Example Goal: Run 3 times per week

There are a few different ways you can set up a running goal with Beeminder! That can be pretty overwhelming, so let's go through the choices step by step.

First, you'll want to decide the metric you care about most. Do you want to commit to running a certain number of minutes per week? Do you care more about reaching a certain weekly mileage? Or maybe you just want to get outside and track the number of runs, regardless of how easy or hard they might be.

Choosing your metric will dictate the type of goal you set up and how you enter your data, so try to pick the one you care about most! If you care a lot about multiple metrics, you can set up multiple goals to make sure you stay on track for both of them.

Next, you'll want to decide whether you'll be entering data manually or using another device to report the data to Beeminder automatically. We highly recommend using an automatic data source if you have one — worry more about running and less about remembering to update your data all the time! Then you'd just have to make sure the data is uploaded to the site we're integrating with. This works best when you want to track time or mileage; if you want to just track that you've done any running at all, a manual goal is probably better.

We have direct integrations with Fitbit, Garmin, Apple Health, Strava and RunKeeper fitness trackers. If your preferred service isn't in that list, you might also want to check IFTTT and Zapier to see if it's covered there. Both of those services can be used to automatically send data from an outside service to a Beeminder goal. (Note that not all of the integrations support every metric listed above — for example, Fitbit does not track distance.)

If you've opted to use an automatic data source, follow the link for your device to get goal setup instructions. If you're going to enter data manually, keep reading!

Manual-entry running miles goal setup

  1. Head to create a new goal (also accessible through the New Goal link in the top menu).
  2. Click the + icon to start a new manual entry goal.

    Goal setup: "How will you track your progress?" with a button immediately below captioned "Add progress manually to Beeminder"
  3. Select Do More as your goal type (because you want to Do More mileage).

    Goal creation: Select goal type. Shows all the current goal types (Do More, Do Less, Lose Weight, Gain Weight, Custom, Odometer and Whittle Down), with the Do More option in the top left highlighted.
  4. Enter the units you want to use and the amount you want to commit to. In this example, I'm aiming to run 6 miles per week (3 runs of 2 miles each), which is the same as a goal to run 0.86 miles per day. I don't need to calculate that out, though -- I can just enter 6/7 (six miles divided over seven days), and Beeminder will automatically calculate what that means.

    GIF file showing how 6/7 gets converted automatically to 0.86 per day

    If you want to delay your goal's start a few days (maybe you're traveling this weekend), be sure to tick the Start this goal with extra leeway box. Enter the number of days you want to delay and press Continue.

    Goal setup: "Commit to at least" followed by a stepper/number entry box to set the amount per day. Below that you can set the units for the goal, and then check the "extra leeway" button to set things up so your goal doesn't start right away.

  5. Give your goal a brief name. If you want, you can also write a short description with more information.

    "Give your goal a name", followed by two text entry boxes. The first allows you to enter a short slug which will name your goal and create a URL for it. The second textbox allows you to set a short description, and is optional.
  6. Finally, choose your initial pledge. This is the amount you will pay the first time you derail on the goal. After derailing, the pledge will increase by default — use the dropdown below to control how high it goes. In the example below, I have chosen to start at a $5 pledge, which will increase each time I derail, until it reaches $270 — the pledge cap. (To read more about pledges and payments, check out some FAQs!)

    Screenshot of the "Pledge your money" screen, showing the starting stakes (choosing between $0 and $5 using radio buttons). The text below that says "Your pledge will increase each time you derail until you reach your pledge cap", with a demonstration below showing the pledge progression: 5, 10, 30, 90... to the pledge cap, which is a set of stepper buttons currently showing $270.
  7. I'll step through the confirmations and preview sections... and now my goal is ready to go! I'll need to go for my first run in 4 days to avoid paying Beeminder my first $5!

    Example goal: shanaqui has to complete at least +1 mile of running in 4 days or pay $5
    But wait! I wanted to run two miles, 3 times a week, and this goal is asking me to run +1 mile in 4 days... Did something go wrong in setup? Nope! The way Beeminder works is that it calculates a daily amount, even if you want to do something weekly. Remember when we set the rate to 6/7 above? That means I need to average 6/7 per day -- but that doesn't actually mean I need to run every day. If I overachieve, I get safety buffer.

    For example, if I enter +2 before the deadline, I'll get more than one day of safety, so I get a day off before I have to run 2 miles on Wednesday, and so on. The "Amounts due by day" section in your goal's statistics will help check on this, and how much you need to do to be safe until a particular day. If you look at the delta column, adding +2 today will allow me to be safe until Tuesday 7th.

    The "Amounts Due By Day" table for the example goal, showing that +1 is due in five days, and +2 in six days, etc

Keywords: example goals, example graphs, fitness, tracking distance run

Did this answer your question? Thanks for the feedback There was a problem submitting your feedback. Please try again later.

Still need help? Contact Us Contact Us