So you’re just getting into running and you want to figure out which app is right for you? You’ve come to the right place! There are so many running apps on the market it can be hard choosing the right one.
The “right” app will simply be the app that best allows you to meet your goals. Keep in mind that all of these apps have pros and cons, but one of them should meet your specific needs. Let’s take a look at the top running apps on the market!
If you’re also looking for a cycling app, check out the best cycling apps of 2022.
Strava is a popular app for outdoor runners and cyclists and is great for runners and cyclists looking to build and interact with a community of fellow athletes. If you’re a social butterfly and like to track fairly basic statistics, Strava could be right for you.
- Great for outdoor running and cycling
- You can compare performance with other users
- A huge community to connect with and receive support from
- Map of where your workout took place, which is excellent for mapping out new routes or seeing where you’ve been.
- Strava can’t automatically track indoor running, which is a considerable disadvantage of the app, especially if you run on a treadmill at home or in the gym.
- Lack of interval training feature
- Limited statistics available, probably not the best for elite runners
If you’re just getting started running or biking, RunKeeper may be a good app for you. RunKeeper keeps it simple by only tracking a few stats so as to not overwhelm new users. RunKeeper also features interval training plans that can help you go from a couch potato to a skilled runner in just 8 weeks.
- Easy-to-use interface
- Audio cues that communicate your pace and distance
- Map feature so you can pre-plan routes
- Training plans and coaching available
- Great for beginner runners
- Doesn’t track as many stats as most tracking apps
- Doesn’t have a social community to connect with
Map My Run
The MapMyRun app is a mobile route mapping application developed by Under Armour. It allows users to track their running routes, distance, time, speed, and other metrics, either by manually entering the data or through a GPS-enabled mobile device. The app functions on iOS and Android devices and also synchronizes with wearable fitness devices such as FitBits and smartwatches.
- Very intuitive route-planning options
- Can find new routes added by other users
- Tracks basic stats you would need as a beginner
- Syncs well with pretty much all smartwatches on the market
- Can’t track indoor runs
- Ads pop-up every couple of minutes if you have the free version
Nike+ Run Club
Nike launched their running app in 2010 and since then, many runners have chosen it as their preferred tracking app. Similar to Strava, the Nike app has a large community of runners who support one another in their goals. The app is also well-loved due to its easy-to-access training plans for all levels of runners. Unfortunately, Nike hasn’t released an app for cyclists, so if you’re into both running and cycling, another app may be better suited for you.
- Large number display makes it easy to see stats mid-run or ride
- Personalized coaching plans
- Post-run/ride selfie filters
- Large and supportive community
- Tracks very limited statistics
- Stats screen is not customizable
Couch to 5K
The Couch to 5K app is a fitness training program that helps you go from not running at all to being able to run a full 5K in just 9 weeks! It’s a mobile application that uses a custom audio coach and GPS support. The app is designed to be super simple and easy to use, so you don’t have any excuse not to start your journey toward being a runner.
Just get out there, follow the voice prompts through your earbuds, and get moving!
- Intuitive user-interface
- Offers simple training programs that really do work for beginners
- Uses audio cues to signal when you should walk/run (you don’t have to be looking at your phone while running)
- Only tracks total time running, distance, and mile splits
- Doesn’t allow you to save or pre-plan routes
Zombies Run is an app that turns your normal jog into a race for your life. It takes your standard run and turns it into a mission, with audio cues from the game’s story breaking up your run into little bursts of activity. You’re collecting supplies, trying to avoid zombies, and helping your base fight off enemies!
You’re Runner 5, the newest recruit to the small town of Abel Township, and you’re about to embark on a journey to save mankind from the zombie apocalypse. A zombie outbreak has devastated the human population, but you’re going to help make things right by running through Abel Township and completing delivery missions. Along the way, you’ll learn what happened to cause the zombie apocalypse in the first place—and just how far people are willing to go in order to survive.
- Super fun storyline that makes walking/running enjoyable
- You can choose training plans based on your current fitness level (there’s lots of walking missions)
- You can listen to music still through the apps “radio station” feature
- Limited tracking features (distance, total time, mile times)
- The app takes up a lot of storage space on your phone
Cadence is newly on the market and growing fast! Cadence is a free app designed to track your running and cycling activity. While all the other apps specialize in outdoor running and cycling, Cadence also works for indoor runners!
Cadence was built with a user-friendly interface to make tracking your runs as simple as possible. Because of how customizable Cadence is, it’s perfect for beginner and elite runners alike. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of Cadence.
- Fully-customizable stats display. Check out our article about how to customize your stats screen.
- Apple Watch companion app to track your most important stats.
- Made for indoor and outdoor runners.
- Over 100 stats to choose from!
- Maps of previous runs or rides and ability to map out future routes.
- User interface is extremely easy to navigate.
- Voice announcements for over 25 stats.
- No social community to connect with if that’s your preference