Apps that keep me healthy and sane during non-travel periods

I’ve come to realise that I’m the best version of myself when travelling. Is that a thing? Does anyone else feel the same way? I’m generally happier exploring the world. Our days are usually spent walking everywhere, seeing new things, taking part in fun activities. Yes, eating out a lot, but the walking totally makes up for our nightly burger and fries ritual. Right?

When I’m not travelling (which, let’s be honest, is most of the time), I’m pretty lazy. I spend my days sitting in front of a computer. Walking to and from work are my main claims to exercise. And at night I watch a lot of tv, idly scrolling through social media. Yes, I sometimes manage a daily yoga practice, and I do think about going to the gym now and then. But, by and large, I’m a couch potato. There, I said it.

Because of this lack of motivation, I’ve come to rely on a few apps to help me keep happy and healthy (and sane). And FYI, I’m linking direct to the source, rather than app stores, so it doesn’t matter what kind of mobile device you prefer, if you want to check these out for yourself (#yourewelcome).

Dawn Chorus

There are few worse ways to wake up in the morning than being jolted out of a wonderful dream to a loud and obnoxious alarm. When we’re travelling, we often don’t even set an alarm, preferring to wake with the sun streaming through our window, the sound of wildlife floating through the air. In real life, we live in the city, and our bedroom view leaves little to be desired, so the curtains stay drawn. I started using Dawn Chorus earlier this year, and I am hooked. Instead of waking up to music or an alarm, I now wake up to birdsong. This app is perfect for anyone who isn’t already surrounded by nature, as it’s such a peaceful way to wake up. The best part is, you can create multiple songs using a variety of birds to suit your needs. It’s pretty hard to mess up, really.
Dawn Chorus

Plant Nanny

I’m sure you’ve already heard of, or seen, the many apps out there dedicated to ensuring you’re drinking enough water each day. But, do they come with a variety of super cute pot plants? Are you responsible for ensuring said pot plant’s survival? Enter, Plant Nanny. This app came into my life toward the end of last year, and I’m totally hooked. I even got a few workmates hooked on it too, for a while there (#sorrynotsorry). I already thought I was drinking enough water every day, as, aside from my morning coffee and afternoon tea, water is pretty much all I drink. Apparently I was wrong. Plant Nanny helps me keep track of my water consumption, while curating a picture perfect virtual garden. Also, you can name your plants (squee!).
Plant Nanny

Clue

This isn’t something I’ve talked about on here before, but before you start freaking out, it’s a part of life, it’s normal, and half of the population go through it on a regular basis. Of course, I’m talking periods! Ladies, if you haven’t heard of Clue before, then get on it. It’s a simple, visually appealing app to help you keep track of your monthly cycle. You can record data about how you’re feeling each day, any symptoms you’re suffering from, and it lets you know when your fertile window is open. You can record as much or as little information as you want, but I’ve found it so helpful in keeping track of where I’m at each month.

Migraine Buddy

Migraine BuddyI have suffered from migraines since I was a high-schooler. Nowadays, I don’t get them very often — maybe a couple of times a year. I’m one of the lucky ones. But, I have found Migraine Buddy to be absolute gold when it comes to keeping track of my attacks. When a migraine hits (or lets be honest, once its over and done, cos who can actually look at a screen during an attack?!), you can easily punch in all of the details relating to your attack. It allows you to record what you were doing at the time, where you were, and if you noticed any symptoms. You can record what you did to relieve the pain, and how effective each treatment was. You can also record how long the migraine lasted for, and what the pain scale was. For me, I haven’t yet worked out what triggers my migraines. Sometimes it’s related to temperature change, sometimes a flashing light can cause an attack, but mostly I’m not really sure. My attacks seem to be quite random, and vary in pain level. This app has certainly helped me to notice any recurring triggers so I can try to avoid attacks in future.

YouTube

So YouTube itself isn’t the most healthy app around. I know I’m not the only one who’s gotten themselves lost down a rabbit-hole! But, one of the things I love to use YouTube for is at home yoga. In particular, Yoga with Adriene. Adriene is such a beautiful soul! She’s quirky, she’s fun, and she caters for everyone. Also, she has the most beautiful dog, Benji, who sometimes makes an appearance in her videos. Each January, Adriene runs a 30 days of yoga challenge, which I absolutely love. I’ve tried a few different home yoga options over the years, but nothing compares. By nature, I have quite a tense body — I’ve never been flexible. But yoga has definitely helped me in that regard. I’ve found that when I practice yoga regularly, I’m a more relaxed and happy human. I can actually feel my body loosen up, and it’s a great way to target certain areas. For example, my neck and shoulders are often super tight and painful, but after spending 17 minutes with Adriene, I feel like a new woman! Another video I always come back to is her Engery Practice. Seriously, you start out feeling like a zombie, unable to do the simplest move, but by the end you are filled with energy and everything feels so easy! It is actual magic.

FitBit

I’ve been a FitBit owner for a few years now, but definitely go through phases when it comes to tracking my steps. I’m currently back on the FitBit bandwagon. My workplace has been taking part in the 10,000 Steps Tasmania challenge for the past month and a half. So, I’ve dusted off my FitBit and have been trying my hardest to hit the 10K mark each day. I’ve mostly managed to get there, but I do like to have a rest day each week where I don’t put my tracker on, so there is that. Also, I didn’t realise how competitive my colleagues were going to be! My team has no chance of winning, but that’s okay. We’ve all become more aware of how little we had been walking each day, and I think all of us will continue to hit that 10K mark even once the challenge is done and dusted.
FitBit

Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp

I have recently become obsessed with Pocket Camp. Animal Crossing was one of my favourite games to play on the Nintendo DS, so when I found out they were making a mobile app, I was intrigued. I only downloaded it a couple of weeks ago, but it’s become an instant hit. It’s such a nice way to wind down at the end of the day. The animals are super cute, and you can really set things up how you want. Basically, you’re a camp manager and you can create the campground of your dreams. To get money and resources, you help out the animals that you find along the way. When you become friends with animals, they’ll spend time at your camp and request certain items to make your camp more suited to their style. You can go fishing, customise your campervan, and grow flowers in your garden to trade for other items. You can also become friends with real humans who are playing the game, which is a nice way to get ideas for your campground, and meet other people. If you too are playing Pocket Camp, and want more friends, you can add me using my ID: 3894 2494 710
Pocket Camp

Over to you

I’d love to hear what apps you use to keep healthy and sane! Hit us up in the comments with your suggestions 🙂

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Author: Michelle

Michelle Harvey is a kiwi traveller, writer, photographer, list-maker, coffee drinker, and wanderer. Winter holidays are her favourite kind.

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