Why would anyone in their right mind want to start another workout app?
20 Feb 2020 - Mathijs
It’s a question I see people asking themselves everytime I mention I’ve built bootRunner. I have to agree with them, there are lots of exercise and running apps out there that gets the job done.
Beginning of 2019 I hadn’t been working out for a long time and was eating anything I wanted. My clothes were too tight, energy level was low and I weighed 96.5 Kg, the heaviest I’d ever been. Over the last few years I’ve been fluctuating a lot, switching periods of regular exercising and paying attention to my food, to long stretches of not doing anything at all. This causes me to gain or lose almost 10kg in periods of just a few months. I decided to pick myself up and do something about it again.
Here I go again
I started running again, having a quick sandwich at my desk and so I could go out for a quick 30 minute run during my lunch break. Also started to eat less, mainly by forcing myself to stop eating peanutbutter and cheese sandwitches in the evening. After a few months I lost about 8kg and started feeling a bit better again. Still, I was afraid falling back again in my old habits, often triggered by a holiday or other reasons not to workout for a week or two.
I love outdoor running as you can do it basically anywhere and doesn’t require a lot of time to get a nice workout. Running is great for building up endurance and clearing your head but it doesn’t really build up strenght and muscles. What I was looking for was something thats just as easy to fit into my schedule like running. This got me looking around for exercises that can be done anywhere and without any equipment. There are several trends coming up over the last few years with a similar purpose like High-intensity interval training, tabata and bootcamp.
Those types of workouts are great but tend to be done in group form in a gym somewhere. I was looking for something that I could do on my own and wanted to combine it with my running routine. Since I love dabbling with computer programming I thought why not build an app specifically tailored to my own needs, hence bootRunner was born!
I built a first prototype somewhere in September in a day or so. It could launch a workout and on a random interval it would play back an audio queue prompting you to do some exercise like pushups or jumping jacks. I remember getting incredibly exited when I was prompted in my headphones to do my first exercise during a run. I really felt I was on to something, somehow having somebody telling you to perform an exercise is a lot easier than trying to convince yourself to do it yourself.
Now that I had an app I have extra motivation to go out and workout. Who else is going to test out that new feature when it’s built?
Where I am now
At the time of writing I’ve lost around 22Kgs, now weighing around 74Kgs in total. Next to working on and with bootRunner, I started intermittend fasting, occasional meditation and taking cold showers, all helping me to maintain my weight and build self-discipline.
I haven’t felt so healthy in years and am slowly shifting my focus from losing weight to building up strenght. This got me to add some variation in workouts to bootRunner like an exercise only workout for indoors and a workout focussed specifically for core strenght.