Apr 12, 2013

Yet Another Tool and Device Advice

So, I wanted to share a couple of things on a non-workout day. I felt like sharing another tool I'm on. Or at least one I'm trying. I also wanted to open up for recommendations on something I'm trying to figure out what's the best way to manage.

Active.com Trainer

When you register for the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend races, you have to make an account with active.com first. That is how their registration process is handled. Since I had to make the account anyway, I decided to poke around the site to see what it had. I came across the trainer area of active.com. It allows you to track your workouts and earn "points" for them. Right now, those points can be combined with other members when you join a group and then all the groups are competing to have the most points. I'm not sure of the end goal for it though, if the points are used for anything else, or if they're Who's Line points, and they're made up and don't really matter. They have a little dashboard to show tracking everything, you can join challenges / goals for yourself and even track plans. My main gripe is the only training plans supported appear to be theirs that you can buy for usually a minimum of $19.99. You can't set up you're own plan to follow and track. The group thing is ok. I joined a Disney Runners one, and got some cool support when I posted to the group how I had signed up for the half and the 5K. So that support side of it was cool. Other than that, it is what it is. (And it's usually pretty slow for me, which I'm not fond of.) I'm mainly double tracking in it for the community side and because there I put the numbers in for my full workout with warm up and cool down, vs Endomondo that I'm using the app to track just my workout, for pacing purposes. You can find me on there if you want to follow me, high five or join the Disney group with me.

Device Advice

8 ball
Internets 8-ball, what do I do?
I'm trying to find the best way to track the run / walk intervals. I have the Endomondo Pro Android app, so I can add custom interval workouts. The problem is you can't just set 2 intervals and tell it to repeat until you stop. You have to add however many total you need. The problem is, with the plan I'm doing, at times I need to run for a certain distance (mostly for my weekend workout "long runs") and want to use that strategy. The problem with the app is I need to just make one long enough to definitely cover the time that it will take me. So, that can be problem-matic, where some I don't know how long it will take me. Then consider the half marathon, where all I can say is "I need to finish in under 3 hours and 30 minutes." Try breaking that down manually in to 30 seconds run and 30 seconds walk. Not pretty. Plus, if you do that, you can no longer set a distance goal if you'd like to or some other settings, because the interval training is the setting. And if the total is too short... oh well.

With this in mind, I'm looking for alternatives. Jeff Galloway offers a Run Walk Vibrating Timer, which may not be bad, but I'd have to clip it to my shorts or get the wrist band for it. At $20, it's not too bad. I could always got it old school and get a Timex Ironman watch, but it does beeps, and I'm unsure whether I would hear it or not with my headphones on and music playing. Well, that is, without the $225 version that does vibration, but in the words of Richard Karn "I don't think so, Tim." I don't want to run another app in the background just for the intervals, if I can avoid it, but maybe that's the best alternative? I'm sure there's things similar to the one offered by Jeff Galloway, but just wondering what my best option would be. Opened to you internets. Give me your thoughts.


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