Skip to main content

#ProofofWorkout: Kickoff Statistics

Op-ed - #ProofofWorkout: Kickoff Statistics

That’s Janah Riddle of Coinbase living the dream after a hike through Colombian rainforest to drink some cold coffee and dip into a few waterfalls. She and her husband, Luke, are taking on the #ProofOfWorkout challenge to stay active while they travel and work remotely. Follow their journey on the Roaming Riddles blog.

You can imagine a blockchain saying to a miner, “Do you even lift, brah?” and the answer being, “Yah, dude, here’s the bitcoin to prove it.” This simple joke explains, in essence, the concept of proof of work.

Proof of work is simply the ability to show through a piece of data that your machine has used some of its precious computing power crunching cryptographic functions. The reward for all that computing power at a certain threshold and moment is bitcoin. The metaphor is apt when compared to accomplishing health and fitness goals. The work put in to maintaining a healthy and fit body is proved by muscle tone and improved health.

Last week #ProofOfWorkout announced a 30-day fitness challenge, in which participants share their fitness progress on social media and compete to win bitcoin or Gyft cards to Nike, Sports Authority, etc. Here are some numbers from the first 55 registrants.

Overwhelmingly, people are focusing on strength training, with cardio enthusiasts coming up closely behind. Body weight exercises such as yoga come up third while hiking and walking follows. Training for races, diet and specific training courses such as Cross Fit make up the last handful of goals.

The reasons people gave for honing in on these goals included: wishing to reduce body fat, build strength, train, lose weight, improve fitness and well-being, and start a routine. The number strength-training participants who used the phrases “swole” or “ripped” to describe their challenge was 44 percent.

Some of the goals listed included:

“To beat my father in an arm wrestle.” “Shrink.” “Follow the Nike training club for 4 weeks.” “Lose weight, walk daily AND spend less time in my office chair by standing while working.” “Get swole.”

Co-founder of Blockchain, Nicolas Cary’s goal: “I’d like to run more than anyone else in this contest.”

With Bitcoin rock-stars such as Elizabeth Ploshay starting the challenge with a 13-mile run, it looks like the competition is heating up.

@proofofworkout goal completed on Day 1: 13 miles of running down!

— Elizabeth Ploshay (@etploshay) May 11, 2015

#ProofOfWorkout started this week with more than 65 participants across four continents in nine countries. Participants have already begun tweeting and sharing their workout progress and goals through screenshots of fitness apps to gym selfies. According to the organizers, #ProofOfWorkout has raised in excess of their fundraising goal from corporate sponsors and individual donors, allowing participants to compete for weekly giveaways in addition to the five $100 Nike Gyft cards reserved for the final prize.

There’s still time to sign-up online.

Photo courtesy of Luke and Janah Riddle.