Daily iPhone App: 5K Runmeter impresses with options and functionality

We did make a mention of the 5K training version of Runmeter when it first arrived on the App Store a little while ago, but it's worth yet another mention, I think, if only because this is the best running app I've ever used. 5K Runmeter, as it's called on my iPhone's home screen, offers all of the functionality of the standard Runmeter app (and that's quite a bit), with the addition of full training plans for 5K, 10K, half-marathon and even marathon runs. I've been using it for the last 11 weeks to train for my very first half-marathon next month, and I've been nothing but impressed at how well this app works to provide feedback, motivation and running insight for those who like to beat feet.

You'd have to pick up the app and look through it to see just how much functionality there is here, but as an example, here's how I use it. I am on the half-marathon plan, so every week on any given day, the app has a set distance or speed run for me to do, and I simply press start and then follow the app's directions in my headset as I run. I've set up the app so that I get split times and pace information through voice every mile, and I just recently also set up the app to let me know when I hit every 30 minutes (as my runs have gotten longer, it's nice to have that perspective injected into the music I listen to as I go). The app of course tracks my GPS movement as I run (and that map can be exported out into email or shared to Facebook or Twitter if I want), and because I've put my pertinent fitness info into the app, I also get full calories spent, pace, timing and distance information when I'm done.

In short, this is an excellent all-in-one way to monitor and track your running, and while the app is compatible with any number of fitness sensors, I haven't even needed those. If you're an expert runner, you can take advantage of interval training or even track your shoe usage (and like the standard Runmeter, the app even works for other exercise like biking). And if you're a beginner runner, you can't go wrong with the Couch to 5k plan -- it's exactly how I started running as a couch potato a few years ago, and ended up losing almost half my body weight and finding a new and exceptionally healthy passion. I did that just by following the plan on a treadmill, but the Runmeter app will guide you through that very same plan.

In short, no matter what your level of running experience, 5K Runmeter is the best running solution I've seen. I can't recommend it highly enough.