Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Tempo Time

No wacky GPS signals this morning with GPS accuracy in the 20-30 foot range during my entire run.

Even though the skies were a bit more overcast than yesterday, I guess atmospheric conditions were just more conducive for using the Garmin Forerunner 205.

The plan today was to run a 4 mile tempo in which I slowly increased the effort throughout the run. I wanted to run the flattest route possible in my area and avoid as many uphills and downhills as possible.

I decided I would try a loop that goes through a couple of quiet neighborhoods with limited traffic (see photo generated from SportTracks and Google Earth). The loop was less than 2 miles and has a few gentle inclines and subtle downhill portions.

MotionBased's MB Gravity Elevation Correction feature calculated the elevation range between 472 to 524 feet with most of the run in the 480-490 foot elevation range (see above chart pulled from MotionBased).

After an easy 2.5 mile warmup, the tempo itself was pretty steady as I ended up running the beginning a little faster than planned, because I was fiddling around with buttons on the 205. Since I didn't know the distances around the loop I wanted to hear a audible signal every .5 miles. However I messed up and I heard the signal every .5 miles from the point I set up the feature and not from the start of the run. Oh well.

The loop measured 1.87 miles on the 205 and I did 2 loops and change for 4.04 miles. Both SportTracks and MotionBased came up with the same distances for each loop as well as the overall run, and more details can be found here.

Since I didn't take any splits other than at the end of each loop, I was interested in seeing my miles splits for the run as calculated by SportTracks and MotionBased using the GPS waypoint data.

Interestingly, while both registered the same overall time (25:13), SportTracks had my splits at 6:29, 6:19, 6:06, 6:05 (and 14 for the last .04 miles), while MotionBased via its Analyzer feature had me at 6:22, 6:19, 6:02, 6:06 (and 18 for the last .04 miles). If you add it up the MB Analyzer somehow dropped 4 seconds from my time. Strange.

Just for kicks, here is some more random data pulled from MotionBased on the time/percent of the tempo run that was ascending, descending and flat:

Time Data Total % of Total
Total Time 0:25:13 100.0
Moving Time 0:25:13 100.0
Ascent 0:03:05 12.2
Descent 0:03:46 14.9
Flat 0:18:22 72.8

Overall, a decent effort. We'll see how I feel tomorrow on my recovery run and then Thursday when I hit the track for some 300m repeats....

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