Pokemon are everywhere, and so are people playing Pokemon Go. I’ve even been using the app for marketing, posting pictures of Pokemon that showed up at county parks or for the Eastern Shore Running Club group run.
I was never into Pokemon, but I downloaded Pokemon Go because I was being interviewed about the app and its potential impact on tourism, and I wanted to be familiar with it and know what I was talking about. I’m not super into the game, and there are still things I don’t understand, but I do think it’s fun to take pictures of the creatures as if they’re in the real world, and I think the Pokestops, which are actual places in the community, are interesting.
I’ve already read about another Pokemon run, so I know I’m not the first to come up with this idea, but it was certainly an interesting way to mix up a run.
Plus, I had donated blood on Wednesday and it had just passed the 24-hour mark during which I wasn’t supposed to exercise, so I figured the slow pace would be good.
Thursday evening’s run was a lot slower than my normal pace, because I kept stopping to catch Pokemon. (I also didn’t stop my watch for waiting to cross streets.) The 5K distance took me 47:39 — a 15:19 pace. My first mile was 17:36, but I sped up a little after that, realizing I could run through the Pokestops and still click on the items available at them.
My run took place primarily in the Salisbury City Park and the downtown area. I figured the downtown area would be fun to go toward because I knew there were plenty of Pokestops there.
When I got to the Ben’s Red Swings parking lot area, I noticed there were two Pokestops with lures, where I caught several Pokemon. I was in the parking lot, and it really goes without saying that people should be careful — I have heard of a few crashes recently involving the app. Don’t walk around staring at your phone if there’s a chance you could be hit by a car (like in a parking lot or the street), and don’t play the game while you’re driving.
It was helpful that I didn’t have to stare at my phone the whole time; the app would buzz when a Pokemon was near enough to catch.
There was also a lure downtown; Roadie Joe’s is having a contest, so it was near there.
While I’m not going to make this a regular habit, it was something interesting to try, and it made the run go by quickly. But, it also really impeded my pace and killed my phone battery (and likely my data).
Here are the 22 Pokemon I caught on the run:
Staryu – 1
Spearow – 2
Eevee – 2
Pidgey – 3
Rattata – 2
Exeggcute – 2
Slowpoke – 1
Magikarp – 3
Bellsprout – 1
Psyduck – 3
Weedle – 1
Venonat – 1
Two of these were new for me: Staryu and Exeggcute.
I also hatched two eggs (Squirtle and Pidgey) and got items from Pokestops 11 times during the run. Luckily, the game keeps track of all this for me in the Journal, so I didn’t have to remember all these things. I’m still learning the characters!
I ended my run shortly before 8 p.m., and there were plenty of people at the park near Ben’s Red Swings/the zoo entrance looking like they were playing Pokemon.
While the distraction is certainly a problem in some cases, I think it’s great that the game is getting people out walking.
Oh, and if you didn’t notice, my username is just my initials and my beloved cat’s name.
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