Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Garmin & Advance Workouts

Well put simply. I'm in love. Oh the levels of data analysis and plots and charts and oh yeah...bring it on Garmin.

I mainly wanted the Garmin 205 because when I looked ahead to my marathon training program I have all kinds of workouts like: Run 7 miles with 10x100m sprints, or 10 miles with 4x800m @ some pace. I don't know how people lived before watches like this.

So today's was actually like that first example: 7 miles with 10x100m in there (a 7 mile fartlek you might say). I set up an advanced workout in Training Center that looked something like this:

  1. Run 2 Miles
  2. Repeat the following 10 times
    1. Run 0.07 Miles (100m=0.0625 miles and I just rounded up)
    2. Run 0.33 Miles (I like things to be even)
  3. Run 1 Mile
So this would give us a 2 mile warm up. 4 Miles of fartleking and 1 mile of cool down.

In the training center you can also drag the said workout to whatever date you want to do it on, then when you get ready to go you just go to Training>Workouts>Advanced>Today and hit 'Do Workout'. Then hit start and you are off to the races. The main screen I looked at counted down whichever leg I was in. So for stage 1)Run 2 Miles it would say things like "Run for : 1.8 miles....Run for 1.2 Miles and so on until it got close to ending. And that's when things got really cool.

At about 50 ft to go in the stage the watch starts beeping like a countdown, then it makes another little, "dadadada" noise and it's time to move onto the next leg. Namely here it was the speedy 0.07mi fartlek. I also named these in the Workout so it would flash 'Fartlek' when it was time to do this leg. Then again same thing, you keep going until it gets close to the next leg (here I called it Recovery) and the thing goes beep beep beep...dadadada and flashes 'Recovery' (You can obviously name the stages whatever you want.

So this is very cool. Then we just kept going, fartleking when the watch told us to and back to a normal pace when it told us to. This is going to be a great tool for these runs. I told Jason that it's also really great becasue sometimes on the speedwork you get to the middle and you don't want to go anymore. This is great because it's just going to keep beeping at you and counting down, so it makes it easier to keep going.

The run itself went pretty well considering it was 90 DEGREES outside when we left. We are working 4pm-midnight this week and so we have to go around 11am so it was a bit annoying. On three of the 'Recovery' stages we had to stop for water and walk a bit because it was just so ridiculously hot out.

So you think that's as cool as it gets? Well you would be wrong! When I got home I then uploaded the workout back to the training center to see how we did. I highlighted the data using photoshop (leave me alone I know I am a big nerd...click to enlarge if you can't see it), so the blue lines show the warm up and cool down. The pink shows the sprinting part (nice to see that these were all under 8 minute miles, some of them were a bit slower but it was really hot out!). Then in yellow/red you can see the recovery stages. The red lines show where we had to walk...obvious by the time. What's also great to see is that the yellow lines we are mostly within 9-9:30 miles. This is probably a bit slower than we would like to go for runs like this, but I don't know what else to do with the heat. I think it's common to slow down about 30 seconds per mile to take that into account, but I don't know....any ideas out there?

Oh and the best part is when you finish it plays a little tune and stops the timer for you. So freakin' cute. The total distance today was 7 miles, averaging a 9:25 pace. I think this is really good considering it was the first time we had ever done a workout like this and the elements were less that cooperative.


Bob said...

You have inspired me yet again, I need to do this now. Right now however all work and no Run makes Bob a bad runner. That would be a preview of my next post. Missing one day just gets me so bummed right now.
Great workout you guys! Cool stuff and you are not a nerd, technically you are a techie geek, takes one to know one. :)

John said...

Nice going. The only problem is the Forerunner 205/305 offers too much workout customization features.

I can foresee spending a lot of time just trying to create the ultimate workout that either never gets run or wipes you out trying to finish it.

I think I'll launch Training Center now to play some more :-)

LeahC said...


it's really easy actually and I already have all my workouts in my PDA that I have to run, so it's just a matter of transfering it over and dragging it to the date it's going to be done. it's super fun.


thanks :-) and i totally know the feeling.

Full Metal Lunchbox said...

I have not fully explored all the features of my 205 yet, but you are sure inspiring me to program some good workouts.

Joe said...

Man, that is way too cool!

> I also named these in the Workout
> so it would flash 'Fartlek' when it
> was time to do this leg.

Can you enter 'Fart' for short? Hehe.

LeahC said...

see now those are the mature kind of comments that I love :-)

Lana said...

Awesome stuff!!!!! I don't think my 301 was this cool. But then again, I never took the time to create those workouts and download them to the device. Too late now!

Thanks for all the tips though...when I get the 205/305, I'm gonna make good use of it!!