I never really thought about it much till I saw ZombieLand… They explain that the first rule for surviving the Zombie Apocalypse is Cardio. Yep… you have to be able to run away from the danger, not just the zombies – because they have always been slow right? but there are bad people out there who would feed you to them too. Then there came world war Z – those Zombies are fricking fast even Bolt may get eaten by those speedies. I always assumed us smart folk would do alright right? I mean we can tell the difference between mint and marajuana leaves (and some other herbs). We can sew fancy outfits out of raffia and palm leaves and figure out ways to take post apocalyptic decor to the next level right… But what if we had to run?
Zombieland wasn’t even to get me to start running. I had always wanted to. (even though I brashly denied it all through school. My rebelling against the laps round the soccer field was just a facade.. secretly I always to be able to do those laps without feeling like I would die, or hiding behind the tall reeds at the back so that I could join in on the next lap and pretend I did them all) . I don’t even remember now how I originally heard about the Zombies, Run and Zombies, Run 5K Training but when I did, I immediately thought it might be useful for me to learn how to run.
What are they? They are phone apps for either iPhones (just because I typed it doesn’t mean I like it) and android phones, that teach you how to build up to a 5k run (from sitting on yo’ fat ass) or immerse you in a Zombie story line while you are doing your runs, or working on increasing your pace (complete with Zombie Chase Interval Drills). You can do them walking, running, on a treadmill or elliptical with some limitations if you are not just ‘running’.
Yes, it did get me off my fat arse. And I am now about to start Week 5 out of 8 weeks in the 5K training application. I have bought the running app, the extra season pass, side quests and race missions and I can’t wait to get started on the main app, when I can actually run! In week 1 running for 10 seconds was enough to make me flop about on the ground like a squid out of water, now I can run for 3 minutes without stopping. In my first mission (25 September) I walked for 2.85km. In my last mission I walked and ran for 4.75km. I now not only run in the run drills I also voluntarily run during free form runs (where you can run/walk as you feel ready).
You get a screen in the app to track your training and can also log into Zombielink online to view your progress. I repeated 3 week 3 missions because I wasn’t feeling very comfortable about my ability to progress to the next level. But here is my progress screen from Zombielink for you to see. (I have removed any storyline information)
Zombielink records your running route (via GPS) or your steps on a treadmill (via the acceloromoter in your smartphone) and you also gain achievements. I have gained the regular runner achievement, an achievement for doing 10km in a week, I am so close to hitting 5km in a mission and even though there are days when I feel like a weak slug sliding along the pavement rather than someone out doing some exercise, All these different ways of seeing how far I have come really help me to stay motivated.
When I start on the running app, you also pick things up during missions that you can add to a little base you have to construct in your own way in Zombielink. Zombies, Run Training cost me $1.39AUD or 99cUS when I bought it. I am pretty confident that it is the coolest thing I have ever got for 99c and it is definitely going to be the most memorable one too. It’s not every day you get to go from someone who chooses to languish around in her sedentary (but happy) life wherever squishy seats are available to literally being able to run 5km. I’ve tried a Couch to 5K program before (years ago) and I don’t think I got passed week 3. This app is it for me.
That is a totally shrunken version of the home screen in Zombielink. There is a list below with all the missions (I cut it off so you can only see the last 2). You can see details of where you ran, relisten to the mission, check what songs were playing from your playlist when certain things happened in the mission. It calculates your calories burned and gives pace information. You can also see my base – which I will be building when I get to the next app.
I’ll be sure to update you when I graduate from training and can call myself a runner!
Good Night Wherever you are!