Monday, November 19, 2007

My New Garmin Forefunner 201

I'm lucky enough to have friends who are sponsored by Garmin - a company whose stock has been pretty incredible - driven by it's amazing products (except they're not waterproof).  I got a new Forerunner 201 to help me with my run pacing and workout tracking.  I took this new toy out for my long run in Z2 with a few mins in Z3/4 towards the end of the run.  It doesn't have an HRM - so I have to wear my Polar 520 to track my HR + carry my iPod - so my right arm is pretty full of stuff.  Below is a picture of the Garmin software's opinion of my workout.  I call in an opinion because it's not all true: there are 2 hills on the chart one is 29% and the other is 41%. It also shows I was sub-10 min miles on a 41% grade hill.  It also shows I was on a -26% hill (I live at the bottom of a 25% grade that I have to climb UP).  It also shows I start at 1,500 ft and since I can jump into the ocean in less than 5 yards - I'd say I was closer to sea level.  

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click the image above to see a better version:

It shows I ran an 8:36 for 1:22 mins - I actually ran a bit further but deleted some of the odd files I saw (it didn't pick me up with GPS for about 5 mins) and then due to the clouds it appeared to have lost GPS reception a few times.

The software Garmin provides is terrible - you can't change the scale to make sense of the data.  Hopefully they'll fix that and make some improvements - or at least get closer to Polar's software.  They do have a nice (very) integration with Google Earth - here's my run:

grmn2

Despite all of the issues I mention - it is cool and fun.  You can set a training partner with goals: pace, distance, time, or mixes of both.  I plan on getting out for a 10k with a goal time of 42 mins. 

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