run, rest, eat, bitch, buy things, cross-train, blog, repeat.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

I Like to Watch

When I first started running, I ran with that god awful Nike ipod Adapter that was "supposed" to keep track of your mileage and pace. Mine was NEVER accurate, but that didn't stop Lance Armstrong or Paula Radcliffe from congratulating me at certain milestones. It didn't take me long to realize that a watch would be a better option. So, for Christmas one year I received a fancy purple Timex Ironman Watch.

 Normally, I hate purple. But, I love it on this watch.
It makes me feel dainty and feminine even when I'm sweating
like a beast and have yesterdays mascara streaming down my face.

I LOVED this watch. Finally I could keep track of my splits during a race or workout. It saw me through some pretty awesome PRs. My first real half marathon PR of 1:49 and my marathon PR of 4:12 (uhhhh. that's still my marathon PR. Crap). It was great.

But, I was still having to manually map out my runs and figure out the distance after a run. I'd finish a run in the morning thinking it was 8 miles and get to work and map it and find out that it was only 7.2. Arg! Frustration! So, for my 30th birthday I bought myself a Garmin Forerunner 305. It was big and clunky and I thought it was going to make me a better runner.

For the record, I also bought P90X for my birthday that year.
Hahahahhahah. At least I got my money's worth out of one of those purchases.

I loved it. I could hook it up to my computer and all my splits would be uploaded into my Running Ahead log. The only thing that I didn't love was the realization that there's no more "fudging" it. All my splits were laid out in black and white. Sure, it felt like I had ran 10 miles, but uhhhh... Garmin says I only ran 8.5. Dammit!

Nevertheless, I ran with it all the time. My Ironman watch got put into my "running drawer" and I never really thought about it. The Garmin could do everything that the Ironman could do. (Well, except tell time. It took me FOREVER to figure out how to find the actual time on the damn thing. Ohhhh the irony).

And then last year I decided that I wanted to wear my Ironman watch when I went to Scotland and Ireland. And that's when I discovered that after a year of neglect in my running drawer, the damn thing's battery had died. I bought a new battery, but was never able to get the old battery out. So, back into the drawer it went.

When I started training for the half marathon and started doing intervals and such, I thought that the Ironman might actually be easier to use. But again, it was DEAD and now in pieces. But a couple of weeks ago, I showed it to KoB and he got the old battery out and then of course I couldn't find the battery that I had bought, so I had to buy another one. But he got it all fixed up and working and back together in one piece. 

And I've been wearing it a lot more since then. And you know what... besides the obvious advantage of it weighing about 7 pounds less than the Garmin, it's really nice. If I know the distances that I'm going to run and don't give a shit what my split times are, I'll wear it instead of my Garmin. It has also occurred to me that in all the races I've worn with the Garmin, I've only PRed in one of them (a 10k earlier this year).

So, all this useless blog filler/drivel to say... fancy/expensive gear doesn't make me a better runner. Sure, it might make things more convenient (did I mention that it's so easy to log runs into Running Ahead with a Garmin??), but running is the only thing that really matters. Spending $150 on a wrist computer isn't going to make any damn difference in my running performance. Unfortunately.

Warning: I might start wearing both watches occasionally. Is that weird?


Don Mouledoux said...

I wear 2 watches when I do speedwork. One tracks my total distance ran. The other one tracks my splits when doing 200's or 400's on the track.

Carina said...

I wore my equivalent to your Ironman watch AND my garmin during Boston last year because I was so paranoid. As I'm traveling for my fall marathon overseas and don't want to worry about adapters killing my garmin, you may have given me a new plan, I could just take my old watch. Hmm...