I’ve written about discrepancies between running apps on iPhone before, but on today’s post, I’m comparing my GPS Watch vs. Running App on iPhone
When I first started running again about 3 years ago, I started running with the Nike+ Run Club to collect stats. Then, last Christmas I received a Garmin Vivoactive GPS smart watch, so I can now run hands free, as well as collect stats for swimming and biking.
I thought it would be fun to do a little test to compare the two different forms of technology; how are they different or the same? I took both my iPhone with the Nike+ Run Club App and my Garmin Vivoactive watch out on my 5 km run today to test out GPS Watch vs. Running App to see how they compare.
GPS Watch vs. Running App
Since the Nike+Run Club app has a count down, I started the app first, then when it reached 1, I started my GPS watch to go. There was about a 1 second difference from the start. Here are the results of my 5 km run from both app and watch.
|Parameter||Nike+ Run Club||Garmin Vivoactive GPS watch|
|Elevation Gain (m)||22||17|
|Splits (min:sec)||Kilometer 1: 6:44
Kilometer 2: 6:35
Kilometer 3: 6:32
Kilometer 4: 6:38
Kilometer 5: 6:16
|Kilometer 1: 6:41
Kilometer 2: 6:35
Kilometer 3: 6:41
Kilometer 4: 6:53
Kilometer 5: 6:17
What did I think of my GPS Watch vs. Running App test?
It’s interesting to see the varying results between the GPS watch and the running app (although not significant) on a 5 km run. Overall, I see a 20 m difference in the distance, 10 second variation in the duration, 4 seconds difference in the average pace, a deviation of 7 calories and a 5 m fluctuation in the elevation gain.
I can’t attest as to which one is more accurate since my course isn’t measured. I do have to note that the Nike+ Run Club app does pause itself if you stop, and I did once, and my watch doesn’t automatically pause itself. This could account for some of the differences in the duration, pace and splits.
Overall, if you are using either a GPS watch or a running app such as the Nike+ Run Club app with a smart phone, I think you’ll have a good enough data to analyze your run. If you are using a consistent tracking method for tracking your stats and comparing your progress, it really doesn’t matter which one you use.
So, my advice is: if you are starting out, and you have a smart phone, then there is no need to invest in a fancy GPS watch since the stats you collect with your running app on your smart phone will be good enough to track your progress. You’ll have the added bonus of having music available on your phone.
The advantage of a GPS watch is that you can run hands free without the bulkiness of an arm band. Hopefully, your GPS watch can also record stats from other sports such as biking or swimming as well. The downside, not all GPS watches have a built-in music player. The Garmin Vivoactive does not and I’ve had to get used to running without music again.
It would be interesting to do this same test on longer runs such as a 10 km, and a half marathon to see if the differences increase significantly with long distances.
#MotivateMe Monday Link Up
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I’ll have to admit that last week, I came down with a cold and a cough so I did not participate in any workouts. I really needed the rest. I finally felt well on Sunday for a 5 km run. I’m going to be re-doing the workouts I missed last week. Here is my Nike Training Club plan for the week:
Monday: Recovery Day
Tuesday: Endurance: The Perfect 10 – 45 min
Wednesday: Recovery Day
Thursday: Endurance: Lean Fit Benchmar – 6 min
Friday: Recovery Day
Saturday: Recovery Day
Sunday: 30 min endurance Run – Fast Pace
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