A new year, a fresh start! 2012 will be the year you cultivate a love for juice fasts, exercise daily, and stay up to date on your doctor appointments. Right? Or perhaps, as January speeds to its conclusion, you’re finding you’re already eschewing the lunchtime salads for pizza and your newfound enthusiasm for the gym isn’t so, well, enthusiastic. You’ve probably started rationalizing away your resolutions with excuses: But the gym is so far… I don’t know how many calories are in what I eat… My doctor doesn’t take my insurance… Well, for better or worse (depending on how lazy you’re feeling), the following health apps make it virtually impossible to indulge in notions of road-blocks. They won’t do the work for you, but they do solve many of the problems that seem insurmountable when our motivation is less than admirable, and they just may be the thing to catapult you out of your mid-January slump.
The Excuse: I would go to the doctor, but I don’t have time to find one.
The Cure: ZocDoc
While no one especially likes going in for their yearly check-ups, half the battle is often just making the appointments. This free app lets you bypass the hold music, the indecipherable phone trees, and the snarky receptionists and book your doctor appointments online. Any kind of doctor—from the gynecologist to the dermatologist to the psychologist, a few swipes through ZocDoc and you’re set up with a doctor that takes your insurance, is convenient to your home or office, and is available when you need him or her. ZocDoc , free.
The Excuse: Who even knows how many calories are in this?
The Cure: Tap & Track Calorie Counter
Anyone will tell you, the way to weight control is to be mindful of your calorie intake. But forget squinting at the nutritional information on that package of fig newtons. Download Tap & Track Calorie and you’ll have a food database of 400,000 items and more than 5,000 brand names and restaurant chains. Input your intake and see your progress graphed out for your consideration. That’ll help keep your appetite leaning toward lean. Tap & Track Calorie Counter , $3.99.
The Excuse: I would work out, but I can’t afford a personal trainer.
The Cure: Full Fitness
This is a great one if you had money-saving resolutions to go with your health-improving ones. With Full Fitness, you can save on a human personal trainer who will charge you $60 an hour, and go instead with this comprehensive workout app, currently being offered on special for 99¢. Hit the gym armed with over 300 exercises, all illustrated by pictures, videos, and written instructions, and sorted by body region, target muscle, and necessary equipment. Log all your exercises and view your progress in graphs. Full Fitness , $2.99.
The Excuse: I’m not seeing any progress so what’s the point?
The Cure: Nike+ GPS
Half-marathons and marathons for charity seem to be all the rage these days. If your New Year’s resolution to get fit was sealed with you signing up for training for one such event, Nike+ GPS will swiftly become a necessity. Gone is the cumbersome shoe sensor. Now Nike+ taps right into your iPhone’s GPS functionality to feed you voice prompts that track your progress and help you monitor your running goals. Nike+ GPS , $1.99
The Excuse: But I’m just so tired…
The Cure: aSleep 3
Health isn’t health without your beauty rest. Augment all your hale and hearty eating and exercise with this app for a better night’s sleep. aSleep 3 provides an array of sleepy melodies and white noise, from “Beach & Seagulls” to “Tundra.” It also includes other sleep-focused tools such as an alarm clock, a timer, chromotherapy, and a snore detector. Just a little arsenal in your fight for some good shut-eye. aSleep 3 , 99¢