Ditch the Distance – Go for Time

If you are training for a distance event, or just training in general, it is important that you work out properly and are prepared for any set of circumstances that come your way. So many things can affect your performance. The weather can be unpredictable, your body can respond differently; so many variables come into play on any given day, especially set race
days!

Prepare for anything and make your training Mother Nature-proof by training with duration and intensity instead of distance.

A recent blog post by noted endurance training expert Joe Friel argues that one of the more common endurance training mistakes is focusing on distance instead of duration. While most people use distance when training because that is the measurement races use (it’s called a “5k”, not a “30 Minute-er”), the best way to combat variability is training using duration. Friel went on to explain further:

“With rare exceptions, the workouts I suggest athletes do are based on duration, not distance. The reason is that the intensity of a workout is specific to its length in time, but not necessarily to its distance. For example, if there are two runners in a 10-km race and one finishes in 30 minutes while the other, also working as hard as he can, finishes in 60 minutes, their intensities were not the same. The 30-minute finisher was working at a much higher intensity as a percentage of VO2max. If they were to both run as hard as they could for 30 minutes they would likely use almost exactly the same intensity; one would simply cover more ground than the other”

Therefore, if there are adverse conditions on race day, you can use your intensity training to alter how hard you push it in order to make sure you complete the race. Friel continues:

“The bottom line here is that intensity is inversely related to time. This means that as one increases, the other decreases. As the time of a race or workout gets longer, the intensity at which you are working is reduced. It’s obvious. You can’t run a marathon at your 5-km pace. You run slower in the marathon because you have to run for a longer time. A 30-minute 10-km racer and a 60-minute 10-km racer are, essentially, not doing the same race, and they shouldn’t train the same way either. In the same way, if the bike race will take longer due to wind then you must race at a lower power.”

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Fitdigits on iOS has all of the tools you need to both create and track duration based workouts with a focus on intensity. Fitdigits Custom Workout Routines allows you to not only create workouts specialized to you, but also gives you in workout feedback if your intensity (i.e. Heart Rate) is too high or low.

Create a Structured Workout Based on Duration:
  1. On the Home page, choose the icon of the workout you wish to create the workout for (most likely Running)
  2. Tap Workout -> Workout Routines
  3. Scroll to the bottom of the page and tap New Time/Distance Routine
  4. Add a Name, Time and Zone. Longer workouts should be in lower zones, while shorter workouts should have a higher heart rate

 

You now are ready to start training! It is up to you whether you wish to add Auto End Routine and Auto Recovery to your workout.

–Read Joe Friel’s blog post Train for Duration or Distance?

Come race day, make sure you are prepared to monitor your race and make it to the end injury free. Use Fitdigits Fitness Assessments to set custom Heart Rate Zones, VO2 Max, and Lactate Threshold.

 

 

Fitdigits Personal Records, Achievement and Activity Summary Emails

With the Pro Plus membership, you get Summary and Achievement emails and notifications! What’s an accomplishment without notoriety? As if the crazy antics of Dancing Andy were not enough, now you’ll have emails to offer you the recognition you deserve or the encouragement you need to get moving!

Achievement Emails

Achievement emails are triggered with new Personal Records (PRs). You must have at least 3 workouts in any workout type to begin getting Personal Records. Your PRs can be found at my.fitdigits.com > Activities > My Best, or in the apps under Menu > Activities > My Best. Achievements will include longest duration and distance, highest calorie burn, highest cal/min burn, and more. Check out this achievement below for heart rate recovery for a Bike workout.

Celebrate your bests of all kinds!

Summary Emails

Summary emails will contain either your weekly or monthly workout stats (see below). If you are linked to Fitbit, Apple Health or other daily activity provider, your steps information will also display here.

See your activity summaries weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly

Set and Crush Goals with Fitdigits

Set different goalsSet Goals for Fitdigits AppsFitdigits now offers the ability to create health and fitness goals over a variety of metrics.  Whether you want to lose 25 pounds in the course of a year or be able to walk 1,000 extra steps each week, Fitdigits has got you covered.

To create a goal, tap Menu > Goals from within the app, or go to my.fitdigits.com and select Goals from the main navigation.

You can set weekly, monthly or annual goals based on distance, duration, steps, calorie burn, or weight.

Distance Goal

To set a distance goal based on a workout type, select the Distance option on the set goal menu. Enter in the number of miles (or KM if you are set in Metric units) you would like to travel over the given time frame. Next, select the workout type with which you would like to track distance and the source you would like to use. Click/tap Create.

Duration Goal

To set up a Duration goal, select the Duration option on the set goal menu. Enter in the total time in minutes that you want to workout. Next, select the workout type you would like to apply for tracking duration. If you want to set a goal for all activity types, select Any Activity. Select the source you would like to use for the goal, and click/tap Create.

Set a steps goalSteps Goal

To set a Steps based goal, select Steps from the set goal menu. Enter in the number of steps you would like to complete in the given period. Next, select “measure with” options. If you are linked with Fitbit or other daily activity provider like Apple Health or Google Fit, you should be able to track this goal with that device.

Weight Goal

To set a Weight based goal, select Weight on the set goal menu. Enter in your current weight (lbs in U.S. and kg in Metric units) and the weight you would like to reach. You can then opt to lose a number of pounds in the given period based on goal time frame. For instance, if you want to lose 20 pounds, you can create a monthly goal to lose 5 pounds. Your goal is set once you click/tap Create!

Calorie Goal

To set a Calorie based goal based on a workout type, select Caloric Burn on the set goal menu. Enter in the amount of calories you would like to burn in the given time period; for instance, if this is a monthly goal, enter in the amount of calories you would want to burn for the month. Next, select the workout type for which you would like to see calories apply. Click/tap Create to begin!
Steps Goal Detail

Seeing Your Progress & Results

You can see your goal progression on either the online portal or your app. You can see the current time period progress as well as a historical view showing how you did in past weeks/months/years.

Setting a Favorite Goal

To set a single selected goal as your “Favorite” goal, which will then show up on the top of the main goals listing and in banners and different display areas throughout, on the desktop web, tap into the specific goal then tap the star icon (see below).

 

 

Deleting / Removing a Goal

To delete a goal from your goals section, tap into the goal details and at the bottom tap “Remove”.

Record a Treadmill or Elliptical Workout With Fitdigits

Sometimes, the weather does not cooperate and you cannot workout outdoors, or maybe you just prefer the gym. If that is the case, use Fitdigits to track your treadmill or elliptical workouts. Even if you do not have a Footpod, you can still record your distance.

First, go to Settings -> My Sensors. Next, choose either a run workout or an Other Workout labeled either Treadmill or Elliptical. Record your workout, and when you are finished, go to the notes page. Tap the MORE button at the bottom, where you can add your distance, modify calories, or even edit times.

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You can also log on to my.fitdigits.com and manually enter in the distance you ran on the treadmill, which you can view on the notes page. After you do so, next time you sync the iPhone app, your distance and pace will show up in the app.