Going the distance
Become your own running coach with these iPhone-friendly apps.
For runners and even cyclists, this application uses your iPhone’s built-in GPS capabilities to track your routes turn by turn. RunKeeper records your total time, distance, pace and average speed. It also tracks your altitude if you come across any hills. We experienced a few misreadings, but despite the weak GPS signal, the app correctly recorded our mileage and speed. After your training session, RunKeeper stores your history on your phone and uploads it onto the company website, where you can view your path on a Google Map. Free at runkeeper.com.
Looking for a workout app that won’t overwhelm you with a laundry list of features? The simplicity behind Fitnio is just for you. Like RunKeeper, this free application records your runs by tapping into your iPhone’s GPS system. However, Fitnio sports a cleaner, easier-to-read interface with large fonts and icons. Unlike RunKeeper, Fitnio also takes your body mass index (BMI) into account and doubles as a calorie counter. The app won’t display your altitude, and it occasionally experienced a few GPS hiccups, but for technophobes, it’s one of the easiest running apps out there. Free at fitnio.com.
Like Facebook for runners, iMapMyRun takes the solitude out of running by connecting you with like-minded athletes. This free app is similar to its counterparts in that it tracks your speed, mileage, altitude and calories, but it takes it up a few notches with an abundance of postworkout features. Once you set up a free account at MapMyRun.com, you can share trails with neighboring runners and cyclists, join a local running or cycling club and even post questions about running techniques. During your workouts, the app can be programmed to announce your distance and speed whenever you reach certain points in your run. Best of all, it lets you upload your run times onto your Twitter account so you can share with friends or fellow runners. Free at mapmyrun.com.
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