Tuesday, August 10, 2004

New Toy: Polar s725

I picked up a Polar s725 to replace my current bike computer and heart rate monitor. I've only been using it for a few days, but am quite happy so far. Hopefully I'll get off my ass and write a full review after I get some more time with it.

The tech/computer geek in me loves one thing about it-- graphs! Yep, you can download the data from the monitor and mess around with it using the provided software.

Today seemed like a perfect opportunity to play with graphs. After work, I rode from downtown Seattle to Seward Park, raced in a criterium and then rode 20 miles home. Below is the graph from the entire ride:

Can you guess which part of the graph was the race? Here's a zoom of that region:

In a prior post I talked about how racing places different stresses on you. These graphs clearly illustrate the point. Obviously my heartrate is quite a bit higher, as is speed, but take a close look at cadence (the green line). Notice that on every lap (the laps are just a bit obvious), the green line is dotted for a bit. These are periods when I wasn't pedalling. At that time my speed doesn't drop off too much and my heart rate goes down. The wonders of pack riding.


At 10:48 AM, Blogger Bill said...

Hi Doug - glad to see there's other geeks/sad bast*rds who post their Polar HRM on their blogs (no offence intended!) Mines on www.billpinnell.com!

At 11:01 AM, Blogger Doug W said...

Don't tempt me.. I'll start posting every ride. :)

At 3:30 PM, Blogger Jim Carson said...

BTW, If you hit the little red button on each lap, it'll generate some extra information for you to compare individual laps.

For the altitude, if you set it to "Auto," the software will normalize the altitudes so the hills aren't chopped off. This is convenient if you do a flat ride one weekend and Tour de Blast the next >:)

Also useful is to set the watch so it only records information while your bicycle is in motion. This is helpful for when you're commuting and don't want to record elapsed time waiting for the light at Eastgate to turn green.

- Jim

At 3:37 PM, Blogger Doug W said...

Thanks for the advice. I didn't know you could set it to stop recording while the bike is in motion, I'll have to look into that.

You know, I have been really tempted to click the lap button during races, but that seems like a recipe for disaster. I'm not sure I'll be able to explain away massive skin loss by suggestion "I just wanted more granular data!". :)

At 4:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You can also manually add laps once you have downloaded the data. If the course has recognizeable altitude profile than it's easy to eyeball the same spot and mark a lap.

- Hans


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