How does GymPact work?

"Make a pact of how many days a week you want to exercise, and how much money you'll put on the line to pay if you don't," says GymPact co-founder Yifan Zhang. "Check in at the gym with our iPhone app, which verifies via GPS that you're at the gym for 30 minutes. At the end of the week, you'll earn cash for every workout committed, paid for by those who didn't exercise! GymPact users earn around $0.70 per workout, which amounts to around $2-$3 a week — enough to cover a morning coffee or a part of a monthly gym membership, as our users say!"

Quitter, are ya?

"If you have an exercise goal, announcing that goal and setting the right incentives and accountability to reach that goal helps to make it a reality," says GymPact co-founder Yifan Zhang. "In addition to GymPact, you can work out with a friend, hire a personal trainer, or create a fitness challenge with your family or coworkers so you can create the support network for success."


Why must we sweat?

"Because the benefits of exercise are down the line while the hard work of exercising happens now, it's often much easier to stay home than to decide to get to the gym," says GymPact co-founder Yifan Zhang. "Folding exercising into our lives takes away that decision and makes exercising a habit that will happen by default."  



Best bang for the buck

"If you only have, say, 30 minutes to exercise, interval training has been shown to have the best results with the least time spent," says GymPact co-founder Yifan Zhang. "Be warned though — interval training means sprints of extremely intense activity with minimal recovery time in between, so it's an intense experience that's not for everyone."

Choosing a Gym

"The best health clubs are the ones closest to your home or office, since location definitely affects how often you will attend!" says GymPact co-founder Yifan Zhang. "If you're in Cambridge, the GymPact team works out at Bosse City Club in Kendall Square — just a block away from our office!”



Coming Soon

"We're launching our Android app to beta users in May!" says GymPact co-founder Yifan Zhang. "If you want early access, sign up here:" Also, in a couple of weeks, GymPact is kicking off group incentives called "GymPact Challenges."  

GymPact Heroes

They swear The Social Network had nothing to do with it. Yes, Yifan Zhang and Geoff Oberhofer went to Harvard, just like famed Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Yes, they both are chomping-at-the-bit entrepreneurs, just like you-know-who. Yes, they both hope to make it big in the social-media space, like...well, you know. But that is it! They swear!  


They will tell you -- no, they will insist -- that the motivation behind going into business together was a class about the motivation behind everything. Behavioral economics struck a chord in both of the young bloods, Harvard freshman at the time. It offered answers to such big questions: what drives people to succeed? What makes them work hard? What keeps people going and going and going? For one, a reward, especially dough. Consistency ranked high, but fear of loss (mainly of dough) soared higher. Yifan and Geoff wondered how to put such insights into practice. They paced, pondered, and brainstormed. Then they went their separate ways: he consulted about pricing in the medical industry, and she started up a style dot-com. But then they got together again and realized something: people need to exercise. It's healthy for the body and mind. Unfortunately, Americans aren't slimming down anytime soon. So what, the pair asked, would motivate people to work out? Dough! 

Three months ago, Yifan and Geoff launched, a mobile app that uses cash incentives to get folks to exercise regularly. In other words: YOU CAN EARN BUCKS (reward!). You just have work out regularly (consistency!). If you don't, you pay up (fear of loss!). So far, 35,000 folks are signed up and sweating it out. Just call them case studies for behavioral economics. As for Yifan and Geoff? We might be calling them the next Mark Zuckerberg.



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