South Africans have a long history of being competitive runners and walkers, as is evident by the ample races held throughout the country all year round.

Good shoes, a steady workout plan and a healthy diet are all crucial when it comes to working your way up from a novice runner to a marathon athlete. To help you on this journey, we set out to find the perfect running apps that can guide you along the way.

Whether you are tracking your progress via a smartphone or smartwatch, these apps will make the perfect running companions.

1. iSmoothrun (iOS) $4.99

What we like most about this app:

The iSmoothrun app allows you to track your running activity like most GPS tracking workout apps, but it is the interval training functionality that really caught our attention. If you are in the walk/run phase of your training, the app allows you to set an alarm to remind you when it is time to start or stop running. We also like the feature that allows you to track the mileage on your running shoes.

2. MapMyRun (iOS, Android) Free

What we like most about this app:

Our favourite feature is the route creator. Having a number of set routes planned out, helps you to stay motivated and stick to your training plan. With the MapMyRun app you can enter your location and use the map to plan various routes. No more driving around in your car to map out routes!

3. RunKeeper (iOS, Android) Free

What we like most about this app:

RunKeeper is almost like a social network specifically for runners. You can join challenges, win workout rewards, participate in virtual races, and share your achievements with your friends.

Andriod iOS

4. Endomondo (iOS, Android) Free

What we like most about this app:

The push notifications you receive on this app can be great motivators. The app reminds you when it is time to go for a run, or when you’ve been neglecting your exercise commitments. You can also track your progress, get workout plans and connect with other athletes.

Andriod iOS 

5. Runtastic (iOS, Android) Free

What we like most about this app:

Like all the apps mentioned before, Runtastic tracks your running/walking activity, allows you to set goals etc. The feature we like most, however, is called Story Running, and it is probably not for everyone. While some people like listening to music while working out, others like listening to stories. The Runtastic app has an entire library of stories specifically for runners. These aren’t your run-of-the-mill podcasts, the stories are exciting and fun, and before you know it, you are not only running a 5K, you are on a mission to save the world from a monster waiting just beyond the next lamppost.

Andriod iOS

(In October, Smartcom is giving away one pair of On running shoes. Everyone who applies for a new Vodacom contract or upgrade on the Smartcom website, will be entered into the draw.)

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