I will start out with saying I am not a fan of treadmill running. I do, however, appreciate it’s convenience when the weather isn’t so great for outdoor running. I am always looking for ways to make treadmill running more fun so I was excited to try out Zwift and the Zwift Run Pod.
So you may be asking, what is Zwift? Zwift is a multiplayer program that allows runners and cyclists to interact and train together from the comfort of their own home (or gym) while navigating a variety of virtual reality locations. Adding a sense of community and fun to the traditional treadmill run. I only used Zwift for running purposes and that will be the focus of this review.
Before beginning there are a few items you will need;
- Zwift app downloaded to the device you will use. I tried it with both my Iphone and Ipad. There is a huge experience difference using the Ipad. The phone just isn’t quite as good.
- You will need access to a treadmill, this seems pretty obvious.
- Zwift Run Pod. You can use other brands of running pods, however if you are only going to use the Run Pod for Zwift running, then this is an easy and budget friendly choice.
How did it go?
I felt a bit foolish because I couldn’t quite follow the directions on getting the back off and battery inserted before use. I feel like there is a step missing on the online directions. The back clip needs to first come off before you can remove the battery cover. Even now that I know how to do it, the smaller pieces are sort of difficult to grasp. I usually change out my shoes for different runs, however I don’t think I would want to frequently change which pair the footpod was attached too. Thanks to my hubby, that mystery was solved and I headed to the gym for my first run.
The first time I used the app, I used my phone. Thinking for size purposes it would be the easiest. Getting started was fairly easy for me. The app walks you step by step on pairing your foot pod and I was off and running in no time.
The app has the option to start training in a few pre-made workouts, however I skipped this step and headed right into running . I am not sure what was happening at first, my avatar was going in circles and I was running into people. I thought maybe I did something wrong with my footpod, so I adjusted is and tried again. I am not sure if the adjustments made a real difference or just exiting and re-entering the app fixed it. Either way, my avatar was off and running without a problem.
I was running on the streets of London, which I thought was pretty neat. Along the way there were lots of bikers and a few runners. Exciting land marks and images to look at, as well. The accuracy of the pod seemed pretty good as my treadmill and Zwift footpod where pretty darn close the whole time. Along your run you can earn some badges and level up. I earned some for completing my first mile, 5k and 10k in the first run. The app used a large amount of the battery life so, if you choose to use your phone plan accordingly.
The second time I used the app I used an Ipad and I joined in a group tempo run. This made a world of difference in the experience. I was able to chat with other runners, and see the app much more in detail. We were going for a three mile tempo. I got about 2.2 miles into the run and my footpod died leaving me unable to complete the run. I haven’t completed any follow up runs, however other runners did note that while the initial battery did have a short life span that once changed it wasn’t a problem. I have not tested this yet, myself.
Overall, I think the Zwift running and run pod are a great addition to treadmill running. I think having friends that I know on the app would really make the group running and training even better. If you have friends all over the globe this is an amazing way to catch up and get some miles in!
If you are interested in getting your own Zwift Runpod use discount code bibrave15 to get 15% off your purchase! (limited to the first 1,000 purchases)
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