Interval workouts are one popular way to exercise, particularly for runners. The idea is that your workout is made up of short, strenuous sprints interspersed with resting periods for recovery. When you don’t have a trainer by your side, it’s important to monitor your time for the intervals – which is where iWorkout Muse Pro comes in.
Designed by Workout Muse, LLC, this app allows you to build several highly customized training programs and add your own soundtracks to each. While the app is thankfully not overly complicated, it’s worth reading through the helpful “Getting Started” page just to make sure you know the difference between things like “Rest Period” and “Transition Period.”
On the main menu, you’ll be able to select “Pre-Workout,” “Workout(s),” and”Post-Workout.” For the actual workouts, you can create up to 25, and you have the option of setting both pre and post-workouts on and off.
Once you select a workout (including pre and post), you can set a number of minutes or seconds for a work period and a rest period, then choose a number of rounds of times you go through those two periods, as well as a number of cycles. You can also select a time for the transition period, which is the time between stopping and starting points of cycles. The duration of the entire workout is calculated automatically for you. The last option is to select music, which is optional – you can browse your library by playlists, artists or songs and add what you want to your workout soundtrack.
In “Settings,” accessible from the bottom of the main menu, you’ve got more options for music and sounds. You can opt to have music playing only during a work period, or have music throughout the workout but at a higher volume during work periods. The third option is to play audio instructions and sounds letting you know when you’re halfway or finished with a round; you can choose from a few different sound effects and whether you want a male or female voice.
Initially, I was confused because you can set vibration and/or sound effects and voices with one of the first two music options selected. I started a workout with the music set to dim during rest periods, but didn’t hear the sound effects or voice instruction during the workout (although the vibration did work when I completed a period). Then I discovered that you have to have the “Play audio instructions” selected, meaning you can’t opt to have softer music or no music during rest periods with verbal instructions and sound effects.
Despite my moment of confusion, iWorkout Muse Pro worked well. I do think it would be useful to be able to name your workouts, as remembering simply by number can be difficult, but overall it’s a great way to create several of your own customized interval exercise routines.
iWorkout Muse Pro [iTunes Link] requires iPhone OS 3.1 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid by the developer to speed up the publication of this review.