7 Workplace Fitness Apps to Get You Moving
Finding time to workout can be difficult, especially for office workers who are trapped in their cubicles for eight hours of the day. But being stuck behind the computer is one of the main reasons office workers need to get exercise. Spending prolonged amounts of time sitting is bad for your health, and not just because you’re doing it incorrectly.
(If you’re interested, experts says you should be sitting with your body positioned centrally to the monitor and keyboard. You should sit up straight with both feet rested flat on the floor, using a footrest if you have to. This means your thighs should be aligned horizontally with your knees and level with your hips.)
Many employers recognize the benefit of healthy employees, which is why they promote workplace wellness plans to help motivate employees towards healthier habits. But aside from getting a standing desk and taking that brief walk to the bathroom or water cooler, who has the time to incorporate fitness into their work schedule?
The proper way to sit at a computer, which we all already follow, of course. Image courtesy of smalltimemarketer.com
Let’s face it, not everyone has half an hour to an hour they can dedicate to a workout. Some people need that time to get a balanced lunch, or to go to doctor’s appointments, or catch up with the million other things in their life. But quick ten minute breaks can be slipped in here and there, and this app will help you add a small workout to your day. Even better, you don’t need any extra weights, although you may need a little extra room for jumping jacks and crunches. The only exercise equipment you’ll need for this app is your chair.
The downside? There’s only four seconds between sets, which could be a little fast for some, and it doesn’t always take the fact that you need to exercise both sides of your body into account.
2. 5K Runner
The Couch-To-5K running plan is one of the more popular activities endorsed by many employee wellness plans, and it’s no wonder why. It requires little investment from employers, and for employees who stick with it, it very effectively increases your stamina over a period of time, no matter how out of shape you are. The downside of it is that it can be a hassle to keep track of how long you’ve been running, especially since it alternates between periods of walking and jogging to make sure you don’t get worn out too quickly.
Thankfully, technology is here to save the day! 5k Runner does all the tracking for you, and includes an audio track letting you know when to speed up and slow down. The downside? It’s for iOS only, and it’s really only good for beginning runners, since it focuses on the training aspect.
Hi, my name is Dave, I’ll be your new personal trainer.
Not all fitness apps have to be boring and grown up. We’ve talked about Pokemon Go as a fitness app before, but Zombies, Run! takes a more threatening approach to motivation. With your headphones on, you’re given a mission briefing as one of the few survivors of the zombie apocalypse. You need to pick up supplies and deliver them to another base, but there are hordes of zombies in the way and you don’t have any means of defense. So how do you complete your mission? Easy, you run! Or walk, or jog if you like. The menacing hordes move only as fast as you say, so you don’t have to hit the ground running if you don’t want to. One thing’s for sure, you’re not going to want to stop moving once the zombie’s start advancing.
Not interested in running, or have other fitness goals, like building muscle or flexibility? Pear’s personal coach app can talk you through workouts with audio recorded from real personal trainers. You can also play your own music in the background, which will fade in and out as the trainer speaks. The big downside about the Pear Sports app is that it works best with a heart rate monitor, and while it has some free training sessions, many must be purchased.
Who doesn’t like six pack abs? It’s the coveted goal of many fitness enthusiasts, although not everyone can achieve them. Some body types just aren’t conducive towards cut and sculpted muscles like you see on bodybuilders. Still, that doesn’t mean everybody can’t benefit from a tummy tune-up; strong core muscles are important for many areas of fitness. Runtastic’s Six Pack Abs app shows you videos of the exercises you’re meant to do, whether you pick from a preset workout or create a custom set for yourself, and a voice recording coaches you through the exercise. Not good at keeping to a schedule? Six Pack Abs can prompt you to do your workout at the set time everyday, helping to prevent you from slacking off.
Being healthy isn’t just about exercising, however. It’s also important to eat right and stay hydrated. It’s especially important when you’ve been running along to Zombies, Run! or you have been out in the sun all afternoon catching Pokemon. Plant Nanny is a good way to track your fluid intake and provides motivation in the form of cute little plants that grow over time. Not drinking enough fluids (or just forgetting to log your drinks) will cause them to wilt.
MyFitnessPal, on the other hand, is a good old fashioned calorie and exercise tracker. Tracking calories as a diet supplement has been around for years, and MyFitnessPal makes it easy to keep track of what you’ve eaten. On top of that, you can log the amount of exercise you’ve done through the day, and it will recommend just how many calories you should be consuming based on how much you’re burning. It can be a little tedious, but it does integrate well with other apps, which can make tracking your eating and exercising a little easier.
This cute little sprout needs you to drink lots of water so it can grow big and strong!
Getting into shape isn’t easy to do, especially in today’s busy society. Whatever kind of app helps you, remember that every little bit helps. Even just 10 minutes a day of movement can make a difference, both mentally and physically. And if you have any favorite workout apps, make sure to share them in the comments!