Starting a new fitness routine or diet program can be tough, but it’s an endeavor that comes along with a healthy dose of hope and motivation. During week one, workouts hurt so good, grocery shopping isn’t so bad, and meal prepping is downright exciting—you’re finally turning over that new leaf that’s been stuck to the pavement for who knows how long, and it’s your time to carve out those six-pack abs.
But by weeks two, three, and four, the excuses start piling up. We get it: The gym’s suddenly too crowded, you’re too tired to meal-prep, and maybe your biceps are sore after all those curls. Suddenly, you could use a shot of motivation and structure to get back on track.
One solution that’s become more popular than ever is downloading a fitness app. It’s simple, way cheaper than hiring human help, and it works for plenty of people. So if you find that you need to be held accountable when it comes to diet and exercise, or if you just need an easy method of tracking your already stellar routine, an app may be a great way to do it.
There are countless fitness-related apps on the market for both Android and iOS, so it can be tough to sift through the dirt and find a gem or two. So we’ve done the heavy lifting for you and tested a whole swathe of apps. We found 18 that are worth trying if you need a nudge to stay on track.
We broke it down into seven categories, so you can browse based on your needs:
- Comprehensive training apps, which guide you through workouts and exercises;
- Quick-hit apps, which focus on shorter workouts for maximum impact;
- Outdoor cardio apps, for the more adventurous fit guy;
- Nutrition tracking apps, to make keeping your diet on-track as simple as possible;
- All-around workout tracking and meal planning apps, for those who want one app to do the job of two or three;
- A “get off the couch” app, for all you true beginners out there;
- Recovery apps, meant to help your body and mind stay in tip top shape.
A few notes about our methodology:
- While most of the apps we chose have been at or near the top of the rankings in their prospective marketplaces, we downloaded all of the apps we considered to get a feel for how they work and make sure that using them consistently is feasible for everyday users.
- We excluded apps that are designed to be used with fitness trackers. Plenty of those apps are great, but they don’t really help unless you have their devices.
Click through to check out our favorite health and fitness apps in 2018, according to category.