Thursday, December 25, 2008

New Garmin!

So the gf tried to get me a gift in October. After it didn't come for a while, we found out from the company that the product wasn't stocked. We canceled that order, and I set about thinking of a good replacement. I finally decided on a Forerunner 305, and it came a few weeks ago. After much excitement, the battery inside was dead, and it wouldn't work off of the cradle. So that one was sent back, and a new one eventually shipped out. And so today, more than 2 months after the beginning of the saga, I got to try out my brand new Forerunner 305!

Interestingly, I was also contacted by another company to try out their GPS watch, called MyTach. It took forever for them to send it, and so in the meantime I ordered the Garmin. They ended up coming 1 day apart. If it turns out to be amazing, the Garmin will be a waste. But we'll see about that.

In the meantime, I tried to run today with the old and new Garmins, as well as the MyTach.

Unfortunately, I'd left the MyTach on accidentally, and there was no charge left in it. So I'll have to review that another time. (Hopefully, they'll be some nice outdoor running weather again. That's been scarce lately.)

In any case, I went for a short run. A litle over 3 miles, but I had a really tough time. I wasn't speeding, but I felt like I was putting in a hard effort. Now that I had a heart rate monitor I can see that my HR went up to 172. (Started from 80, which is high. Maybe from coffee?) Anyway, using the old standard calculation, my max HR should be 185. So I was up at 93% of my maximum, which would explain why it felt so hard.

In terms of comparing the two Garmins, I was initially upset. After a quarter mile, the 305 lost the satellite connection. What the??? In retrospect, I think it's kind of a learning process, since it was perfect on the way back. Also, perhaps reading the instructions and fiddling with the settings will help.

Take a look at these maps.

This is from the 201.

This is from the 305.

You probably have to blow up the pictures to see the details. The 201 kept the basic path, but there are less GPS data points, and it wavers off the course quite a bit. For the last few years, I've been modifying the GPS data after each run. (Big pain!) The 305 was definitely confused in the beginning. See how it veered off towards the left right from the get go? However, once it got back on course it was perfect for the rest of the way, and perfect the whole way back. There are way more data points, and the course is pretty much right on, without requiring major editing.

I have a feeling that now that the 305 has learned where I am (and maybe locked on to more satellites) that it will be better next time. I'll let you know.

Of course, the 305 has the added feature of keeping track of my HR (as long as I wear the strap).

I probably won't wear this for every run, but I think it will give me some useful information over the next little while.

As an aside, I want to point out that the above pictures are from a program I love for GPS watches, called SportTracks. It's free (donation suggested) and wonderful. Very customizable, and full of features. (Unfortunately, no Mac version as of yet.) As a comparison, the picture below is what you get from the Garmin Training Center.

Pretty crappy, in my opinion. I think there's something about using MotionBased. I don't know much about that option. (If someone does, let me know.)

Ok that's it for now. Tonight I'm hoping to fulfill the Jewish tradition of Chinese food on Christmas. (I'm probably skipping the movie, because I'm on call.) But for those of you celebrating tonight, you can perhaps enjoy what the cafeteria did in my old hospital.

I think outside New York, the "black and white" cookie is not so famous. But around here, they're ubiquitous. Except today, when they're "red and green".

Happy Holidays.


Blogger David H. said...

Although I'm not Jewish, I have loved Chinese food for dinner the past few years!

Thursday, December 25, 2008  
Blogger Ansky said...

Just found your blog. I'm a Jewish (observant) runner and blogger as well. Check out my blog,

Wednesday, December 31, 2008  

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