By: Krystle Crossman
Pokémon Go has captured the hearts of millions of players all over the world. It is a game for your phone or tablet where you go hunting after virtual monsters, battle them in a “gym”, and try to collect as many of the 250 monsters as you can find. One of the best features of the game is that it uses a GPS signal and creates a virtual map that is based on the streets around you. The only way to make your character move is to actually get up and physically walk. There are eggs that can be hatched to reveal new Pokémon but only if you walk a certain number of miles. Since the game was released on July 5th it has gained an immense following. It is not uncommon to go outside and see people roaming around together, trying to catch the Pokémon.
Cosmo contributor Tess Komen decided that she was going to take the game to the next level and begin to use it as a workout routine. She thought the idea of the game was silly at first but quickly saw that it was going to be a huge help for people all over the world. She stated that she is someone who is motivated to do things when there is incentive, so having a goal of hitting “Pokéstops” where you can collect items to help you in the game, and catching new Pokémon in the area helped her to stay motivated when walking.
Komen decided that for a week she was going to leave her fitness tracker behind and attempt to get her 10,000 step per day goal in just using the Pokémon game. She was not going to go to the gym either. As she progressed through the week she found that while she was not hitting as many steps as she would have if she had gone to the gym and got on a treadmill each day, she found her exercise to be much more enjoyable. She even took her fiancé with her on some of her adventures.
Komen herself did not find that the game boosted her normal workouts however it is helping many other people greatly. People who normally would not leave their houses and even think about working out are now walking all over town in an effort to catch Pokémon, find new stops to collect items at, and find gyms to battle in. Many people don’t even realize how far they have walked or that they are getting a huge amount of exercise in because they are so focused on the game.