How I Track My Running

There is nothing more exciting for me than to see how I improve and get better at doing something. Since October 8, 2013, I have been using an Excel Spreadsheet to track my mileage every week. I also keep track of the shoes that I am wearing and the surface I am running on. I want to know exactly how many miles I can run before it’s time to buy new shoes. So far, I have run 467 miles in my Asics Gels and 31 miles in my Saucony Progrid shoes. The graph below represents my daily mileage since October 8th, 2013. The peak is on October 27th, 2013, when I ran the Hallowed Half Marathon in Wake Forest, NC.

LineGraphThe spreadsheet is also helpful since it allows me to keep track of my progress towards my goal of running 1,000 miles this year. In my Asics, I’ve run 351 miles on pavement and 96 miles on the treadmill.   I want to know how much I run on each surface to see the effect that the surface has on wearing out my shoes. The pie chart below shows that 79 percent of the miles I ranhave been on pavement and 21 percent of my miles have been on the treadmill. Generally, it is recommended that runners get new shoes after every 400 miles. With almost 450 miles on my Asics Gels, it looks like it’s time for me to buy some new shoes!

PieChartI use a Nike+ Sportswatch GPS to pace myself when I am running outside. I set the watch to the default level, so I can see my pace when I am running and the distance I’ve run. I try to run faster by keeping a fast pace at an interval. For example, usually try to run 0.5 miles at a pace of 6:30 per mile.  After a run, the watch shows how far I ran, my average pace, and the amount of calories I burned. The watch has a history feature allowing me to go back and see all my runs as well as my personal records for the fastest kilometer (3:47), mile (6:20), 5K (21:31), 10K (44:20), and longest run (13.1 miles). The watch also includes an interval and a stopwatch feature, which I don’t use as much.

I also have the Nike+ app on my smartphone. It tells me the same information as the Sportswatch. However, I prefer to wear the Sportswatch since it’s light, more convenient than the smartphone, and it tells me the basic info I need to know. The drawbacks are relatively minor. It usually takes a few minutes for the TomTom GPS locators to kick in. The watch’s memory becomes full after 10-15 runs. After that, I need to upload my runs to my Nike+ on-line account. The account shows maps of all my runs, the elevation, and it specifies the pace that I ran on every point in my run. The picture below shows my typical route in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

mymap

One advantages of running with a Smartphone is listening to music. However, considering that I run through a busy urban environment with cars and plenty of pedestrians, listening to music is not a good idea. There is no doubt that the Smartphone app is a more efficient and sophisticated method of tracking my runs. With a running app on your smartphone, there is no need to take the additional step of uploading information in order to see it.  However, I feel the best way to keep track of my running is to do what feels right and what is most comfortable for me. So far, I feel this strategy has worked out.

Miles From Last Week
Tuesday: 5 miles
Thursday 5 miles
Friday: 4 miles
Saturday 5 miles
Total: 14 miles
Miles Ran in March: 87 (Personal Record)

Ideas for Future Posts
Time for Cross-Training
Running in Parque Central
Time for New Shoes
Running Rhymes
Running in Different Cultures
Best Running Movie Scenes Ever
How Running relates to Other Sports
Let’s Stretch
What do I think about while I’m running?
How I Started Running
Old School vs. New School Runners

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