Running with someone else is always different to running on your own. You run further, faster, hoping to either beat—or keep up—with your exercise partner.
But life is busy, and you end up running on your own more often than coordinating sessions with other people.
So, what if there was a technological solution that could keep running sessions high intensity, even when running alone?
These were the thoughts sprinting through engineer and all-state runner AbdurRahman Bhatti’s mind in 2017, when his pacing devices weren’t quite giving him the boost he needed.
“I realized that what I sorely needed was the competitive edge I got from racing alongside one of my faster friends,” he writes. “But with everyone so busy all the time, we could never quite get our schedules to line up.
“And that’s how the idea of the Ghost Pacer was born—-a pair of glasses that project a holographic training partner that runners could run with anywhere, at any time.”
Three years later, after “hundreds of iterations,” Ghost Pacer is now being developed and released via Kickstarter. It’s a simple process: The user pairs an app on their phone to the glasses, selects a route and a pace, then presses go.
The wraparound glasses have a six-hour battery life and weigh just 90g—around twice the weight of Google Glass.
Demo videos show the full size holograph running slightly ahead of the user, sprinting like a mannequin version of the Temple Run runner. The hologram also offers guidance to ensure people stay on goal pace, thereby aiming to maximise the “value of each run and workout.”
“With the avatar by your side, it will be that much easier to chase down your goals, one step at a time,” the Kickstarter page reads.
The app allows people to race against an avatar that matches their route and speed from one of the previous workouts done by a friend, with the goal of offering real-time racing with friends in the near future.
Ghost Pacer will retail for $349, but is available cheaper for backers on the Kickstarter page—which has already raised $68,000 from a $25,000 goal.
“The Ghost Pacer is the partner that will improve with you,” a demo video adds.