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Fitocracy, Inc.
Type of businessPrivate
Type of site
Social Networking
Available inEnglish
FoundedNew York City, New York, USA
Area servedWorldwide
Founder(s)Richard Talens
Brian Wang
Key peopleDick Talens, Co-Founder Brian Wang, Co-Founder
LaunchedFebruary 2011; 10 years ago (2011-02)
Current statusActive

Fitocracy is an online game and social network that aims to use gamification to help users improve their fitness.[2] It has received coverage from mainstream media sources.[3][4]


Fitocracy was founded by Richard Talens and Brian Wang. Both were two self-described computer nerds who had succeeded in improving their own fitness and decided that game mechanics could help others to do the same.[4]

Fitocracy launched in February 2011, using an invite system to control new user signups. Invite codes were initially distributed through sites such as Reddit.[5]

In November 2011, the site introduced advertising, along with a paid option, known as Fitocracy Hero, which was advertisement-free and offered additional features.[6] By then, Fitocracy claimed to have 120,000 users and a waiting list of a further 120,000.[4]

In January 2012, Fitocracy began a partnership with Red Bull in which the site would be used to host the Red Bull Fitness Challenge.[7]

By the end of January 2012, Fitocracy claimed a user base of 230,000 registered members.[8]

In March 2012, Fitocracy launched an app for iOS devices.[9]

In January 2013, Fitocracy launched an app for Android.

In March 2013, Fitocracy reached one million users[10] and also announced a collaboration with Arnold Schwarzenegger, which challenges users to exercise for 15 minutes per day.[10]

In August 2014, Fitocracy was listed as one of TIME's Best Websites of 2014.

Fitocracy was acquired in 2016 by an unnamed buyer.[11]

In October 2017 it was announced that Fitocracy had reached 12.5 million active users.[12]

Fitocracy is no longer available in the Google App Store.


Browsing available quests in Fitocracy
The Fitocracy game interface

Fitocracy users log their exercise activity by selecting from a collection of activities such as weight lifting or running and entering details such as weight lifted or distance run. Points are awarded based on the estimated fitness benefit of each activity. Users must reach points thresholds in order to level up.[5]

Quests and achievements[edit]

The site presents users with quests to perform for additional points, typically consisting of a set of related activities.[4] Particularly significant fitness milestones are recognized with achievement badges.[5]

Social networking[edit]

In addition to the game, Fitocracy also provides a social network which enables users to 'follow' other users, view and comment on their workouts and join groups for specific interests.[4]


Fitocracy was initially covered by technology and gaming focused media, such as Tech Crunch,[5] Slate,[13] Lifehacker, where it won a vote for 'Most Popular Fitness Tracking Site',[14] Kotaku,[15] and Destructoid.[16] As it grew, it was covered by more mainstream media, including Popular Mechanics,[17] The New York Observer,[2] CNN,[18] The New York Times[3] and The Globe and Mail.[4]

2012 Shorty Awards[edit]

Fitocracy was nominated in the 2012 Shorty Awards. Although it received the most votes in its category,[19] Social Fitness, it was not selected as the winner by the judges.


  1. ^ Caruana, Anthony. "MyFiziq Inks Fitocracy Deal As They Muscle in on Fitness Market". LifeHacker. Retrieved 18 January 2019.
  2. ^ a b Jeffries, Adrianne (16 September 2011). "The Fitocrats: How Two Nerds Turned an Addiction to Videogames into an Addiction to Fitness". The New York Observer. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  3. ^ a b Wortham, Jenna (6 December 2011). "Some Instant Motivation for the Fitness Conscious". The New York Times. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  4. ^ a b c d e f McGinn, Dave (13 November 2011). "Can a couple of reformed gamers make you addicted to exercise?". The Globe And Mail. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  5. ^ a b c d Empson, Rip. "Fitocracy Brings Games And Social To Your Workouts (Invites Within)". TechCrunch. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  6. ^ "Introducing Fitocracy Hero". Fitocracy Blog. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  7. ^ "Red Bull Fitness Challenge". Red Bull Fitness Challenge. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  8. ^ "Fitocracy Presentation at 500Startups". 500 Startups — Fitocracy Presentation. Retrieved 28 January 2012.
  9. ^ "Fitocracy App". iTunes Store. 8 May 2012. Retrieved 2 July 2012.
  10. ^ a b Crook, Jordan. "Fitocracy's 1M Users, Including Arnold Schwarzenegger, Are More Engaged Than Any Other Social Network Besides Facebook". TechCrunch. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  11. ^ @brianmwang (24 February 2016). "Life update! Fitocracy has been acquired and I joined @500Startups as a venture partner!" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  12. ^ "MyFiziq Inks Fitocracy Deal As They Muscle In On Fitness Market". Lifehacker Australia. Retrieved 26 November 2020.
  13. ^ Calderone, Emily. "Train Like a Gamer". Slate. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  14. ^ Henry, Alan. "Most Popular Fitness Tracking Web Site: Fitocracy". Lifehacker. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  15. ^ Good, Owen. "My Workout Partner is a Role-Playing Game". Kotaku. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  16. ^ Chester, Nick. "Get in shape with game-like Fitocracy". Destructoid. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  17. ^ Herrman, John (December 2011). "4 Great Apps to Game-ify Your Life". Popular Mechanics.
  18. ^ Wilson, Jacque. "Why gamers are a great fit at the gym By Jacque Wilson, CNN". CNN. Retrieved 23 January 2012.
  19. ^ "Shorty Awards Social Fitness Category". Shorty Awards Website. Archived from the original on 6 April 2012. Retrieved 30 March 2012.

External links[edit]