Here's an article, written by Texas measurer, Dr. Maurice Johnson that appeared in the San Marcos Record newspaper.
You can read the complete article by going to this link.
I included the text from the article below.
Enjoy! -- Justin
San Marcos Record, San Marcos, TX
May 1, 2011
Running with Moe for 5/1
By Moe Johnson
Special to the Record
San Marcos - Runners and walkers often keep log books on a daily workout and information about a run to either use it as a motivation or to look back on each month and sometimes as far back as a year.
I still look back at some of my log books and it is amazing how by reading about a run from past years, the details and recollection of the run come back to you.
Randy Stevens, sports editor of the Daily Record, put me on to an online system of a log book recently and I thought it would be fun to check it out since I am on a computer almost every day.
The location is called MapMyFitness.com and is located in Austin. The site lets you join for free and gives you several perks on recording your workout, but has several other options that range in cost from about $29-$99 a year, depending on much you want to get involved. The more you sign up for the more options are available to you.
You can record your route (the map my fitness thing). Put down your time, distance, type of workout (run/jog, bike, gym workout, walk, etc.) and include your height and weight and the system will tell you how many calories you burned for the workout.
You can save the workout for future reference and keep a record of training that you would do with a log book.
The system lets you use the GPS on your cell phone to map your run. Some systems let you record your heart rate and even the elevation from the run.
Some really amazing options are available for a fitness person interested in tracking their workouts.
The other options are similar to Facebook in that you can connect with friends and compare workouts and see what new routes they have put down that you might want to try. It is very easy to use as I can attest to that with my limited abilities on most of this modern day technology.
I still use my cell phone for calling people and am learning to text now that my phone has a keyboard on it.
I signed up for the bronze (least-expensive option) to try it out and you can upgrade later if you find you need more items, but there is a free option to try if you want to use it.
The free option gives you numerous items and lets you record workouts and routes that you use. For walkers, bike riders and runners it is worth the time to check it out.
This past week I have had a couple of requests to know if Moe’s Better Half Marathon we have here in San Marcos is a certified course.
The thing with having a course certified is that runners know that the distance is accurate and not measured from a car’s speedometer or a bike odometer or measuring wheel. Some of these methods give you a close approximation of the distance but are not necessarily accurate.
Some distances measured with a car’s speedometer can be a quarter of a mile short in a 5K course. To certify a course a person trained in measuring courses is needed and paper work and maps drawn and sent to the national certification person.
What I forgot that with having a course certified is that it can be used for other race registrations. I had several runners ask for the certification number so that they could use it to qualify for the New York Marathon and even Pike’s Peak climb.
Some of the races require a specified time on a certified course for entry and since our half marathon is certified it can be used as a qualifying run.
There are some benefits to having that race course certified other than letting runners know that the distance is accurate.
I have taught a course for people interested in learning to measure courses so that they can also do this. My course is free but a person measuring a route can charge a fee for this service and make a little money on the side.
The initial investment includes buying a Jones counter to attach to a bicycle, a 100 foot steel tape, a thermometer and then some paint, nails and tin tops and you are ready to go.
Dr. Maurice Johnson is a professor at Texas State University in the Department of Health and Exercise Science. His column appears every Sunday in the Daily Record.
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