Like it or not, quarantine has forced us all to make adjustments to our normal routine and find new ways to adapt without the normalities we usually enjoy. In order to maintain my sanity, there have been some areas of my life that I couldn’t let quarantine push off track. The solution (as it is to so many things) has been technology. In this article I am sharing some of my personal favorite apps that have helped me survive quarantine.
I am someone who primarily works out in a group setting. As you can imagine, social distancing imposed a huge problem for me. I rely on the structure of group fitness and being able to just follow along with the trainer somewhat mindlessly to get an efficient, timely, and effective workout. It turns out that SWEAT provided just that. At $20 per month (cheaper than a gym membership!), this app provides hundreds of different workouts suited for both gym and at home, fitness challenges, meal plans/grocery lists, and so much more. This app is one that will definitely stick with me, post-quarantine.
MyFitnessPal is a highly robust food diary. Programmed with thousands of foods, plus the ability to add in your own recipes, this app helps me stay on track to make sure I am not eating too much (obviously a temptation being THIS close to my pantry every day) and also makes sure I am not eating too little based on how active I am. Not only do I use it to track my meals and make sure I am getting the right amount of calories, I also use it to track my workouts. MyFitnessPal automatically calculates, based on your personal information, your recommended number of calories, macros, etc based on your personal health goals. This app is a game changer whether your goals are to lose, gain, or just maintain over the course of this quarantine. This app is available with basic features for free or for $10 per month for the Premium features which allow for more robust food tracking.
Quarantine, for some, has definitely posed some financial challenges as well. Personally, right before quarantine, my fiance and I closed on a home and a few months prior to that we got engaged. Before that we spent a majority of our expendable income on Uber Eats and alcohol. These milestones have definitely caused us to both put a bigger focus on our financials and stick to a budget. He even read the book Total Money Makeover to help us get started. The EveryDollar app, also created by Dave Ramsey, is a budget tracker on the go. It helps you create and manage your budget as well as track your spending (all from your phone). This app can track your budget manually (for free) or can link securely into your bank accounts (for a $99 flat annual fee) and allows you to view and categorize your spending in different ways. Creating good financial habits now will help you maintain those habits once we are no longer quarantined.
One of the hardest parts of quarantine for me has been that one of my favorite hobbies has been made impossible (or so I thought!): thrifting. As an app that allows people to buy and sell their personal items, Mercari is a thrift queen’s dream come true. From everything from homegoods to clothes to nightlights, you can buy and sell just about anything on this app. Many items offer free shipping, and if you sell your own items you can get money directly deposited into your account. You can also use your earnings towards the items that others are selling. Mercari makes it easy to take a few pictures of your items, recommends pricing for them, and posts it to be sold in a matter of minutes. It is easy to use and you can find just about anything you are looking for. It is a great place to put those scrolling skills to use and like the thrift store, you never know what you will find!
While UberEats was an app I was pretty familiar with prior to quarantine, I am still including it on my list of my quarantine necessities. For those of you who may not have indulged in the idea of food delivery through an app, I highly recommend you try it. The app allows you to browse menus at your fingertips all in one place, order, track your food in real time, and leave notes for the driver such as “Please leave at doorstep” to ensure you still follow the social distancing guidelines. It is an app that also helps stimulate the economy as well. As we all have heard, local restaurants across the nation are in jeopardy of not surviving life after quarantine. My fiance and I have made it a point to order locally at least once a week by using UberEats. They are offering free delivery on many local restaurants which is a great perk. Not only does this help support the local restaurants who are still offering food via delivery, but also supports the delivery drivers who may be struggling financially as well. This app has been a staple in our household and will likely continue to be once COVID is behind us…we just have to make sure we don’t overdo our UberEats budget every month 😉
For anyone who enjoys puzzle and game apps (think Candy Crush or Angry Birds) I highly recommend this one! I do want to warn you that it is highly addictive. I personally play Two Dots, every night before I go to bed to decompress my thoughts and take a brain break. The rules of Two Dots are simple: connect at least two dots of the same color to eliminate them. Each level of the game has different goals associated with it and they get more intense as you advance through the game. On top of the main map to work through the levels, there are several mini games you have access to as well which definitely helps you pass time around your house while cooped up. This game is great for all ages – everyone from my mother in law to my 6 year old niece loves playing it. Give it a download if for no other reason than because it’s free!
While I know TikTok has been around for a few years now, quarantine has elevated both my interest and curiosity in this app. If you haven’t visited this app before, it is basically a blackhole of randomness. There are various original videos and even more re-made videos of the original videos. TikTok offers a wide array of cooking videos, dance snippets, voiceovers, and just about anything else you can imagine. I only downloaded the app about a week ago so I have yet to make my own TikToks but perhaps if quarantine goes on for another month or two, I will have to start making (or remaking) some of my own videos!
While these are just my personal go to apps that keep me going during quarantine, there are so many other apps out there that bring value to our everyday lives. I’d love to find out what some of your newly discovered favorite apps are or even some of your old faithfuls. Drop a comment below so we can learn more about the apps that help you live your life!