‘Learn to run’ – training app for Android
From the first college years me and my friends kept telling each other we have to start jogging to keep in shape. Yet every time going out for a beer and a pizza or a movie sounded better and the jogging part got voted out. Then another motivational speech the next week, ending with the same result and so on. Years passed and we never jogged a single minute, not because we were so in shape (quite contrary) but because we lacked the will to run. So dear reader, you’re not the only one that promises to start working out and never actually does it, there’s millions of us. You see, you have an enemy within your brain, one that thinks it helps you but actually endangers your life. We have a very old piece within our brain that’s a leftover from the time we were reptiles that still thinks you have to eat and conserve your energy. While this was helpful tens of thousands of years ago, when food was scarce, it’s obviously not helpful nowadays. That part of the brain is the reason you have bad habits such as eating more than you need, unhealthy food and not exercising.
But there’s light at the end of the tunnel. Sure it take a lot of will to do so, however you will feel much better when you actually start working out. Just find the motivation to start running once and it will become easier to repeat the action. You can even get help from your smartphone by installing an app to guide and motivate you in your training.
‘Learn to run’ is an app for Android devices that helps you stick to your workout program. The app has two modes, basic training and advanced training. The main difference between the two is the time it takes you to complete one of the training programs. In basic mode, workout sessions last between 30 and 60 minutes. If you choose the advanced one, workout sessions last between 60 and 120 minutes (each). Each training program has 25 lessons and the logic is taking a lesson each day without any gaps. A lesson is divided into smaller exercises, alternations of running and walking.
While you are following one of the workout lessons, you have the option to play music that’s stored on your device. You can choose a custom folder to get the music from, or simply let the app load music from the default media folder on your device. You can see a short video tutorial on how you can use ‘Learn to Run’ here:
When an exercise starts or ends you will be notified by a voice and accompanying a bell. This way you don’t have to look at the phone again to know how much you’ve practiced for, as you can hear it. The app will also keep track of your progress through the workout sessions, in case you want to take a break (which will probably happen more often in the beginning, especially if you’re out of shape). Jogging daily will keep you in shape as exercise improves your overall health. Here’s some of the features ‘Learn to Run’ has that can help you:
- Two training modes. The app comes with two training modes, Basic and Advanced. Each training mode has 25 different lessons, to be practiced in 25 consecutive days (recommended). The difference comes in the amount of time you have to practice for each training mode. In Basic mode, each of those 25 lessons lasts up to 60 minutes. The first lessons start with 30-40 minutes, while the last ones will be 60-70 minutes. In advanced mode, things get more complicated as one lesson can be up to 120 minutes (the last ones). Running for 2 hours daily it’s quite the effort, so most likely this option is for sportsmen.
- Music. Whenever I hear the music I like I feel more motivated to do things. I’m not alone, the right type of music helps especially with physical activities. With ‘Learn to Run’ you can listen to your favorite music while exercising. It will play automatically what it detects in your default Music folder from your device, but you can go in its settings and modify that folder to load music from a different location.
- Voice commands. Whenever you start an exercise, a voice will tell you that you’ve started it (you have to press a Start button to do so). It’s also followed by a bell sound and it’s useful because you don’t have to look at your phone constantly to know when it started and when you have to stop. Because you will also hear this when the exercise stops.
- Options. The app has some basic options that allow you to disable the voice commands, disable the bell noise, enable/disable the music and also modify the default folder for the music in case you want to play from a different location.
- Free. The app is free to install and it has some ads shown at the bottom of the screen. Given that you only start the app and then just run, you barely interact with those ads. However if you find those annoying you have an option to upgrade to an ad-free version for a very small fee.
‘Learn to Run’ is an app for those that want to get back in shape in a couple of weeks by following a workout training program. It’s all about being motivated to do so and once starting the workout to keep following it until it ends. It’s a game of will between your ‘modern’ part of the brain (the ones that understands the benefits of working out) and the ‘reptilian’ part of your brain (the one that keeps telling you to just sit and eat to conserve energy). Since the app is free maybe it’s time to give running a try.
You can get the app directly from Google Play: Download ‘Learn to Run’