Gear

Here are some links to any Gear posts:

Buying new running trainers?
I went a bit crazy on Wiggle…

My new Speedo Elite Coach bag :-)
My ‘Journey and Race’ Nike T-Shirt
New trainers arrived! (Kinvaras)
New Saucony Paramount 3s
Replacement clip for my Veho muvi camera
Rewarded in new trainers
New running gear
Gel Belt…
Using Garmin to update your Nike+ runs….
How many pairs of trainers do YOU have?
Heart rate monitor stopped working?
My Garmin Training Effect Analysis
My new K Swiss Trainers!
Target Weight PRO App Review
How to count lengths?
10% off at Wiggle! : BONUS10
New trainers (again!)
Ghetto outfit for today’s 10 miler
Garmin GPS watches to buy

Here’s a list of some of the gear I use a lot for my exercise:

RUNNING

Garmin Forerunner 405

I’ve had my Garmin for a while now, I got it in December 2009 and haven’t looked back since. In the first 16 months of having it I logged 235 activities, 1,560 miles and 155,000 calories.  It’s a great tool to check progress and compare runs and I’ve used it to track cycles abroad (in San Fransisco and Lanzarote) as well as hill climbs, walks and a flight!

My Garmin comes with a heart rate monitor which is good for checking how you are getting on with your training, and I also use the mile split function a lot to check my pace as I run and after I run.

It’s definitely changed the way I train and helped me to push myself further than I would have done if I didn’t have one.  I wouldn’t run without it now!

Garmin Connect

Garmin Connect is the online software that comes with having a Garmin.  It’s a great database which stores your activities so you can review or link to them.  You can track your weight through the ‘Health’ section and you can compare activities which are similar.  After I’ve logged a run/walk/cycle I always update Facebook with it and can link to it from this blog.  Garmin Connect provides you with a real time player of how the run/cycle went and provides heart rate, speed and elevation graphs.  It’s brilliant!

iPod Nano

Unless I’m running with others, I always run to music and my iPod Nano is another piece of kit I use a lot.   A present from my brother a few years ago, its 4gb and holds plenty of songs. I try to make up playlists which motivate me to run stronger to a beat and have posted a few of these playlists on here.  I used to use it with the nike plus chip a lot (see below)… but now I just transfer my garmin runs onto my nike plus account so I don’t need to bother with the nike plus chip.

Nike Plus chip

I started using the Nike Plus chip in October 2008 as a way to track my runs.  Up to May 2011 I had logged over 1,750 miles using it – I reached the ‘purple level’ in March 2009 having run 1,550 miles.  It’s a great motivator and you can keep in touch with friends running and set up challenges for even more motivation.  I set up the 262 mile challenge through it at the end of 2010 and loads of people joined in through Facebook – that was pretty cool.  Just me, and my two brothers completed it.

The good thing about nike plus is that it provides you with spoken feedback in your ear as you run when you use it with a nano/iphone.  ‘5 minutes completed’, ‘10 minutes completed’, ‘halfway point’ and when you finish Paula Radcliffe or Lance Armstrong might come on to let you know you ran your fastest mile, your longest distance or if you’ve completed a certain amount of miles.  It’s really motivating.

The only negative thing about it is that it’s not too accurate at logging the miles, but I’ve got around that by logging my garmin runs onto the nike plus website.  I still have my nike plus account, however I’ve found that I don’t need to run with my sensor anymore.  A clever man set up a transfer page online which allows you to transfer garmin workouts onto your nike plus account.  Very clever indeed and it means I don’t need to remember my sensor etc when I run now.

Muvi Atom Video camera

This tiny bit of kit is what I take on runs so that I can take snaps and videos of what I see when I’m out on my runs.  The quality (2 mega pixels) isn’t brilliant, but it does me.

TRAINERS

Saucony Paramount 3 Trainers

These trainers are the best running trainers I’ve ever had… so good I bought two pairs quite close together!  They have a flexion plate in them which is meant to ‘improve your heel to toe transition’… ? eh ? … whatever the jargon/sales patter… I like them.  They are very comfortable and supportive and well worth the money I paid.  RRP is £135 but I got them for a price match of £108.  A bit expensive, but I figured I’d pay about £70 for another pair which I didn’t like as much and I’d be training for and doing marathon distances in them so it was worth shelling out.  I got them from Run 4 it at Tiso in Glasgow where the manager is a very nice man.

SWIMMING

Timex Heart Rate Monitor (for swimming with)

I got my Timex Heart Rate Monitor as my first piece of kit for running with in December 2008.  I quickly got used to running and checking what my heart rate was doing and making sure I felt ok as I was running.  It’s water proof so I can use it when I go swimming (the watch and the monitor) and it’s also a good monitor for checking (roughly) how many calories have been burned etc.  It has the ability to record 30 laps which came in handy when I was training and timing my 2500m-3000m swims leading up to the triathalon I did in August 2009.

The heart rate strap has needed replaced once, and the watch battery needed replaced since I’ve had it, but I’ve used it a lot so it’s no wonder.

Speedo Speedsocket goggles

I’ve tried a lot of types of goggles in my time swimming, and although these are one of the most expensive goggles on the market (RRP around £17-£19) I would always recommend them.  They don’t leak, they have a double strap and the lenses come in various colours.  Just now I have a silver pair with clear lenses.

Speedo paddles

Good for pull work in the swimming pool, I’ve got the medium pair I think.

CYCLING

Boardman Team Bike 2008 model

I got this bike through the cycle to work scheme…mainly for training for and completing my triathalon. I managed to buy it in December 2008 when the new models were about to come in store so I got quite a bit of a discount off it. I got a hybrid bike as I wanted one which would do for any other types of cycling apart from racing as I expected I wouldn’t be doing much racing (like I did in the triathalon).

I put a set of Profile tri bars on it so I can get more streamlined on it and added some schwable marathon tyres on it after I got a few punctures one after the other (on Glasgows dodgy roads).

IPHONE APPS

Walkjogrun App

The app for the website www.walkjogrun.co.uk.  I use the website to plot out training runs, then I can log in to my app and check the route at any time.  The website is american based and is similar to map my run which I never tried to use as walkjogrun seemed to do the business for me.

Target Weight App

I record my weight weekly on the Target weight app.  It lets you set targets, shows you your BMI and allows you to see a good graph which shows weight loss to date. In almost a year I’ve lost 10lbs without really trying (sorry)…just through running and exercising.  And the information is at my fingertips in this app.

Tabata HIIT App

Great for using to do circuit workouts.

Cyclestreets App

This app shows the local cycle routes within an area and can plot you a route from A to B.  Sometimes its not the best for picking cycle routes or less busy streets, but you can see the cycle routes so you can amend the route if you want to.  And it’s helped me a few times when I’ve got lost out on my bike as you can find your location then figure out where you went wrong or where you’re meant to be going.

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