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Statistically speaking...

by Susie Chan
Friday 9th December 2016
Tags  Strava   |   Susie Chan
 
 
I am a sucker for the stats.
 
Post-run my watch gets uploaded before I even think about having a shower.
 
Now I know it’s not for all (Gary I’m looking at you my lovely) but for some of us the gadgets, apps, maps and heart rate monitors are a crucial part of the training.
 
For me, it’s less about them being used in an intelligent way as a training tool (I’m too lazy for that) but a way of connecting with my friends about running, comparing how I’m doing, looking at routes, keeping a log, and, yes, sometimes being a bit of a slave to the pace if I have decided to try my best.
 
When I first started running it was logged on a private Garmin account. Everyone told me to join Strava. For me, at the time, I didn’t want to be that exposed. I didn’t want people to see if I was running a slow 3 miles rather than smashing out a 10k at a pacey clip. I thought people would judge me.
 
Then one day curiosity got the better of me and I set up a private Strava account and started running with it. It took all of one week for me to go head-first into all of the things Strava has to offer - the routes, the segments, the unashamed run chat (which, let’s face it, you can’t really do on Facebook. I went from being unsure, to being hooked very, very quickly. I'm currently trying to run a different route to work on every run commute. It's adds variety and a bit of fun to my training. 
 
You can upload photos, join races, take on challenges, keep a map of everywhere you have run, and the thing which really is brilliant, is the support you get. No one judges you if you go out for a nice slow run.
 
Except, hang on, what’s this? Garmin Connect, the segue between my Garmin & Strava, is judging me. 
 
I joined my mate Jane for a conversational run. A lot of my socialising ends up like this as I’m too knackered to go out for a drink most nights. We met, chatted, ran around a bit and then went home. When I uploaded my Garmin watch I got a message from Garmin.
 
“This Friday is looking a little off” it told me.

Susie Strava

I was offended by a piece of technology. How DARE it tell me that I’m not running as well, because I’m not banging out a fast pace or not doing as many miles. Bloody cheek. I tweeted the message, for several people to join in telling me their sports watch (and other judgemental sports watches are available) had taken a similar dim view when they had not moved as much, rested post marathon, or simply decided to put their feet up.
 
It’s a fine line between motivation and nagging. A fine line between trying to gee someone along and denting a tired confidence, or downright annoying them.  Imagine if you were post-injury, or just trying your best on the day, then imagine how demotivating it must be to get a message like that?!
 
Garmin Connect, pull your socks up.

UK averages

Thank goodness for Strava. It’s all positivity. It does not judge, merely celebrates activity. Trophies, challenges, and kind slaps on the back from your mates for just getting your trainers on are what it’s all about. No guilt trips or nagging. 

fastest UK

This year the stats from Strava are incredible. Globally, runners uploaded 86.7 million runs to Strava, with 16.9 million from UK accounts. In the UK alone 60,264 completed marathons were logged. Elevation gain for UK Strava runners reached the dizzying heights of 6.1 billion metres in total. Rather pleasingly the UK is the fasted country globally, male and female.

longest UK

That’s a lot of running you lot.
 
Kudos all round.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

About The Author

Susie Chan

Susie Chan is an endurance runner, who runs all sorts of races from 1 mile to 100 miles and beyond. Her favourite races are multistage ultras. Find her on Twitter @susie__chan Instagram @susie_chan_ or read about her races on her blog www.susie-chan.com
 
 
 
 
 

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