As our daily routines have been forced to change in recent months due to COVID-19, many of us are not quite feeling like our best selves. It’s normal to feel affected by what’s happening around us and more importantly, to recognise that this sense of unease or lack of motivation can be worked through. And it’s not something you have to do alone; all of us around the world are going through this together and need to consciously keep our physical and psychological wellbeing in check. While the gyms and fitness studios are closed for now, there are some great health and wellness apps that can help boost your endorphins and protect your mental health to make this tough time a little easier.
You can still head outdoors for a run and some fresh air with the Circuit Breaker measures in place. While you do have to exercise alone and keep a safe distance from others, the Nike Run Club app is a great running partner. Download it on your phone or Apple Watch to track your progress and get real-time feedback on your pace, location, distance, elevation, heart rate and mile splits. Other useful features include guided runs, custom playlists and challenges for some healthy competition with your friends and a whole community of runners around the world. And when you’ve completed your route for the day, the app allows you to easily share your run statistics on social media. After all, if you didn’t gram it, did it really happen?
There are many yoga apps out there to choose from, but what sets Down Dog apart is that you get a different yoga practice every time. Instead of having a catalogue of pre-recorded videos, the app has 60,000 configurations for you to customise your session so you’ll never get bored. Before beginning a class, select your level, type of yoga practice, boost (particular areas to focus on), length, duration of Savasana, music and other options. During the session, you can also easily switch between left and right side views of the instruction on the screen to check that your poses and forms are correct.
It takes just a few minutes each day to make mindfulness a part of your daily life. Find calm in the guided meditation exercises on Headspace that cover topics like managing stress and anxiety, productivity, exercise, and physical health. During this period, Headspace has introduced a new Weathering the storm pack to help users cope better. If you’re one of those that have trouble sleeping, the app also has bedtime meditations to relax your mind and help you drift off.
Work out with five of the best female personal fit-fluencers on the SWEAT app, with each one specialising in different types of workout plans for various goals. Kayla Itsines, who co-created the app, will whip you into shape with her world-famous BBG (Bikini Body Guide) and she also has a Post-Pregnancy programme for new mothers to rebuild strength. If you have the equipment at home, sculpt your muscles and get stronger with Kelsey Wells’ PWR programme, which focuses on weight training. Each exercise are demonstrated via video loops as well as with written instructions for an easy-to-follow experience. To maximise your efforts, eat well by following the healthy meal plans with shopping lists provided on the app.
Why not take a break from the constant stream of news and mentally escape with a book instead? Scribd has an extensive library of books, audiobooks, magazines in one convenient app. With a monthly subscription (free for the first 30 days), you can get access to unlimited reading and listening, which is great value compared to some other book apps and services. If you don’t want to have to trawl through the hundreds of thousands of titles, the team at Scribd also curates a monthly recommended list of books to aid your decision.