Oh, the gym. As much as we like the idea of fitness equipment and classes on tap, the reality—hidden fees, overcrowded facilities, competitive class registration, the pervasive eau de sweaty socks—is often much less glamorous.
Luckily, if you’re thinking about breaking up with your gym, you’ve got more options than a jog around the block. That’s thanks to these fitness apps, which will shake up your routines with everything from phantom zombies to charitable donations to thousands of video workouts on demand (no awkward locker room interactions required). We can’t remember the last time we were this excited to break a sweat.
Get fit fast—and without the whole going-to-the-gym-thing—with 7 Minute Workout.
1. 7 Minute Workout
It’s the curse of city-dwellers everywhere: Who has time to work out when there’s so much going on around town? We’re not sure if it’s good news or bad news for the perpetually busy, but 7 Minute Workout has quickly made its way onto our list of fave 2016 fitness apps for its sheer flexibility. Seven minutes may not sound like enough time to bust a move, but trust us—after 40 burpees, you’ll probably disagree.
With Zombies, Run!, you’ll sprint like your life depends on it.
2. Zombies, Run!
Some of us need a bit more motivation than others to lace up our sneakers and hit the pavement. Like a horde of lightning-fast, bloodthirsty zombies, say. Although the undead in Zombies, Run! aren’t technically real, periodic warnings letting you know you’re being chased—and that you need to reach crucial, humanity-saving supplies—should definitely inspire you to pick up the pace.
Save the world—at a reasonable pace—with The Walk.
3. The Walk
Not much of a runner, but still enjoy the idea of narrative-based workouts? You’ll want to download The Walk, which combines the addictive plot twists of an audiobook with some good old-fashioned calorie burning. In this story, you’ve been handed a package and need to deliver it to save humanity. The catch? Saving humanity requires walking the length of the UK. Best get started on that.
Get moving and get giving with Charity Miles.
4. Charity Miles
The idea of giving back every time you head out for a run might sound too good to be true, but Charity Miles is the real deal. This app racks up donations whenever you get moving, and it allows users to choose from more than 30 charities to give to, ranging from Stand Up to Cancer to the ASPCA. There aren’t many better reasons to start adding a jog (or even a quick stroll around the neighborhood) to your routine.
Move and groove with FITRadio.
When you aren’t listening to warnings of imminent zombie ambushes, there’s nothing like some high-octane tunes to make your workout that much more thrilling. But what happens when you’ve gotten bored of all your playlists? Seek a musical refresher by way of FITRadio. Beyond a simple playlist, the app hosts hundreds of DJ-curated mixes, in genres ranging from hip hop to top 40. (You could even use it at your next house party—’cause dancing totally counts as working out.)
Always snag a spot at the front of the (virtual) fitness studio with Daily Burn.
6. Daily Burn
One of the best parts of being a gym member is having access to dozens of classes and trained instructors. But thanks to Daily Burn, you can trade your gym for streaming access to tons of classes and workout plans…all without having to battle your fellow gym-goers for prime position at the front of the class. Nice.
It’s just you, your phone, and a ton of potential with Sworkit.
Here’s the thing about IRL personal trainers: they sure know their stuff, but boy are their services spendy. If you’re looking for some one-on-one instruction—and don’t mind a virtual helping hand—then try downloading Sworkit. The app covers strength training, stretching, cardio, yoga, and pilates, includes videos and instructions by trainers, and doesn’t require any equipment at all. This is how you hack home workouts.