For a long time I put ‘running’ in the same mind-numbing box as other boring pursuits such as tennis, golf, darts or cricket. Anchorman Ron Burgundy famously described ‘yogging’ as a hobby in which ‘apparently you just run for an extended period of time‘ and up to this point I’d have agreed that description pretty much nailed it. And the only thing more pointless, more boring and more vomit inducing than actually running? Listening to people talk about running. The idea of becoming one of them, or – worse still – their smug aged faces overtaking my wheezing nicotine-dependent body and dying in an ugly sports bra is the stuff of nightmares. But having dropped the gym membership and being infamously woeful at anything that requires kicking, bouncing, throwing, hitting or catching a ball, I was rather limited in my potential other options for fitness (Jenny can also testify that I’m an appalling pole dancer but that’s a long story).
On the total opposite end of the spectrum however, is my love for zombies – which I put in the same odd-ball box of awesomeness as Poirot, cheese and husky puppies. As such, I’ll consume anything zombie related and this lead me to making my first actual app purchase – Zombies Run! I figured if anything could make me run, the heavy breathing of impending doom in my ear would probably do it…. and so it sat on my phone for the better part of 5 months completely untouched (or ‘untapped’…whatevs). Then this month, in another desperate attempt to unlock the ‘secret’ to liking fitness related stuffs, I bought Run Fat Bitch Run in one of those value book stores for a euro.
I don’t think either of the two did it on their own, but the book gave me the psychological motivation to get off the couch and put on the trainers. Then, the app maintains the interest for me from when I actually say ‘OK, go!’ The app itself is an audiobook that unfolds mission by mission (run by run). You can still listen to your own music at the same time and it involves all the elements of not only a great story, but great gamers psychology – badges, collecting items, bonus missions to unlock, sharable statuses, and all of your stats on each run analyzed – so you can see your own progress run by run. It beats other running apps by a long mile (pun), including the famous Nike+. Don’t worry though if you are a Nike+ advocate, you can run both apps at the same time!
The biggest surprise for me however is that at the end of each ‘mission’, I found myself still running an extra few K, just for the craic.
So now I guess I’m a runner and a cyclist… and hating myself for it. Just don’t tell anyone OK?