Thursday, April 1, 2010

Involuntary Garmin-slaughter

Today's workouts: Stillwell field trail loop - 3.55 miles plus speed and hill drills

My Garmin 50 display was showing "LoBattery" so I decided to change it myself. Big mistake. I had the right battery (CR2032) on hand so I thought "How hard could this be?" Replacing the battery in the heart rate monitor and the foot pod was simple but when I opened the 50 I knew it was going to be a lot more complicated. I should have stopped there and taken it to a jeweler but I was too impatient and it cost me the watch. I first had to separate the housing from the main board that held the display in order to get to the battery and when I did some tiny brackets and and a tiny spring went flying. Before I knew it the whole thing became a cruel puzzle. When I put it together in the most logical way that I could, the display failed to work. I looked up how to change the battery on this watch online but there is little documentation. In fairness to Gamin they do recommend professional battery installation.

I went through all the stages of grief: Denial (it worked before, it will work again!), Anger (stupid Garmin engineering!), Bargaining (what are Forerunner 50's going for on Amazon these days?), Depression (I have nothing to capture tomorrow's run so it will be meaningless!), Acceptance (this sucks but maybe it's a good excuse to buy a 405). Then I went online and priced out the 405, the new F60 and even saw that Garmin has a new "entry level" GPS watch called the 110. Since the 110 doesn't also work with a foot pod I'm down to deciding between the 405 and the F60.

This morning I pulled out my iPhone arm band and did my run at Stillwell using MotionX which has been improved since the last time I used it. The day was sunny and I acquired a signal quickly. I set off to run the field loop trail making four circuits with a total distance of 3.55 miles. As usual the GPS accuracy was a little off so I used Google Earth to verify the true length. It was a better experience with the iPhone than I had on previous runs. I uploaded the GPX file from MotionX to Garmin Connect and it worked great.  My online running history didn't skip a beat despite last night's Garmin problem. I may take the broken watch over to a local jeweler to see if they can make it work. If not I'll probably get the new F60 that should work with the 50's HRM and foot pod.  I did see a 405 online for $299 with a $50 rebate so maybe...


Later in the day the Emerging Runner family headed to a local park to enjoy the beautiful weather. After playing some hoops we made our way to the ball fields and had a running competition. First we ran from home plate straight out to center field (which rises to a 60+% incline over the last 30 or 40 feet) and back again. All four of us did that run, my son did it several times, and we recorded our times using my iPhone's stopwatch app. After that we all took turns on a circuit that required the runner to touch the six light poles that ringed the diamond and outfield. The total length of that circuit is .15 miles. Based on that, I calculated our paces. I ran it at 5:33, my wife at 7:40 and my son and daughter (10 & 11) at 8:20. We weren't dressed at all for running (although I did have my NB trail shoes) so this was a good benchmark for the next time we come, better prepared. It was a very active day for the family. How could we stay inside with this weather?

4 comments:

  1. lol... I tried to pull the same thing with my old i-pod... one soldering tool, new ipod battery, and new ipod display screen later and I was off to Target to buy a brand new iPOD nano

    ReplyDelete
  2. I don't understand why these things are so complex when simple design is just as easy. I won't make that mistake again!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I did precisely the same thing with the same watch. Opened it up saw the circuit board and that layer of plastic but I took it to the jewelers upstairs in Roosevelt Field, above Dick's - Express something or other.

    They changed the battery for me for 19 bucks (and even set the time for me too).

    I'd like to upgrade to the 305 but only if the footpod works on both...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Smart move. I think the 305 does work with the foot pod. You should also check out the new 110.

    ReplyDelete

Comments are most welcome!

 

blogger templates | Webtalks