Plus three bonus apps to help you stay motivated year round!
As we head into a new year, many of us resolve to improve ourselves with healthier habits. According to a survey by YouGov, 54% of us resolve to eat healthier, 48% resolve to lose weight, and a whopping 59% resolve to exercise more. Motivation is key when it comes to staying on track with any resolution, so wouldn’t it be great to get a little reward for your hard work? Here are 12 apps and websites that reward your healthy habits!
I feel obligated to throw a disclaimer out there, though: Always consult your health care provider before starting any exercise or diet plan. From there, decide if these apps are a good fit from your lifestyle. Ask your health care provider for any guidance you need on your self-improvement journey.
If you’re already counting how many steps you take per day using your phone or Fitbit, why not get paid for it? Achievement is a free iOS and Android app that pays you to track steps, meals, and sleep patterns. Tracking is made simple by integrating with your Fitbit, Apple Health, or Samsung Health apps. One drawback: earnings are capped at a maximum of $30 per year. You can cash out to PayPal or via direct deposit when you hit the $10 mark.
SweatCoin is another free app that will reward you for tracking your steps. It’s a slow and steady yet simple process to earn with SweatCoin: download the app and connect it to your Apple Watch, iPhone, or Android phone (sorry, SweatCoin doesn’t work with Fitbit). There are different levels of payment through SweatCoin, each with the potential to earn more SweatCoins. The catch is that you “pay” using a small percentage of SweatCoins each month to bump up to a higher bracket. SweatCoins are essentially a virtual currency (think BitCoin) that you can exchange for various items in their rewards shop.
Whealthy is a super simple way to get rewarded for tracking your steps, water intake–even heart rate and meditation! All you have to do is install the app on your phone and check in when you want to log your steps, exercise sessions, etc.
Activities you can track for points include:
• breathing exercises
• working out
• 3,000 step challenges
• 8,000 step challenges
• drinking water
• daily sports activity, such as playing tennis and volleyball
• tracking steps
• heart rate monitoring
• observation training (or as I like to call it, a “spot the differences” game)
• watching “creatives”, which are videos and advertisements. Totally optional and useful if you need extra coins to help you meet your reward goals.
Coins can be exchanged for exercise equipment, Nike, Adidas, and Under Armour gift cards, or cash out to PayPal. This was one of the strategies I used to help pay for my recent Disney World trip without any out of pocket expenses! If you’re interested in seeing how I accomplished this for your own travel adventures, you can check out the post here.
StepBet is my personal favorite to stay motivated to get those steps in every single day. StepBet is a little different from the previously mentioned apps since you pay a monthly fee to be a member. After downloading the app, you’ll want to choose a game where you literally place a bet on how many steps you can complete each day. The app will calculate your daily goals based on your past activity history. Most challenges will give you 4 active days, 2 power days, and one free day per week. From there, it’s up to you to crush your goals each day! Most games last about 6 weeks and have wager of around $40. StepBet does take a commission from the wagers but if you meet your goals for the duration of your game, you’ll at least break even if not make a small profit. StepBet will give you your portion of the pot back via PayPal. In my experience, I usually get back $50 to $60 which is a $10 to $20 profit. Not a huge amount, but it is a fun way to keep going on the tough days. Each game has a Facebook-esque social space where you can engage and encourage fellow participants.
Need a powerful motivator to help you shed the pounds? HealthyWage has a similar concept to StepBet, but instead of wagering on how many steps you complete per day, you bet on how much weight you think you can successfully lose. HealthyWage wants participants to set a goal that is challenging yet attainable–and at least 10% of your body weight. You set how long you think it will take you to accomplish your goal safely (and they’ll verify that it’s a realistic timeline and weight according to CDC guidelines). Participants weigh in weekly either by checking in at your doctor’s office for a weight check, video verification, or through the mobile app. HealthyWage is very reassuring that the process of video or app verification is private and secure. Once you’ve put in the work and lost the weight, you’ll receive your cash prize. According to HealthyWage’s website, they’ve paid out over $9,217, 664.43 in rewards in the past 12 months! Curious to see how much you could potentially win using HealthyWage? Check out their Prize Calculator here.
The concept behind DietBet is a blend of StepBet (their sister company) and HealthyWage. With DietBet, you can choose one of three types of games: Kickstarter, Transformer, or Maintainer. Just as it’s name implies, Kickstarter participants are challenged to lose 4% of their body weight in four weeks. Those who join the Transformer game aim to lose 10% of their body weight in six months (this game is most similar to HealthyWage’s overall system). Already lost your weight and want to be rewarded for maintaining your weight loss? The Maintainer’s game rewards you for keeping the same weight for 12 months and the rewards grow the longer you play the game. Much like HealthyWage, DietBet participants weigh in either by video weigh in or two-step photo verification. It’s super important that you’re losing in a safe manner and DietBet referees look for unhealthy weight loss patterns and behaviors.
Lympo is a free app that will reward you for running and walking for fitness. All you’ll need to do is download the app and choose a challenge. Once you’ve completed your chosen challenge, you’ll get rewarded in tokens that you can then redeem in the app’s shop. You’ll get rewarded for steps taken both indoors and outdoors. Prizes in their rewards shop vary but typically include exercise gear and apparel, such as t-shirts. Or if you join larger challenges, you could be entered to win tickets to professional sporting events. One more reason to love about the Lympo app? They offer fitness tips and injury prevention to help you meet your goals, stay motivated, and maintain health.
The Higi app focus on health and wellness education, first and foremost. You’ll install the free app and visit one of their Smart Health Stations located within 10,000 retail stores and pharmacy locations nationwide. The app will track measurements, such as blood pressure and BMI, that are displayed on a graph that you can then share with your healthcare provider. They also partner with organizations such as the American Heart Association and American Diabetes Association for education and self-service risk assessments. Most of the rewards available through Higi are discounts on exercise apparel and shoes. One drawback: The app had issues connecting to the Smart Health Station but was successful after a couple of attempts.
9. Charity Miles
Charity Miles is a distance tracker app that rewards you in a different way: by making a donation to the charity of your choice! It feels good to help an organization you support, so it definitely is rewarding. After downloading the app, you can create an account or link to your Facebook account. You’ll earn rewards for every mile you walk, run, or bike. There are several charities for you to choose from, including St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Feeding America, and the ASPCA. I think this would be an great way to get your family and kids engaged in healthy and philanthropy. That’s a win-win if you ask me.
10. Map My Fitness
Map My Fitness is an app by Under Armour that has built-in fitness tracking capabilities along with preset workout routines and the ability to share your workout routine with other app users in their online community. There’s a free version along with a premium paid membership. Map My Fitness has different challenges with different rules and prizes. Those at the top of the leaderboard at the end of the challenge will win the prizes, so you have to place in order to receive a reward. The incentives and winnings can be pretty substantial, plus there are rewards for overall winners for the year.
Paceline is the highest rated app on this list in the Apple App Store with a stellar 4.9 rating. Users love the rewards system and ease of use. I’ve started with Paceline and it was easy enough. All you’ll need to do is download the free app from Google Play or the App Store and connect to the Health app on your phone or Apple Watch, Garmin, or Fitbit watch. Paceline mentioned that more devices would be added soon. Rewards are earned after you have exercised 150 minutes for the week, which is in line with the American Heart Association’s recommended guidelines. You’ll get weekly gift cards from vendors such as Target, Starbucks, Athleta, Adidas, Amazon, and more!
Last but not lease, Fitpotato is a free iOS app that’s very similar to StepBet but with shorter, weeklong challenges. There’s a $5 “buy in” and your winnings will depend on how many other competitors are in the prize pool (and that you successfully complete the challenge, of course). One big advantage to winning with Fitpotato? You can have cash winnings deposited to your bank account any time you request with no minimum requirements.
Vitality and Virgin Pulse are both apps that work with employee wellness programs, so you’ll want to check with your company’s human resources department to get started. Vitality’s participants can earn a free Fitbit or Apple Watch for regularly engaging in healthy exercise. Virgin Pulse has various challenges for both groups and on an individual basis for merchandise and cash prizes. AARP Rewards for Good is a free program for anyone 18 and over–you don’t need to be a retiree to enjoy rewards such as gift cards for tracking your fitness.