4 Apps to track your runs – and keep you motivated!
Endomondo was one of the first fitness tracking apps to gain a large following and continues to evolve, providing details on distance, speed, kilojoules, graphs and mapped routes, just like the other apps reviewed here.
Something a little different is the option to send pep talks to your friends in real time. You’ll see a newsfeed of their activity, and can then write a message that is played aloud to them a few seconds later. The user interface works really well on the smartphone, and testers were especially surprised at how simple it was to create an interval training session. The website is not as user-friendly or well designed as the app interface on the phone.
Best for: Sharing workout comments with friends.
MapMyRun is another free app that has similar capabilities to RunKeeper, just with an easier user interface and a great Twitter and Facebook option, which our testers liked for challenging others or showing off the latest routes they had run. A great feature is the option of over 26 million routes to choose from, which comes in handy for travellers looking for some direction when in a new city. The website is set up to encourage you to find new routes and to share your runs too, rather than just recording your run details.
Best for: Route explorers.
When you are bleary-eyed and barely ready to run, the simple design of Strava will not get you flustered and frustrated before the run has even begun.
Strava is relatively new to our testers, but it was clear that it got them excited. The personal, manual uploads of challenging sections within your running route and the automatic ranking
system of other users that have run over the same sections is great fun.
Strava is massively motivating, and although currently it has a large following among cyclists, it’s just a matter of time before runners cotton on to its benefits.
Best for: Those needing more motivation.
RunKeeper is not the best design to look at, but it’s been around for many years as a running app and functions more than adequately, with some excellent specifics that make it a little different too. The main difference is the amount of data you are able to collect and the app shows how it’s all related.
It’s not just about the run – fitness levels, weight-loss and sleeping patterns can all be observed together. It’s more information than some might want, but it also gives the basics; and we especially enjoyed the easy change of screen orientation – incredibly handy when strapping a phone upside down to your arm.
Best for: Collecting as much information as you can.
Don’t have a smart phone and want to plot your run? Visit the Runner’s World Route Mapping tool: click here.
Which is your favourite app? Let us know by commenting below.