Fitness Training For Geeks

As you know my latest gadget which arrived yesterday is a Garmin Forerunner 305, which is a GPS enable Heart Rate Monitor training device. The idea is that when you are out running, cycling or doing any other outdoor activity it tracks your precise position and speed using the GPS and records your heart rate using the heart rate monitor so that you can train effectively, or just look at it out of interest.

For me it is a way of encouraging me to get fit again. I used to be really fit, but marriage, fatherhood, mortgage, increasing age and the need to earn money have all got in the way of that, however recently in a bid to reverse the trend I have started running and mountain-biking. Nothing too serious yet, but the new toy could change that as i am now able to track my progress.

I’ve just returned from a little run using it and it seemed to work well. Of course, none of this would be any good without some software to analyse the data so I have been trying out various offerings which I shall report on soon. My favourite at the moment is a program called Ascent from Montebello Software so here is some of the data presented by Ascent from todays run.

First, the route which is automatically generated by the software using the GPS tracking:
Route of my run around Ynyslas

Next the speed and heart rate trace, with heart rate peaks marked:
Speed and Heart Rate trace

And finally an overview of some of the important statistics:
Running Stats

Click on any for a larger image. as you can see I’m not fast yet and haven’t covered much distance but I now have a base from which to improve. Also, the tide was quite high so at one point I had to run up and along the pebble ridge at the top of the beach… That of course slowed me down considerably… That is my excuse anyway!

11 Responses

  1. jamesq says:

    I’m expecting to see daily feeds of your progress! No more pebble excuses!! I want to see results…

    Everyone is up for a weekend of adventure in feb some time just trying to get everyone together to talk about dates. Des is off work at the mo, I think with trapped wind so will hopefully catch up with them soon as it will be good to get something booked.
    Happy running!

  2. Al says:

    Ahhhhh… My Forerunner 305 stopped working today… Just a week before the one year warranty runs out.

    Time to see how good the Garmin warranty and customer service really is.


  3. Alan says:

    Now looking at getting a new ‘gadget’ to help me keep fit.

    Check out my post about buying a turbo / ergo trainer.

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Alan Cole

Alan is a Freelance Website Designer, Sports & Exercise Science Lab Technician and full time Dad & husband with far too many hobbies: Triathlete, Swimming, Cycling, Running, MTBing, Surfing, Windsurfing, SUPing, Gardening, Photography.... The list goes on.

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