The technology I’ll use to accept the London Marathon

Therefore, we’re currently at time two within the 10 day countdown towards the London Marathon, and I’ve had a couple of individuals asking what sort of technology I’ll be making use of into the race – therefore I’ve assembled helpful tips to what I’ll be making use of.

But exactly what I’ll be running with will likely be useless to 1 individual, or unimportant to another – it’s what makes you’re feeling good. We don’t like running having phone strapped to my arm however people can’t do without it – which’s okay.

For some people, a GPS watch simply is an unnecessary distraction for their pure racing – these people are brilliant at monitoring their very own human anatomy and pace instinctively, and I’m insanely jealous of those. Give me personally a tiny wizard on my arm telling me to run faster or slower, please.

Then when we get to the London Marathon start line, panicking about lacking the right pacing strategy or wondering if going to the lavatory five times has been enough, here’s what will be strapped onto my own body to help me personally get through:

GPS watch

As I said above, there’s no way I’m going into competition with no watch strapped to my wrist. I love them. Actually, i enjoy testing them plenty that my buddy said she as soon as had a fantasy that I was chasing the girl within the London Marathon with 20 strapped every single arm, screaming at the lady to operate faster.

(She called it a nightmare. Simply seems motivational to me).

My favourite at the moment could be the Garmin Forerunner 735XT – I’m a fan of what Garmin does at the moment with sleek design, lots of data to consider as well as the capacity to really customise the display showing what i would like.

That’s important to me personally: being able to see exactly what I want when I need certainly to. The 735XT is costly, and I don’t ever make use of the swimming and biking functions (it’s a real triathlon view), but I prefer it to the running-only Forerunner 630 as it’s maybe not touchscreen.

When I start a competition, i enjoy press a real switch, not have to touch a display. Additionally, that watch additionally once removed a run under a damp sleeve, making me personally without any record of my 19 mile run.

We put it on everyday as well, as it functions completely as being a smartwatch. I get notifications, can control music and decrease telephone calls – plus I’ll nevertheless reach minimum four days’ battery pack life even with a regular run.

It’s also among the best fitness and rest trackers, plus the software is fully-featured too. The Forerunner 735XT actually beast.

But I’ve additionally tested these watches recently if you’re enthusiastic about various other options:

I’ll be operating with all the Apple Watch 2 trapped to my arm – but not for monitoring reasons. It’s a fairly competent product for monitoring your runs, but that’s all it can do as being a GPS view. It willn’t have actually training plans or tips to get stronger, and range of 3rd party apps that may do that continue to be pretty limited.

(Strava is currently a indigenous app on Apple Watch – meaning you are able to run without the need to be connected to a phone – but it’s basic at most useful).

I’ll be using it because it’s got brilliant battery life for smartwatch in a marathon (as you can see from my Chester Marathon report) while still pumping the tunes into my head. 

It’s a lightweight option to a phone in the supply for music, although sadly it doesn’t allow me to store Spotify songs on the website.
There ended up being an app called Spotty that was going to offer this functionality, however some legal issues with Spotify saw it halted. It’s coming, yet not over time for me.

So I’ll be taking out a one-month subscription to Apple musical – it is since fully-featured as Spotify and lets me personally keep offline songs. All we worry about is music getting to my head – this will do.

As for other watches I tried, the Suunto Spartan Sport Wrist HR is a chunky number that’s got a big display screen and decent battery pack life – nonetheless it’s pretty massive and does not provide much customisation. It can have one of the best wrist heartrate monitors I’ve ever tried however.

I’d urge any runner looking for a budget option to try the TomTom Spark 3 – it is a steal today and that can do this much – including playback music through wireless headphones. It’s a small on the simplistic part, nonetheless it’s always usually the one I recommend looking at if you’re hoping to get started in running watches.

We enjoyed my time aided by the Polar M400 – some on chunky part, nevertheless the Polar Flow app is great and contains smart features too. In addition provides some nice fitness tracking abilities for a discounted.

If you’re a new runner, pun intended NewBalance RunIQ watch. It’s a chunky Android Wear smartwatch that’s been made with Strava, but after that function (& most other operating watches now auto-upload towards the service) it is pretty mundane and hella costly.


Regarding music engaging in my brain during the competition, there’s just one option for me personally: Aftershokz Trekz Titanium.

You will find quite a few Zs within the name of those headphones, but they’re special for 2 reasons: they’re race appropriate and they enable you to hear the audience along with your music.

It works through bone tissue conduction, firing the noise throughout your head bone tissue into your ear canals. There’s part of me that just thinks they’re really loud headphones being pushed up against the bones before your ears, nonetheless they get the job done.

I’ll be carrying out a more in-depth piece on bone-conduction technology later on a few weeks, but also for now, simply trust me why these really are a great option for London – even when you’re allowed to make use of other headphones, generally in most events you can’t and there’s no chance i do want to miss any of the environment.

Heartrate monitor

Plenty of concerns I have remain heart rate monitors – simply because the average runner is getting up on benefits of heartrate training, but the majority don’t like the concept of using a band.

We used to be in that club, but since using the plunge I can’t perform a competition or decent run without one connected. They don’t need to be too tight, just snug enough not to move.

I’m not a fan of wrist-based heartbeat monitors, as they can be inaccurate too easily. For a lot of they can work nicely, and they’re a convenient option, but I can’t use them. There’s absolutely nothing worse that feeling like you are dying in a race and also you look right down to obtain a continue reading exactly how hard you are working only to see you’re apparently asleep.

I use the supplied heartrate strap using the Garmin 735XT, mostly as it packs an accelerometer to monitor things such as exactly how high you are bounding, which foot you favour and exactly how quickly you are tapping the bottom.

We don’t need any one of that information, although easily had been leaning too much kept or appropriate it might offer me a great insight on why i may be getting random accidents.

If you’re buying good fundamental heart rate monitor, I’d recommend the Wahoo Tickr. It’ll utilize most smartphones and watches, and fits nicely. You can invest a bit more money and acquire the Tickr X, but that will fundamentally just provide you with the capacity to record workouts without having a phone… the bottom model is okay.

There’s a lot of material occurring in ear-based heartbeat monitors right now too – your skin within the ear is actually thin and is near the bloodstream flowing on mind, so it’s supposed to be hyper accurate.

Unfortunately I’ve got really crap ears, as they’re a lot more like vast expanses of aural wasteland than snug area to slide and earbud into, meaning many heart rate monitors battle to work correctly. However, I’ve found several that work pretty much:

The Jabra Elite Sport buds are only phenomenal. They’re Apple’s wireless AirPods on steroids, offering certainly cordless music, training programs and heartbeat monitoring. But they’re mega-expensive… but worth a appearance if you’re after an all-round recreations option.

Bose’ SoundSport Pulse are really a pair I’ve simply finished evaluation, and while they’re another touch expensive, the sound quality is immense, the fit interestingly strong despite experiencing loose as well as the heartbeat monitor accurate as a result.

If you’d like to make more of a fashion statement, then the Moov HR is just a enjoyable option. Using the ‘thin skin close to the mind’ idea to your Nth degree, here is a headband by having an inbuilt heart-rate monitor.

It will set with running watches (with more just around the corner) but I’ve perhaps not had the best time with all the accuracy since utilizing it – but seems more reliable for running than it will high intensity exercises.

One last thing

I’ve possessed a good question from people of #teamcardio group I’m section of included in the Cardiomyopathy charity operating group on marathon, particularly around whether carrying water and candies may be beneficial… and how to complete it.

I’m not a fan of holding water in races up to half marathon distance since it’s feasible to get in totally hydrated sufficient if you’re running for 90 mins or less.

However, review that and you’ll need to consider benefiting from fluid in you.

In competition I’ll be slurping from bottles along the way, as they’re mega-regular on course, so I would say you don’t must be concerned about holding your own personal beverages during the competition.

However, i take advantage of the Nathan Trail Mix 4 hydration gear for my training as it’s got two neat pockets for water bottles plus handy pouch for energy chews or ties in – and may be a good clear idea for the marathon without the fluid containers.

It’s a bit late become thinking about incorporating in brand new kit this near to the marathon, however, if you are looking for one (and guarantee to try it out several times prior to the big day…) that’s a great option.

Sorry the brag

I wanted to place this in today’s diary entry but felt bad placing it excessive: I WAS THE VERY FIRST FINISHER IN PARKRUN TODAY! 

(For those that have no idea, Parkrun is a free 5k competition every Saturday at hundreds of areas around the world – and I love it).

It was a huge accomplishment for me personally since it was a strong battle with an accomplished runner for the whole run across an undulating program – and I actually had a need to dig in by the end, my heart rate pumping at a close-to-max 182 beats each minute up the final hill.

It’s a big deal this near to the battle because it shows working out is coming together also it was tough today – and I’m going to need that psychological fortitude to possess any chance in competition a few weeks. 

I really couldn’t find a decent picture of me personally today. Enjoy particularly this one from ages ago.

Being strong mentally is something I’ve struggled with hard previously, being able to silence the internal voice that informs me I’m not adequate enough, unable to run only at that speed, maybe not going to be capable finish…. So to concern the dark vocals today and keep maintaining work feels huge.

I Like this estimate from cyclist Greg LeMond whenever describing the improvements training brings: “It doesn’t get any easier, you simply have faster.” So in spite of how fast you’re thinking about operating the London Marathon, or other competition, work may be the big leveller.

I simply desire to get across that line and know We forced towards the restriction – there’s nothing more I am able to do from then on.

If you have any technology questions in front of the big day – or perhaps about running as a whole – please feel free getting in contact using the links below, and/or email within my author bio! It’d be great to answer some direct questions from runners on the next few days.