With April arriving and the relatively depressing month of March that most of us seemed to have had finally ending, I got to thinking about a new type of challenge that would push us to achieve more. I didn’t want just another “run X distance” or “complete X amount of hours in cardio.” Although both of those challenges were fun, I wanted to change it up a little bit. Over the past month, I’ve been trying to figure out an alternative, one that would push us in the spirit of competition but at the same time didn’t leave any ill feelings that could result in head-to-head competition. I think what I’ve come up with should do the trick.

The April Challenge

There will be two competing teams this month that were selected based upon averages, standard deviations, and variance of all submitted workouts. Each team was really chosen to the best of my ability, and I feel that they are pretty balanced.  Each team will alternate its weekly focus over the next four weeks of April, either shooting for distance or time goals. The caveat, however, is that the goals are shifting based on the other team’s activity.

This challenge is really only suited for running and elliptical workouts, sorry!

Week 1: Setting the Bar

  • Team Alpha will be striving for a distance goal. Their goal is to log as many kilometers of cardio workouts as possible.
  • Team Omega will be striving for a duration goal. Their goal is to log as many minutes of cardio workouts as possible.

Week 2: Role Reversal

  • Team Alpha will now be working to beat the previous duration record set by Team Omega in week one.
  • Team Omega will now be working to beat the previous distance record set by Team Alpha in week one.

Week 3: Role Reversal

  • Team Alpha will now be working to beat the distance record set by Team Omega in week two.
  • Team Omega will now be working to beat the duration record set by Team Alpha in week two.

Week 4: Role Reversal

  • Team Alpha will now be working to beat the previous duration record set by Team Omega in week three.
  • Team Omega will now be working to beat the previous distance record set by Team Alpha in week three.

Caveats

In the event that a team does not set a new benchmark, the high watermark will remain intact, i.e., if Alpha fails to beat the distance record set by Omega in week two, in week four Omega will try to beat their own record from week two to score points. This prevents one team from completely dominating the other and forces them to still strive to beat the previous high watermark.

Scoring Points

A team will score a point when it successfully completes the objective for the given week by setting a new record. Thus, each week a team has the opportunity to win a point. This allows for both teams to come out on top.

The Teams!

This is the most important part—the teams!

  • Team Alpha: Tino, Jono, Ellie, Amy, Kory, Terry, Adrienne, & Mom (Estimated projection: 84 kilometers)
  • Team Omega: Pat, Mike, Susan, Tim, Brindy, Brian, Aidan, & Dave (Estimated projection: 90 kilometers)
  • Team Mark: Mark (Estimated projection: e^{ix} = cos x + isin x  )

Mark’s objective, by the way, is in order to score a point for the week, he has to beat both high watermarks for the week, i.e., he has to beat both the given distance and duration for the week. This will not impact the goal for the other two teams in any way. I’m just curious to see if he can do it.

Escape Clause

I reserve the right to make some ad-hoc team shuffles midway through if one team is blatantly unbalanced. I don’t see that happening if everyone steps up to the plate, but just in case, I wanted to make it clear that I am willing to shuffle around after the first or even second week of the challenge. Also, if you have been included in a team but really have reservations about participating, please let me know and I can remove you from the list. I made the assumption that by submitting weekly, you would be interested in participating!

Logging

As always, there is the short-form logging available via the online form or, for those of you who are more ambitious, the login tracking system. Please just make sure to log both distance and time for this month because if you omit one or the other it is rather difficult to accurately record your data.

The challenge starts this coming Wednesday, April 4th, so get to it!

Feedback

I also am very curious to see what people think about this concept, so feel free to leave a comment with your thoughts or even some trash talk to get the ball rolling.