Apps I love

First, thanks so much for your kind words from my last post. Everyday is getting a little better.

Second, I’ve had this draft saved in my archives for almost 3 weeks and just never got around to posting so here it finally is! (I know you were all waiting with bated breath)

 

Are you an app person? One of the big reasons I wanted an IPhone a few years ago when it was time to renew my contract, is because they had all of the cool apps. Now Android has caught up and most apps can be downloaded to either operating system.  I have all of the usual apps – Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, Instagram and love them. I’m also always on the lookout for new ones that are either (a) fun (b)functional or (c) both. And, if they are free it’s even better! 🙂 I’ve found 2 (technically 3, but two are really similar) so far this year that I really love and figured that other people might love too.

Sleep Cycle.

This app is awesome! I believe it costs .99, but I downloaded it for free as a ‘Pick of the Week’ from Starbucks. This bad boy monitors your sleep, through the accelerometer in your phone and is designed to gently wake you up when you are in “your lightest sleep state”, known as the ‘wake up phase’.  You can set your wake up phase in increments (mine is set for 15 minutes) and your alarm will wake you no earlier than 15 minutes before your set alarm time.

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This app also tracks your sleep pattern, and every morning when I wake up to a gentle, soothing sound I can see how long I slept, and what the quality of my sleep is.

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There are also other graphs that show things like your sleep quality per day of the week, how many hours I spend in bed by day of the week, etc.  

sleep quality

time in bed

Getting a good night’s sleep is important no matter what, but as a runner it’s crucial. Not that this helps me sleep better, per say, but it does help me see when I ‘m not sleeping well and I can hopefully take steps to correct it. My goal is always to get a 100% – I’ve had two since I downloaded this app in March…and I lost one when I updated my new phone. Bummer.

Nap Cycle

This is really similar to my sleep cycle app, but doesn’t come with all of the fancy charts and graphs, etc. You can set your nap timer for 20 minutes, 45 minutes, 60 minutes or 120 minutes.

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You keep the phone close to you so it can track your movements, and it will gently wake you up just like your sleep cycle. This app was .99 and after seeing how awesome Sleep Cycle was I gladly paid the whopping ninety-nine cents for it. I love taking naps, but hate sitting down to close my eyes and waking up 3 hours later. Then I toss and turn all night long. Sure, I could set a normal alarm on my phone, but let’s be honest…where’s the fun in that?

Outsider.

This app is so cool. I read about it on-line (Runner’s World, I think) and downloaded it right away. It works with The Weather Channel and factors in things like air temperature, humidity, air quality, chance of precipitation, and wind speed and tells you on a scale from 1-10 how ideal the weather is for running.

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You can also look to see hour by hour what the quality is predicted to be.

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I’ve only had this for about two-ish, but I’ve used it every day. So far, I’ve run in a 1, a 9 and a few in between. I really like this because I can’t seem to comprehend humidity for the life of me. I know it also has something to do with dew points, but some days my Weather Channel app says the humidity is low and I walk outside and can barely breathe. Other mornings, the humidity is high but it doesn’t seem bad at all. ( <— not a rocket scientist over here. I don’t even play one on TV) At least with this, I have an idea of what I’m getting myself into!

 

What are your favorite apps?

Bonus points if they are FREE 😉 !

 

 

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4 thoughts on “Apps I love

  1. I will definitely look into getting both! I know I am really irritable and groggy when I wake up in the middle of a very deep dream, so the sleep app may be just what I need. And I’ll use the other one all the time. I am constantly checking my weather apps and trying to figure out what I should wear for running. I hate it when the radar map is completely clear and I go out without a hat and it starts to rain. Thanks for the suggestions!

  2. I am a total app junkie, so I loved this. I think I used the sleep cycle one before but them I got the Jawbone Up band. That broke, so I’m going to try the sleep one again. I am obsessed with my sleep patterns because I know I am so under-rested! I’m also fanatical about the air quality. Although the Outsider app might mentally break me before i get out the door if I see high humidity. LOL

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