My Review of Runtastic Six Pack, a Personal Abs Trainer


Get Yourself a Six Pack

This is the promise of Runtastic’s new app, Six Pack. I thought I’d give the free version a whirl. Here’s what I thought.

Over the summer I focused on cardio (running) and less on strength training and abs because hey, it was nice out and I didn’t want to be stuck indoors working out. Now that the cool weather is back, I’ve restarted strength training and restricted my running to certain cardio days on the treadmill at the office gym. Blah blah…

Ab Ripper X is the abdominal routine/workout that comes with P90X… and from day 1, I hated it. It was too much, too fast, and too soon. There’s no way I could crank out 300+ abdominal moves and yes, even though I knew I didn’t have to on day 1, I always struggled with it. Since it was the most frustrating part of the P90X regimen, I had no interest in playing that DVD. What to do…

Six Pack Email

A Personal Trainer in your Pocket

In mid-October, Runtastic emailed me with the promise great abs and a personal trainer in my pocket. Their free app would help me define myself and get my abs in shape. I wondered if I had finally found a routine that would work for me. (I admit, I wasn’t looking around for a solution, I was just going to cobble together a bunch of ab exercises and start that way.)

Since the Six Pack lite version is free (and only $4.99 to upgrade to the full version) downloaded it and started day 1 immediately. I pushed it up to my Apple TV and hit play. And… easy. Day 1 was easy. I was embarrassed at how easy it was. 3 exercises with 3 sets each with 8 reps each set and an optional bonus round (which I did). 80 crunches. It was fabulously easy.

SixPack DanielDay 2 came, and easy peasy. 10 reps this time.

Day 3 – now I felt it. 12 reps this time. Each day added 2 reps and rotated the exercises.

I rested my abs for one day, and continued with Day 4. The exercises were starting to work, and I could see some results in the mirror. Or my imagination did. Around Day 5 or 6 the exercises changed up.

Today I competed ten days of Level 1 Training and finished off the morning with 234 repetitions of abdominal exercises. AND I CAN DO IT. And I like it.

The Actual Review Part of this Post

SixPack Daniel 2

If you haven’t figured it out yet, I like the app a lot and I plan to continue using it. I’ll upgrade to the full version very soon.

  • I like that it isn’t an intense program that things you can do 325 sit ups as a beginner, or even mid-level fitness seeker.
  • I like that you can choose between a male or female CGI model. The male – Daniel – is shown in the pics here.
  • I like that it works with Apple TV (although this is a function of AirPlay, not the app).
  • I like that the lite app starts you from an easy place and moves you forward.
  • I like the changes in music for different sets. I also like that I can do an in-app purchase for new music packs.
  • I like that if you want a little more intensity of work out, you can get that too.
  • I like that the app and program are well thought out and put together. This not a quick hack App trying to make a buck.
  • I wish I had taken “before” pictures, since I can already see a difference in my abs after finishing Level 1.
  • I don’t like that if you choose to skip some of the rest time (30 secs) between sets, on a second set of three, the app can’t seem to count the rest and the counting is off for the first few reps.
  • I don’t like – and really this is just a critique because I can work around it – the order of exercises in some of the workouts. For instance, this was today’s workout order:
  1. 2×26 sit ups
  2. 2×26 bent knee leg raises
  3. 2×26 right side leg lifts
  4. 2×26 left side leg lifts
  5. 1×26 bonus

I saw that nightmare coming and immediately switched it around in my head.

  1. 2×26 sit ups
  2. 2×26 right side leg lifts
  3. 2×26 bent knee leg raises
  4. 2×26 left side leg lifts
  5. 1×26 bonus

This made the workout a bit more bearable – doing working the same abdominal group four times in a row (104 reps) would be too much for me to handle. So just a thought, Runtastic, if you’re reading, check the order of the predetermined workouts. With the full version I’ll be able to set up my own stuff, but for now I’m happy following and adjusting. Even if I don’t like the order, I trust that someone who knows a bit more than I do about abs fitness sets up the routines, and I’m ok following their lead for now.

The Bottom Line

So: while I’m still new to the app, I highly recommend it if you are interested in better abs, a defined midsection, and if you’re up for solid – not cheesy or flimsy – abdominal program. Well done, Runtastic.

Update: I purchased the full version so that I could progress into level 2. Still like it! 🙂.