One thing that a whole lot of people find intimidating when they start is strength training. I used to avoid anything that wasn’t a treadmill at the gym, and it took me quite awhile to work up the courage to go to a group class like Crossfit. If you can afford a PT, I think or a group class they are well worth the investment, because quality of movement and developing good technique is so important – but, it’s great to have some options to do on your own or at home as well. It can help to boost your confidence, make the most of your time and start to work on some of your weaknesses as well.
PT in My Pocket
This is a great introduction to strength work and HIIT training. The workouts range from 10 minutes to 20 minutes and you don’t need any equipment. You can also mix and match workouts depending on the amount of time you have and it includes demonstration videos, which is great if you aren’t familiar with any of the movements. You can check it out on iTunes or on Google Play. Cost $4.49 and there are in-app purchases.
7 Minute Workout
This is a great HIIT option that focuses on bodyweight movements so you don’t need any equipment and every workout is only 7 minutes. It also has video demonstrations for all the movements. And because each workout is only 7 minutes, there’s no excuse not to do it! You can check it out on ITunes or on Google Play. It is free but there are in-app purchases.
Strong Lifts 5 x 5
If you have weights at home or have access to a gym and would like a more structured program, 5 x 5 is an established programming technique designed to maximise strength gains by focusing on the key lifts of: back squat, bench press, overhead press, deadlift and barbell row. It works off three sessions per week with three lifts per session. It’s free to download on iTunes or on Google Play and offers in-app purchases.
Powerlifter 5 / 3 / 1
This is another program option if you have weights at home or access to a gym and want to follow a structured program. Instead of doing 3 lifts per session, 3 times a week, you do 4 sessions, but with 1 lift per session and the option of supporting accessory work. It focuses on: Back Squat, Deadlift, Overhead Press and Bench Press and takes you through a strength cycle with 4 weeks in each cycle. You can download on iTunes or on Google Play. It’s free and offers in-app purchases.
This is an app designed specifically for women who are interested in building strength and has different program based on your goals (including strength for runners). The app itself is free and there are free programs within the app (including bodyweight and barbell), but the most benefit comes out of the pro version which starts at $169.99 for 3 months. You can download on iTunes or on Google Play