The 8 Best Running Apps of 2019

Track your distance, progress, and more

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Keeping track of your runs and staying motivated to stick to your running schedule is easier than ever, with the help of running apps. They allow you to monitor your distance and pace, track all your mileage, follow training schedules, find new running routes, and much more. You can use running apps on your smartphone or your Apple Watch, and even sync them up with other apps and fitness trackers.

With so many running apps available and new ones coming out all the time, it’s tough to figure out the right choice for your running level, goals and needs. We’ve sorted through the options and come up with the best running apps. Whether you’re new to running or you’re a seasoned expert looking to take your performance to the next level, there’s an app on this list for everyone. All of these apps have a free version, with some in-app purchase opportunities to get additional features. Read on to learn bout the best apps for running you can buy now.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Runkeeper

Courtesy of Apple Store

As one of the most popular and tried-and-true running apps out there, Runkeeper gets our top ranking for its wide array of features, accuracy, as well as ease of use. Whether you’re a beginner runner or an experienced marathoner, this app has something for everyone. You can use the GPS capability to track your distance, pace and overall time, and mix up your running routine by following one of Runkeeper’s pre-created routes.

Runkeeper also lets you set goals and watch your progress to stay motivated. If you’re also into biking or fitness walking, you can track those activities. For runners training for races, Runkeeper offers personalized training routines, complete with helpful reminders to keep you on track. It also syncs with other apps and devices, such as Fitbit, as well as your Apple watch. All of these features are available free on iOS or Android.

Best Route Finding and Tracking: MapMyRun

Map My Run by Under Armour
Courtesy of the Apple Store

MapMyRun is another running app that has stood the test of time. It first debuted as a way to measure running routes, but the latest version offers runners many more cool and helpful features. You can use it to track your runs and find running routes locally or in new cities, as well as get feedback on your stats so you can try to improve your performance.

If you’re one of those runners who never knows when to replace your running shoes, you can add your shoes to the app and the Gear Tracker will notify you when it’s time to get a new pair. You can also join the MapMyRun community to connect with other runners and stay motivated with fun challenges.

MapMyRun is available on iOS and Android and is compatible with hundreds of other popular apps and devices, allowing you to sync your data with your Apple Watch, Garmin, Fitbit, and more.

Best for Beginners: C25K 5K Trainer

C25K® 5K Trainer
Courtesy of the Apple Store

New runners rave about how this popular app took them from couch potato to the finish line of a 5K race in just eight weeks. With pre-designed training plans, Couch to 5K guides you through three workouts each week and keeps track of your progress and routes.

Perfect for beginners, it starts with a mix of running and walking, gradually building up your strength and stamina so you learn how to get into a regular running habit. You’ll also get verbal feedback as you’re running, so you’ll stay motivated to stick with the training. C25K works on any iOS or Android device.

Best Community App: Strava

Courtesy of Strava

If you love the social and competition aspects of running, Strava is the app for you. It allows you to compare times with other members of the Strava community or with your own group of friends to boost your motivation.

You can set up group challenges, such as fastest 5K or most miles in a set period of time, to keep each other going. You can use Strava on any iOS or Android device and Apple Watch.

Best for Motivation: Charity Miles

Charity Miles
Courtesy of Charity Miles

Charity Miles helps you make your miles more meaningful and motivational by donating 25 cents for every mile you run to the charity of your choice. Just open up this free app, choose a charity and you’ll start raising money with each mile you run, bike, or walk.

You can also form teams with running friends to combine fundraising efforts. To stay motivated, Charity Miles prompts you with reminders to run and keep raising money. You can use Charity Miles on any iOS or Android device.

Best for Reaching Your Health Goals: MyFitnessPal

Courtesy of MyFitnessPal 

If you’re hoping to lose some weight through running, the MyFitnessPal app can help you achieve your goals. It allows you to track all your calories and runs in one place and lets you know how many calories you have left based on your daily calorie goals.

You can chart your fitness and weight loss progress and connect with friends on the app, so you can hold each other accountable and maintain motivation. MyFitnessPal is available on iOS and Android and it syncs with other apps and devices including Fitbit, Strava, Runkeeper and Runtastic.

Best for Apple Watch: Nike+ Run Club

Courtesy of NRC

One of the most popular running apps in the App Store for iPhone and Apple Watch, Nike+ Run Club is a fantastic, all-in-one app. This free app offers GPS tracking, audio-guided workouts, weekly and monthly distance challenges to keep you motivated, and personalized coaching plans.

You can connect to Apple Music or Spotify to access curated playlists that are specific for your runs. If you’re a social runner, you’ll love the opportunities to compete with friends and cheer each other on during runs. Nike+ Run Club is perfect for runners with Apple Watches who want stats and feedback during their runs, but don’t want to carry a smartphone. It’s also available for Android devices.

Best for Marathon Runners: Runtastic

Runtastic GPS Running App
Courtesy of Runtastic

Reach your goals in your next marathon with this app that tracks all your runs and offers training plans for marathons and other races. You can save all your routes and stats, so you can stay motivated by trying to beat your personal records.

Once you’ve finished your run, post your stats to Facebook or Twitter right from the app. This app can be used on iOS and Android devices and syncs with other apps such as MyFitnessPal as well as Garmin devices.

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