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Keeping a resolution? There's an app for that.

 
POSTED: January 11, 2017 12:46 p.m.
Micah Green/

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With 2017 right around the corner, ideas for resolutions are likely starting to make their way to the forefront of your consciousness. Though some may resolve to spend less time on their phone or tablet and more time in the present, technology actually can benefit a person – at least in helping him or her stay on track of New Year’s resolutions. We’ve broken down some popular resolution categories and found apps that may add to your health, wealth and happiness.

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OVERALL HEALTH

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* MyFitnessPal

An extremely popular dieting and health monitor­ing app, in 2013, MyFitnessPal was one of Consumer Reports’ high­est-rated diet plans. It has ranked No. 1 in health and fitness apps for more than four years and has been featured in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today and other publications.

At a glance:

• Easy-to-use calorie counters

• More than 5 million foods in database

• Contains a built-in step tracker – no Fitbit or other device is needed
It also has a recipe importer, which allows users to search the web for recipes and add them into the app

Cost: Free to download and use basic version; pre­mium version either $9.99/ mo. or $49.99/year

* Sleep Cycle

For years, research has shown the benefits a good night’s sleep can produce. From increased productivi­ty to enhanced memory, sleep does wonders for the body and brain, and studies have shown lack of sleep may make the brain more vulnerable to degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. Sleep Cycle is the No. 1 “smart alarm clock” and the world’s most used app-based clock.

At a glance:

• Monitors a person’s sleep movements using sound and vibration analy­sis

• Using analysis, finds the optimal time to wake a person during a 30-minute window set by the user

• Developed “using prov­en sleep science and years of research and develop­ment”

Cost: Free to download and use basic version; pre­mium version one-month free trial then $9.99/year

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FITNESS

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* 7 Minute Workout

For those who don’t have a lot of time on their hands, 7 Minute Workout is a great app to try. It is currently the top paid app in Apple’s App store, offering exercises for all athletic types.

Researchers who designed the app have chosen 12 exercises that are performed for 30-seconds, each with 10-second rests in between. The high-inten­sity training, they say, is equivalent to working out for over an hour, due to the little rest between exercises.

At a glance:

• Full video, audio, image and text instruc­tion

• Contains an acti vity tracker to monitor prog­ress

• Offers achievements and awards to unlock, making exercising fun and goal-oriented

Cost: $2.99 to down­load; offers in-app pur­chases

* Running for Weight Loss

Featured in the Washington Post, the Huffington Post and Apple Insider, this app combines exercise, in the form of sprinting/run­ning/walking, with meal plans that offer step-by-step recipes.

At a glance:

• Allows users to choose different meal and exercise plans based on personal goals, activi­ty level and physical condition

• Also offers a “per ­sonal trainer” who gives audio instructions for every workout

Cost: Free to down­load and use basic ver­sion; premium version either $11.99/mo. or $49.99/year

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MIND & BODY

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* Headspace

Though eating healthy and exercising can reduce stress and get your endor­phins flowing, it’s impor­tant to take time to clear your mind and be aware of your surroundings.

At a glance:

• Gives guided medita­tion, which researches say can improve focus, help you exercise mindful awareness, relieve anxiety and reduce stress

• Emma Watson has called the app “kind of genius”

Cost: Free to download and use basic version, called Take 10; after Take 10 completion, other pack­ages available for $12.99/ mo., 94.99/year or one-time payment of $399.99 with unlimited access to collection

* Pacifica

Based on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy tech­niques, this app gives a user tools to address stress, anxiety and depres­sion.

According to the app’s creators, stress, anxiety and depression are caused by ongoing cycles of thought, which cause physical feelings that then prompt a person to make – or not make – a certain action.

At a glance:

Pacifica is designed to break the cycle and was listed as Forbes’ top app in the publication’s “4 Technologies Innovating Mental Health.”

Cost: Free to download and use basic version; full access version $4.99/mo., $35.99/year

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FINANCES

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* Mint

An easy way to manage your personal finances, this app was created by Intuit, the makers of TurboTax.

At a glance:

• Offers secure financial tracking, allowing users to connect their bank accounts, credit cards, investment services and debt and loan services

• Centralizes, organizes and displays information in a concise manner

• Uses personal data to update your credit score, show how much you have earned versus spent and show spending categories

• Allows you to create goals, budgets and savings plans

• Sends alerts about money usage and high spending

Cost: Free to download and use

* Stash

Investing can be daunting, especially for newcomers, and often requires a bit of capital (wealth in the form of money or assets.) This app breaks down investment-making into smaller, easier and cheaper steps.

At a glance:

• Users can invest as little as $5 and add $10-$20 per month, gradually building the money “stash”

• Offers education to devel­op smart financial habits and give users an understanding of investment

• Easy-to-use interface allows prospective buyers to view a company’s statistics

Note: This is not a trading app; it’s aimed at investing money for the long-term.

Cost: Free to download and use for three months; after three months, charges users $1/month; accounts over $5,000 are charged

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