No matter where you are in your running journey—just getting started, an experienced runner, or every other level in between—there’s an amazing running app that can help track your progress and inspire you to keep going. Here are 10 of the best running apps for motivating you, tracking your run, and planning your next route.
Created by ASICS, Runkeeper is one of the most popular running apps on the market, and for good reason. You won’t need to worry about motivation—the app has a strong running community, gamified challenges, goal setting and progression trackers to help you stay on track and charting your growth. Bonus: you can sync Runkeeper with your Fitbit or Apple Watch and all your running deets like pace, calories, exercise time and loads more will be recorded on all your devices. If you feel like upgrading to the premium Runkeeper Go for a personalised experience and detailed insights, it’ll set you back $62.99 a year.
Chances are you’ve heard of Strava—even if you’re not a runner, ‘cause your cycling and running friends are no doubt obsessed (and for good reason too). This sporty social networks allows you to connect with fellow runners, follow your friends, be motivated by their achievements and even set up group challenges. Of course, if you just want to run for yourself, Strava has got you covered with all the usual tracking features, as well as some nifty extras like the Strava Beacon, which is designed to keep you safe by sharing your live running location with a loved one. You can access more advanced features with the premium version, available for $81.99 annually.
Looking for a run with a difference? Zombies, Run! will spice up your usual circuit with its gamified design which simulates a zombie apocalypse. As you hit the pavement, you will have to gather supplies, rescue survivors and be chased by zombies. As well as your usual running tunes, you'll hear fun sound effects and specific missions (there's 200 to play) to rebuild your town after the apocalypse. Now that’s the ultimate motivation to keep the pace up.
Running By Daily Burn
If you prefer an extra little kick of motivation or you never make it out of bed in the morning (*raises hand*), do yourself a favour and download this app. Running by Daily Burn is the ultimate motivator—it’s basically a personalised running coach in your ear, with customised running plans, guided runs, new weekly challenges and training plans and a personal running coach. Running by Daily Burn even takes it to the next level with guided warm-up stretches to reduce injuries, so you can really smash those goals. There's only a couple of free runs, but you can upgrade to the premium version for full access for $65.99 a year.
Many people take up running with the intention of raising money for charity, but if you don't have a specific event in mind, Charity Miles donates money for every kilometre you run, to a charity of your choice. The app will sync with your phone’s built-in pedometer or can be synced with Strava so that every time you hit the pavement, you’re raising money for those in need. You can source pledges and donations from your friends and family through the app, too.
Nike Run Club
In true Nike style, they’ve got one of the best running apps on the market with Nike Run Club. Designed for beginners and veteran runners alike, this app offers audio-guided workouts, weekly and monthly distance challenges and personalised coaching plans. Connect to your music apps to curate the perfect adrenaline-pumping playlist and connect with your friends for extra motivation.
This one isn't necessarily for running, but we all know how important it is to stretch before an after a run to avoid injury and improve recovery. Bend is stocked with simple guided stretch routines, shared with simple and easy-to-follow illustrations and a timer, so you're not left guessing. Even on your running rest day, a quick stretch is a great way to explore some movement. There's plenty to get you started, or you can unlock the entire library for $45.99 a year.
Peloton is for the runners who prefer to clock their kilometres on a treadmill, and is one of the best running apps on the market specific to indoor running. You’ll be coached by experienced trainers via your phone, tablet, smart TV or computer, and can tailor your runs by time or distance. We can confirm the classes are extremely motivating (and get a sweat up too), with sessions ranging from ten-minute sprint training to endurance runs. Peloton offers a three-month trial for $16.99 for you to explore the app, and after that, it’ll cost you $16.99 per month.
Runtastic by Adidas is designed to help you smash your goals in your next marathon by saving all your running routes, training runs, stats and health info in one convenient app. You can post your stats to Facebook or Twitter directly from the app for some encouragement from your circle, and reminders and goal setting will keep you motivated to beat your personal records.
Map My Run
When a running app is developed by one of the best exercise brands around, you know it’s going to be a goodie. Map My Run (which was created by Under Armour) is one of the most comprehensive running apps, with cool features like audio coaching, route finding and all your usual real-time stats, like course, speed, time and total distance. If you’re one of these people who never know when it’s time to say goodbye to a pair of shoes, Map My Run has got you sorted, with an inbuilt Gear Tracker that will notify you when it’s time for a new pair of their smart kicks.
Now that you’re feeling motivated to clock up some kilometres, make sure you check out our guide to the best running shoes to help you hit your stride.