Tuesday, January 3, 2012

insight and GPS

Went on a very nice hike along the Yuba River. As always, kept thinking "This would be a great trail to ride on." Except that it was far too short to bother to trailer a horse there. As we were hiking, I kept speeding up and getting too close to the SO, and finally just asked to walk in front. He moved aside, I stepped up the pace a bit. He insightfully mentioned, "You're just like Major, wanting to go." Hmmmm. I never think of myself as a very driven person. But I will say on the hiking trail we have to be moving. No dawdling, look at the view, move on! I'm not a big fan of a slow, quiet walk in the woods. Obviously on foot or horseback! When riding Major I try to sit back and relax, and we can get a nice calm walk much of the time. But I'm sure somehow I feed his "go, go, go" plan. Must ponder on this...

lovely trail, not long enough for horses!

Now, onto the GPS quandary: I like my tried-and-true GPS program, MotionX. I use it on my iPhone, as I can't justify buying a new GPS device when I have a perfectly capable one. I've tried a couple other apps that I just haven't liked. But then Funder posted info about Strava, and I figured to give it a try. So I had a small head-to-head competition. On December 31 I did a short ride, and turned on both GPS apps.

Motion X tracked me at 5.57 miles, 1:23 time, average speed 4, max 11.9

Strava tracked me at 5.7 mph, in 1:15 moving time, average speed 4.5, max 14.6
(If you look a the Performance graph, the ride chart is completely spastic. Major and I were working on walking, then trotting, then walking calmly again on loose rein)

I like the average moving speed aspect of Strava: I'm always deducting the minutes we spend standing around on MotionX. Likewise the average moving speed is then more accurate on Strava. The distance is confounding, do I use the longer Strava one or slightly shorter MotionX? (Doing the math: even if it differed that amount for 50 rides it is only 6.5 miles total, so ignore that). I like the graphs that Strava provides, though MotionX provides them separately within the app. Strava doesn't have any map integration, with MotionX I can download maps for offline use, very handy when out of service area, and an absolute when in unknown territory.

I think I'll keep using them both for awhile. With a fully-charged phone using both apps at once for 1.5 hours I only lost 9% of battery life.

And with this we have reached the end of the geek post!

1 comment:

  1. Ooh, glad you liked Strava! Amazing battery life running both those apps - I used MotionX years ago on the iPhone 3 and it devoured battery like the cookie monster. I could ride for no more than an hour before 80% of my battery was gone. That's why I shelled out for a real GPS, actually (and I got mine for $40 at an REI sale, so I didn't even shell out too much.)

    I need to hike more. I *really* need to take Dixie out to some long hilly trails nearby, ride her down to the bottom, and hike / ride her back to the top and get MY fitness improved. But I sprained my big toe and that sounds like a great excuse to put off hiking ;)