NPR logo The Best Damn Workout App Money Can't Buy


The Best Damn Workout App Money Can't Buy

There's a great phone app out there called Sports Tracker that never fails to impress my friends.

It uses GPS to track your workouts — running or cycling, for instance. Afterward, it lists your average and maximum speed over the distance. It also charts speed, time, distance, and altitude.

Some of my bike routes, from the Sports Tracker site. hide caption

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If you pause along the way, the program can pause with you. And it can handle laps and favorite routes.

Sports Tracker also tags any music you listened to along the way, so you can identify which songs really got you moving.

And oh yeah — it'll also upload the data to an online server. And when it does, it finds any photos you took and tacks them onto the correct spots on your route.

The results are compiled on the Sports Tracker Web site, or you can export them to any tracking site you like, because it uses common formats.

All of those things are what you'd dream about in a phone application. They're what you would expect in an ideal world.

Now for the details: The application is free, it's more than 2 years old — and it's made by Nokia.

As Apple's App Store makes headlines for turning developers into overnight thousandaires, I'm thankful for a free, reliable program that does everything I want.

But it's not like I'm Sports Tracker's No.-1 fan — millions have downloaded it, and they've used it to track themselves over distances that equal more than 15 round trips to the Moon, according to Nokia.

And speaking of celestial bodies: If you're really feeling it, the app will let you SIGN YOUR NAME ON THE PLANET.