Joe Wicks: Why Seconds comes first

The fitness star reveals his favourite workout tool.

Which apps do you use to get fit? We’ve all got our favourites, and fitness guru and all-round general health icon Joe Wicks is no different.

The Lean in 15 author, TV presenter and Instagram icon has inspired many with his fitness regimes and healthy eating guides. When Wicks is working out, there’s only one app that he swears by, and it’s probably one you’ve never heard of.

“I’ve gone through quite a few fitness apps in the past,” Wicks explains. “The one I use more than everything though – the one I use almost every day and on every workout – is Seconds.”

Available on iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, Seconds is a fitness-friendly interval trainer that offers an easy-to-read countdown timer and audible alerts for your upcoming exercises. If, like Wicks, you're into High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) workouts it's essentially your best friend.

“It’s a basic interval timer, but it’s really clear,” says Wicks.

Green or red panels show you when you should be working out or resting.

“It’s so easy to use,” he adds. “You create your intervals; your rest and work. It’s not a die-hard fitness app, Seconds is just so simple. When you’re on a workout phase it’s green, when you’re on a rest, it’s red, it’s really visual, so if it’s far away and you haven’t got your glasses on, you’ve got the sound and the visual.”

It can adapt to your workout too. Wicks uses it for a whole range of sessions, covering everything from crunches and curls to mountain climbers and burpees. For those of you who have watched Wicks's workout videos and exercise guides, even if you can’t see him using Seconds, chances are he’s got the app running just out of frame.

“When I do my DVD or workouts, I’ll still have it as a timer,” he explains. “I hear the, 'beep, beep, beep, 3,2,1,' and it really motivates me to stick to an interval and push right until I hear that bell.”

It really motivates me to stick to an interval and push right until you hear that bell.

Joe Wicks

Unlike some fitness apps, Seconds won’t give you the biggest post-workout data breakdown, but that’s exactly why Wicks likes it so much.

“I’m not really a stats man,” he says. “You can get really into it, there are plenty of people who love monitoring every step they take, and it’s great technology, but for me, I’m more about getting your heart rate up and working as hard as you can.

Seconds is the one I really, truly engage in. You can save certain types of workout. It’s basically for anyone who wants to monitor intervals and know how hard they’re working for those exercise periods.”

Set up your workout with any combination of sets and exercises.

Aside from fitness, which apps does Joe Wicks use most? “It’s basically Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter, and WhatsApp,” says Wicks. “My whole business is based on communication, so I have to go where the audience is.”

It's Seconds that always acompanies him in the gym though, and while you'll need to bring your own motivation to your exercise sessions, this exercise app can help you work towards your own fitness goals.

Downloaded the app? These are Joe's training tips to enhance your first Seconds session.

Joe Wicks HIIT Workout

"Everyone loves a good abs workout and this elbow to knee crunch really fires up your core and targets your obliques. Remember to exhale as your crunch and breathe in on the way down."
“Here’s another great exercise for your abs. Laying on your back, place your hands lightly either side of your head and roll your shoulders off the ground. Keep your lower back pushed to the floor and exhale as your crunch up.”
“I love doing bodyweight exercise that don’t require any equipment and this crab toe touch is a great one for working your triceps, as well as improving core stability which will help make all of your workouts more effective.”
“It’s really important to stretch and warm down after a workout and I try and do at least 10 minutes at the end of each session. Stretching can help ease delayed onset muscle soreness and prevent you from picking up any needless injuries, also helping to develop and maintain flexibility.”

    Seconds Interval Timer

    Tabata, HIIT, Circuit Training