Aaptiv Review: Running and Fitness Classes In Your Pocket

 

An app that brings personal trainers to your home

Aaptiv is a phone-based app that provides a variety of workouts – including outdoor running, treadmill, spinning, elliptical, and strength training – that are led by real personal trainers. It’s fitness classes in your pocket at a fraction of the cost of a gym membership or personal trainer. You can do them at home or pretty much anywhere you want.

PROS:

  • Variety of workouts for all levels
  • Enthusiastic and fun trainers
  • Simple, easy-to-use app
  • Takes the boredom out of working out

CONS:

  • For runners, geared more for beginner and intermediates
  • Mostly interval and speed workouts – not many long runs

Sign Up for Aaptiv Here

A personalized fitness program shouldn’t just be reserved for the people who can afford their own personal trainer. As a beginner, intermediate, or advanced runner, an audio-based guide can be with you every step of the way.

Aaptiv is an audio fitness app that is always there to offer a convenient, customize, and fun way to run. Since most people rely on music to motivate them on their runs, the app allows runners to have access to over 2,500 audio fitness classes and a wide variety of music genres.

Many users describe Aaptiv as a fitness class that they can attend in the comfort of their own apartment. Boasting more than 10M app downloads and over 50,000 five star reviews, Aaptiv provides runners with effective workouts that produce amazing results.

What is Aaptiv?

Aaptiv is an innovative app that offers runners music and audio cues to follow while working out. Instead of staring at a screen or squinting at a phone, this app provides expert instruction through your earphones.

The app was ultimately created to improve the lives of many people through fitness. Everyone is welcome to use the app even those who do not have a six pack or perfect beach body. Rather than concentrating on obtaining the perfect physique, the app focuses on more important aspects of fitness such as the thrill of beating a personal best, the joy of moving your body freely, and the many health benefits of running.

One of the best aspects of this app is that every class comes with its own hand-picked playlist by top artists in various popular genres. The songs match the pace and vibe of each workout perfectly. If pop music is your regular jam, just use the app’s filters to discover running workouts with playlist in virtually every major music genre.

Since the classes are recorded, mixed, and produced by the company, the audio quality on this app is exceptional. Aaptiv’s talented team of expert audio engineers are always adding uplifting new music to the app that carefully matches the workout instructions.

Due to its many unique features, Aaptiv is one of the best audio fitness apps on the market today. By combing the guidance of a personal trainer with a fun fitness class, you’ll experience a running session like never before. As the Aaptiv continues to grow, you can count on the app to deliver personalized fitness instruction to guide you to a healthier and happier life.

Why Do I Need Aaptiv?

Contrary to other fitness programs, Aaptiv classes are specifically designed with your body and workout in mind. The app’s audio-based instruction and musical inspiration will encourage you to perfect your form and move freely while enjoying your working out environment.

If you are wondering why you aren’t getting faster at running, your form could be part of the problem. The good news is that Aaptiv offers many classes to perfect your form. These classes teach you how to run with proper breathing, body moving in sync, and shoulders back.

Along with classes that perfect your form, the app also offers many intensive race training programs for 5K and 10K. The high-intensity interval training can result in optimal weight loss and muscle building.

The app also offers popular workouts that naturally build endurance and stamina. These are ones that focus on cross-training, tempo runs, and speed.

In addition, the app has structured programs that have been shown to help runners achieve specific running goals in four to ten weeks. When you use the app’s training schedule and built-in tracking, you’ll be able to accomplish your running goals in no time.

Be sure to check out these great classes for runners: “Walk To Run One Mile,” “Cross-Train To 5K,” “Hit The Half,” “Master The Marathon,” “Focus On 5K,” “Cross-Train 10K,” “Tackle The 10K,” “Walk On, Jog Long,” “Keep It Up-Intermediate Treadmill,” and “Run Your Fastest Mile.”

While consistency is the key to running success, making sure that the activity stays fresh and new is essential to remaining motivated.
Because the company adds classes weekly, you’ll be able to keep up with the newest trends in fitness instruction and musical artists. You can even give feedback to the trainers regarding the type of classes you’ll like to see next.

The uniqueness of the app also lies in its ability to recommend songs to play matching the beats per a minute to your cadence. The best running music will have a bpm of 165 to 185. Interesting enough, the amount of steps you should be taking per minute is between 165 and 185 during an average run.

One thing to note is that if a trainer cues a 400 meter sprint, there is energizing music to keep you on track. So every workout class offers you the opportunity to skip the boring exercise DVD music and instead jam out to exciting music like Britney Spears, N*Sync, Kygo, and Cardi B.

Another perk of the app is that Aaptiv allows you to use a fitness tracking app while you are working out. Just open your fitness tracking app and then begin your preferred program on Aaptiv. The two apps will work simultaneously.

There is no doubt that the app embraces all paths from a vigorous morning run to an after-work treadmill class. Whether you are running at home, the gym, or outside, this audio app will help you obtain the fitness results that you always wanted. If you don’t have time for a full workout, Aaptiv offers many short, 7-minute running classes too.

Keep in mind that all workouts are provided in miles rather than kilometers. For your convenience, the workouts can be downloaded to your phone so that you can play them offline later.

How Does Aaptiv Work?

Aaptiv offers runners a perfect workout in three simple steps. The first step is to enter your goals to discover a plethora of workouts that you’ll love. As a runner, your goal may be to run farther, lose weight, or get stronger.

Next it’s time to choose a workout while keeping the music, difficulty, trainer, and duration in mind. The running workouts are each labeled with a level of difficulty such as beginner, intermediate, or advance. Select the “filter workouts” tab to filter workouts based on experience level and important other criteria.

Now all you need to do is put on your headphones and let the trainers guide you. The workouts are available on demand, which means that you can play the audio anytime, anywhere.

Is Aaptiv Just For Running?

One of the best things about Aaptiv is that it’s not just for running. The app also has programs in twelve other categories including walking, strength training, boxing, indoor cycling, treadmill, elliptical, yoga, meditation, stretching, rowing, and stair climbing.

Here are some other great classes to check out: “Train Like A Boxer,” “Touch Your Toes,” “Ease Into Exercise,” “Foundations Of Yoga,” “Total Body Training,” “Body & Mind,” “Weight Loss Kickstart,” and “Intro To Meditation.”

From beginners trying to lose weight to experienced athletes striving to exceed fitness goals, Aaptive has a workout for virtually everyone.

Who are the Aaptiv Trainers?

Aaptiv offers over twenty-five trainers to help you accomplish your running goals even if you’re just getting started with exercise. Each trainer has a different workout and style, so it’s easy to find one that meets your specific needs.

If you are a marathon runner, you will probably like master trainers Rochelle Moncourtois and Meghan Takacs. These excellent trainers have created “Hit the Half” and “Master the Marathon.” Regardless of your level of experience, these programs can be adapted to accommodate your needs.

All of the Aaptive trainers are health educators, renowned athletes, and physical therapists. They are certified by prominent organizations like ACE, ISSA, and NASM.

Join Aaptiv’s private Facebook group to get in touch with the trainers. You must be an Aaptiv member to join the group.

Hands-on Review

I had the chance to try out Aaptiv and do some of their workouts. While I didn’t try every type of workout, I got a chance to experience what they were really like.

First Impressions

Once I signed up and downloaded the app, it was super-easy to use. Starter workouts were listed right at the top of the app. Or you could browse through Aaptiv’s suggestions.

The first time I logged in, Aaptiv kept pushing me to take a starter class. This makes sense, so you can get a feel for the app. But it made it a little annoying if you wanted to jump right into something more challenging (like I did).

Once I figured out how to bypass that feature, there is a filter to find specific types of workout. You could select: outdoor run, treadmill, strength training, elliptical, plus a few others. There were filters for workout difficulty – beginner, intermediate, advanced – plus duration of workout. Duration included anything from 10 minutes or less up to 50+ minutes. Further filters let you select the type of music and a specific trainer, if you found one you liked.

Workouts

I did 3 workouts in total. They were all outdoor runs (because, well, this is a running blog and I like running outside). 

Each workout had a different level of difficulty, music genre, and trainer. The first thing I noticed was that each trainer had a unique style and motivational method. This was good because it kept the workouts varied and interesting. They had different energy levels, too, but all of them kept me entertained and motivated. 

It was a lot like taking a fitness class at the gym – or having your experienced and talkative friend on a run with you.

Workout #1 – I Like to Move It

My first workout was called “I Like to Move It” with Benjamin Green. It was an interval/tempo run that lasted about 45 minutes. It featured a heavy rotation of what Aaptiv called Electronic music, and I called dance music (including the song, “I Like to Move It”). 

The workout started with a walking warm-up, morphed into some easy running/walking intervals, then cranked it up with a 12-minute tempo run, a walk break, followed by a 16-minute tempo run. It finished with a cool-down.

First off, shout out to Benjamin for keeping me smiling and entertained! He had a nice mix of pushing me, keeping me motivated, and breaking up the run into manageable pieces. He was by far the most enthusiastic trainer of the three I tried. 

Benjamin did a nice job laying out how the run was going to progress. He gave plenty of advance notice we’d be doing some hard, long runs. He also did quite a bit of running form work. He reminded me to stay light on my feet, land on the ball of my foot, and to keep my head level. This was nice, knowing it’s easy to let form get sloppy on hard runs.

There were multiple segments of checking cadence. This involved counting every right (or left) footfall over a 30 second period. This did two things: it helped me track my pace and ensure I was going hard enough for the duration of the tempo portions of the workout. It also made the time go by quicker. 

Benjamin would also come and go during the workout. At his suggestion, he’d say, “Now zone out…” and fade off for a bit. Just when you thought he disappeared – boom! – he was back to see how we were doing. 

He also said to imagine he was running beside me. Strangely, even though this was a recording and I obviously don’t know Benjamin personally, I liked it. The thought of a super-enthusiastic person running next to me – someone who did all talking – that was nice and kept me going.

The workout ended with a cool-down along with some strength exercises, which I skipped, but liked the idea behind it.

Workout #2 – Rush of Blood to the Legs

My second outdoor run was with Meg. It was called “Rush of Blood to the Legs” and started off with a Coldplay song, Rush of Blood to the Head. (Get it?!?)

This was another intermediate workout, although a bit shorter than the first one I did. But it also heavily featured intervals. 

Meg, while not quite as enthusiastic as Benjamin, was still a good trainer who kept me motivated the entire run. Like Benjamin, she focused a lot on running form. Her intervals were shorter, 2-3 minutes, but more intense – followed by walking breaks.

The pop music was more my style, especially as it opened with two Coldplay songs. Overall, this was a fun workout. 

Workout #3 – Bursting with Joy!

The last outdoor run I did was with Jaime and featured more pop music. I had just come down with a cold and was feeling pretty tired. So I opted for an easy run/walk workout that Aaptiv classified as “beginner.”

The run was only 20 minutes and featured your basic run/walk strategy. Warm-up, run for 30 seconds, walk 30 seconds, then repeat that a few times. Then run 60/walk 60, repeat that a few times. Run 30/walk 30 a couple more times. Then, cool-down.

Jaime had a totally different vibe than Benjamin and Meg. I’d almost call it half workout/half motivational speech. Jaime really wanted me to focus on joy as much as the workout (FYI, the workout was called “Bursting with Joy!” – I guess Aaptiv likes to keep their workout titles literal). Her suggestions were to find joy during the run, focus on that joy, think about daily things that bring joy and do more of it. We also learned what gives Jaime joy. Overall, a nice experience, just more zen-like than the other two trainers.

Post Workout

After each workout, the trainers (and Aaptiv) reminded you to post your workout on social media. They made it easy by opening up a screen on the app you could post directly from. I’m not much into social media so I skipped that part, but a fun idea.

email received from aaptiv post-workout

I also received an email with congratulations from the trainer for completing it. The email included the total number of minutes I’d worked out during the week.

What I Liked

The Aaptiv app was really easy to use. Finding workouts wasn’t a problem. The workouts themselves were entertaining and kept me motivated. It really was a lot like taking a fitness class at the gym, except outside and by myself.

The form, breathing, and cadence checks were a nice way to pass the time and motivated me during the runs. The music was good, although I hadn’t heard of half the songs. That’s more from my lack of current music trends than anything else.

What I Didn’t Like

My biggest pet peeve – and this is partly my own issue – was that some of the trainers referred to running as “jogging.” This drives me nuts because jogging is just a term than non-runners use to describe runners. Like when newspapers do a story about runners, it always refers to them as “joggers.” If you are out there moving faster than a walk – which you do in these workouts, even the beginner one – you are running, not jogging!

Ok, rant over. And not a huge deal, but it did annoy me.

My only other real issue is that the workouts are made for beginner and intermediate runners. If you are an experienced runner, you won’t get as much out of this app. If you want Benjamin to accompany you on your next 20-miler, not going to happen.

Most of the workouts were more interval or speed work. This is fine as it breaks up the workout and is a necessary part of any training plan. But there wasn’t much for long or steady-state runs.

In Summary

I was pretty happy with this app. It’s not for experienced runners. But for newbies and anyone who wants to incorporate some speed work, the app is great. It’s easy to use, the trainers are fun, and the price is right.

So… How Do I Sign Up for Aaptiv?

Signing up for Aaptiv is easy. The company offers a free seven-day trial so that you can discover the app’s amazing features risk-free.

You can get started with this free trial immediately by answering questions about your fitness goals, fitness level, average workout duration, favorite types of workouts, and favorite workout music.

If you like the free trial, you can purchase a subscription through the website. A subscription can also be purchased on the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.

A monthly subscription is only $14.99. A yearly subscription is $99.99. Depending on the plan you choose, the subscription automatically renews monthly or yearly. Unless you cancel your plan at least 48 hours before the renewal, you can expect to be billed on the same day of each renewal period.

These two subscriptions include access to every feature of the website such as monthly challenges, competitive fitness programs, and over 2,500 workouts and classes. You’ll also receive over 40 new classes every week and exclusive access to a supportive community group.

Ready to run? Whether you are an experienced runner or tackling your first race, Aaptiv will help jumpstart your running goals and take you all the way to the finish line.

Sign Up for Aaptiv Here
The Wired Runner