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Phew, you made it through another busy January! Good job. Hopefully, you are on your way to reaching your 2020 fitness goals with the help of your Black Box VR battle team.

Here at HQ, we’ve been focused on new ways to make your Black Box VR experience more fun and more effective. Our backlog is never-ending! We are listening to your feedback and moving as fast as we can. Read on to see what’s new and what other members are up to. Give us a follow on your favorite social network if you haven’t already to stay up-to-date and provide vital feedback.

We are thankful to have you as a member!

See you in the Arena!
Ryan and Preston
Founders, Black Box VR


Gym  Member of the Month

Username: JoshArtale

Hero Level: 24

Arena: Gold 9 

Why I love Black Box VR: I love BBVR because it’s the first thing that has gotten me to train consistently since competitive sports and the mechanics of the game get you to push yourself way harder than you would in a standard gym setting.

Physical/Mental Health Results: I’ve lost 15lbs since starting in November, and my confidence levels are way up. 

Favorite Champion: Lightning Tiger! Because it’s 2020 and offense wins championships now. 

Favorite Direct Damage Exercise: Squats, because Black Box VR mastered a way to get you to enjoy leg day by making hysterical squats a potent attack against your opponent.

Game Play Tip: Find a go-to champion combination for your original 1800 elixir each round. 

Fun Fact: I’m a DJ.

Next Black Box VR Goal: 100 streaks by my birthday May 14th(Current streak 25).


Gym Update

This January, we held the first Black Box VR tournament. Dozens of members from the San Francisco and Boise locations competed in an effort to become a real-life Black Box VR Arena Champion.

Amber Parker, Boise’s Lead Hero Trainer, said, “It was an amazing experience to be a part of. I loved seeing our members connect and get to know each other. It was great to see them comparing their statistics and Heroes in the app and talking strategies. Being able to watch the battling competitors was really fun, and it felt like our own mini version of a super bowl with our members cheering at the live competitions on the television.”

The Black Box VR competitors really dug deep and pushed harder than ever during their battles, some saying it was their hardest workout ever. Boise competitors and BBVR employees were all ecstatic that two of the three trophies up for grabs were won by Boise gym members. 

This first foray into a gym-based eSports competition set the groundwork for even bigger and better competitions in the future. Stay tuned for upcoming announcements regarding our next tournament. 


Battle Update

Ahoy Black Box VR Heroes! 

This month in the Black Box VR dev shop, we have been focused on our new story-driven onboarding experience and the plethora of quality of life improvements that are coming with it. For users in the arena leagues, this means much more dynamic models and animation sequences with the enemy avatar, unit VFX improvements, dynamic announcers and crowd improvements, and more. 

In addition this week, we are submitting an app update to iTunes and Google Play, which addresses the communication errors we’ve been having with our cloud provider. The whole team is very excited to have the app talking to the backend again so we can get back to keeping each other accountable with the social features released last month! If you have a friend who is a Black Box VR Hero, definitely start getting familiar with the friends’ list, profile view, and friends feed. We will be building out team goals and custom rewards in the near future, and social engagement will continue to be a significant focus for us going forward.

The dev team is always proud to be working on something that helps you all have a killer time reaching your fitness goals. Please keep sending in your suggestions for making Black Box VR the best product for you.

Keep crushing it! 

“Captain” Duane Mathes
Senior VP of Game Development


Exercise Science

We know that working out can help us burn calories, build muscle, and improve our cardiovascular health. But did you know that exercising can actually help you improve your diet?

A recent study found just that: 

“In the latest evidence that it’s worth sticking to your health-focused New Year’s resolutions, researchers at The University of Texas at Austin have found that exercising regularly is linked to better eating habits.

The new study, published recently in the International Journal of Obesity, looked at 2,680 young adults who were not exercising regularly or dieting. Scientists found that after exercising for several weeks, formerly sedentary study participants were more likely to choose foods like lean meats, fruits, and vegetables, while preferences for fried foods, sodas, and other unhealthy options decreased.”

Some people believe that to lose fat, they should only focus on their diet. Yes, diet is 90% of fat loss, but exercise brings some obvious and non-obvious benefits that will make your journey a heck of a lot easier. 

Keep your streak alive!

Full details:


Hero Trainer of the Month

Username: SterlingShark

Hero Level: 24

Arena: Platinum 4

Background: If you were to ask me for directions to the weight room in high school, I probably would not have heard your question as I was too busy playing my trumpet in the marching band. The first gym I set foot in was not until my first year of college when I was out on a long-distance run around Saint George, UT. I saw an Anytime Fitness from the road and decided to stop and take a tour. I can remember going online to and printing out my workouts for the day and carrying the printout around with me at the gym. Fast forward four years, and you’ll find me working in the Customer Service department at Today, I work at Black Box VR and am happier than ever before.

Why I Love Black Box VR: I love seeing our members come in and get a fantastic workout in and come out with a smile on their face. It’s gratifying to know that we are helping change people’s lives with our Black Box VR fitness experience. 

Physical Results So Far: Before Black Box VR, I was a long time subscriber to the classic ‘bro-split’ weight lifting regimen. I’ve noticed since joining Black Box VR, I’ve achieved a much more well-rounded physique as well as increased athletic endurance. I especially have seen my leg strength skyrocket, which has improved many aspects of my life.

Favorite Champion: From the very beginning, Skadi has been my favorite. She can be deployed swiftly, she’s quick on her feet, and her range is unmatched! Honorable mention: Boulder Bell.

Favorite Direct Damage Exercise: Ice Shard (Squat). There are so many benefits to squats, and the fact the in-game AI has encouraged me to do them consistently has brought real-world results into my life, which makes me happy.

Gameplay Tip: Be aware that you can re-target a champion your opponent has recently deployed in a lane by simply glancing in the direction of the opposite lane and then glancing back to the original lane. For instance, I will be doing direct damage to the enemies’ crystal, and they deploy Winja. If I briefly target the other lane and then glance back, my direct damage attack will now target Winja instead of the crystal. There are some instances when the crystal health is low where you don’t need to worry about this, but sometimes knowing how to re-target comes in handy!

Fun Fact: I love playing golf. I’ve only made one hole-in-one, but it was in a tournament on the ‘closest to pin’ competition hole. I scored 64 over 18 holes that day.


Fitness Tip

Getting in shape is just a matter of changing your habits. Simple, right? That’s a lot harder than it sounds. So how can we make it easier on ourselves? Here’s something to try.

Remember, a habit consists of three elements:

  • A trigger or cue
  • A routine
  • A reward

Our brains are very good at learning when there is a reward immediately following an action. We remember these things and naturally do them over and over. If I see a donut (trigger) and eat it (routine), I’ll immediately get a pleasurable taste sensation (reward) that makes me want to do it again next time I see a donut. Dang those evil little chocolate-frosted jerks!

To change a habit, we need to create or eliminate a trigger, do the routine (or stop doing it), and then get an immediate reward. 

A great way to create a new habit is to tie it together with an existing one. For example, if you are good at remembering to brush your teeth before bed but you always forget to take your vitamins, you can put the vitamins next to your toothbrush, so you always see them at that time. Brushing your teeth will be the trigger that reminds you to take your vitamins. When you are done taking your vitamins, celebrate your success by looking in the mirror and telling yourself that you did something that will help you to be more healthy.

It sounds trivial but put it all together, and you’ll have a new positive habit that feels effortless.

What habits are you trying to create that can be tied together with other ones?