Not having motivation can be a huge barrier to working out, but what if going to the gym tonight meant that a starving child got a nourishing meal? Would that give you the motivation to go?
This is not a hypothetical question. Italian fitness-equipment maker Technogym has combined personal and global health through technology so your workouts can feed hungry children.
All you do is download their app, start collecting moves, and when you hit 1,000, Technogym will donate a meal to a malnourished child through the World Food Programme.
Any exercise you can track is counted toward your move total. The app has a variety of easy-to-follow workouts, synchs with the iPhone health tracker, and can be integrated with devices like your Apple Watch, so your morning jog or barre class can also earn moves.
It doesn’t take long to collect moves—two minutes of skipping can earn 28 moves. So after just an hour and 11 minutes of jumping rope, you’ve fed a hungry child. You also earn moves through the walking you do in daily life, so your commute and the errands you run count.
The meal donation is part of the company’s “Let’s Move for a Better World Campaign,” which it started in 2014 as a competition between gyms that used Technogym equipment.
The goal was to help improve childhood fitness and reduce obesity. The gym that accumulated the most moves got to choose a school to receive a full set of Technogym equipment, said Technogym COO Federico Foli via email.
The program was such a hit, they wanted to expand the initiative. “We wanted to find a way to bring the challenge outside of fitness facilities and into the world, where anyone at any moment can participate through physical activity,” Foli said.
Thus the app was launched in May this year in conjunction with the 2015 World Expo in Milan, which has the theme of feeding the planet. So far the app campaign has collected over 500,000 meals, Foli said.
The final total will be tallied Oct. 31, when the Expo ends, but stay tuned because Technogym will have other opportunities to move for social causes. It currently also offers chances to move to end obesity and fight ALS.
If apps aren’t your thing, you can check out Technogym equipment at their showroom in SoHo or the 92nd Street Y, a nonprofit cultural and community center on the Upper East Side. If you stay in luxury hotels around the city, look for Technogym equipment in their fitness centers.
So how many meals will you move for this month?