Sunday, 17 January 2016


Something you will see a lot of runners do just before they set off is clicking watches and phones to start tracking their activity. I had experimented with the Walk Jog Run app, but had seen a number of my running mates using other timekeepers - Garmin watches and apps like Runkeeper and Endomondo.

Halfway through last year I decided to switch to Strava. It seems a very popular application and I've enjoyed using it. Some of the things it allows me to do:

  • obviously record the time I run for - I have set it to auto-pause so it doesn't record my rests and that then tells me the pace I'm actually running at
  • record the shoes I wear for each run - useful for gauging when to replace them i.e. at around 500 miles
  • show me a map of where I've just run - let's others know what routes I've been on
  • track the height I'm running at so I can see all the ups and downs - elevation gain is something I look for to gauge how tough a race will be
  • share that information with fellow strava users - and be able to encourage each other with our achievements
  • share that information with social media - although I don't do that very much at the moment
  • join challenges with other runners in the Strava community, which helps with motivation - for example, two challenges I've joined this month are 'Strava Races: 10k' (complete a 10km run) and 'January Run Climbing Challenge' (run up 1,000 metres this month)
  • lastly, a cool feature on the website is that if you're running with other Strava users you can overlay a few sets of run data and see how you all did on a single map - seeing 3 or 4 dots navigating the map is amusing to watch

I also wear an Apple Watch and use it's Activity app to record the same run. I can look at this easily while I'm running (the Strava app is on my phone, which is strapped to my arm) and see my time and distance at a glance. I tried the Strava watch app, but it doesn't stay on screen - hopefully that will change sometime in the future. Also, I use my watch to record the full run time (as opposed to Strava, which I set to exclude my rests).

Strava made a personalised end of year video that shows some of the key stats for the year (or half year for me), here's mine:

I look forward to the 2016 summary showing a much better set of information!

Coming up next week: Race 2, the Lyme Park Nightrun

1 comment:

  1. Oh so technical, Matt.. here we are thinking apps are for playing games! Seriously, it must be great to have your progress in 'real time' terms. Hudds is on the horizon, wonder if it will recognize it's erstwhile 90's student 'son'?!
    We will be looking out for you in the dark tonight at Lyme Park... run, Matthew, run!