We’ve had this blog sitting in our draft folder for about six months. But given we’re on the eve of two of the biggest events in Australia’s sporting calendar, we thought it was high time it saw the “rivalry blog” light of day.

We’re talking about that feeling you get in the pit of your stomach before the national anthem is sung when it’s your team in the grand final. That flutter when your mate sends you his new PB, and it’s 40 seconds better than yours. That niggle when your older sister aces her end of year exams.

We’re talking about rivalry. Sibling rivalry. Schoolyard rivalry. Sporting team rivalry. Hell, turn on anything electric and you’ll hear the latest from the Trump vs Clinton arena. (Yep, your fridge probably has an opinion on it too.)

Let’s take a moment to reflect on some of the world’s greatest rivals.

  • Australia vs New Zealand in rugby
  • Barcelona vs Real Madrid in soccer
  • Australia vs England for the Ashes
  • Carlton vs Collingwood
  • Clinton vs Trump
  • NSW vs QLD in Origin
  • Argentina vs Brazil in, well, everything
  • Marvel vs DC

Regardless of what the subject, code, hobby or interest is, every single person on earth will experience some form of rivalry in their lifetime. No one is immune. Sure, the degree to which we’re affected can vary. You might just get a blush of jealousy and move on. But for the most of us, we’re likely to react.

This is why the greatest rivals in the world, are still that. Their motivation is constantly feeding into the other. To be the best. To prove themselves. To be on top. Without a rival, it becomes that bit harder to keep striving to be the best, to be on top.

But what makes a rival different to a nemesis? That my friend, is the natural comradery that goes hand in hand with rivalry. It’s the handshake at the end of the game. The genuine smile at the end of a jibe. The special award we saw at the recent Olympics bestowed upon the two female runners who epitomised the Olympic spirit by helping each other cross the line after a tumble mid-race.

If you’re an Aussie (or a Kiwi) rivalry is an inherent part of your DNA. Remember the last Rugby World Cup when we were the underdogs against our Kiwi brothers? The hype. The nervous smiles. The bloke jokes.

It’s this exact feeling that gets you out of bed to go for a run, when it’s still dark and 0°C. Knowing that your rivals are out there doing the same thing. Wanting that edge on you. That’s what drives your motivation. That’s what makes you Run & Rule.

Some people have incredible drive and self-determination and are happy to exercise for intrinsic rewards. (Michelle Bridges we’re looking at you!) But many people need that extrinsic motivation. Particularly to sustain long-term benefits of exercise.

That’s where Run & Rule shines. You get the double whammy. You get the satisfaction (and ensuing endorphin high) of knowing you just treated your body to something good. But you also get extrinsic rewards. You own virtual territory. You get to beat your rivals. And you don’t even have to be fast, or go hard. Just going around the block a few times can mean you have the upper hand to all your neighbours.

So next time your mate sends you his new PB, embrace it! Use that rival-feeling as your fuel. Then quickly send him a text making sure he used the Run & Rule app to record it 😉