As the first couple of weeks of 2018 come to an end, I began to reflect on how I want to self-improve this year. Whether it was stopping my habit of getting Starbucks every time I go to the library or finally working out at least more than once in one week. After indicating all of my short-comings, I realized that there was common thread between how I wanted to improve myself this year —health and fitness. Bettering yourself or changing old routines is not easy; however, conquer your New Year's resolutions and goals this year by setting yourself up for success with these amazing 5 free health and fitness apps.

1. MyPlate

MyPlate is a great way to track your health and fitness if you are a newbie to working out. Not only can you easily search for foods to track in your Food Diary, but it also uses your iPhone daily steps to calculate your daily number of calories burned. A great feature of this app that makes it stand out from the others is the workout section that it offers. There are five workouts available for free that range from medium to hard difficulty and from five to ten minutes. With the step-by-step videos and instructions, it makes working out simple, uncomplicated and fast.

2. Carb Manager

Carb Manager is specifically useful if you are planning on reducing the number of carbohydrates in your diet by following the ketogenic diet aka the "keto diet." The keto diet attempts to eliminate the number of carbs, maintain the amount of protein, and increase the level of fats in diet. By doing this, it teaches your body to switch its main energy sources from sugars to fats. This change in lifestyle can help with weight-loss and controlling blood sugar levels. 

3. Lose It!

Lose It! is an amazing app to try if you struggle with motivating yourself to reaching your goals. Foods can be effortlessly logged, and steps are tracked on this app, too. Moreover, it logs the steps in a different way than most apps by giving the number of steps that will earn a "bonus" or extra calories for the week. It effectively creates community and encouragement through the challenges section of the app. This part of the app has several challenges like having a streak of tracking your meals for 13 days or losing four pounds in four weeks. If you have issues with committing to a plan, this special feature will definitely keep you accountable and on the path towards success and a healthy lifestyle.

4. Lifesum

If you love to experiment with cooking, then Lifesum might be the perfect health and fitness app for you. Like, the other apps you can easily record your meals and fitness; however, the recipe section of this app sets it apart. It has many options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner recipes that are low-calorie and healthy. This app also features health and fitness articles from Lifesum blog. While the classic diet plan on this app is free, if you upgrade, it gives you have options of trying diets like the ketogenic or mediterranean.

5. My Fitness Pal

Saving the best for last, MyFitnessPal is an incredible way to help keep you on the right path. It has a Weekly Digest which gives a synopsis of how your week progressed and if you reached all your goals. This app logically displays your goal as an equation which makes it easy to see where you need to improve. Also, if you are someone who frequently eats out, then this app will be a perfect fit. Not only does it let you log your foods, but it has a feature that uses your current location to search the menu and caloric count of restaurants nearby; it makes tracking calories while eating out a breeze.

As someone who believes that each day is an opportunity to become a better version of yourself, take 2018 with stride and achieve the goals you set out for yourself. The first step is making the conscious effort toward change. And it can be as simple as downloading a app!