Travel, explore, and see the world through The Conqueror Challenges—a virtual site that lets you race and stay fit.
Like some of you, I have made my travel plans earlier for August—only to have to delay them, due to the new travel restrictions. While I am all for the stricter lockdown (to contain the spread of the new virus variant), I was a tad bit disheartened that I could not leave home again.
That is until I realized I was doing a lot of virtual traveling already with the Conqueror Challenges.
Virtual Traveling Through Conqueror Challenges
I have been doing these app-based virtual races since the lockdown began in 2020, but I have not fully embraced the travel side of it. My focus was, after all, on the fitness merits of these routes. I rarely went through the postcards they sent me, nor did I think of going through the street view of where I was on my progress map.
My very first Conqueror race was a long 412-kilometer route across Kruger Park in South Africa. Finishing it was so challenging—due to the length of the race—that I found myself walking about 20,000 to 30,000 steps a day just to catch up! But getting it done within two weeks was very rewarding and it encouraged me to share more about it with my family and friends. To my delight, some of my friends have also installed the app and joined the virtual races.
How can you be a Conqueror?
The Conqueror Challenges is an app-based virtual racing platform that allows you to choose from their library of 25 destinations around the world. Each one comes with different distances that challenge you to keep moving and staying healthy.
The shortest race route, for example, stretches across The English Channel—between England and France for 34 kilometers. Alternatively, you can opt to jump right into it with the 66-kilometer Flower Route, where you can breeze through scenic landscapes and blooming flower fields along the iconic windmills of the Netherlands.
Or better yet, you can also enjoy the virtual scenery by choosing the 161-kilometer journey along the French Riviera on the Mediterranean coast.
Each time you complete a distance-based exercise—like running, walking, cycling, or swimming—you advance along the map on the app. You can also use their conversion table to convert your non-distance workouts to distance ones. These include activities such as Yoga, Pilates, Barre, Crossfit, and so much more. The mobile app will map your progress on a virtual route.
How can you travel virtually?
Before this current lockdown, I have been up-to-date with my map progress, though I have not really looked at where I was in terms of the route I was racing in. And since I am stuck at home once again, I started exploring the app’s different views on the map.
I discovered that every time you add a workout, you advance on the map. Not only will you see your avatar and other people on the map, but you can also explore your virtual surroundings on the Street View feature as you approach the finish line. This will allow you to see exactly where you are racing and have a 360-degree view of the place. You can even take your time to look around once you have uploaded your distance for the day. What fun!
The fun does not stop there, as you will also receive custom virtual postcards when you reach milestones in your route. Each postcard contains interesting information about the location. Here are a couple of virtual postcards during my races:
How do you track your progress?
Tracking your progress is also easy. You can enter your activity into the app either by manually entering its distance and adding your photo proof or by syncing your activities from your fitness tracker or smart watch.
How can you plant trees while racing virtually?
The Conqueror Challenges have partnered with Eden Projects, a non-profit organization that have planted over 400 million trees through its reforestation projects. For every 20% of the challenge you complete on any of the Conqueror Challenges, a tree will be planted somewhere in the world.
There’s no extra work or cost on your end—just make sure you keep exercising! By the end of the challenge, you will have planted several trees. Imagine what that can achieve as a community! That’s why I encourage you to explore this app and help in this cause.
How long are these virtual races?
The great thing about these races is the fact that you can pick your own start date and choose your own duration, depending on your goal, exercise type, and fitness level. In fact, my 11-year old daughter recently completed The English Channel race for 34km while indoor cycling. And she did it in a day!
Do I race solo or can I form a team?
One of the remarkable things about the Conqueror Challenges is its flexibility in allowing you to race solo or getting a group of friends to race virtually together. You may not be able to gather together to travel or workout, but you can accomplish a hike across Scotland together!
For the 806-kilometer North Coast Virtual Journey along the Scottish Highlands, I did it with a team of friends from my entrepreneurial support group—Em Sulit of Game Changer, Joana Gube of Hey Jow, Sheila Catilo of Catilo Photography, Indy Ycasiano of Smitten Floristry, and Mia Lauchengco of So True Naturals. We did it in a month— chipping away at the kilometers with a mix of daily steps, dance, workout, Barre3, bike, and so on.
Overall, it was gratifying to have covered such a long race distance with these amazing hard working women!
Why should you do it?
The Conqueror Challenges is a very well-designed and seamless app. Just sign up for the challenge, download the app, enter the code, and you are good to go. There is no hassle in getting started.
Additionally, there are so many challenges to choose from. And they all suit any skill level, mostly because you can choose your own destination, your own duration, your type of workout, and whether to go solo or get it done with a team of friends.
Plus, getting the rewards are just as gratifying. The medals you win are of high quality and are beautifully and thoughtfully designed. You will really feel proud when you receive them that you’ll definitely show it off to your family and friends. It also becomes quite addicting to collect as much of these medals as you could!
And finally, it provides a wonderful way to keep moving and having fun while doing it. We all felt encouraged and motivated to push ourselves to walk further, get on a bike, use the treadmill, and move daily. It gave our quest for movement a visual purpose that helped motivate us every day to move. In turn, I hope it would motivate you too, and allow you to enjoy some virtual traveling at the same time!
Marie Field-Faith, mom of 3, is a former Oil and Gas Engineer with a degree in Chemical Engineering from UP Diliman and MBA from the University of South Australia. She moved back to the Philippines with her family in 2013 and started her kids decor brand as she focused more on her little ones. Now, she continues to work as an entrepreneur, a content creator, a digital show host and part-time model. Marie is also a fitness enthusiast and is the co-founder of Fit Moms Project PH, an advocacy aiming to encourage more moms to start their fitness journey. Growing up in Palawan, she always seeks the outdoor and life by the seaside so she often takes her kids around on road trips to discover staycation finds, boutique resorts and family adventure, which she shares as Marie’s Discoveries.
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