What does “Any Distance counts” really mean?
First, a brief origin story.
As the pandemic raged on in 2020, I, like many, struggled with what to do with myself. Separated from friends, family, and routines, I self-soothed in unsound ways. I was drinking too often, staring at my phone far too frequently, and moving very little.
To my complete and utter surprise, this was a terrible idea. I was anxious and I felt terrible. I was in a perfect loop of behaviors that didn’t particularly lend themselves to improving my overall wellness.
I remember often seeing the “going for a stupid little walk for my stupid little mental health” meme (silly, yet effective. We’ve since made a t-shirt about it). I saw it enough times that I got up and did it. I found a podcast on the space race and went on a walk in the scorching Atlanta heat for nearly 2 hours.
I did this for almost 4 months straight, racking up hundreds of miles and seeing so much of the city I’d never seen before. Some walks were 20 minutes, and others topped 4 hours, and I started to feel better physically and mentally.
I found I felt calmer and the anxious black cloud began to dissipate. Being the ~extremely online~ person I am, I was also sharing a multitude of photos during my walks. It became a rewarding, enjoyable experience and I began looking forward to this new routine, a routine that, essentially, required nothing. I just went outside.
I received encouraging replies and notes that sharing those walks was motivating others to follow along and find their own way to move their bodies. This led to the first designs of the app and the distinct sharing format you know today.
No competition, no comparison. Simply sharing my active lifestyle story made me feel good.
This, in many ways, is the kernel of Any Distance and our mission — create motivating digital and physical experiences that feel like home for your active lifestyle.
Eventually, walking led to running, and running led to a personal journey that changed my life, the impetus for committing to Any Distance. More on that in the next issue of the Active Times!
So, what does “Any Distance counts” even mean?
It’s a core value for our team as we build (it’s even painted on the wall of our office), and most importantly, a mantra for supporting the community. It’s not about sports or athleticism. It’s about you, it’s a way to celebrate your active lifestyle and overall wellness.
There is an easy comparison to what Nike did with “Just do it” and we’re extremely okay with that. The culture they created with 3 simple words is an inspiration. In a complete coincidence, Nike had a “Counts” campaign in the mid-2000s. The video is real fun.
Any Distance counts is a response to the (to put it lightly) level of inactivity exposed not only during the pandemic, and rather existing as an ongoing crisis. The verdict is in and the studies have been reviewed. Movement can help everyone.
While our name includes “distance,” we designed it to feel like home for your overall wellness: Exploring breathwork, going the distance with your mental health, enjoying training or sports — imagine a sunny morning of surfing or an evening of yoga. It all counts.
We have much to build and a community to cultivate. We’re excited, focused, and determined to create something that can do and be good for as many people as possible.
In fact, if you’d like to take a peek at our road map for 2023, keep your eyes peeled for Issue 0003.
We covered a bunch here, what do you think? Leave us a comment, tweet at us, DM us, send us an email. We want to hear your thoughts. What motivates you?
Check out all our latest and greatest updates on the App Store.
Rewards have arrived 🎁
Now, when you invite your friends to use Any Distance, you can share your invite code which gets both of you 3 months of Super Distance (aka fun features like 3D routes) for free. Learn all about it.
Watch out, good news coming your way soon ⌚️
The Any Distance Apple Watch app is coming real soon! We’re in the final stages of polishing it up for you.
Enable notifications in Settings and/or join the ADAC Slack if you want to hear about it first.
Let the good times roll (soon)
Our next Not So Active Club product is headed your way shortly and it’s all about that post-active glow.
Can you guess what it is? First one to DM us @anydistance with the right guess gets two on us 😉
🚲 Make any bike an eBike → Go Swytchbike.
🧠 A new newsletter dedicated to trends in mental health? → Hey Headlines.
🎒 What is Rucking you ask? → Get the beginner’s guide.
📺 Watch this → 7,000 new underwater spots for parking your bike 🇳🇱
📖 Read this → More proof that exercise boosts cognitive function (via our friends at Fitt Insider)
🎧 Listen to this → Our pal, Dusty, curated a killer playlist to pop on during your next activity. Enjoy 😉
🥂 Drink this → Château del ISH, an alcohol-removed sparkling Blanc de Blancs that is, indeed, delish
⚡️ Bonus drink this → Joggy just launched the next big energy drink.
🏅 Earn this → Set your next goal (in the Goals tab) and earn a special medal once you complete it!
I've been a long time Any Distance user (since the beta days) and follower of Luke on IG (Hey Luke!). I'm so stoked and inspired by what y'all are doing with Any Distance. The way it's evolving feels so intentional. Each update gets me more and more excited to be a supporter. Keep up the great work!