Sometimes, I wake up with a clear idea of what I’d like from my workout that day.
Maybe I want to do a HIIT session at the gym, or take a long, slow run outside, or head downtown for a class at my favorite yoga studio. If my body is craving a particular kind of movement, I’m all for honoring that.
But often, the only thing clear is that I want to move and sweat — and I don’t want to have to come up with the workout myself.
Hey, there’s a reason that even those of us who have the certifications and training still hire coaches and personal trainers. Coming up with good workouts — and keeping them fresh — requires time and effort, and sometimes, we just want to show up and move.
I’ve used a big ol’ variety of fitness apps, but the one I’m really, really into right now is Aaptiv. It has guided audio fitness classes (more than 2,500) of all sorts — seriously: treadmill, outdoor running, strength training, stretching, elliptical, indoor cycling, yoga, meditation, walking, stair climber, rowing, and boxing. Within each category, you can sort workouts by trainer, music genre, length, difficulty, and whether or not you’ve taken the class before — which becomes handy, because they add more than 40 classes every week.
As you browse through the workouts, you can schedule when you want to do them (it’ll save it right to your phone’s calendar) or save them to a list of your choosing to do later — and I freaking love this feature. I’ve got lists of workouts that would be fun with a friend, workouts that would be perfect to start my day, others that I use to help me wind down in the evening, and still more that are favorites or ones that I just want to try one of these days.
But, if you don’t enjoy sorting, scrolling, selecting and organizing as much as I do, you can jump into one of their programs (like Cross-Train to 5k or Foundations of Yoga — or, if you’re in Jenn’s situation, maybe a pregnancy program) or check out their collections (such as Travel-Friendly Fitness or 90s Hip Hop Workouts … which I may or may not be extremely into right this moment).
The audio-only format has been amazing for running — I’m surprised at how much harder I push when I have a coach in my ear telling me that I have a 30-second sprint coming up. I mean, I thought I was good at getting the most out of myself, because I’m no slouch! But that encouragement and direction helps me take my workouts to the next level. Plus, in case you haven’t picked up on this yet, I really like being able to hand the clipboard over to someone else. Doing the hard physical work is so much more doable when I’m not in charge of the heavy mental lifting, too.
I’ll admit that I was a little worried about relying on audio for things like strength training and yoga — so often, I’ve followed videos and looked up for visual clues. But it turns out that like it — a lot. The audio format forces me to remain present and focus, because if I zone out, well, I’m out of luck unless I go back 30 seconds (which can be done with the touch of a button), and, because I’m not spending any time staring at a screen, I seem to remain more in tune with my body and my workout. Now, sure, if you’re brand new to a specific type of workout, it may be more challenging — but that’s where the beginner workouts come in so handy. And, in fact, Aaptiv has gotten some great reviews from workout newbies!
The other thing that I love about Aaptiv is the fact that it works in all the places I like to work out. Home workouts? Sure thing — they’ve got loads of options that require no equipment. Like using machines or free weights or cardio equipment? Those are covered, too. And, you already know how I feel about the outdoor running workouts — same goes for walking. Having stretching and meditation options readily available has also been huge — I can jump straight from one coach telling me to work hard into another coach (or, sometimes the same one!) guiding me through some amazing physical or mental recovery.
The subscription options are simple, too: monthly ($14.99, automatically renewing each month) or yearly ($99.99, automatically renewing each year). And, another potential option for my fellow bookworms: You can find Aaptiv workouts on Audible!
Interested in checking it out yourself? Our friends at Aaptiv are offering FBG readers one free week with this link!
What’s your go-to workout location — gym, home, or outdoors? —Kristen