- Author Edward Craig
- Published April 9, 2014
My Marathon Tech
It’s one of the biggest days in London’s calendar – the Marathon – and it’s this Sunday. Four amateur runners talk through the tech that’s got them through training and which, they hope, will get them over the line in one piece.
Alice Wauchope (above)
Job Works in a post-production house in London
Training Since January
Key tech A small clip-on MP3 player for tunes and a smartphone that handles GPS tracking duties in her pocket.
Key app Nike+ Running. “It tracks your route with GPS and tells you how long you’ve been going and how long it takes you to run a mile. I don’t watch how many miles I do during a run.”
Key tactic “I make up stories about people I see while I’m out running. I listen to music I don’t like, too, so I don’t know the lyrics. If I start singing along I get disturbed from my train of thought – that’s not good.”
Desired tech A fitness-tracking watch: “I’m now beginning to map out how far everything is so I know how far I’ve run.”
Ashleigh Ferris (centre above)
Job Sales executive from Bristol
Training Since September
Key tech A Garmin Forerunner 610. “It finds a satellite signal, you press go and it shows you how many miles you’ve done, how long you’ve been going, and your pace per mile. It’s really big so you can see everything easily.”
Key app RunKeeper (before the Garmin watch). But she turned the voice-prompts off… “It makes you feel slower. You’re waiting for her next count the whole time, and when she’s counting in half-miles, it seems like ages! I used to think she was getting it wrong.”
Key tactic Ashleigh does all her long runs with a friend who is also training for the race. The period from September to December was done flying solo. “Knowing other people who are running definitely helps.”
Desired tech Before she got it, it was the watch. But it’s not perfect: “With Runkeeper, I’d post maps of my route after a long run on Facebook and Instagram and encourage donations. It worked. Every time I posted a long run, I’d get a sponsor.”
Big tech moment “I had trainers specially fitted at Sweatshop. You run on a treadmill and you get a heat sensitive map of your feet and how you run. I ended up with Adidas Supernova Glide 5. My first run in my Supernova shoes I took off a minute-per-mile. I call them my super shoes.”
Scott and Lorraine Mason (with Gracie above)
Ages 28 and 30
Job Police officers from Cheshunt, Hertfordshire
Training Since December
Key tech A smartphone – and energy drinks. “Electrolytes enhance your performance. They definitely help. We never used to run with drinks, but it helps on the long runs. The difference surprised me.”
Key app RunKeeper. Lorraine: “It gives you information about your distance and pace, and plots your route on a map.”
Key tactics Having the right music. They have Ministry of Sound albums specifically created for running and have created a playlist just for Marathon day. It’s seven hours long but they hope not to have to listen to all of it! They’re also taking aim at 10-minute miles (Lorraine confident, Scott uncertain).
Desired tech Lorraine: “Some sort of wearable tech, so there’s no need to worry about carrying the phone or the battery dying. I’m not sure if the smartphone battery will last the whole marathon…”
Charity Children with Cancer UK
Innovation is on the fast track with LG’s Lifeband Touch Activity Tracker. A fitness band that comes in three sizes with an OLED touch-scroll display, phone compatibility, music control, wireless syncing with LG fitness app – and more.