It feels like GORUCK has been talking about developing their own (new) app for ages. At one point there was a GORUCK app however it was essentially a web portal for their website. It wasn’t updated and, as far as I’m aware, fell off the app store. The app GORUCK has been talking about lately is a fully featured ruck tracking app with ruck club integrations.
At this point I think most ruckers use Strava for tracking their rucks. Strava can aggregate data from tons of sources (Garmin, Suunto, etc) and has some community features. The All Day Ruckoff Strava Club has over 100 members with dozens of activities being logged daily.
Strava is designed mainly for cyclists and runners so it’s not ideal for rucking. There’s no place to input weight or even mark your activities as a ruck (most people use walking, hiking, or running) which really makes it feel like you’re conforming to a non-ideal solution.
Hopefully the GORUCK app will be able to fix all of that!
GORUCK App Prototype
GORUCK reached out to ruck club leaders to fill out and send their members a survey about the new GORUCK App. If you’re a member of a ruck club I’d suggest reaching out to the leader to get that survey. In that survey there was a video which previewed some of the functionality of the potential application. The app was working incredibly smoothly which makes me think that some of it is still very much in the mock-up phase of production.
Although there wasn’t much shown there were a number of screens on the ruck tracking and ruck club management pages which will hopefully get people excited.
The ruck tracking feature appears to be the third tab on the bottom menu and is exactly what it sounds like. You should be able able to use the GORUCK app to track your rucks using your phone’s GPS. The first screen shows your current location, the second screen lets you select a ruck and total weight, and the third screen shows the details of the ruck.
I really like the ability to add the total weight to the ruck so that you can (hopefully) track pace and weight in the future. It would be interesting to figure out using data what your average 10 lb/20 lb/30 lb/ 45 lb mile pace is. I’m guessing with time you could get some very interesting analytics from the data.
Based on the features presented the first page of the app shows a history of your rucks. You can see total miles, amount of time rucked, and calories burned at a glance. I hope there’s the ability to either pull in data from Strava/Garmin/Suunto or manually enter data in the future. I like being able to track my rucks on my watch so that I can keep my phone free in case of emergency. I wouldn’t mind adding the weight and ruck at a later point either.
Ruck Club Management
GORUCK currently lets you search through ruck clubs on their website but I’m really liking the members feature on this screen above. You can quickly see what ruck clubs are in your area and how many members they have. My guess is that this is counted as total members using the app but that’s probably a better indicator than Facebook Group members. There will be people who have the app but don’t show up for rucks and don’t have the app and do show up for rucks… hopefully it all averages out :)
When you select a ruck club you can see the group messages as well as what appears to be options to view upcoming events and a member list.
The upcoming event page looks pretty awesome. You can see previous events (Jan 6th Bridge Ruck) with number of participants and total miles and weight rucked. My guess is that miles and weight are derived from the other ruckers using the app and what they selected and tracked during the event.
Upcoming events (Jan 9th Bridge Ruck) show how many people have said they will attend. I hope that GORUCK builds this all out as well as the ability to see all public ruck club rucks in your area. If you’re flying into a city it would be really cool to pull up this app and see what rucks are occurring within 5 or 10 miles of you.
The final page is a little confusing if you don’t know what you’re looking at. This is a member list for the club featuring how many miles each member has rucked and how many ruck club callouts they have completed. It appears GORUCK is using the same user multiple times here to show that however (I’d imagine) you can pretend that each of those is a different person in the club.
As you can probably imagine I’m very excited about the prospect of a GORUCK app. Apps are challenging to write properly and take a lot of time to maintain and update as security fixes and errors arise. That’s the number one reason I haven’t worked past my initial rucking app because it would honestly take a dedicated team to maintain it. Looking at other app companies shows just how many employees it can take to keep a well running piece of software. Strava has 275 employees, Endomondo has over 40 employees, MapMyRun is now owned by Under Armour, and the list goes on. I commend GORUCK for stepping into this area and working on their own tracking app!
I would love to hear your initial thoughts on the app in the comments. I’m very excited but I tend to get excited about both rucking and technology. Are you excited about this? Let me know and, if you’re a ruck club member, make sure to let GORUCK know.