Damn you, targeted Instagram ads

I admit, those stupid ads on Instagram have snared me on more than one occasion. Usually it’s something simple, like a shirt, or some hair tint, or food. Definitely food. That’s how I ended up following (and thus ordering from) Makarohn, which I regret both 100% and 0% at the same time.

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LOOK AT IT

But yesterday… yesterday Instagram got me reeeeaaaal good. I was scrolling fairly mindlessly through my feed, as one does, when a sparkly unicorn zoomed past my eyes. I stopped, scrolled back up, and saw an ad from Yes.Fit for a Unicorn-themed virtual race. It had a picture of the race medal and the race shirt, and let me tell you, that medal was a sight to behold.

LOOK. AT. IT.

A few months ago during one of our lesson days, we had talked about finding a 5k to do as a group – myself, Bobby, Hillary, and our trainer. We put Bobby in charge of picking the race, so naturally it never happened, but it’s remained in the back of my mind. I’ve been out of the running and triathlon world for a few years now, but I still love races. I especially love medals. And BOY do I love a friendly competition.

So I clicked on the ad, and it took me to Yes.Fit’s website, where it told me all the details of said Unicorn virtual race. It was 121.1 miles, cumulative over however long you want to take to complete it, and you can log running or cycling miles. All of their races are “set” in a particular place, this one being Scotland (hence the unicorn). As you enter your miles, it moves you around the pre-determined Google maps route, and you can click to see where you are on the street view. It was $24 (with a coupon code), and at the end they send you either the medal or the shirt, whichever you choose (or both, if you pay more money).

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Our virtual route
Apparently I am here.

The best part is that you can add friends, and if they join the same race, they join your group. It shows everyone’s progress as they log miles and move around the map. The only thing the app really lacks is a shit-talking feature. How am I supposed to verbally harass Bobby? Guess group text will have to do.

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Within the hour all 4 of us had signed up and joined the race, and now it’s on like donkey kong. Bobby logged his first couple miles last night, and I was up at 5 this morning to go for my first run in more than 6 months, since before I injured my knee. I want to make sure I don’t hurt myself again, so I kept it short and slow, but so far so good and everything felt great (it helped that it was raining on me so I couldn’t tell if I was profusely sweating or just wet). I will probably try to log at least half of the miles via cycling, so I don’t destroy myself (have I ever mentioned I’m competitive in a group setting? I will die before I quit.), but I’m excited. I think this format is WAAAAAAAY more fun and motivating than just regular training or trying to plug away at fitness on your own. Plus we can all do it on our own time, separately, but also “together”.

They have a lot of cool races and medals and shirts on that site/app, and we already decided that after this one we’ve gotta do the Nessie one, which is – you guessed it – Loch Ness themed. I mean, look at the shirt!!!

I also like the Yeti one, 39.5 miles through Nepal.

And this Peter Pan one.

And Sherlock Holmes.

I can see how this could quickly get addicting. Granted, the Unicorn race is one of the longest they have, so it’ll probably take us a while to complete. That’s good though, I think… it’ll require a little more dedication and effort. It seems like a good way to keep the motivation and the accountability up, since I know all of us are super competitive. Further proof that horse people are crazy, even when horses aren’t involved.

We’ll see how long it takes us to finish! You can bet your sparkly ass I’ll be posting a picture of the medal when I get it… just 119 more miles to go…

36 thoughts on “Damn you, targeted Instagram ads

  1. Wow. Instagram has really gotten you! That medal is awesome, and the idea behind it, genius.
    Personally Instagram have gotten me with horsey clothing and boot socks. You have taken this to a whole new level and I am in awe. Bobby, has nothing on you by the way. NOTHING! 😎

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  2. I’ve been eyeing those virtual races for months. The Loch Ness one was at the top of my list. These are way more fun with friends like you have and I can’t ask my hubby cuz he is insane and is running a 100k this weekend and a 100 miler in 3 weeks. His lunch break fun is going for 20 miles. He’d kick my ass so fast it wouldn’t be fun at all.

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  3. OMG…. I am in so much trouble. I’m a sucker for finisher’s medals, I mean I belong to a Facebook group called ‘Bling Whores’ where people can share photos of their fancy medals. I signed up for a 1/2 marathon in Kentucky because the medals/the entire race was horse themed. I NEED that unicorn medal in my life…

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  4. Instagram also got me with the macarons, and they were so disappointing. If you’ve never had a homemade authentic macaron I suppose they would be good, but they just tasted like a mass produced product to me and half of them didn’t even look like the pictures.

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  5. I have having a nice day off. Slept in a little. Cool breeze through the open window, bad cat sitting on my keyboard…and now I’m signed up for a virtual race of 12o miles???? You’re worse than targeted advertising!

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  6. Whenever I’m trying to get back into running, I usually sign up for a race, either local or virtual. I haven’t seen one that you can compete against your friends though. That’s super fun! Let me know next time, I’d love to join you all (if you’ll have me)!
    In other targeted add news, have you tried that tinted hair conditioner? It looks fun, but I don’t like to try new things first…

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  7. Whaaaat? I didn’t know this was a thing and now I am super interested. I have seen virtual 5 k races you do at a marked course, but any weekend you want, but I have never seen a cumulative virtual race. So cool

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