Best Training Tools in here!

#1
Hi guys. I left the Army last year and I'm on a mission to be fitter than I ever was when I was in (believe me, that's a pretty low target), and while i always hated running, that's changing as I'm training for a bonkers event in Ireland, The Warrior's Run.

On the heart rate monitor thread I mentioned that a great HRM was the Garmin 305 so I'm basically repeating what I said there, sharing tools for what really helps me to train and maybe hoping that if you have any similar tools you could stick them in here.

Here's what I said on the HRM thread:
ChristopherRobin said:
The absolutely best HRM is the Garmin 305

This thing is brilliant. It's a HRM with an integrated GPS so you don't have to guess how far you've run. If you then download SportTracks (because the bundled software is crap) it will download a google map and trace you running route out for you. If it's a regular route you run (I'm training for a mixed road/mountain 15km) then you can set it up to race against your best last time. Where this is clever is that your virtual competitor (i.e. you) slows down where you slowed down and so you really are racing an exact recording of yourself. In this mode it tells you how far you are ahead or behind and the screen turns black if you're behind and white if you're ahead for a quick glance.

Now you may be tempted to go for the garmin 405 which looks a bit more like a normal watch but my advice is don't. It uses an ipod style wheel around the face to navigate menus and is too fiddly when you're running. The 305 has robust chunky buttons and a good screen which can be set up to display whatever parameters you want, e.g. time, time of day, distance, HR zone, elevation, calories burnt etc with up to 4 of these fields on a single screen and 3 screens that you can flick thru on the run. If you get lost you can go into Nav mode and it will give you steers back to base. both it and the 405 have a 3 hour battery life so you won't want to use it all the time as a watch like you do with the Polars.

Both I and Mrs Robin have one and it really is the balls. SportTracks allows you to track your progress over time as well as track your weight, body fat, calories etc. and its free. You can then look at the elevation profile you've just run. It also works on a bike although I've not used it that way yet.

I find it a great tool for training because I can see my progress over weeks. I also use www.Nutracheck.co.uk to track the calories that I'm shoving down my grid - and it's not a pretty sight after all the guinness yesterday! But here you can put exercise calories burned vs calorie intake, track it over weeks and control your calorie intake
Anyone else got any great tools that they use to keep them on the straight and narra' or to help them train better?
 
#3
A decent pair of trainers. Not expensive nessecarily, but a decent pair that are zero'd to you through use. Without them you'll get nowhere! My mp3 player is the other thing that I really struggle without, I get very very very bored running, so it's good to have tunes on! Other than that, comfy socks shorts and a top and away I go!
 
#4
dhgrainger1 said:
A decent pair of trainers.
Too true. I was beginning to get shin splints in my right leg which I'd never had before so I nipped into Up and Running who do gait analysis and I could see that I was pronating when running so I was able to get a pair of trainers to offset this and my legs are back to normal.

MP3 player essential, natch.
 
#9
yes Flash, I am now a civvy, and it's great (glad it's all over etc).

Because I'm still flying as opposed to what I would be doing if I'd stayed in (making tea for you probably)

i miss the old times, but if I'd stayed in, and been posted to the MOD, I'd still be missing the old times!

Good to see you're still cutting about!
 
#10
That warriors run looks like fun.

15k in sub 2 hours 30 minutes.

End of august is quite aways away. I might enter that just to see how I do (ie die trying to complete it). I need an event to aim to.
 
#11
I did the full route in 1 hr 27 this morning (9.1 miles). If you're going to come do it then pm me. Oh and by the way, it is traditional to get completely shiters in the bar afterward.
 
#12
That takes the cake. You get the opportunity to practise the actual route.

Isn't it traditional to get completely ratted after any atheltic endeavour ;).

Now I've seen it I've sent out feelers to some mates to see if they would want to try it with me. Does it get fully booked?
I see not that many people do it, so I was thinking not booking until July time.
 
#13
this is the 25th anniversary, so they're expecting over 500 people. Registration is open now. There's never been any upper limit before, and i guess there won't be this time.

Oh and it's not the best place to be doing a race kitted out in boots, combats, reggie t-shirt and beret for charity, just in case you were thinking along those lines!!!