Wednesday, July 10, 2013

technology frustration

The saga of my last few runs before the Bix continues.  

This morning, I ran the 5th-from-the-last of my pre-race runs.  I am frustrated with my Map My Run app on my iPHone.  There are 2 problems:
  1. What shows on my results, as far as elevations, does not seem accurate to me, and
  2. I’m struggling to believe that the speeds being called out to me every 2 minutes for my “split times” in training modes are accurate.

First, elevations.  This morning, I was very intentional in seeking large amounts of hill action.  For sure, I went up-and-down a lot more often than the “climbs” readout on my run report seems to indicate.  The large portions of basically flat running that show up there – well, I just don’t understand them.  The only real “flat time” I spent on the run was the first mile, and part of mile 5!  The rest of the time was all on an incline.  Why doesn’t it read like that?!

Then, speed.  I’m relying on the app to help push me, when I slow down.  But I keep noticing that I don’t FEEL difference in my pace as it is so often called out.  MAYBE I’m so physically non-discerning that I can’t tell the difference between running a 15 min/mile pace and an 18 min/mile.  MAYBE.  But those random times when it says I’m running a 10 or 11 min/mile, or a 23 min/mile – I’m just saying – that is a REALLY wide margin. 

When I first used the app, I assumed I just have zero body consciousness, when it comes to pacing my run.  But the more these weird, wild times get called out, the harder I find it to trust the pace the phone is calling out to me.  Some of it just doesn’t feel rooted in reality. 

So, all of you out there:  have you tested this app?  Do you find it to be accurate?  Either way, I’ll definitely keep training, and probably still use the app.  But I am very curious about other users’ experiences with this technology. 


  1. of course I have NOT used the app, but I was thinking something similar about you and your running and me and my art-making. sometimes I think there is a standard to hold myself TO or against in deciding if I am really making art [like the 15min/mile] or just exploring and seeing what happens [more the 18 or 23min/mile]
    I think we are prone to comparison and judgments of good, better, best, NOT so good, yuck, or ick... what I'm thinking is just run and just make art and when you have ways of comparing or discovery, let that in but don't let it BEcome the judge and jury. hope that makes some sense. just my thoughts fresh out of my birdbrain!!

  2. Karen - I use a Garmin forerunner. I got mine on e-bay - here's a link to one (I paid almost $200 for mine a couple years ago - they've gone down a lot since it's an older version)

    I like it a LOT. I'm not sure what it does as far as showing elevation, but the accuracy on speed and distance is great. I've been really happy with it. I know (think) you can program it to beep at mile markers. I've been thrilled with it - I didn't like running/walking/shuffling ;-) outside without it. Just a thought. I have a Map My Run app on my phone I think I am going to try out tomorrow just for fun since you've written about it - I want to see if my app will call out to me my time at the miles and such. Anyway - I LOVE my garmin and can't imagine running (shuffling) outside without it! Just thought I'd share! :-) You continue to inspire me!!