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How to measure my runs?

bluebug322011-04-19 13:12:53 +0000 #1
I just started running to give my body a new challenge other than cycling. What's the best affordable and simple way to measure distance, speed, splits, etc? I don't think I'm going far enough to justify a Garmin, but seeing my improvement will definitely help me stick with this.
HillSlugger2011-04-19 13:16:45 +0000 #2
The Garmin Forerunner 305 is a great watch and is fairly "cheap" these days. The 205 is very similar but can't use a cadence sensor.
OakLeaf2011-04-19 13:37:23 +0000 #3
If you're running either on roads/sidewalks or on trails that are visible from aerial photography, you can plot your course very accurately on mapmyrun.com .

Then a simple stopwatch can give you the rest of what you need to know. The timers in most phones have lap capability, if you have a way to make your phone's screen accessible when you run. If you have a smartphone, there's an iMapMy app that uses your phone's GPS - the free app is all I've used, and it worked quite well (aside from issues of simply being able to access the phone), but there are pay options as well.
indigoiis2011-04-19 14:24:33 +0000 #4
I just use mapmyrun, look at the clock before I leave the house and when I get home. I do take a watch on long runs, but nothing fancy. Also, not for nothing but you can feel it when you're running better (or worse) than your base. Set up a few base runs in your neighborhood that you can run once a week so that you can gage improvement.
bluebug322011-04-19 14:34:26 +0000 #5
Thanks! It would be nice to know when I've run my fastest mile, etc. Winter is probably the hardest time to start running, but I'll see how long I can hang on before resorting to the trainer or cross country skiis.

I do have an iPhone, so I'll have to look into apps.
jessmarimba2011-04-19 14:46:38 +0000 #6
Check out the RunKeeper app - it's free and has a gps tracking system. Even let's you start tracking, close the app, and start up some music while it jeeps paying attention.
Kerry19762011-04-19 15:38:16 +0000 #7
I use a Garmin 305 (but have used a 201 and 101) to log my runs. I am a strong supporter of RunningAhead.com. It is an amazing place to log your runs and a top-notch community of wonderful people. I can't say enough good about it. Also, there are multiple ways to log your runs (and other activities - it is limitless - i log bikes, strength, aquajogging, etc.) such as on a droid phone, etc. It also has a FB app so your FB friends can cheer you on as you work hard to reach your goals.
Syndirelah2011-04-19 15:35:01 +0000 #8
I use the MapMyRun app, its great. Youll probably never need a garmin if you dont mind sticking your phone in a pocket. (easy in the winter!). By the time spring/summer rolls around, youll already know the distances and routes... and you can use a simple Timex for total time or some interval work.

Winter running is not so bad! Just make sure you have the right clothes, some good shoes, maybe a pair of Yaktrax if youre on the trail. Have fun!

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