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Follow planned and guided workout routes with the RunGo app

Never get lost again, no matter where you're running, with this Canadian-made navigation app

Photo by: Instagram/rungoapp

If you’re tired of your same old running routes and looking for new ones, RunGo is the app for you. But this Vancouver-based navigation app can be used for so much more than finding and sharing routes with other runners. It can take you on guided runs, whether you’re in your city or a completely new one, and you can be sure that you’ll finish your workout without missing a single turn and getting lost. Plus, the app tracks your runs like a regular fitness app, covering your time, pace and distance in addition to telling you where and when to turn. RunGo is free to download and compatible with iPhones, Androids and Apple Watches, so there’s nothing stopping you from starting your next running adventure. 

Starting RunGo

RunGo was founded by Craig Slagel, whose personal travelling experiences inspired the idea for the navigation app. “I’m a runner who used to travel a lot for business, and I wanted a way to find routes in new places,” Slagel says. He tended to get lost in these foreign cities, and he thought it would be so much easier if he had a GPS similar to the one in his car to tell him where to go on runs. So that’s exactly what he created: an app that guides runners along their routes so they never miss a turn.

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RunGo can be used on iPhone and Android, but Slagel notes that if you have an Apple Watch, that’s a great option to use so you don’t have to cart your phone around on all of your runs. “RunGo pushes tech pretty hard,” he says. “Apple Watch is the only watch that has the power to handle our app.”

Going virtual with RunGo 

One of the best RunGo features for the days of COVID-19 is its virtual mode. Just because you aren’t in a specific city or at a certain race doesn’t mean you can’t feel like you are, thanks to the app’s virtual routes. With this feature, you pick a city or race and then go for a run around your town or at home on your treadmill. While running, the app will tell you about the course, stories about the race and give you updates on your location in the race as if you were actually there.

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“Anywhere you go, we can take that run and give you the virtual feedback from that route somewhere else,” Slagel says. “You can run around your block and it’ll tell you where you’d be on a course like the Boston Marathon.” 

Discovering new cities and routes

Running is the best way to explore a new city, but a big issue is that you may have no idea where you’re going. Most runners abroad won’t take any chances when running in a new place, and they stick with the ever-safe out-and-back route so as not to get lost. With RunGo, you can forget the out-and-back and take in more of each city you visit with every run. Just pick a route, pop your headphones in and be sure to turn when the app tells you to. 

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There are two types of routes in RunGo: verified and user-created. “We have more than 1,000 verified routes in pretty obscure places and all corners of the earth,” Slagel says. A verified route has been created with the help of local hotels (RunGo is partnered with many hotels worldwide), races and run groups. “We create routes for hotels, so travellers could have a fun guided tour of the city while running.” 

But the majority of the app’s routes (there are more than 400,000) are made by RunGo users, so wherever you are, you can run local favourites. You don’t even need data or cellular connection to use RunGo in foreign places. As long as you download a route before your run, it’ll keep you on course.