Sunday, November 20, 2011

Playing World of Warcraft on a Treadmill

I had a pretty simple workout routine.  The treadmill in my bedroom faces the television.  I put on stereo headphones and watch a  pre-recorded television program.  While I am watching television, the treadmill makes me run up and down simulated hills for half an hour at the equivalent pace of a 15 minute mile.  About the time the television program is over, my workout is over.  I did not notice I was working out.   I lost a lot of weight doing this every day this past year.

Then three weeks ago, the treadmill broke.  This was not expected.  I was thrown off my schedule.  I had to get things organized to have the old one removed, and now I am working on getting a new one installed.  In the meantime, I've been using the treadmill at a health club.

I hate going to the health club.  It requires getting dressed, driving eight miles round trip, and walking through a room with lots of beautiful people.  Then, I arrive in the humongous industrial factory where I am faced with row after row after row of treadmills and elliptical machines (most occupied with a beautiful person).  It always seems that  the people next to me are running four minute miles up hills. (That's right, almost four times faster than me.) It is intimidating.  I can overcome the intimidation, but then, in front of me is a tiny television with a football game on it, or worse yet, Fox News.  There's no sound.  There are no headphones.  It is extremely dull.

Today I thought of a solution.  I like World of Warcraft, but I rarely play it because I don't have time, and I already spend too much of my life in front of a computer (like right now, for example).  But, what if World of Warcraft were physical?  In other words, if your character is fighting a wizard for example, maybe you have to do certain physical boxing moves on the treadmill with your arms.  Maybe someone is chasing you over hills, so you have to run as fast as you can over hills for a couple of minutes.  It could be a very entertaining distraction, and after 30 minutes, your workout would be done.  Perhaps you would even be motivated to extend the workout based on the narrative in the World of Warcraft story.

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