals.
Those who review the product emphasis on how it helps you individualize your workout sessions to meet your needs, not someone else.
Whether your goals include losing weight, getting faster, gaining strength or improving flexibility, Sworkit has workouts for you. Made for both Apple and Android users, this is a versatile and highly praised app.
In addition, according to Business Insider, in a study done in 2015, by a team of sports scientists, “found that Sworkit was the most closely aligned with the American College of Sports Medicines training guidelines.”
4. Fitness Blender
Fitness Blender is actually a website that offers free workout programs. They offer free workout videos of differing levels of fitness, for varying lengths of time. The user can either browse topics or refine the search by checking a series of boxes. You can choose from HIIT, strength, pilates, cardio work, yoga, toning, etc. Furthermore, the user can signify if they need workouts involving zero equipment, or if you own a kettlebell, exercise ball, bands, weights, etc.
There are also differing levels of difficulty ranging from one to five. If you start with a level of difficulty, it automatically removes certain criteria for the user. For example, when I checked the “beginner” box, “kettlebell” was pulled from the mix. When I checked “HIIT,” levels one and two were automatically removed, showing me that I needed to be ready for at least “moderate” exertion.
Free Running Apps
5. Couch to 5K
If you have always wanted to complete a 5K and are not a runner, Couch to 5K (C25K) is the app for you! It is a nine-week program that has the person start with walking and slowly add jog intervals. For example, in week one the person would warm up by walking for 5 minutes. After that, you alternate 1 minute of jogging by 90 seconds of walking. This is done for 20 minutes. Sounds easy? The premise is easy. Depending on your level of fitness, the implementation may be challenging.
Some people find that they need to stretch out the program over more weeks. If you are struggling on week six, complete week six again in week seven. In this way, it is easy to modify the program to fit your needs.
It bears mentioning that some athletes always use interval training of this nature. Here is where an interval timer comes in hand.
GymBoss is an interval timer app that allows the user to set intervals to track. This is helpful for any time you want to be notified at set instances. It can be a single time interval or multiple time intervals, and can be set to repeat as often as needed. This tool is perfect for run intervals (such as those used in C25K and other programs) HIIT training, cardio weight lifting, circuits, etc.
7. Nike Run Club
Nike said it perfectly, “Track your runs, get coaching that adapts to you and bring your friends along for the ride. It’s all possible with the Nike Run Club App.” My personal favorite, the NikeRunClub app helps me accomplish so much more than running.
The user can use the app simply to track a run. The app will tell you your pace at each mile. I seldom use it for this purpose. The guided runs offer something for everyone. Categories include: treadmill runs, short runs, long runs, speed runs, distance-based runs, run & train combination workouts and guided plans based on distance.
My favorite category is the speed work area. Even if you don’t do speed work, hear me out. Most of these workouts vary in time commitment from twenty to sixty minutes, with the average being 30-35 minutes long. A 22-minute fartlek workout has the runner warming up for 5 minutes, then running :60 seconds hard by :60 easy. You, the runner, get to determine pace.
Other workouts set specific paces. For example, the power period has you warming up for 5:00, then running 1:00 at mile pace, 5:00 at 5K pace, 10:00 at 10K pace, 5:00 at 5K pace, and finishing with 1:00 at mile pace. Each effort described above has a recovery between :30 seconds and 3:00 minutes. You decide if you gently jog, walk or stand still between efforts.
How do I use these other than running? Easy! This app keeps me company and motivated on the elliptical, stair stepper and spin bike workouts. I think perceived effort on the intervals. This keeps the time moving along quickly and also turns what might have been a 30 minute, boring slog on the elliptical into HIIT training!
The Runkeeper free app helps the athlete track miles run. It can be set to notify you of pace at regular distance or time intervals. For example, it could notify you how far you have gone every 5 minutes or could give you pace every mile. There is a paid version that adds extra perks, but the free version is slick, accurate and easy to use!
According to Self Magazine, Under Armour’s MapMyRun running app, “makes running fun and easy by turning your device into a social training partner while using your phone’s GPS to track your distance and route.” An added bonus is you can add the shoes you wear for each run into the Gear Tracker. This allows you to very easily keep track of how many miles you have logged on each pair of shoes so you replace them in a timely manner.
Free Yoga Apps
10. Daily Yoga
DailyYoga shares over 100 yoga and meditation offerings. With the opportunity to personalize your workouts and engage with other members, this is a good place to find your Zen from home.
11. Yoga Down Dog
YogaDownDog allows you to choose the amount of time you will practice yoga, your perceived level of expertise and preferred music in order to create your personalized yoga plan for each session. This puts the user in charge each time you log in!
12. Yoga For Beginners
100% free for every person, every day, the YogaForBeginners app is a great starting point for people new to yoga. You get to handcraft your personal yoga journey through this fantastic app. With over 43,000 ratings, it scores a 4.8 on a 5.0 scale.
Don’t Forget YouTube Videos and Websites
Tasked with being in charge of your own fitness, there is a multitude of places to go to find guidance. During this time, YouTube can be your saving grace!
YouTube Video Core Work:
Thoughts from an Average Joe:
Melody Olson highly recommends the 7-minute workout. She uses it on rest days when not running. Also, “The app is a great one to use when you are away on vacation because the workouts can be done in a hotel room!”
During these unprecedented times, it is a great idea to stay fit because studies show that physical health is closely tied to emotional health. As you work to navigate your way through planning your own fitness journey, there are many workouts and fitness apps out there.
In addition, a simple Google search will net hundreds of online workouts ranging from weight training to HIIT workouts, gentle stretching to yoga. The sky is the limit if you take the time to look!