8 Ways Pokémon Go Is a Surprisingly Useful Fitness Tool

Who knew trying to find Pikachu could be such a great workout?

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If you've noticed more people running around than usual the past few days, one thing's probably to blame: Nintendo's latest release, Pokémon Go.

The free app — which you can download on both iTunes and Google Play — is sending the world straight back to the 90s as people of all ages go on a quest to capture all their favorite Pokémon characters. The only catch? Instead of sitting in front of the TV with a Nintendo 64 controller in hand, this time the only way you can play is if you get up and go — like, outside.

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The last time we saw so many people obsess over something that paired gaming with physical activity was nearly 20 years ago. You know what we're talking about: good ol' Dance Dance Revolution. And, as was the case with DDR (don't pretend you never called it that), Pokémon Go is helping some users get their first real exercise in years. Here are some fabulous examples of how people are using the game to get into shape.

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1. It gives you major motivation to work out in the first place.

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2. It takes walks and runs to another level.

Ran 3 miles caught a Charmander... #productive #nikerun #morningrun #pokemongo #mightbelatetowork

A photo posted by Jenny Rodriguez (@jrod630) on

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Over 4,000 steps of Pokemon hunting! lol With ankle and wrist weights!! 💪🏻 #pokemongo #gottacatchemall

A photo posted by Kaitlin (@sterlingcabernet29) on

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3. It turns actual gym time (not Pokemon Gyms, sorry!) into something much more exciting.

Turns out, #PokemonGo is a great way too get moving. This little guy agrees! #MtSiSports #FoothillsFit #NorthBend #CatchemAll

A photo posted by Mount Si Sports + Fitness (@mtsisportsnfitness) on

Chest day cubone!! #pokemongo partener of the day

A photo posted by Ilias Katsas (@iliaskatsas) on

4. It gives everyone a (cute) walking buddy.

On A Journey With Blastoise #lookingforpokemon #pokemongo

A photo posted by Foster Wilson^^ Tiggie 🐷🐢 (@jay_jay_the_turtle) on

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5. It makes exercise more social.

Gangs beginnen te ontstaan.. 😂 #thedutchpokemongo #TDPGO #PokemonGO #bikergang

A photo posted by The Dutch Pokémon GO (@thedutchpokemongo) on

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6. It gets the whole family involved.

One way to get your kids to get some exercise ... tell them they can play #pokemongo while we are out lol @ryanbergeron3

A photo posted by Hailee Bergeron (@haileebergeron3) on

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#pokemongo over the weekend. Mason was excited to jump on his bike and go catch'em all.

A photo posted by Dan Epley (Official) (@danepley) on

7. It gets pets involved, too!

Oh look! I found one!

A photo posted by Mochi The Little Frenchie (@mochi_little_frenchie) on

makes walking the dog a little bit more fun 😩🐶🙈 #LeoIChooseYou #PokemonGo

A photo posted by Harvey Rana (@harveyrana) on

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I want more jiggly puff 😁 #Pokemon #pokemongo #sofun #jigglypuff #cute #cantstop #goout #catchemall

A photo posted by Patricia (@patriciawang) on

Dad, I choose you! Nerdosaur! 😂😂#pokemongo #muttsofinstagram #🌼

A photo posted by Daisy Duck Pup, Jr. (@daisyduckpup) on

8. It inspires other healthy choices, as well. #SaladGoals

...Just make sure you're not stopping in the middle of the street to catch 'em.

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