Having said that, the Fitocracy algorithm strongly favors weight lifting: Lifting 100 pounds five times is "equivalent" to running a mile. Yeah, right!
Therefore, I decided to create my OWN point system (again, the points don't matter), which rewards the sort of exercise *I* do (jogging).
Here is the way I figure it (qualitatively). You get more points for:
- Running farther,
- Running faster,
- Running with extra weight (including your own weight).
The last item is based on the reality that heavier runners expend more energy. For example, let's say you are a svelte 130 pound marathon runner, who averages around 5:30/mile for short runs. What would she be able to do with, say, 60 pounds of extra weight? Could she halve her pace (11:00/mile) for a 5K with that extra weight? Hmm? HMMMMM?
Long story short (and I think this will need tweaking), I'll take this form for the algorithm:
Points = (scaling1)*(C1 + miles) + (scaling2)*(C2- pace)
I'll arbitrarily say that a 1-mile run at a moderate pace for me is worth 5 points. I'll also set scaling2=C1=1.0 (yeah, I know, the units don't match; ignore it). A moderate pace for me is 13:00/mile (C2). Do the arithmetic to see that scaling1=2.5:
points = 2.5*(1 + miles) + 13 - pace.
Now, we add a factor for the weight. Since BMI is a better measurement of your overweight-ness, I have settled on this formula:
Points = 2.5*(1 + miles) + 0.4*BMI - pace.
There is only one more factor that I have to add in: you can only get points if you go at least 1/2 mile.
Using this scoring system, here are some examples of an 11-point 5K run for different BMI values:
- 25:00, BMI=22
- 30:00, BMI=26
- 32:30, BMI=28
- 35:00, BMI=30
- 37:30, BMI=32
The world record 5K is 12:37 by Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia. Let's say this particular human specimen has a BMI of 18. Kenenisa would have received 13.4 points for this run. Patrick Mahu's world's best marathon of 2:03:35 would have earned him (assuming a BMI of 16) 64 points!
My point system favors more frequent, shorter exercises, which is what I need right now. That is, it is better for me to do five 2-mile runs in a week than three 5K's (about 40 points versus 33 points).
My sort-term goal is 25 points per week. I hope to increase this to 40 points per week over the coming weeks.