Exercise. We know it’s good for us, and we all want to be healthy, but it just isn’t that easy!
One of the toughest things about establishing a regular exercise habit is finding the motivation to start and stay consistent.
You need a strong incentive to stick to it. And there are few stronger motivators than money! In fact, one study from 2008 found its participants lost significantly more weight when there was a financial incentive involved.
But can you really get paid to workout?
As it turns out, you can! There are a number of apps that can help you get in shape by rewarding you for physical activity.
So if you need some inspiration to get moving, try one of these six fitness apps that pay you to exercise.
Sweatcoin is an app that encourages you to hit the pavement by reimbursing your step count with a virtual currency called Sweatcoin.
All you need is a smartphone, and the app automatically uses its unique algorithm to calibrate your step count and convert your steps to Sweatcoins. The app also counts indoor steps, so you don’t even need to enable your phone’s GPS to earn.
As you earn Sweatcoins, you can use them to donate to charities or in exchange for free or discounted swag.
Save up enough Sweatcoins, and one day you might even be able to cash them in for a big prize, like 75” TV. They also offer several “bucket list” items like dining at the Eiffel tower, enjoying the Northern Lights, or a 5-day trip to Disney World.
The great thing about this app is it requires zero dollars of investment on your part. You start with the free subscription, which allows you to earn up to 5 SC per day.
And if you want to upgrade your Sweatcoin subscription, the monthly fees are paid in Sweatcoins!
FitCoin is a bit like Sweatcoin, except your exercise is rewarded with a cryptocurrency called FitCoin, and it pays for calories burned instead of steps taken.
Therefore, this app is ideal if you want to exercise but don’t plan on doing much running or walking.
To benefit from this app, you need to own a fitness tracker like an Apple Watch, Fitbit, or Garmin. Then you’ll need to create a BitShares wallet and link it to your FitCoin account.
Once you link your fitness tracker to the app, it tracks your calories burned, and you earn points that can be redeemed for FitCoins.
Although it’s a bit of a process to get set up, it’s worth the effort; you can use your earnings to buy items at the FitCoin store, such as gift cards for Amazon, Lululemon, or Nike.
DietBet is a fun app that rewards you for winning weight loss challenges. You sign up for either a 4-week “Kickstarter” game or a 6-month “Transformer” game by paying money into the pot.
The goal is to lose either 4% or 10% of your weight, depending on the length of the challenge.
After the challenge is complete, whoever achieves their weight loss goal wins, and the pot is split equally among the winners.
Players submit photos of their weight while standing on the scale to validate their progress. The app also uses an algorithm and a team of referees to prevent cheating.
DietBet does take a cut of the winnings but features a “no-lose guarantee,” which means that if there’s an overly high percentage of winners, they will forgo taking their cut so that at least you earn back the money you put in.
HealthyWage is similar to DietBet, with the app letting you make a personal weight loss wager to win money. Pick a weight loss goal and bet, and their app’s Prize Calculator will show you a prize offer.
Depending on how much you wager and your stats, you could win prizes up to $10,000!
Once you pay in, all you have to do is reach your goal, and the prize is yours. You can even participate in multiple challenges in order to double or triple your winnings!
HealthyWage also offers a nifty referral program that adds a $40 prize boost for every friend you refer.
And if you have four friends who also need to lose some weight, you can join a team challenge for a $10k prize.
Like HealthyWage and DietBet, StepBet is a way to earn money by putting your own money on the line for motivation. The biggest difference is that you’re betting on step count goals rather than weight loss goals.
This app is ideal if you need motivation for physical activity but don’t necessarily have much weight to lose.
When you connect your phone or activity tracker to the app, it uses your step count history to determine your step goals. The average bet is about $40, and games typically last around six weeks.
As long as you hit your step goals each week, you split the pot with whoever else wins!
If you live in the US, you’ll want to check out the Achievement app. Not only does it reward you for physical activity like walking, but it also rewards points for other healthy activities like meditation and meal tracking.
All you have to do is download the app and connect it to your other compatible fitness apps.
Once you hit 10,000 points, you can exchange them for $10 via PayPal or donate them towards a charity.
Another neat feature is the app’s research studies. If you choose to participate, you will earn extra points while helping scientists with their latest research.
Losing a few pounds to gain a few dollars is definitely what I’d call a win-win situation! And thanks to these legit apps that pay you to exercise, you have plenty of options for adding a financial element to your fitness goals in a fun and motivating way.
Which app you choose will depend on your health goals, how high you are willing to put the stakes, and what kind of exercise you want to focus on.
Of course, nothing is stopping you from trying a couple of different apps to double down on your fitness efforts.
Have fun with it, and you’ll be enjoying some extra cash and better-fitting pants in no time!