I love this app. I’ll start about by saying that.
I think we all want something to tailor our workouts, to tell us what to do. At least I do. I don’t want to do the research on what my workouts should be. And why? Because I’m lazy. I tend to expend all of my initiative actually working out. That’s where GAIN comes into the mix. This iPhone app review is for one of those apps at which experts in the field may scoff.
Full review after the jump…
GAIN creates a custom weights or yoga workout for you. How custom? Below are some screenshots of what you can customize via the app (the web interface is much more granular).
Sorry, that’s a lot of pictures, but that’s how customizable this bad boy is. And that’s a perfect segway to…
Look and Feel
The look and feel are alright, I guess. There’s something lackluster about them at this point. In terms of pure aesthetics, it’s a bit dark. You’ve seen the create-a-workout interface above. It’s a simple list, which is an ok interface.
Also, there’s the list of workouts—including both your Quick Workouts and GAIN plan (I’ll explain in a bit)—your performance, and your settings. Like I said, something about it seems visually “meh” at best. Below, in order,are the workouts list, performance, and settings.
Very standard stuff there. I think the Performance portion looks a bit cluttered but provides some interesting info, I will get to a beef about it later.
But as you can see, it’s a bit dark and uninspired. Fortunately, they did put some thought into function.
As you saw above, after creating a workout it drops into the list under “GAIN plan” or “Quick Workouts”. What’s the difference here? Well, anything you create in the app goes to Quick Workouts, which also can be done via the website.
The GAIN plan (as far as I can tell) can only be created via the website (however, is a beta feature and, at this point, is from time-to-time disabled), but is sort of neat. The GAIN plan uses the same customization concepts but creates a workout plan for you. You tell it on which days you want to workout and how hard/what you want to focus on. And, viola, you have a weekly workout plan.
Because GAIN plans are in beta, I trust them less than a guy with a black cape, black top hat, and curly mustache. That being said, I use the quick workouts (as you can see from that list picture). The first set of pictures in this post are for creating those quick workouts. And I think they work great. Even at a moderate intensity I’m getting a solid workout.
An Actual Workout
So what does one of those workouts look like? Here’s a couple of quick images:
As you can see it has a warm-up and the actual strength training. What you can’t see is it also provides a cool-down. At the top we have a nice big button that says “Start Workout”. When we click that button we jump right into the warm-up, which pops this up:
All the warm ups run for 30 seconds and are pretty cardio-focused. The difference from the picture to what actually happens is where it says “WORKOUT TIME: 40:00” it will say “EXERCISE: 00:30” and countdown to zero until it moves to the next exercise.
As we move through exercises, the progress tracker moves along. The progress tracker is the thin bar of colored squares. Each different color is to show which part of the exercise you’re currently in (yellow is warm-up, red/orange is the strength training, and blue is the cool down). As we move along the boxes go from a dim color (as in the picture) and then brighten up when the exercise is completed. This feature is actually really nice, because I can easily see where I am at in the workout (whichever box is outlined in white), how much I have left, and if I skipped anything (box is still dim).
There are also back, forward, play, and finish buttons. The play button allows us to stop our workout which is useful if you need to help someone with a spot or go take a mid-workout poop. The fast-forward is helpful whenever I can’t get to a machine or set of weights I need because they’re in use at the moment.
The final feature of this interface is the bar directly below the progress bar. This bar has two portions: the view change and the exercise change. The exercise change is a great feature. Say an exercise is part of the workout and for one reason or another you can’t use it. You can select an exercise from the drop-down which focuses on the same muscles that you can do. So not only do get a customized workout, but you can customize that customization so that you can actually do the workout. That’s a butt-ton of customization.
The view change allows us to switch between the view above (which is actually an animated image) showing you how to do the exercise and the reps view (below) which shows what to do for the exercise, in terms of sets and reps.
As you can see, it provides how many sets and reps to do and if you finished (that’s a checkbox). You can customize how many reps or the weight via the interface below.
You can put the numbers in directly via the number pad or, what you wouldn’t think is that useful, through the +10, +5, +1, and -1 buttons. Surprisingly, I used those buttons 99% of the time. I do wish there was a -5 button over the -1, but whatever, I’ll live.
So those are the workout interfaces. They’re dark, like I said I didn’t like, but they are useful and get a lot of information to you in a rather simple way.
I have a couple of beefs with this app. The first is that the site doesn’t keep a historical record of your workouts. At this point, I can’t go back a couple weeks and see how I did on a specific workout. In addition, I’d like a feature to side-by-side compare my performances on a specific workout to each other.
The other beef I have is seemingly silly, but I can’t get past it. When I click the “Done” checkbox, it doesn’t check it off with the responsiveness it should. If you use the app, maybe you’ll notice it.
Like I said, I love this app, but it’s not because it has a good interface. I like the GAIN app for the same reason I like the GAIN website: it provides me with a free, customizable workout. At a price of free, it’s a can’t miss. Give it a try.
This is a sexy woman. Look at all that weight.
- You are not a doctor. Do not go handing out bullshit information to people who may think you actually know what you are talking about. If I had heat stroke, and you rubbed ice all over me while I was unconscious, when/if I recovered, I would find you and punch you in the face repeatedly.
She’s only been here 30 hours or so and it’s already gotten kinda ridiculous.
Good night, Internet.
This may be the most attractive thing a woman can wear to bed. Ever.
So my weight went up. Boo freaking hoo.
A much more important development is occurring.
Body fat. Body fat is happening.
And it’s negatively happening. But it’s a positive for me.
Before I started my little endeavor, I had trouble with keeping my body fat % (or at least the number our scale claims) down.
Between 17-19% was normal.
Now, I know this isn’t accurate, but that big of a gap is proof of something happening.
Current Weight 181.8
Caloric Budget (Per Day) 2190
(Re-)Reach 180 Jan 2
I will reach it by Wednesday. I guarantee this. But Sunday will be a boner-killer for me. I have no delusions about eating healthy on Christmas.
yeppp. more like 10-15 for me, actually :p
Fan freakin tastic.