Happy Apping

To those of you who don’t have a smart phone (or, as my wonderful neighbor from Kosovo calls it, “Stupeed Smartphone,” you may want to browse down. But this may pique your interest.

In the past I’ve mentioned my many fitness apps–Myfitnesspal, Runkeeper, MapMyRun (or MapMyAss as I fondly call it), and Gym Pact. They all are good record keepers and let me know how much time and energy I’ve spent biking, running, walking and swimming. Because I am a little compulsive, I like to look at where I was and where I am now. I do track almost every workout.

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Fresh veggies harvested in my back yard

Part of my interest in apps has been to make some money. Like Gym Pact, where I get paid for “making my fitness pact” every week, Achievemint is a new one that I’ve recently downloaded. Gym Pact only syncs with Runkeeper (and right now that feature isn’t working well so I’ve put my account on freeze) and will count gym visits by GPS if you stay in one gym for at least a half-hour. Achievemint was founded on the idea of encouraging a healthier lifestyle in general. When I post a healthy picture on Instagram, it gives me 20 points.

Achievemint awards even more points for running or biking by linking with Runkeeper (and many other fitness trackers). It can also track Foursquare, healthy posts on FB, and other social media like Twitter.  When you hit 25,000 points, they send you a $25 check. I haven’t even used it one month and am at $5000. I really don’t have to do anything except connect my apps, which makes it really simple.

Check it out: http://www.achievemint.com

Fitness Magazine’s October issue features a woman who had the idea to pair fitness with fundraising for charity. She has created an app called Charity Miles. (www.charitymiles.org) For every mile you walk or run, they donate 25 cents to the charity that you choose among their selections, including cancer, Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Autism research and World Hunger organizations. Cycling earns 10 cents per mile. You share your workout at the end to thank the sponsors and get more people interested in donating.

That app has made me the most happy of the all. All you do is check in and it tracks you by GPS; I’ve had it running at the same time as Runkeeper and it is no big drain on the battery. And it’s free!

Because helping other people is way cooler than just helping myself to dessert after a long workout.

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What we need to have for dinner

That said, I am going to make some apple crisp now with home grown apples from my back yard so that Ballet Boy and I can enjoy it tonight without a wait. He will have danced and Nutcrackered 5.5 hours today and I will hopefully have run 8 miles again tonight. Yes, again, as I completed 8 at a slight under 12 minute mile pace with Candy Ass last week. It was fun to be running with her again, and I am repeatedly amazed at the progress my ankle is making. There is hope!

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