Runner Safety: Use Garmin LiveTrack to Share Your Activity in Real-Time

adult-aesthetics-beautiful-458753

Recently we are hearing more and more stories of harassment, assault and even murder of predominately female runners across the US. It’s so tragic, and has naturally stirred a huge discussion in the running community about what we can and should do to protect ourselves.

It’s no coincidence that companies are launching lots of runner-safety themed solutions, and one area that seems to be getting a huge boost is real-time activity tracking. As most runners know, it’s usually the people you leave behind at home that do most of the worrying.

Let’s look at some of the available offerings…

Strava has beacon, which is now part of it’s Summit safety pack. I have not used beacon, as I use Strava’s free tier, and this feature is a paid extra. I know most people I’ve talked to have not regretted moving to the premium tier of Strava.

Road iD, the guys that brought us the awesome Road iD bracelet, now have an app to help friends and family track you in real time. I have not used this service, but from what I read online it’s free and has a couple of neat features I should mention.

You can have the Road iD app send a stationary alert (if you stop moving for more than 5 minutes), and you can customize your phone’s lock screen with emergency contact information — very nice!

The application I will be focusing on in this post is Garmin Connect’s LiveTrack. This feature is bundled with Garmin Connect, paired with selected Garmin devices (e.g. Forerunner, Fenix, etc.). I have used LiveTrack on every activity for the last year or more, so my wife always knows where I am and how my training is going.

For such an important feature, Garmin doesn’t seem to do a great job at publicizing LiveTrack. I searched online and found a Garmin blog post that gives a brief overview of it — but that’s it.

The very reason I’m putting this post together is because of a recent Twitter thread, where many Garmin users didn’t know this existed.

Fortunately, LiveTrack is really easy to set-up and use and works really well. To find it, open Garmin Connect on your phone and select the “More” menu item. Then click on the LiveTrack link.

Once on the LiveTrack page, you have multiple options. You can choose to start LiveTrack automatically on each activity [1], or manually start it.

By default, the recipient(s) will only be able to view your activity while you are active. If you want the activity to stay accessible after you have finished, you can extend this by 24 hours only.

Recipients can be informed by email and/or Twitter. The Facebook option is currently unavailable, I’m guessing due to some recent Facebook policy changes. I have currently two email recipients, one to my wife and one to me.

I have never used the Twitter option. I guess this would be fun to use for a race event, but I would not broadcast training runs live to Twitter. No way.

When an activity starts (or when you decide to start LiveLink), a link is sent out that will take the user to your live activity page where they can track your position and current activity data.

Providing they know how long you had planned to be out, and a rough idea of your route, this data should help the viewer determine if you’ve ran into trouble or not.

If you have to run alone, always tell someone where you’re going and when you think you’ll be back. If you’re a Garmin user, do check out this great tool and tell others about it. Keep safe out there.

Question: What other tools/technology do you use to stay safe?


[1] I had trouble recently with the automatic start of LiveTrack. After reading online, it appeared the best solution was to remove the app from my phone and re-install. This resolved it for me.

Running Around with Knockaround Sunglasses

IMG_1722

Disclaimer: I received an two pairs of Knockaround Sunglasses to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

I’ve never been one to spend a lot of money on sunglasses. The main reason is that I tend to lose them, or get them scratched up, etc. When the opportunity came along to test Knockaround, the timing was perfect as my current sunglasses were about done.

It was a nice surprise to get two pairs in the post to review. These glasses are well put together, are lightweight, comfortable and have polarized lenses. You get all this from only $15 per pair!

Continue reading “Running Around with Knockaround Sunglasses”

Fuel Your Workouts with Detach Coconut Water

IMG_1464

Disclaimer: I received a sample of DETACH to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Detach is a coconut water based drink, with a hint of lemon/lime. It’s designed to be consumed prior to your workout to help you feel energized, hydrated and refreshed.

The coconut water is definitely not the dominant flavor, it blends really well with the lemon/lime flavors. There are no “diet” sugars in it, so the texture is smooth and it’s still only 60 calories.

To keep you hydrated, the right amount of purified sea salt is added, and  organic superfood ingredients like coconut nectar and wildflower honey provide sustained energy. Key amino acids (protein building blocks) beta-alanine, citrulline and theanine to get you activated.

I have also used Detach during and after workouts. It had no negative impact on my stomach at all when I used it as a fuel source on the run. I carried it inside one of my vest bottles and it did not leave any stains or smells in the bottle itself.

Before testing Detach, I’d never tried any kind of coconut water before so I was a little dubious. If you’re not a coconut water fan, do still give Detach a try. I would never have considered it something I would have liked until I tried it.

I have a discount coupon for you if you want to try some. Use code “BIBRAVE” at drink-detach.com to get 1 FREE case of Detach. You’ll just pay shipping & handling at $14.95.

 

Don’t be a Doofus, get yourself some Oofos…

Disclaimer: I received a pair of Oofos OOMG Fibre Low shoes to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

DSC_0436

You may have seen Oofos sandals in your local running store before. The company focuses on making recovery footwear for runners (and other active people). Their footwear is made from Oofoam which is scientifically proven to help you recover faster and better.

How does it work? The revolutionary Oofoam absorbs 37% more shock in every step. It reduces stress on sore feet, knees and back. On top of that, the shoes have amazing arch support, allowing the feet to move in a natural motion.

Continue reading “Don’t be a Doofus, get yourself some Oofos…”

Added: 2019 Allscripts Tobacco Road Marathon

IMG_9408

Disclaimer: I received free entry to Allscripts Tobacco Road Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Take a look at that photo. That is me from March 18th, 2018 at Tobacco Road. I’d just run my first ever HALF marathon race and crushed it. I remember the feeling so well. It was amazing!

Well, I’m hoping it’s all smiles once more when I complete my first FULL marathon at Tobacco Road in March 2019! Yes, I have signed up for 26.2 miles and I’m kind of freaking out!

Fortunately I’m not doing this alone. There’s a few of my running buddies taking the plunge and running their first FULL marathon also (including fellow BibRave Pro, Lissa). I’m such a social runner these days, so I know I’m going to need ALL that accountability to keep up the training when it gets tough.

Continue reading “Added: 2019 Allscripts Tobacco Road Marathon”

Added: 2019 Allstate Hot Chocolate 15K – Charlotte, NC

IMG_8709 (1)

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Allstate Hot Chocolate 15k Charlotte race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!

Yes! I’m going back for a big pot of scrumptious Hot Chocolate! I have signed up for 2019 Hot Chocolate 15K in Charlotte, NC. I ran the race for the first time last year and thoroughly enjoyed it.

My wife Liz traveled with me and we really loved our wee stay in Charlotte over the race weekend. This time Liz has signed up to run as well (5K), and I think it was the race swag that swayed her. 🙂

If you remember the race shirts from my 2018 review, they are some of the best race race shirts I’ve ever received, and this year appears to be no different. Just look at those hoodies… and with the race being moved back into January, we may just need the extra warmth these will provide!

hotchocolate-hoodies

I was really pleased with my pace at the 2018 Hot Chocolate race. I had not participated in a 15k road race before so I didn’t really know what to shoot for.

In 2019 I’m hoping for a big improvement. I will be putting in some serious training between now and then (because of an active race calendar) and I know it’ll pay off come January 2019 when I hit the streets of Charlotte for the second time.

 

HC armband giveaway

Sign up today and come run with Liz, myself and my fellow BibRave Pros! When you register use code “BRHCCharlotte” to get a trendy Hot Chocolate branded armband to carry your phone. Now, it won’t be as sexy as my fanny pack pictured at the top of this post, but there’s only room for so much style on the course!