A smartphone's built-in sensors make it a great platform for a variety of running apps that can track your speed, distance traveled and calories burned while even mapping your route. Things get even better when paired with a run tracker or smartwatch. From high-end exercise apps with dedicated training plans to fun, gamified tools, stay on track with your New Years fitness resolutions with the best running apps for Android and iOS devices.
A perennial favorite among runners, Runkeeper (Android, iOS) uses your phone's GPS to track your running, cycling, hiking and other distance activities. The app records your pace, distance, total exercise time, calories burned and other useful metrics, while also allowing you to take and tag pictures on the go. Users can go freeform or download and follow popular running routes. You can measure your progress and workout history, as well as sync with numerous other apps and services and receive detailed reports of your tracked activity.
In addition to being a top-notch running tracker, Strava Running and Cycling (Android, iOS) adds some pretty neat competitive and gamified features to the usual run-tracking recipe. The app records your running speed, distance traveled, time and course taken for both useful metrics and tracking, but combines all that with leaderboards, achievements and challenges as you race against your friends. Strava supports a variety of running trackers in addition to Android Wear and Apple Watch.
Run with Map My Run (Android, iOS) is Map My Fitness's own take on the run-tracking app, taking advantage of your phone's GPS and other sensors to track and map your running course, time, speed and total distance traveled. The app displays both your real-time stats and your end-of-run totals. Useful extras include support for a variety of fitness trackers and heart rate sensors, Android Wear support and nutrition tracking. A premium subscription provides voice coaching and location sharing and removes ads.
Runtastic (Android, iOS) uses GPS to track and map your exercise, monitoring time, speed and distance and plots your route in real-time. A personal exercise diary keeps track of your running metrics, and you can view routes in a Google Earth-style view. A configurable dashboard, detailed graphs of your exercise information, progress sharing over social networks and numerous training plans round out this neat exercise app.
iSmoothRun Pro is an extremely feature-packed running tracker app that works fantastically well on its own, or in combination with a variety of wearable devices and fitness apps and services. iSmoothRun Pro uses GPS and the iPhone's motion sensors, effortlessly switching between the two as needed, while tracking your run time, cadence and more. Users can log and display a variety of running metrics, such as speed, distance, time and intervals. You can export data to a variety of formats and fitness services.
Once a Nokia exclusive, Sports Tracker (Android, iOS) now brings one of the first mobile sports trackers to other platforms. The app uses GPS to track your progress when running, cycling, or skiing, providing you with a map track of your exercise route, as well as average speed, estimated calories burned, heart rate (with a heart rate monitor) and other exercise metrics. You can record a workout diary and track your progress, set weekly fitness goals, and participate in optional social features. Those include sharing your exercise progress and route, following and commenting on other users and participating in weekly leaderboards.
Push yourself against your personal best with Ghostracer, a free Android app that integrates with Strava so that you can pit yourself against your best times or those from other users. Users race against "ghosts," previous course or segment times that they try to beat, with ghost times pulled from Strava or a GPX file. The app can display segments and routes through a Google Maps display, and provide audio updates as you run. Android Wear, Sony Smartwatch, and Wahoo RFLKT owners can use their smartwatches to display their stats and record their route.