The best way to stay fit in 2016 is ... from your smartphone.
More specifically, utilizing a smartphone workout app.
Easier (and cheaper) than hiring a trainer, these eight workout apps promise to track steps, calories and workouts, as well as design menus, compare and compete with a larger workout community and even land a fit date.
Our criteria: we focused solely on brand new apps/devices or popular fitness programs with brand new features.
After all, gotta break from old habits.
For those who lack a gym but want a cheap trainer: Sworkit Premium
The best gets better. Sworkit is already a popular free app that designs workouts for you involving little to no gym equipment. Their brand new Premium service now adds customized workouts and an “Ask a Trainer” feature (allowing for personalized advice from pros).
For Tinder fanatics: SWEATT
A new dating app for the fitness community that matches you and a potential partner based on your workout profile and “time-of-day” activity. The publicist claims it works across all fitness levels interests, from “bootcampers and cyclists, to yogis and CrossFit junkies.”
For Apple Watch users: Freeletics
A popular training program in Europe, Freeletics recently debuted in both the U.S. and on the Apple Watch. The skinny: free high-intensity interval workouts that require no gym equipment (it’s all bodyweight-based). If you’ve got an Apple Watch, there’s no need for a smartphone, either.
For the IT crowd: Slackbot Workout
Fitness by peer pressure, thanks to a Slack app that uses a lottery system to assign exercise routines (e.g., “42 pushups right now @brandon”).
For habit seekers: Streaks Workout
From the makers of cool, minimalist to-do list and goal-tracker Streaks — an app that encourages you to build daily habits (“streaks”) — comes Workout, a like-minded fitness app that features 18 equipment-free exercises and adjusts them to your availability and ability.
For hacking restaurant nutrition: MyFitnessPal
The well-loved fitness app might be buggy — yours truly gets a “can’t sync to server” error message thrice daily — but they just added the ability to figure out calorie counts and nutrition data from major restaurants (via Foursquare), as well as a discovery tool for healthier dining options nearby.
For walkers and dieters: Movesum
From the creators of fitness app Lifesum comes a new type of step tracker that relates your walking to food intake. Basically, the simple interface sets the bar for your step count based on calories burned and diet (That burger you want? May cost ya 20,000 steps).
For A.I.-approved workouts: UA Record
As part of Under Armour’s fitness app, IBM’s cognitive supercomputer Watson will now analyze your sleep, food and exercise patterns and compare it with other members of the UA community, offering advice based on age and even, as The Verge notes, weather conditions (e.g., suggesting when to run based on outside temperature). It also pairs well with UA’s new fitness monitor HealthBox, a combo fitness band, scale and heart rate monitor package.