Maintaining a running habit can be a challenge. CHNOS helps beginners STAY MOTIVATED. The ideal way to overcome boredom!

My Role

  • User Research
  • UX Design
  • UI Design
  • Concept Developing

The Challenge

  • How to engage people to keep running

Design Process

The first step of the design process involved user interviews to understand users’ pain points. Then I did desk research to analyze the competitors. After these research efforts, I focused on coming up with new method to keep motivating users in running.
Afterwards I came up with the solutions, and designed the user flows and wireframe. I also named the product and did the branding & UI design.

User research

User interview is my favourite part of UX design. Asking the right quetions often elicits interesting and surprising responses.  I chose to approach 10 people to interview, mainly focusing on beginners but also a few experienced runners, aiming to find the pain points of maintaining the running habbit.

Interviewed audience

The interview sample took into account men and women aged from 22 to 40, based in the economically active population of the city of Shanghai, Beijing and Nanjing. Running experience between 1 month - 9 years.

The interview took approximately 30 minutes, I asked the following questions  ->

  • Which app do you use for running, how do you feel about it?
  • What is your motivation to run?
  • Do you enjoy running?why?
  • Do you prefer to run with a group or run alone? why?
  • Have you tried running with a runner group?if yes, how do you feel about it?
  • What happened last time you gave up on a running plan
  • Could you share with me one of your most joyful running experiences
  • What kinds of incentives would make you run more frequently

Customer Insights

After analysing the interviews I isolated the data I found most relevant for decision-making in creating the solution:

Desk Research

From my desk research result, the strategies most existing apps are using to help users stay motivated are

· Challenges 
· Virtual workout rewards 
· Participation in virtual races

Based on my interviews, these virtual elements don’t tackle the pain points my interviewees expressed.

By integrating users’ pain points and market research, I found the runners are more likely to give up when running alone.  The best way to keep maintain motivation is by running with a group of people.

Why people don’t really want to join running group?

What do they need to keep motivation?


No pressure
- run with same lever runners

Easy to reach
-  running group near by your location

My Concept

1.  Less pressure - Run with same level runners

Most people like to run with similar level runners, plus different level runners need a different training plan, so the same level runners have more in common. Most important - they won't feel pressured with their running performance compared to their peers.

2.  Intead of setting random groups we connect users by routes. Runners can find the routes nearby.

Runners can choose to join different running events. Therefore runners can form a groups which match various criteria: location, time, level, etc.


User Flow


The wireframe was designed to build the structure and architecture of the information
and only then go to visual and interactions.

Naming & Icon Design

There hormone  “endorphin” is released after running for a certain amount of time. This hormone makes people feel happy and energetic. It makes runners fall in love with running, and so does this app. Therefore, the app is named after this hormone - ENDORPHIN.

The name is based on Endorphoon’s chemical formual (C98H152N22O29S) - CHNOS.


It Is Fun For Runners

The app can analyze running data and create “Endorphin curves” based on the analysis.

The users can also make their own endorphin curve &  group endorphin curve poster to share with their friends.

Interface design



This project was designed three years ago. When I was redesigning the visual and interactive parts in 2019, I found that there is a sports app called KEEP that launched a new version which allows users to upload running routes. You can see other runners who are running on the same route. This app is very popular in China, people enjoy to run on shared routes. I think this proves that my research and concept is valuable.