Forget the ‘As Seen on TV’ gadgets, Runtastic promises six-pack abs from an app

Runtastic six pack abs

We’re always on the lookout for apps that can improve our lives, and a good fitness app that helps us get in shape is always appreciated – if not a little resented for making us sweat. When an app offers something as promising as six pack abs, it’s hard to pass up. Runtastic has long been a leader in the fitness category for mobile and has delivered a new version of its midsection-focused workout app: Runtastic Six Pack 2.0.

The idea of the app is with a little work on your core each day, you’ll slowly be able to develop the ever-elusive six pack abs. Here we’ve been drawing abs on our stomachs with Sharpie this whole time. If you’re a Runtastic user and have an account with any of the company’s many fitness focused apps, you’ll feel right at home in Six Pack 2.0. For those unfamiliar with the original iteration of Runtastic Six Pack or the Runtastic ecosystem, you won’t have to worry about too much of a learning curve. The app starts with a slow climb so you won’t feel overwhelmed. We were happy for the slow introduction because, as tech writers who sit in front of laptops all day, getting up to grab coffee is the most stress we’re used to enduring. But we learned that we do, indeed, still have abs.

A realistic – if not a bit robotic and lifeless – guide takes you through your workout, which is preconfigured for you each day. The difficulty scale slides as you go to slowly increase the difficulty and the burn gets more intense as you advance past the easy stages. Each workout is accompanied by the voice of a coach – well, less of a coach and more of a metronome since it only counts out reps – and background music that is designed to motivate you. Additional music packages are available via in-app purchase and are organized by genre. We didn’t find the music offensive, but we turned it off rather quickly in favor of our own music, which Six Pack 2.0 happily accommodates by allowing you to pick a playlist from iTunes.

We found the early workouts pretty easy despite our poor physical shape, so we turned up the difficulty a bit. When Six Pack 2.0 wants to make you feel the burn, it has more than enough heat to do so. If you’re like us and make the mistake of overextending yourself, trying to do more than you’re capable of, the app lets you to back up or add extra down time between each set of reps so you can recover. Should a burst of energy hit right at the end of the workout, the app prompts you to “go the extra mile” and complete an additional exercise of your choosing. Take it from us, on the higher difficulty setting there is no second wind, just gasping for breath.

We liked that the app had laid out each day’s workout so we knew what to expect for our next session, though we quickly learned that there would be a lot of repetition if we didn’t buy the full version of the app. There are 40 individual workouts in Six Pack 2.0 and those are combined to make up your sessions, but only a handful of those are available without upgrading. This is also key for those customizing routines, a feature we found key for building our own workout (and avoiding those really unpleasant exercises). Even the new tips of the day feature is limited in what it provides without upgrade – though we have to assume none of those 50+ tips are going to be life savers or information that should be kept under lock and key. 

The pre-built plans of Runtastic Six Pack 2.0 was easiest for us to follow, as customization was a little overwhelming. The app is designed to make workouts, so we figured we not let it? We liked that the app prompted us to try to do these workouts at the same time each day, ideally making us work Six Pack 2.0 into our daily routine. It could be annoying should you choose to move your workout time, but consistency is key to getting these things to become habit.

As the Runtastic network of fitness apps and devices continues to grow, more richness of information is added. Runtastic Six Pack 2.0 benefits from this, with the new ability to connect to the Runtastic Bluetooth Heart Rate Monitor. We haven’t had the opportunity to test this, but it isn’t hard to tell that our heart was pumping during the tougher workouts. A new Body Fat Visualization feature also appears in the app. It connects with the Runtastic Libra Scale and tells if your body, based on body fat percentage, is ready for a six pack. It told us that we’re in “perfect condition for ripped abs” which sounds promising. Now if only they could just mail us results instead of making us work for it.

If you’re already engulfed in the Runtastic ecosystem, Runtastic Six Pack 2.0 is a solid addition to the fitness app family. The decision to make apps that focus on a specific area of the body like Six Pack 2.0 does is a great alternative to all the generic options out there that can’t provide nearly the same detail, especially when used together to make a more complete workout. Of course, you’ll have to buy the full version of this app to truly get the most out of it. After a few days of following instruction, we still don’t have a six pack, but our abs are indeed burning, and that’s exactly what Six Pack 2.0 wants. At this rate, we may get to retire our abs-drawing Sharpie someday.

Six Pack 2.0 is available for iOS and Android

Product Review

The Huawei Watch GT’s battery life gets a tick, but the software may not tock

Huawei’s track record with smartwatches is strong, having releases two models and several spin-offs to general acclaim. This is the Watch GT, and it moves away from Google’s Wear OS to focus on fitness, yet stays ahead of the…

Start your fitness journey with the best Fitbit deals available now

If you're ready to kick-start your fitness regimen (or just take your current one to the next level), we've created a quick rundown of the best, most current Fitbit deals to help you decide which one is best for you.
Home Theater

Keep those albums sounding great by converting your vinyl to a digital format

There are all sorts of reasons for ripping records and storing them digitally, but what's the best way to do it? We cover the different types of equipment and software available for ripping records at any price in this guide.
Home Theater

The best MP3 players of 2018

Want to go for a run, but your phone is weighing you down? No worries. Can't fit your whole music library on your smartphone? Don't sweat it. Check out our list of the best MP3 players, and find one that works for you.

There are four versions of the Mate 20, but which one is the best?

Huawei revealed its full range of Mate 20 handsets, and it seems that there is a device that fits everyone's needs. We've compared all the options, including the Huawei Mate 20 Pro, the Mate 20 X, the Mate 20, and the Mate 20 Lite.

Keep your new Google phone pixel perfect with the best Pixel 3 cases

If you want your new Google phone to stay pixel perfect, then you should snag one of the best Pixel 3 cases. We've scoped out some of your best options so far based on different styles, levels of protection, and budgets.
Product Review

We can’t find a reason to buy the Porsche Design Mate 20 RS over the Mate 20 Pro

The Huawei Mate 20 Pro looks like an exceptional phone, so can a version with Porsche Design’s involvement be worth spending twice as much on? We’ve taken the phone for a test drive.

Huawei is working on a 5G foldable phone, the Mate 20 X may be its template

Huawei is working on a folding 5G smartphone, according to the company's CEO, Richard Yu. He also provoked speculation the phone may have something in common with the massive Mate 20 X and its 7.2-inch screen.

Apple sends out invites for October hardware event, new iPad Pro expected

The new iPhone XS, iPhone XR, and Apple Watch aren't the last devices we'll see from Apple in 2018. There are plenty of rumors about a new iPad coming this year too, and it may share some design similarities with the new phones.

Number not recognized? Here's why you're receiving calls from 'Scam Likely'

While it may seem like a bold marketing move to tag your calls "Scam Likely," these alerts are actually your carrier's way of helping you identify scams. Here, we'll walk you through what exactly these markers mean and how you can turn them…

How much is Spotify Premium, and how can you get it at a discount?

Having access to millions of songs comes at a price -- albeit, a pretty small one. Before you figure out how much is Spotify Premium going to cost you, you will want to see if you qualify for a discounted (or even free) subscription.

Master your new Google phone with these handy Pixel 3 and 3 XL tips

If you’re hunting for some Pixel 3 tips to help you get more from your Google phone, then you’ll find them right here. We’ve got tips for shortcuts, camera controls, and more. All these tips will also work for the Pixel 3 XL.

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are now available for purchase

Google's latest flagships, the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, are now official and we have all the details from the October 9 event in New York City and Paris. Here's everything we know about the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL.

The world’s thinnest smartphone fits alongside your business cards

Kyocera has taken the wraps off of a new smartphone called the KY-O1L. The device is a tiny 5.3mm thick and is specifically billed as being a phone that can fit inside a business card holder.