I wanted to talk about my most used iPhone apps on here for a long time, it’s something I’ve seen other bloggers doing and something I find interesting on a personal level or for finding something useful for work as well. I live a lot of my life on my iPhone – texting, emailing, networking, planning, taking photos etc – so it’s only fair that I share with you what I use on a daily basis to either help make my life easier work-wise or in order to help keep myself healthy when I may otherwise forget.
I’ve split this into two categories – Work/Blogging and Fitness/Wellbeing – as they seem to be the two things I use the most. I’ve left out the obvious stuff like Mail, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and eBay that I use on a daily basis to connect, network, chat or check the status of my selling. Instead I’ve gone for the apps I would be lost without, so here is my round up of my most used.
Hootsuite – FREE for App Store
I use Hootsuite all the time, quite literally, I use it on my computer and then on the go on my phone. I usually schedule my blog related tweets for the week all on a Sunday and with working for Social Sheffield now as well it is handy to manage two accounts at once without having to sign in and out of the Twitter app and to schedule some tweets for the account in advance so I don’t forget about events while I’m out and about. Hootsuite is a lifesaver for keeping on top of blog promotion, networking with people on either account and seeing real time updates through retweets, replies and direct messages. Even if you don’t run two Twitter accounts like me this is a useful app especially for those running a blog or business.
Afterlight – 69p from App Store
After reading this post about Afterlight on Zoe’s blog I decided straight away to download the Afterlight app and let me tell you it was the best 69p I have ever spent in my life. It is now something I use on every single photo I post on Instagram for whatever reason – to crop, to add borders that compliment better than Instagram’s, to sharpen the focus, to brighten, darken, add shadows and sort out the exposure. For me, this is like a mini photoshop I can carry around with me and it saves me uploading the picture to my laptop to edit and then to put back on my phone to post. This saves me time and has, I think, improved the look and aesthetic of my Instagram page, something I have been wanting to do for a very long time.
Evernote and Any.Do. – both free from App Store
Evernote is an app that I use a lot particularly when at gigs for making notes for future reviews, it is so handy for me to make notes while I am there to write down straight away the sounds, comments on the audience and the atmosphere and how much I liked the band or not in that moment instead of trying to remember a few hours or days later when it comes to me writing up the piece. My first major test for this app was Tramlines this year and with separate notes for each band that I could easily email to myself, I had reviews written in no time and stayed on top of my workload more than I ever have before.
Any Do on the other hand is my reminder app, I’ll write down my to do list on there and I can set reminders for specific days or times, when it needs to be done by and at the end of each day I can tick off every task I’ve done. Anything I’ve not done I’ll move to the next day and set a reminder and it is a perfect way for me to see just exactly how much work I do manage to get done in a day particularly when I think I never get as much done as I actually do.
My Fitness Pal – Free from App Store
I love this app and I’m constantly on it, maybe obsessively so. Ever since starting to lose weight over 4 years ago now I’ve been very aware of what I eat and how much I exercise. I downloaded this app over a year ago have used it every day since [bar holidays obviously] and it has been great to see my progress over the last year. For a start by logging my weight I’ve seen just how much I’ve lost in the last year alone which is a huge boost to me and then I can also track every meal, snack and exercise I do in a day. By checking nutrition I can pick out key areas I need to work on which at the moment is cutting down on sugar and I’ve learnt that you burn a hell of a lot of calories by walking actually more than I imagined. Like I said I may be unhealthily obsessed with this but it helps me out a lot to maintain the weight and fitness level I am happy with.
Sleep Cycle – Free from App Store
This app is a must for me for my own health more than anything else. I have such a terrible sleep pattern, I am constantly tired because of not getting enough sleep and being exhausted all the time because of my illness all adds up. This app lets me track my sleep every night and tells me my sleep quality, how long I was asleep for and how much of that time I spent in a state of deep sleep or being awake. It’s actually a very insightful app not just for the above reasons I need it for but just general curiosity about what happens when you are asleep. All you do is set the alarm on the app, put your phone under your pillow [while plugged into the mains] and go to sleep, the next morning it wakes you up and you can track your previous night’s sleep, amazing!
Nike Fitness – Free from App Store
I’ve said before that I like to log my food intake and exercise and as I’ve got better at fitness over the years [I’m no expert and will not be running any marathons any time soon] I’ve looked for something a little more challenging than my usual workouts. This Nike app is perfect. It has plenty of exercise regimes from 15 minute workouts to 45 minute workouts, you can change the intensity level from beginner to expert, you can focus on specific areas – weight loss or strength and there are also yoga workouts and you can use it for running and setting targets there too. I love this and have already completed a month long programme on a medium level [4 workouts a week] where I focussed on weight loss. It was the best challenge I set myself in a long time and the effects it had on my weight did work and I felt physically fitter after completing it too. I’d recommend this app to anyone from exercise beginner’s to those who exercise every day, it is an invaluable resource and you do feel pretty damn good about yourself after completing one of these workouts.