050: Is Your GPS Watch Holding You Back?Aug 23, 2018
As technology improves, and the amount of information available on your wrist increases, are GPS watches helping or hurting your running? As with most things in life, the answer is, of course, both.
We require every athlete on our cross country team to get at least a stopwatch. Other athletes we train often have gps watches. We both have gps watches. The ease of workouts improves when you strap a watch to your wrist even if the workout is simply run harder for 2 minutes, and then easier for 2 minutes. If you are looking to improve your performance, you are going to need some concrete numbers that a watch can provide. The extra enhancements like heart rate, pacing, and cadence can also be used to see performance improvement.
When using a watch to train in heart rate zones, the watch provides an honest accountability partner. It forces easy to stay easy and lets you know when your heart rate has reached its hard zone. The watch may not know that you only slept two hours last night, but it knows your heart rate is elevated and you need to slow down to make it an easy day.
Unfortunately, the watch can sometimes replace our brain. Rather than running by effort and feeling what easy and medium feel like, runners can get caught up staring at their watch. All runners should be working toward a greater understanding of the feedback between the brain and body, and the watch can allow a runner to bypass that loop. In this episode, we have a lively discussion on how many effort levels should exist.
Finally, the watch can become a limiter. If the workout says to run at these specific speeds, or train in this heart rate zone, runners get nervous to reach farther. Running should provide opportunities for fun and experimentation. The watch, and it’s constant feedback, can lead us into the mindset of magic workouts that lead to automatic results. Every runner is different, brings different backgrounds, and adapts differently to training stimuli. Regular experimentation helps mental training by removing the fear of failing.
Ultimately, I love my watch and will always run with it for safety purposes and the extra information that I can check out after my run. However, it is important to realize that the watch is one of many tools that can enhance your running, but we should never discount our own intuition and learning about our body. We need to use the external feedback that the watch provides, and compare it to the internal feedback that we are gaining with each run about how our body feels. External and internal feedback are crucial to develop into a well-rounded runner, and we need to make sure all of our tools are working correctly to help us achieve that.
Hope you enjoy it!! Let us know if you have any questions that you would like answered on our show!
Thanks for Listening!!
Want some Real Life Runners swag?? Check out our new shirts!
Do you love the show and want to help us to continue to produce great content for you? Please consider becoming a patron to support us and show your love and appreciation! Pledge as little as $1 per month or $1 per episode!
Need a new running and strengthening plan handed to you every month? Check out our all new RLR monthly running plan, which takes out all of the guesswork, giving you a 30 min and 45 min option for your running days, with time-based and effort-based workouts so that you can become a stronger runner, no matter where you are right now on your running journey! It also includes runner-specific strengthening, drills, mobility work, and HIIT workouts to keep you running strong and injury-free.
Come join us for the Key West Half Marathon on January 20, 2019! It is our first Real Life Runners destination race, and we would love to meet you in person! We currently have a discount code for our listeners, so if you are ready to register, use the code REALLIFE when checking out on Active.com for 15% off of your registration! Also, be sure to add yourselves to part of our team, Real Life Runners! Come and join us!
If you have a topic you would like us to talk about, please send us an email at [email protected]
Click here to request to be added to our private Facebook tribe!
Leave an honest review on iTunes. Your ratings and reviews really help and we read each one!
Interested in Custom training plans and Personalized Coaching? Check that out here!
Have you seen our members-only area with a HUGE video library of strengthening, stretching, foam rolling, and mobility exercises, and more!! Check that out here!