As a specimen of the modern-day everynerd, I revel in the joys of simply lounging around with a laptop or maybe a new smartphone to review, surfing across the far reaches of the interwebs and reading my SNS news feeds for as long as my free time allows – which can actually happen quite often. As a result, I’m far from being the healthiest guy I’d like myself to be, which is unfortunate since I do tend to get conscious about things like that from time to time.
Given this, I’ve decided to (finally) check out how my inclination towards modern tech can actually help me become a better, self-proclaimed nerd. Thus, I present to you, some of the top free apps that so far, I’ve found useful for my quest to stay fit while staying true to my nerdhood.
Endomondo Sports Tracker
Endomondo is a relatively popular app for active lifestyle buffs -- particularly walkers, runners, and cyclists -- as it offers a wide range of functionalities such as real-time GPS tracking of time, distance, speed, and calories; instantaneous and live sharing as well as friendly competition via social network sites; audio feedback for every mile or kilometer; heart rate monitoring; and more. The best aspect that this app has going for it has to be its live social aspect, so you won't necessary feel alone or awkward if ever you're taking on an exercise route by yourself. Similarly versatile alternatives to this app are Adidas' miCoach and Google's own My Tracks.
Granted, this one's a glorified music player, but it's quite a nice-looking one. This app syncs the music loaded in your device with your workout routine, sprinkling a few downloadable voice clips of encouragement featuring highly-regarded athletes from your sport of choice (there are options for basketball, football, hockey, baseball, soccer, rugby, and cross training). These happen at certain (customizable) intervals of the workout, so you can be sure to stay focused and motivated if ever you feel that your routine is beginning to drag along. Unfortunately, this app doesn't really suggest any particular workouts or training routines particular to the sport you've chosen, which is a shame. Another is that it doesn't support the GPS tracking functions of your smartphone, so outdoor runners may not find this one very useful (for these purposes, one may opt to check out our next app). But if you're looking for something to spice up your pump-up music playlist, Nike boom is a good option to go with.
Daniel Miller And Rittr Labs Workout Apps
For those who are looking for apps that can guide them with particular exercise or training routines, those developed by Daniel Miller (Daily Ab Workout, Daily Butt Workout, and Daily Arm Workout) and Rittr Labs (Push Ups, Sit Ups, Squats) may work wonders for you. The Rittr Labs apps can help you progress with and achieve certain goals in your push-up, sit-up, and squat routines based on your own pace, while Daniel Miller's Daily Workout apps provide easy-to-follow routines with video demonstrations to help you make sure you're doing things right.
I’ve only recently (re)started a somewhat regular exercise routine, so at this point, I can’t comment much about how these apps can actually help me reach my goals just yet. I’d prefer to stay optimistic about all these things though, so maybe in the coming weeks I could follow up with another entry to describe my progress – as well as perhaps to add some new worthwhile finds from the Android Market.
From what I’ve seen so far though, there’s quite an abundance of apps, both free and purchasable, already available out there, covering practically any need or preference. It would be interesting to check them all out at some point, so here’s hoping I don’t end up getting too lazy to finish what I’ve started. Again. (Just kidding.)
Jason Marges / Executive Editor, HWM Philippines
A member of the HardwareZone Philippines family since 2006, Jason is the Executive Editor for HardwareZone's print publication, HWM Philippines. Apart from his keen interest in all things high-tech, he is also a huge fan of basketball, pop culture, Internet memes, and free, high-speed Wi-Fi.