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6 Apps To Kickstart Your 2019 Health & Fitness Goals

Every year, millions of people make health and fitness-focused New Year's resolutions...

Wellness

Every year, millions of people make health and fitness-focused New Year's resolutions. Whether those goals include losing weight, hitting the gym consistently, training for an upcoming event, or just eating healthier, so many people start off the year strong only to have their resolutions disband into nothing by the time April has arrived.

But fear not, because with these six apps you can still lose weight, train for your upcoming event, and eat healthier without having to sign yet another gym contract. With these apps, you'll be able to track your fitness, nutrition, and everything else without having to break the bank. Say goodbye to the hassle of having to find a gym, nutritionist, and personal trainer. And say hello to the fitter and healthier you. This year, with the help of some of the best fitness apps in the game, your New Year's resolutions to be fit and healthy will be as easy as hitting a button.

Best Fitness Apps 2019

Best Fitness Apps For Tracking Fitness:

Home Workout - No Equipment Needed (Fitness Level: Beginners and Up)

Overall Free for Users: Android, IOS

The Home Workout app provides daily workout routines for all your main muscle groups. With just a few minutes a day, you can build muscles and keep fit without ever having to step into the gym.

The app has workouts for your abs, chest, legs, arms, and butt, as well as full body workouts. Even though it just takes a few minutes a day, it can effectively tone your muscles and help you get six pack abs at home.

All the workouts are designed by experts. With animations and video guidance for each exercise, you can make sure you use the right form during your sets. In addition, the warm-up and stretching routines are designed to make sure you exercise in a scientific way.

Subscription Benefits: Ads are removed for $5.98. The rest of the app is free for all beginner, intermediate, and advanced users.

PEAR: Personal Fitness Coach (Fitness Level: Intermediate and Advanced)

Overall Free for Users: Android, IOS

The PEAR Personal Fitness Coach app provides users with an array of guided workouts for all fitness levels and intensities that adapt based on your performance. The app plays well with a variety of fitness trackers and devices, allowing you to keep track of your performance and share metrics with other fitness apps. And the best part? The PEAR mobile training intelligence system puts personal coaches right in your ear that are available inside the app.

Subscription Benefits: The premium subscription, $5.99/month, gives you unlimited access to the workout library and extra features.

Best Fitness Apps For Tracking Nutrition:

Lose It! (Nutrition Knowledge Level: Beginner and Up)

Overall Free for Users: Android, IOS

The Lose It! app is a great tool to have on your journey because of its simplicity. Best known for its meal tracking, Lost It! uses its huge food database to break down meals by breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. In this app, users are capable of logging food, scanning barcodes, and photographing their meals.

Subscription Benefits: With a premium subscription, $29.99/year, users can get access to more nutritional stats and dietary trends.

Lifesum (Nutrition Knowledge Level: Intermediate and Advanced)

Overall Free for Users: Android, IOS

Lifesum makes gauging your overall nutrition and health easy peasy, giving you comprehensible lifestyle tips and adjustments based on your eating habits. After downloading the app, you'll be required to take an assessment — this includes questions about your cravings, weight loss goals, diet roadblocks, general preferences — to find out which diet plan best suits your goals, schedule, and lifestyle. Then, the app will start providing recommendations to help you start making healthy changes and dietary decisions. The app can also act as a lifestyle coach by reminding you to eat and drink water regularly throughout your busy day.

Subscription Benefits: A premium subscription, $44.99/year, will get you even more detailed nutritional analysis and let you sync with other fitness apps.

Best Fitness Apps For All-Around Tracking:

8fit (Fitness Level: Beginner and Up)

Overall Free for Users of: Android, IOS

For an all-around comprehensive fitness planning and tracking, 8fit has it all. 8fit creates custom exercises and meal plans based on your goals, your current stats, and, more importantly, your preferences. The app goes more into detail with preferences, asking your goals, the number of workouts you'd like to do each week, how many meals you'd like to eat each day, how much variety you need in a nutrition program, and how you prefer to prep your food.

During the meal plan, you can even select the days you'd like to grocery shop for ahead of time and the app automatically generates a shopping list based on the recipes that you'll prepare on those days. And when it comes to logging workouts, there's a variety of endless options so that you can track accurately. In addition, there is an array of preset workouts, which is fantastic for the beginner users.

Subscription Benefits: The Pro edition, which is $59.99/year, includes even more custom workouts and more personalized plans.

Trifecta (Fitness Level: Intermediate-Advanced)

Overall Free for Users of: Android, IOS

Trifecta is an ultra-comprehensive app that specializes in functional fitness training, meaning it provides beneficial workouts whether you're at home or on the go. It's unique among fitness apps because it caters to the workouts and diet of CrossFitters. The free version provides you with daily WODs, a nutrition tracker, and useful tools like a kilos-to-pounds converter and CrossFit box finder. However, make sure you're careful while using this app. Although beginner-friendly, it is recommended that you start regular workouts before jumping into this app.

Subscription Benefits: With the premium version, $49.99/year, you get a comprehensive workout log, movement log, and in-depth diet tracking.

The Best Fitness App Honorable Mention:

If you want to get more bang for your buck, for $8.33-14.99/month, consider the following app:

Aaptiv provides trainer-led audio workouts for a variety of workout styles and goals, complete with accompanying music playlists.

Users can select from more than 2500 workouts in hundreds of fitness classes, whether for running, cycling, high intensity interval training, 5k, or marathon training, this app makes it easy to stream training routines or download to your phone for offline use.

Workouts can be configured for distance, duration, intensity, and calories burned. In other words, if you're willing to spend the money, this app is worth every penny.

Featured image by Getty Images.

You may not know her by Elisabeth Ovesen – writer and host of the love, sex and relationships advice podcast Asking for a Friend. But you definitely know her other alter ego, Karrine Steffans, the New York Times best-selling author who lit up the literary and entertainment world when she released what she called a “tell some” memoir, Confessions of a Video Vixen.

Her 2005 barn-burning book gave an inside look at the seemingly glamorous world of being a video vixen in the ‘90s and early 2000s, and exposed the industry’s culture of abuse, intimidation, and misogyny years before the Me Too Movement hit the mainstream. Her follow-up books, The Vixen Diaries (2007) and The Vixen Manual: How To Find, Seduce And Keep The Man You Want (2009) all topped the New York Times best-seller list. After a long social media break, she's back. xoNecole caught up with Ovesen about the impact of her groundbreaking book, what life is like for her now, and why she was never “before her time”– everyone else was just late to the revolution.

xoNecole: Tell me about your new podcast Asking for a Friend with Elisabeth Ovesen and how that came about.

Elisabeth Ovesen: I have a friend who is over [at Blavity] and he just asked me if I wanted to do something with him. And that's just kinda how it happened. It wasn't like some big master plan. Somebody over there was like, “Hey, we need content. We want to do this podcast. Can you do it?” And I was like, “Sure.” And that's that. That was around the holidays and so we started working on it.

xoNecole: Your life and work seem incredibly different from when you first broke out on the scene. Can you talk a bit about the change in your career and how your life is now?

EO: Not that different. I mean my life is very different, of course, but my work isn't really that different. My life is different, of course, because I'm 43. My career started when I was in my 20s, so we're looking at almost 20 years since the beginning of my career. So, naturally life has changed a lot since then.

I don’t think my career has changed a whole lot – not as far as my writing is concerned, and my stream of consciousness with my writing, and my concerns and the subject matter hasn’t changed much. I've always written about interpersonal relationships, sexual shame, male ego fragility, respectability politics – things like that. I always put myself in the center of that to make those points, which I think were greatly missed when I first started writing. I think that society has changed quite a bit. People are more aware. People tell me a lot that I have always been “before my time.” I was writing about things before other people were talking about that; I was concerned about things before my generation seemed to be concerned about things. I wasn't “before my time.” I think it just seems that way to people who are late to the revolution, you know what I mean?

I retired from publishing in 2015, which was always the plan to do 10 years and retire. I was retired from my pen name and just from the business in general in 2015, I could focus on my business, my education and other things, my family. I came back to writing in 2020 over at Medium. The same friend that got me into the podcast, actually as the vice president of content over at Medium and was like, “Hey, we need some content.” I guess I’m his go-to content creator.

xoNecole: Can you expound on why you went back to your birth name versus your stage name?

EO: No, it was nothing to expound upon. I mean, writers have pen names. That’s like asking Diddy, why did he go by Sean? I didn't go back. I've always used that. Nobody was paying attention. I've never not been myself. Karrine Steffans wrote a certain kind of book for a certain kind of audience. She was invented for the urban audience, particularly. She was never meant to live more than 10 years. I have other pen names as well. I write under several names. So, the other ones are just nobody's business right now. Different pen names write different things. And Elisabeth isn’t my real name either. So you'll never know who I really am and you’ll never know what my real name is, because part of being a writer is, for me at least, keeping some sort of anonymity. Anything I do in entertainment is going to amass quite a bit because who I am as a person in my private life isn't the same a lot of times as who I am publicly.

xoNecole: I want to go back to when you published Confessions of a Video Vixen. We are now in this time where people are reevaluating how the media mistreated women in the spotlight in the 2000s, namely women like Britney Spears. So I’d be interested to hear how you feel about that period of your life and how you were treated by the media?

EO: What I said earlier. I think that much of society has evolved quite a bit. When you look back at that time, it was actually shocking how old-fashioned the thinking still was. How women were still treated and how they're still treated now. I mean, it hasn't changed completely. I think that especially for the audience, I think it was shocking for them to see a woman – a woman of color – not be sexually ashamed.

I hate being like other people. I don't want to do what anyone else is doing. I can't conform. I will not conform. I think in 2005 when Confessions was published, that attitude, especially about sex, was very upsetting. Number one, it was upsetting to the men, especially within urban and hip-hop culture, which is built on misogyny and thrives off of it to this day. And the women who protect these men, I think, you know, addressing a demographic that is rooted in trauma that is rooted in sexual shame, trauma, slavery of all kinds, including slavery of the mind – I think it triggered a lot of people to see a Black woman be free in this way.

I think it said a lot about the people who were upset by it. And then there were some in “crossover media,” a lot of white folks were upset too, not gonna lie. But to see it from Black women – Tyra Banks was really upset [when she interviewed me about Confessions in 2005]. Oprah wasn't mad [when she interviewed me]. As long as Oprah wasn’t mad, I was good. I didn't care what anybody else had to say. Oprah was amazing. So, watching Black women defend men, and Black women who had a platform, defend the sexual blackmailing of men: “If you don't do this with me, you won't get this job”; “If you don't do this in my trailer, you're going to have to leave the set”– these are things that I dealt with.

I just happened to be the kind of woman who, because I was a single mother raising my child all by myself and never got any help at all – which I still don't. Like, I'm 24 in college – not a cheap college either – one of the best colleges in the country, and I'm still taking care of him all by myself as a 21-year-old, 20-year-old, young, single mother with no family and no support – I wasn’t about to say no to something that could help me feed my son for a month or two or three.

xoNecole: We are in this post-Me Too climate where women in Hollywood have come forward to talk about the powerful men who have abused them. In the music industry in particular, it seems nearly impossible for any substantive change or movement to take place within music. It's only now after three decades of allegations that R. Kelly has finally been convicted and other men like Russell Simmons continue to roam free despite the multiple allegations against him. Why do you think it's hard for the music industry to face its reckoning?

EO: That's not the music industry, that's urban music. That’s just Black folks who make music and nobody cares about that. That's the thing; nobody cares...Nobody cares. It's not the music industry. It's just an "urban" thing. And when I say "urban," I say that in quotations. Literally, it’s a Black thing, where nobody gives a shit what Black people do to Black people. And Russell didn't go on unchecked, he just had enough money to keep it quiet. But you know, anytime you're dealing with Black women being disrespected, especially by Black men, nobody gives a shit.

And Black people don't police themselves so it doesn't matter. Why should anybody care? And Black women don't care. They'll buy an R. Kelly album right now. They’ll stream that shit right now. They don’t care. So, nobody cares. Nobody cares. And if you're not going to police yourself, then nobody's ever going to care.

xoNecole: Do you have any regrets about anything you wrote or perhaps something you may have omitted?

EO: Absolutely not. No. There's nothing that I wish I would've gone back and said to myself, no. I don’t think at 20-something years old, I'm supposed to understand every little thing. I don't think the 20-something-year-old woman is supposed to understand the world and know exactly what she's doing. I think that one of my biggest regrets, which isn't my regret, but a regret, is that I didn't have better parents. Because a 20-something only knows what she knows based on what she’s seen and what she’s been taught and what she’s told. I had shitty parents and a horrible family. Just terrible. These people had no business having children. None of them. And a lot of our families are like that. And we may pass down those familial curses.

*This interview has been edited and condensed

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