Running technology

By | May 5, 2019

Running is cheap. You just need to get out the door and go. Hahahaha.

It’s a cliché we see everywhere. But before I get there, nod to why & how much I love the various link ups & the community here. Quickest ever crowd sourcing and I’m going back to modified Higdon. Thank you!

As I renewed my Runkeeper subscription thanks to the periodic discount on Runkeeper Go, I began to think about the sheer amount of technology running “requires”.

  • a running watch
  • apps for the watch to sync to. I have personally cycled through so many of these: MapMyRun, Runkeeper, Strava, Tom Tom, Garmin Connect… Not to mention the calorie tracking ones. I’ve happily been on MyFitnessPal for sometime though
  • Excel to “journal” progress and look at data at a glance
  • websites to register for races
  • Phone to take photos or listen to music, or map your run without a watch

Of course none of it is actually required, save for the websites, we can just lace up and go. But it’s a funny digital version of scope creep.

I don’t actually love Runkeeper. The distance traveled is way off from Garmin & Strava, though sometimes in my favor. But it’s worth the $19.99/year for the custom training plans since I know I’m going to have to modify Higdon/Hanson for my NYC training. In fact, inputting that was literally the first thing I did Monday when I upgraded the account.

You know when technology would come in really handy? If I’d scroll down my spreadsheet earlier than April 30 to realize what mileage I needed. Tuesday was a surprise six miles so it might not have actually mattered otherwise, but finishing the month with 59.16 miles. No issue with 59, it’s the most on the year but oh so close to sixty which just sounds like so much more.

On the non-technology front, I love this hat. I’ve worn it a fair bit lately including Saturday’s afternoon race with my “not quite long enough for a ponytail” hair.

On a pseudo technology front, since I’m reading it on my Kindle, loving Tommy Tomlinson’s The Elephant in the Room. So different to see a weight loss memoir from a man’s point of view.

Weekly Run Down with Deborah and Kim: 18 miles. My most in a while. Operation building back up is good. Light on photos as I didn’t run with my phone or iPod on either Tuesday or Thursday.

  • Monday: while I was fairly sore from Saturday’s miles on Sunday, I wasn’t too sore from the weekend double. Still decided to play it smart and not run or cross. Did the whole slate of PT exercises and a few of the machines. The last time I touched the hip adductor/abductor 5? years ago I think I was at 30 lbs. This time it was 60. I guess running builds muscles.
  • Tuesday: a glorious surprise outdoor run. I almost always have my gym bag with me and a colleague asked at 3 if I wanted to run outside since it was a spectacular 65 after the rain had cleared out for a minute. I was able to make it work schedule wise and he mentioned he wanted to do the full loop. I said I’d decide as we approached the 102nd St. Transverse. When we hit the two mile mark I said I’d be fine if he didn’t want to slow up on the Harlem Hills and I could meet him at the far side of the 102nd, but he said he wasn’t going for speed. My Achilles felt good and he paced me up the Harlem Hills. Why was this glorious? I have been hill avoidant, this was my first time doing Harlem Hills since Lebow and it wasn’t awful. I was huffing and puffing, but I did not walk and it was slightly faster, somehow, than Cat Hill. The best part? Iced it, but my Achilles didn’t hurt Wednesday morning and my knees were just the standard sore going down stairs. This run left me feeling really, really good and confident.
  • Wednesday: stretch and roll at the gym. I was tired, sore and not feeling much else. It meant no steps goal either and I was AOK with that.
  • Thursday: office run group: tired legs edition. I’m also calling that “As drawn by a toddler” edition. The plan was two laps of our standard three-ish mile loop, but on the return we decided to reverse & do the bridle path. I think we played etch a sketch. It was warm and humid to cool and humid as we progressed, and we were both tired.
  • Friday: off, dinner with friends and legs needed a break.

have you hugged a unicorn today?

cloudy with a chance of maybe?

  • Saturday: April showers bring May flowers and what does hugging a unicorn bring? A maybe PR. More on this Tuesday, but I’m really happy regardless of whether the above is actually true.
  • Sunday: maybe shakeout, maybe off. Lortel Awards in the evening and I have a whole ton of errands that need to happen including getting my haircut and roots done.

Plan for the Week:

  • Monday: run if I don’t on Sunday, cross train if I do
  • Tuesday: off, Jill Biden book launch
  • Wednesday: cross or run
  • Thursday: office run group
  • Friday: cross or off
  • Saturday: long run
  • Sunday: off?



  • 448,367 steps
  • 198.7 miles run/walked
  • aforementioned 59.16 miles run

2019 YTD:

  • 1,752,420 steps
  • 775.88 miles run/walked
  • 214.11 miles run

So close to so many round numbers it’s almost comical. Happy with that month. Good balance of true rest days and some solid ones.


23 thoughts on “Running technology

  1. Renée

    ah yes the old “lace up and go” saying 🙂 I remember the days when I had nothing but a ill-fitting pair of shoes, some random sports clothes an ipod that somehow had c25k on it (don’t ask me, I think Ron arranged it for me) and that was it. At some point I bought a polar watch, got proper fitting shoes, and started tracking. Oh and then there was the Nike Pod! Oh I had so much fun with that! I did my first long LONG runs with the pod and remember having Paula Radcliffe come on my headphones at the end and tell me how proud she was of me. Enter Runkeeper and Endomondo later Garmin, Strava… it’s so complicated these days! Ha! AND YET… IF IT’S NOT ON STRAVA IT DIDN’T HAPPEN hahahaha!

    so nice that you had so really good running days this week! I did some strength at the gym too – really had no idea where to put the weights so I started with 15KG for leg extension and 30KG for the leg press. I am probably going to try the ab and adductor machines next week. Yes, running definitely builds muscle!

    interested in the unicorn PR story…

    1. cari Post author

      Speaking of “if it’s not on Strava”, so glad we are. Love following yours. And yes, it’s insane. Also, cotton now the devil.

  2. Chocolaterunsjudy

    Upping weight & tackling hills — you’re kicking butt, girl, and that shows up on your Garmin! Nice job.I thought I would actually join the dogwalk today, but the rain had other ideas.

  3. Kim at Running on the Fly

    a 5K PR? That’s great!! I’m kind of on my own island, but I fight technology (practically tooth and nail). I much prefer “old school” methods LOL I have a Garmin, but it’s a very basic one and I use it more for the GPS than the on-going stats it dispenses. I always have it set to the elapsed time setting, but do refer back to the mile splits AFTER I finish my run or race. Some people like all that info as it happens, but it’s TMI for my taste and too overwhelming. Thanks for linking with us 😉

  4. kookyrunner

    Ah yes, running is such a “cheap” sport. I always laugh whenever I hear this. Although I like to say that I’m not a huge technology person, when it comes to running I definitely have my share of gadgets!

    Nice job on your 5K yesterday!

  5. Laurie

    IU always liked the Higdon plans. By the time you have run as many years as we have, you know what is right for you. You can always modify plans that are not a good fit. I really do not use all the technology. Just an inexpensive sport watch. I can always map later if I need to know the exact mileage. Nice mileage this week!

    1. cari Post author

      I started using RunKeeper first, so all of my data is in there. Can’t quite bring myself to drop it.

  6. Coco

    That 59 mile total would bug me too, but then again, April only has 30 days, so maybe that makes it better. 😛 I’ve never been good at following a training plan so I just rely on my Garmin. I’ve heard about an app you can use to map out a run — better than map my run — I might track that down and try it.

    1. cari Post author

      ooh I’ll have to look into that. I printed off some Strava maps ahead of London last year but didn’t end up using them as it was intuitive
      I think being oh so close bothered me more than 59 itself did, if that makes sense. I’m all too often the queen of 18,999 steps too

  7. Wendy

    I was cleaning out my bedroom last week and I found my original Timex Ironman–I should have taken a picture of it with my Garmin. The face is about the size of a penny. No lie. I used it to keep track of my time. Nothing fancy. It’s so funny how things have changed!

    Nice miles–I had 56, so we were simpaticos!

    1. cari Post author

      So did Kim. We’re triplets!
      I wore Timex non running watches forever. Loved those. Also, indestructible

  8. Organic Runner Mom

    Awesome mileage for April!! You are crushing it! I have never used Runkeeper. I do use my Garmin and its App as well as Strava.

    1. cari Post author

      I went to Runkeeper when I moved from Map My Run. It isn’t perfect, but has its upside
      THank you!

  9. Zenaida Arroyo

    I have a Garmin and love it. I used to use the Nike app with the watch but just decided to just use the Garmin. I am not a big fan of Strava. Oh, and running is definitely not cheap. Haha!

    1. cari Post author

      I switched to Garmin this past fall and love it. Haven’t really figured out the community aspect. I like Strava for the data

  10. therightfits

    Ah, but the technology makes it so fun! I love Strava 🙂 It’s another great community like this one.

    1. cari Post author

      I have to play around with the community aspect. I only follow a few, mostly IRL friends

  11. Michelle @ Running with Attitude

    I have a Garmin but have never used Strava or Runkeeper. It is funny to think of running as a “cheap” sport – sometimes I marvel at all the gear and tech I rely on to get out the door for a run!

    1. cari Post author

      I think the main reason I use them is because I had a hand me down TomTom before I bought a Garmin and their interface was the worst. I liked visualizing my data in a way I couldn’t

  12. Marcia

    Great news that the hills agreed with your achilles! I used to have these inserts in my shoes called stridalyzers that would monitor everything. A voice would come through my runkeeper telling me how much pressure I was putting on each foot, among many other things. It was a sample for review but the product was over $200.
    When I first started running I bought whatever sneaker was on sale. No clue about running shoes whatsoever.

    1. cari Post author

      Oh wow, that sounds a lie a cool, if out of my budget, gadget. Bet it would be super helpful
      Ditto — my first pair of shoes were fine. First attempt at running shoes? Shin splints/PF

  13. Debbie @ Deb Runs

    When I first started running seriously again as an adult, none of that technology existed. I only had a Timex watch that allowed me to do my mile splits. I had to drive my course in advance to determine my mileage. Today, I need ALL THE TOYS! LOL

    I haven’t hugged a unicorn recently (perhaps never), but I love that picture of you!


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