New year, gonna run, gonna do five zillion pushups, gonna cleanse—you know the drill.
Sure, you could get some heart-rate monitoring Nike+ shoes that bluetooth into your social media web 4.0 and ... nah. If you’re already a fitness fanatic, the routine isn’t the hard part. Sometimes you don’t want working out to feel like working out.
Turns out there’s an app for that (with apologies to Maeva Considine’s cover story on page 18).
Zombies, Run! iOS, Android
Feeling unmotivated? What was the first rule of Zombieland? “Do your cardio.” Nothing is more motivating than the (albeit virtual) threat of the brain-eating, shambling hordes. Enter Zombies, Run!—an RPG game where you progress through the levels by walking/running. Complete missions, gather items, and yes, run from zombies.
Missile Wars (iOS)
Nothing says “workout buddy” like the phrase “you’ve been targeted by a missile.” Log into a Google maps overlay of the world. You’re now a target. Anyone in the world can launch a missile at you, and you have 60 seconds to get clear of the blast radius. Think of it like tag-meets-missile command.
Enlightened or Resistance? Or: Where the frak are all the portals?
Ingress is less a running game than a get-out-and-conquer game. Transdimensional beings are infiltrating our dimension, and it’s up to you to pick a side and help stop them or spread their coming. “Portals” are spread throughout the world via a map overlay. Collect energy as you search for portals, and when you find them, link them together to capture territory.
Fit Freeway Lite
Ever wonder what it’s like to be the car in Pole Position*? Turn your run/cycle/elliptical workout into lap times around a track. Make your way around different courses; the faster your time in real life, the better your lap speed in the game.
Not an app, per se, but the distance from Bag End to Mount Doom. Use an app like Runkeeper or Cardio Trainer to track your mileage, get your hairy feet on, and start walking. Obviously it’s going to take you awhile, and the thought of walking 1,779 miles can be intimidating, so break it down:
Bag End to Rivendale: 458 miles. If that’s still too big to bite off, try Bad End to Bree (and more importantly, the beer at the Prancing Pony): 135 miles.
Rivendell to Lothlorien: 462 miles. Bonus points if you can find some caves on your walking route.
Lothlorien to Rauros Falls: 389 miles. Technically this was floating, not walking. Well, there was some. If you’re feeling ambitious, carry an elvish canoe for two miles.
Rauros Falls to Mount Doom: 470. If you’re hardcore, finish your trek by carrying your dearest friend up Cerro San Luis. Then punch someone in the face the next time they call Samwise “the fat one.”
We won’t worry about the walk back to Bag End this time out.
* Yeah, me neither. Worth a shot.
Contact contributor Nicholas Walter via Managing Editor Ashley Schwellenbach at firstname.lastname@example.org.