Tag Archives: cadence

Technology and running

2 Oct

Do you let technology dictate your training or are you happy to run ‘naked’?

I recently read this New York Times article:

For Fitness Bands, Slick Marketing but Suspect Results

My sister and my work colleague both wear Fitbits and a triathlete friend recently revealed that he wears a Garmin vivofit, so I was interested in finding out about their experiences with the gadgets.

I have to admit that I’ve become a bit addicted to technology – it all started with a Garmin 405CX. After a while, I started uploading the data in Garmin Training Center… and then I moved to Garmin Connect. Then I started using my heart rate monitor. Then I started using a Garmin footpod to measure my cadence. At Christmas my sister and my husband gave me a Garmin 910XT… and that came with a heart rate monitor and a speed and cadence sensor for my bike. The advantage of my latest toy is that I can also wear it when swimming. But how much is too much? A I addicted? I find it strange running without my watch, but perhaps I let the numbers dictate how I feel too often.

Maybe the only running app is need is MIND (TM): http://m.runnersworld.com/fun/the-only-running-app-you-need

Do you use all of the pre-installed applications including:

  • Mental Notes™, featuring Mnemonic Device™ technology, which lets you “jot down” ideas without pen or paper and without interrupting your run.
  • Idea Gener8or™, which can yield creative breakthroughs in as little as five minutes.
  • Serendipity™ Route Creator, powered by your own innate desire for novelty and exploration.
  • Lay-o’-the-Land™ Maps, which automatically syncs with the Serendipity™ Route Creator to create a database of your favorite running loops.
  • Subconscious™, which operates continuously, in the background, helping the user to analyze, synthesize, and contextualize information. This feature runs so quietly, you hardly ever know it’s running at all.

Perhaps MIND™’s most impressive feature is its built-in Think™ option. Turn on Think™, and you can explore virtually – sorry, I mean virtually explore – literally any subject you can think of. Even more impressive? Every time you use Think™, you strengthen and expand it, so it works better the next time.

“Have some electrolytes and eat a piece of kale…”

13 Jun

I just love the latest video from IFHT:

I’ve had a busy week. Wednesday started with a pool session. I wasn’t given session specifics, so I decided to do a pyramid. As my shoulder still isn’t quite right, I didn’t want to push it too much, so I just did 2000m (I LOVE that I can now say ‘just’ when it wasn’t long ago that this would have been a major achievement!!!) I did 100m; 200m; 300m; 400m; 400m; 300m; 200m; 100m. My intention was to have a minute’s rest after each one, but a slight oversight meant that didn’t happen. After I arrived at the pool, I realised that my prescription goggles and my favourite swimming hat were in my swim kit bag with my pull buoy, fins and hand paddles… and that bag was at home. I’m partial to my shark hat as it is comfortable and stops water from going in my ears, and without contact lenses, glasses or prescription goggles, my eyesight is very limited, which makes doing basic activities somewhat hazardous. I almost gave up on swimming, but I realised that I had a tri club swimming hat tucked in my rucksack. I rarely wear it as it’s not as comfortable as my other hat and it feels a bit pretentious to wear it when swimming in a public pool – I’d rather not draw attention to the fact that I’m desperately trying to be a triathlete, as I feel that other people have preconceived ideas about how good a swimmer I should be. (That’s probably in my head, but I don’t like attracting attention). I also realised that I have the cheap pair of goggles that I bought in Cyprus in my rucksack, so I put them on and went into the pool. I was able to read my watch, but even with squinting, I couldn’t make out any of the numbers on the giant wall clock.

My husband was just finishing his swim set as I arrived. I had seen him when I walked into the building (there’s a glass wall in the reception that shows off the pool), but with restricted vision, I had to wait until he was just a metre or so away to be sure that it was him. He had another 100m to do and agreed that when he had done that, I could borrow his goggles. They aren’t prescription ones, but they are quite expensive and more comfortable than what I had. I was really appreciative of them, although I’m not convinced that orange lenses are helpful. A plus side of not being able to see was that I think it helped my stroke. I know that I pick my head up far too high out of the water when I breathe and have narrowed this down to three problems:

1. I have a fear of inhaling water and don’t believe that I create a bow wave

2. I like to know what’s going on around me, so I try to have a look when my head is out of the water (when I couldn’t see anything, there was no point in trying this)

3. When I breathe, I relax and don’t kick, so my legs sink. I can’t believe that I’ve only just noticed this!

Tri club swim hat montage

In the evening, a lot of my friends did a cross-country race, but I went to see the sports masseur who had a look at my injured right leg. I don’t know what she did to it, but it hurt then and it’s still painful now 😦 Hopefully, tomorrow it will feel amazing!

Arriving at the Sports Centre

Arriving at the Sports Centre

Yesterday’s training started at the track at 6:30am.It was a session about cadence and pace, so we had to do multiple laps of the track at different paces (easy, 5k, 3k, 1k, all out, 1k, 3k, 5k, easy), which doesn’t sound too bad, but we had to count the number of steps each lap took. That requires tremendous concentration for before 7am!!! For me it was between 300 and 400 each lap. I’m intrigued by what my coach is going to do with the info.

Athletics track

Athletics track

We then moved on to a variety of exercises and the famous hurdles came out again. They were put in a square and we had to hop over them. Hopping forwards and sideways isn’t too bad, but hopping backwards over an obstacle that you can’t really see is challenging!

Ant demonstrating his new form of torture 2

Ant demonstrating his new form of torture

Ant hopping 1

Ant hopping

Yesterday evening, I had to do an hour on my bike, including 4 reps of a steep hill. It was meant to be a 2 minute hill climbing effort, but once again, I judged it incorrectly, so I found a hill that took about 1:45. I’m hoping that’s close enough!

Today was an optional 30 minute swim, but as I had quite a busy day at work and am feeling exhausted, I decided to take it as a rest day, so that I’m ready for tomorrow’s 70 minute run.

Does your coach get you to do any unusual drills? Who do you think wins the rap battle?


90-96 is the magic number

21 Mar

😦 I had just about psyched myself up to enter Ferndown tri, when my husband delivered some bad news… he is unable to accompany me as he has a won a place in Bournemouth marathon, which is on the same day. I’m a little disappointed as I had hoped we could enter the event together and I had also suggested that we can enter our oldest nieces and nephews in the children’s event.

Bournemouth marathon

However, I have also got some thoughts in mind. Katherine has suggested that I might want to enter Cycletta New Forest, which is also in October (13th October). There are three options: 20km, 42km and 82 km. There isn’t much difference in the cost of them (only £4 more for the longest distance) and I can’t help but feel that it’s therefore better value for money. Sadly, it will be before I can have a new bike, but I’m sure my hybrid will be fine.

I was nervous about this morning’s RunCamp session as my glutes are still tired from Tuesday. Fortunately, it didn’t feel as bad as I thought it might. Again we tried running at different cadences – trying to match 150, 160 and 170 all felt very odd – I was much more comfortable at 180 and 190. Bizarrely, I have the highest cadence out of all of the runners at RunCamp, including Stu and Mike (who is an experienced triathlete and a fairly nifty runner). Maybe I’ve internalised Eric‘s wisdom (from Embrace Sports) more than I had realised.

I also asked Ant about cycling cadence. Apparently, for triathlons it is good to cycle at 90 as well, so that your running and cycling cadence are the same. This means that the transition from bike to run is easier. This (poorly spelled) article appears to agree; http://www.elitecyclingfitness.com/#/cadence-pedalling/4560059628  I found this article on cycling cadence to be helpful: http://www.active.com/triathlon/Articles/Cycling_cadence_in_training_and_racing

It has been raining hard all day, and I was tempted not to got to the Thursday evening LRR social run. I tried to tell myself that it would be sensible to take it easy before Eastleigh 10k, but in my heart I know I need to do far more training for Paris (although I’ve left it a bit late). Plus, I ate two biscuits and two GIANT slices of cake at work today, so I need to try to burn a few calories… although I did manage to lose 1.5lbs last week 🙂 When I arrived at Oasis, I was surprised that only 9 other people chose to come out in the rain. We did a steady 10.6k run over to The Common and through the Sports Centre. I had a long chat with Paul about cycling cadence and resolved to change my Garmin to show cadence… plus, I must search in the loft for my foot pod as I’m borrowing one at the moment. I thought this video was interesting: http://kropelnicki.com/?p=231

Tomorrow’s challenge is my 400m time trial and then I’ll take it easy at parkrun in preparation for Eastleigh 10k. Here’s a photo of my sprint finish from last year:

Eastleigh 10k March 2012 - PB: 51:06

Eastleigh 10k March 2012 – PB: 51:06

God knows how I was brave enough to wear those skimpy shorts – people of Eastleigh, do not fear – they will not be making an appearance this year!!!