Outdoor Fitness Essentials

JessiKorch_FitnessAppsThe latest temperature drop in State College reminds us all that cooler days are coming, but don’t take your workouts indoors just yet! Lace up those Nikes and hit the pavement around campus before it’s too late.

Outdoor fitness has tremendous health benefits- both physical and mental. In addition to weight control, 30 to 60 minutes of daily activity will pump out feel-good hormones like endorphins and may leave you feeling better about your appearance and self-esteem.

Taking a routine outside also allows you the freedom to customize your workout and switch up your routes to break out from ordinary scenery.

“Hitting a fitness plateau can be easy when you’re stuck in the same routine,” Chris Kalisz, personal trainer at Frost Fitness Center, says.

“When you train outside you’re getting your body and your mind moving. You can switch up your training to fit your mood, like running through the woods one day or around campus the next,” Kalisz says.

If a lack of motivation is getting in your way, using your Smartphone could help. Get a little closer with Mother Nature and spice up your routine by downloading one of these awesome fitness apps. Each one is designed to help you reach your fitness goals while embracing the great outdoors.

EveryTrail Pro

$3.99, iTunes

Good for: Hiking, walking, mountain biking

Perfect for embracing your adventurous side, EveryTrail Pro makes it easy to find hiking and riding trails in your area through its route database. The app even allows you to create your own map and share it with other users. Offline accessibility to the app is also convenient for when you find yourself in spots without service.

Strava Cycling

Free, iTunes

Good for: Cycling

Track your rides, map your routes and join challenges with Strava Cycling. The app is designed to give riders a place to record their stats and connect with other bikers in the area by utilizing social media. Users are able to motivate their friends and receive kudos for hard workouts by sharing the details of their ride on Facebook and Twitter.

Nike+ Running

Free, iTunes

Good for: Running, Walking

A well-known app in the running community, Nike+ Running allows users to track their routes using the reliable GPS function. The app is able to record distance, time and calories burned, providing a set of metrics and personal bests after each use. In addition to metrics, motivational boosts and power songs, the app has features which allow you to share your run through social media, play music and offers motivation.

Map My Walk

Free, iTunes

Good for: Walking

Turn your phone into a personal pedometer with Map My Walk. The app uses a GPS function to record your routes and times, tracking everything from elevation to distance. In addition to standard metrics, Map My Walk provides a nutrition, diet and weight tracker to keep you in line with your fitness goals. If you find yourself favoring a tech-free workout, you can create a Map My Walk profile on the app’s website, where users can log their routes anytime, anywhere.

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