Note: This was originally posted in January 2016. We decided to recycle it because physical fitness is among the top new year's resolutions and we want to help you with your 2017 goals.
A lot of people say,“If you see me running, you can bet zombies are chasing me!”
And that’s precisely why I run.
One of my favorite fitness apps is Zombies,Run! In it, you are Runner 5 of Abel Township, a post-apocalyptic community in the United Kingdom. Sam Yao is the radio operator who guides you and your fellow runners on missions and helps you navigate attacks from zombies and not-so friendly human survivors. In the “real world,” you don’t have to do anything but run or walk; the game notifies you when you’ve picked up supplies or when you are being chased by zombies (which is an optional feature).
It’s like an immersive audiobook with plots, subplots, side-plots, villains, heroes, villains who become heroes, heroes who turn out to be villains--and you are the main character throughout. After you’re done with your outing and checked your running (or walking) stats, you can use the supplies you’ve gathered to build onto your base.
Naomi Alderman and her team of writers have kept me solidly invested in the lives of her characters for four seasons now. The storyline is engaging, and fans of this app frequently report a “running while crying” phenomenon. Guest writers have included Margaret Atwood, Joanne Harris, and Elizabeth Bear.
Each mission is divided into segments with spaces in between for music. For this, I turn to Freegal. Rather than creating a playlist, I use the free app on my mobile device (available through your app marketplace) to take advantage of the three permanent downloads a week that I’m allowed with my library card.
After opening the app, I use the search function to find the specific song that I want. I can then touch the blue arrow to the left to stream it, or I touch the white arrow to the right to download it to my device.
If I’m just browsing for good running music, I will touch the playlist icon on the bottom and then touch Freegal Playlists; from there, I comb through the selections to see if anything will inspire my running. After downloading my selections, I then add it to my Running playlist on my device’s music app.
The free version of Zombies, Run! gives unlimited access to the first four missions of Season 1 and then one mission per week. Freegal is free to stream for three hours and offers three permanent downloads per week for MY Link card holders.
Are you ready to get moving and save the world?
Raise the gates!
--Runner 5, AKA Darcy C., Central Library