Use Your Phone to Track Fitness: My New Favorite Fitness Apps

Matt and I took our bikes out to play over the weekend! With such a busy (and hot) summer, it had been WAY too long since they’d seen the light of day.



It was a gorgeous day for biking — cool but nice and sunny.


We had a fabulous ride. I always forget how much I love biking until I do it again! Now that the weather is nicer, we’ll definitely be taking these bad boys out and about more often again before the weather takes a turn for the cold. I have a feeling that being back in DC we’re going to REALLY miss those nice warm NC winters!


When Matt and I were getting ready to leave the house for the ride we discovered that both of our GPS watches were dead and needed charging. Oh no! We like tracking how far we go; what to do? And then, I remembered — duh! My phone can do that! Samsung Galaxy S3 to the rescue. :)



Stats include a 20 minute break in a park that I forgot to stop the timer for. :)

I downloaded the Endomondo app on the phone earlier this week because I thought it would be fun to see how far I walk during my lunch breaks at work, and we used that to track our ride! Endomondo is really cool (and free) — not only does it track your pace/distance/time/etc., it also spits out a map of where you went! Here are my stats from a quick hilly afternoon walk I took with some coworkers on Thursday afternoon. The Samsung has a really cool feature where you can swipe your hand across the screen in a copier motion, and it will take a screenshot for you. :)


(I forgot to put ”walking” as the sport instead of the default, running! Oops.)

The GPS capability on this phone is INSANE, btw — I’ve been using the GPS maps navigation on it to get around the city because it literally picks up the satellites the second you open the application. It’s so awesome. On my old phone, you had to wait a few minutes before it could figure out where you were, and even then it was often kind of confused.

I tested out the app again yesterday on a nice lunch time walk I took from work out on the C&O Canal. So great that this trail is near the office!


As you can see, I had a great walk. I ate lunch at my desk while working and spent the whole lunch break walking. It was so beautiful out I didn’t want to stop!



Another new favorite fitness app is the “Tabata Timer” or “HIIT workout timer” — Heather and I used one of these in the strength training lunch and learn session we taught two weeks ago to lead a 4 minute mini-workout session, and at the corporate wellness place I’m interning right now we do these in the afternoons sometimes, too! It’s fun. :) Basically, it’s an app that will lead you in mini-workouts — usually they are set up to do 4 minutes total, with 20 seconds of exercise, 10 seconds of rest, repeating until the time is up. At work, we’ve alternated between pushups and squats as our workouts.


There are a ton of different variations of the app if you search “Tabata Timer” on your smart phone. Many of them are free, too! Try doing one of the workouts and let me know how it goes. :) You can do anything for 4 minutes, right? And don’t doubt that 4 minutes is a workout — we’re always out of breath and energized after them at work!

What are your favorite fitness apps? I’d love to try some new ones!

Do you walk during your lunch breaks? If not, I challenge you to start! :)


*Disclosure: As part of the Verizon Wireless Ambassador program I have been provided with a wireless device (the Samsung Galaxy S3) and three months of service in exchange for my honest opinions about the product.


  1. 1

    I think you just sold me on the Samsung Galaxy S3 with that screenshot feature. That’s the ONLY thing I am jealous of iPhone users for!

  2. 2

    I don’t know if it’s only an iPhone app, but I love Bit Timer for timing interval workouts. You can set the time for your work and the time for your rest, and how many reps you want to complete. It will count you down and then let you know when to rest, all while being able to continue to listen to your music.

  3. 3

    That is an awesome app, Anne. Ha, I’m using a Walmart disposable tracfone. Teehee.

  4. 5

    I haven’t downloaded any fitness apps for my phone but after reading this post, I think I need to! We just started having yoga at work on Tuesdays and Thursdays during lunch. It’s a lot of breathing and stretching which is so nice after sitting at a computer all day!

  5. 7

    Just curious which interval timer you’re using (there are so many out there!) since it looks like it has a good interface and all of the functions I’d need – I’m not sold on the one I’m using right now.

  6. 9

    I’ve downloaded a bunch of different apps after reading great things about them but have yet to use them :P Lately I’ve been having working lunches so I can use my lunch break to go on walks- the weather has been too beautiful to stay inside! A little window shopping or a stroll down by the water is the perfect way to “check-out” for a bit!

  7. 11

    Just wanted to mention that I’m hosting the Fitblog chat tonight and it’s all about if we/how we track our workouts, I thought your post was pretty timely :) I hope you’ll join in if you’re around tonight!

  8. 14

    My boyfriend and I have been looking into getting bikes recently. The only fitness app I use is mapmyrun. I’m not a serious runner but I jog a couple times a week, only a mile or two at a time, but its a good app to mat routes and measure distance – even if its small : )

  9. 16

    Thanks for the info. I’ll have to see if I can get endomondo on my iphone and compare it to my Garmin. I need to try walking on my lunch break, now that the weather is cooler. I wear heels a lot, so I’ll have to be sure and pack some sneakers, though.

  10. 18

    Like Brittany @ Protein and Pumps, my boyfriend and I are also planning on investing in some quality road bikes in the next few months. Anne, did you write a post about how you decided on yours? If not, would it be possible for you to do a mini review of whatever you have and how you came to pick that model? Thanks!

    • 19

      Matt and I basically just went to a bike shop and asked them what they recommended for what we had in mind, then tried a bunch to see what felt best. I’d recommend trying some out at the store to make sure they fit you well! And then research the ones you like online to see how the reviews are. Good luck!

  11. 20

    I love the RunKeeper app!

  12. 21

    How cool!!! Not sure if you or Matt do P90X, but there is a new App for that :)

  13. 22

    Looks like a great app! I will have to check it out.

  14. 23

    Even though I just started cycling this summer, I’m already falling in love with the sport, especially fall riding–it’s cool and so picturesque. Trek Lexa represent! ;)

  15. 24

    I used to use my iPod touch for gym workouts and running. I used a program called “LoloBurn” It matches your music to the speed/pace and really pushes you. They have it for running, elliptical and I think they’ve come out with a few more. Unfortunately…they don’t have it for Android. It’s a SERIOUS bummer, because I’ve not found anything to replace it.

    I LOVE my Android phone, and I do use Endomondo and like it, but it’s not the same. Music is so integral to my workouts, my m otivation, my ability to keep pushing. I just can’t seem to find anything to compare to Lolo. Boo.

  16. 27
    Adventurer says:

    Very impressive app! Great ride!

  17. 28
    Linda Williams says:

    I’ve been using ActivityTracker for quite some time now to track my daily activity.
    It’s free and, the best part, it doesn’t drain your iPhone battery.

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