Olympic 400m legend, Michael Johnson, has released two smartphone apps that are aimed at improving an individual’s health and fitness.
One of the BBC’s pundits at the London 2012 Games, Johnson said that his motivation in developing the apps was that mobile devices were a “brilliant way to get my message out to millions of people, to help with their fitness and wellbeing.
“The running app is perfect to have in your pocket, as you can’t take a computer, and I’m not always available to run alongside you.”
The apps were developed by Appshen and are available on the iPhone and Android platforms.
Michael Johnson’s Motiv8 app, which costs £1.99 from iTunes and Google Play, includes the voice of the athlete monitoring and encouraging an individual while they are running. Other features include GPS tracking and warm-up advice.
Runners receive unique ‘Michael Johnson Certificates of Achievement’ when they reach certain targets and can post their personal achievements on Facebook and Twitter.
Michael Johnson's Fun Run app, which is only available on Apple devices, can be downloaded for free during the Olympics and aims to educate children on why it is important to avoid junk food and eat only healthy meals and snacks.
The app is an arcade-style mobile game that involves players using their fingers to sprint, with fast food slowing them down and healthy food speeding them up.
Good performances are rewarded with bronze, silver and gold medals, while the app also serves up various food-related facts.
Johnson said that childhood obesity was a “huge problem” and that while he hoped the app would play a small part in improving the situation, it would require a “collective effort from governments, schools, media communities and the fast food industry itself.”
“It’s about using technology to re-engage with people young and old. The Fun Run app was built specifically to remind people that you can go out and run.
“Put that alongside healthy eating comments and the game reinforcement that picking up a burger or a fizzy drink is bad and slows you down but eating fruit is good and can speed you up are basic facts that have got lost in a sedentary consumer lifestyle,” he added.
© 2012 EHealth Media.
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