Anyone use any GPS watches for both the biking and running portions of your training? I use the Timex baseline model of the GPS system, and find that it works very well for getting distances of courses/routes you do in your training.
Rick Karboviak, CSCS
I have been using a Garmin eTrex hand held and love it!!! I really like being able to know my distance without having to measure my route. I am so pleased with it that I am planning on getting the Garmin Forerunner 201 that has pace and lap and can be downloaded into your computer for a training diary.
Another advantage of these devices is that they allow you to do very precise pace-based running workouts. In partnership with Training Peaks I have devised a new system of pace based running workouts called the Pace Zone Index, which you could conceivably use with just a stopwatch and a measured course, but which are really meant to be used with a GPS. In the case of the new Garmin Forerunner 301, you can download the workouts, or even complete 5K and 10K training plans, onto your device, which then guides you through them literally every step of the way. Here's a link for more information: www.trainingpeaks.com/cuttingedge
OK. I did it. I was so excited to see the Garmin Forerunner 301 that bit the bullet and ordered it. The 301 takes the 201 GPS and all of its features and adds heart rate monitor. Should get it next week. I expect it to help my training quite a bit.
I use the Garmin Forerunner 201 and absolutely love it! I use it mostly for running in combination with a formerly purchased heart rate monitor. I also use it hiking, cycling, and a wide variety of other activities.
Thanks for the responses so far. I've been reading on other sites as well for GPS training techniques. I think we're onto something great in the future of training smarter for running, cycling, and even outdoor sports like football, soccer, baseball, etc. The thing I like is that the Timex model measures Max Speed, which can give the FB, baseball, soccer player an idea of what their max speeds are when doing sprints, agility drills, etc. As a strength coach & performance trainer, I've experimented with this system for doing forward sprints, agility sprints, backpedaling drills, etc. This has many more applications than just training for tri's, I think.
Rick Karboviak, CSCS
I don't trust the GPS max speed. My Garmin eTrex showed I had a max speed over 15 mph and usually over 10 mph during a jog that I never sprinted or pushed that hard.
I am considering getting a GPS monitor, however for a college student this is a lot of money to put down. So far I have been impressed with the technology, but I want to find out the pros (and cons) before buying one. If you can give me any advice or references and recommendations on brands that would be great! Thanks.
The monitors by Timex are coming down in price lately. Rumor has it that WalMart sells them for around $100 now. When the price for a pair or 2 of shoes equals that, why not get something that tells you how fast you're moving in the shoes? I'd get the Timex S+D model, 50 lap version, because it tells you the same stuff as the higher priced ones do, just without all the heart rate gadgets and PC datalink stuff.
Rick Karboviak, CSCS
I have the Garmin 201 and love it! There is also a new model with a built in HR monitor. The unit is small and reliable. I either use it on my wrist while running or on my bike. I have had very good luck with it.
I also purchased TopoFusion (topofusion.com) to go along with it. Awesome software! You can download your workouts, and instantly view them on high resolution satellite photos (in certain areas). You can download the demo for free to see what type of data is available in your area. Very easy to use and fun. It is also very handy for scoping out new rides/runs.
The Garmin Forerunner 301 is advertised as being a tool for triathletes, but I don't think the transmitter or receiver are sufficiently waterproof. Bad advertising...
Has anyone had any success using the 301 in the water?? After all, it's not truly "submerged" while swimming, but I'd hate to wreck an otherwise good GPS.
I've been using the Garmin 301 for several months now and I'm very happy with, especially in combination with MotionBased and Keyhole web-services. They biggest drawbacks of the Garmin that I can think of is that it doesn't sample frequently enough (it's also not adjustable) and that I can't use it for swimming. Since recently Garmin sells a device that allows you to quickly move the GPS from bike to wrist and even allows you to fix it to the rear of your head using the straps of your goggles. Have not tried this though and I'm not sure if I trust it before anyone else has used it. Other then that it's a great tool. I had the polar 625x before this and although it's smaller and more practical (you can also use it as a "normal" watch) I did not like that you can only use it on 2 bikes, the running measurement is inaccurate and cumbersome and that it only tracks in 2 dimensions. Sometimes I download the information from the watch after several trainings and I forget where I was running/biking at the time. This is never a problem with the GPS because it tells you the exact position and even shows it on a map. Pretty cool stuff! They should provide a better chest strap, the one that comes with it is a bit uncomfortable.
i just completed a tri and some guy had a GPS monitor but said the trees were blocking the reciption. I think he may had been playing around to much with his new toy as I passed him. but it sounds cool for training were there are no trees and no clouds.
I have been using the Garmin eTrex Vista C for the past month along with the MotionBased service and it has been extremely useful. I decided to post some of my training workouts to the following web page.
The one that is most interesting is that of the Dot Racing.
I have the Garmin Forerunner 301, and think it's one of the coolest gadgets I own! Along with Training Peaks.com and Google's Keyhole software, it is incredibly useful.
As far as the swimming goes, I always take it with me. I put it in a heavy-duty Ziploc, and then stick it in my swim cap. It's always bone-dry when I pull it back out. It takes a little practice pushing the start/stop button, but thankfully it's the largest button.