Over the next few days, as people draft their New Year’s Resolutions and 2012 predictions, I’ll be providing tools to help you Achieve Your Resolution – valuable webapps and web sites that I’ve found in the past year that help achieve popular New Year’s Resolutions.

Happy New Year HackCollege! One of the most popular resolutions for 2012 (and every other year) is to finally get in shape – whether that’s shedding extra pounds from the holiday feasts or bulking up with some extra muscle.

It’s the time when college gyms get packed as those who planned to exercise fulfill their resolutions, and the regulars get peeved with their newfound wait. The wait often subsides after a few weeks as the resolutions falter and the goal to get fit is put off to the great unknown of “later”.

Unfortunately for the  gym regulars, Fitocracy helps keep those resolutions alive. It’s currently invite-only, but invite codes can be found on popular sites like Zen Habits and Reddit’s Fitness subreddit.

It combines elements of a social network by allowing you to follow other users and be followed. Groups can create fitness challenges for their members, but the most important element is Fitocracy’s game-like element. There’s integration with Facebook, Twitter, and RunKeeper (which I’ll speak on more later this week).

For anyone who’s ever enjoyed playing video games, Fitocracy takes the element of getting fit and makes it a challenge. There are specific achievements that can be reached (think Xbox 360) and quests (specific workouts) that can be conquered for more points and more difficult challenges. More points = a higher level, and the goal is to continue leveling up.

I’ve found Fitocracy to be incredibly effective in my fitness goals. Even on nights when I’m sitting on the couch watching TV, I’ve achieved Fitocracy quests by dropping down and giving them twenty…literally. Fitocracy allows couch potatoes to continue leveling up – but not on their computers or game consoles, and with their bodies instead.

[Photo courtesy of author.]