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Tom Sims, The New York Times’ sports blogger, believes smartphones have become increasingly easy, affordable and effective alternatives to gyms and personal trainers. Downloadable fitness apps have the ability to do anything from tracking your running routes to teaching you new workouts, all while listening to your favorite tunes and keeping detailed records. Here are Tom’s picks for effective fitness apps:

Endomondo and RunKeeper map your running and walking routes using GPS. Once your routes are uploaded they can be seen by friends, whose own routes can be downloaded and followed to alternate your routine.

Apps like iMuscle and Nike Training Club use easy interfaces combined with videos to act like a virtual trainer, letting you choose specific areas of your body to focus on.

There are also apps aimed at dieters, like the Calorie Tracker developed by Livestrong.com, which tracks calorie intake and factors daily exercise in, giving you an accurate read on daily calorie consumption.

Read the full article at The New York Times.
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