Week in Review–February 2nd, 2013


The Week in Review is a collection of both all the goodness I’ve written during the past week around the internet, as well as a small pile of links I found interesting – generally endurance sports related. I’ve often wondered what to do with all of the coolness that people write, and while I share a lot of it on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, this is a better forum for sending it on to y’all. Most times these different streams don’t overlap, so be on the lookout at all these places for good stuff!

So with that, let’s get into the action!

DCRainmaker.com posts this past week:

Here’s all the goodness that ended up on the main page of DCRainmaker.com this week.

Sunday: Week in Review–January 26th, 2013
Monday: Stages Power Meter In-Depth Review
Tuesday: Because it’s cold FR910XT Giveaway Winner!
Wednesday: A Stockholm (Sweden) Runaround

It was a bit of a busy week for me, so the post-count was a bit lower.  Fear not, I’ve got a 9-hour flight I’m about to board and four posts I’m putting the finishing touches (including a review, maybe two) for next week.

Woot, thanks!

Just want to say a huge thanks to everyone following along on Twitter, as I crossed over the 10,000 Twitter followers point late Thursday night.  Thanks!


Additionally, January ended as the most visited month ever here (by over 15%).  Again, huge thanks for reading!

Stuff that I found interesting around the interwebs:

Here’s a not-so-small smattering of all the random things that I stumbled on while doing my civic duty to find the end of the Internet:

1) What it’s like to go off the worlds largest ski jump:  This is just downright crazy.  Just watch the video from start to end. (via Gizmodo)

2) How to make an Ironman Whimper: An impressively in-depth article from the New York Times on the whole sport of building/stair racing (i.e. running up stairs of Empire State building).  A long read, but well worth it.

3) Man falls of train in Russia, runs 4-miles in –40*C weather in t-shirt/shorts/slippers: Really, I’m not sure there’s much more to say beyond that headline.  Clearly, you’re gonna have to read it it (plus, it includes pics of the guy!).

4) Finish an Ironman or Marathon on your Birthday?  Here’s a massive list of places giving you free food:  Of course, you don’t have to finish either event to get the free food.  It’s just the biggest list known to mankind on restaurants that will give you freebies on your birthday.  Still, if you’re going to truly take advantage of it, I’d suggest a really long run beforehand. (Mom – Since your birthday is on Monday, this seems like a good place to start for dinner reservations, no?)

5) What if guys and girls swapped roles at the gym?  A funny video that takes a look at some of the (generally true) behaviors that both genders seem so exhibit in the gym…and then swaps them.

6) 9 kinda-sorta-maybe-excessive cycling jerseys:  The article itself uses the word ‘ridiculous’, but I’m not sure I’d go that far.  Nonetheless, if you want to stand out in the crowd…there ya have it!

7) A way to get your Withings WiFi data into Garmin Connect: I had seen this a bit back, but I don’t think I posted on it.  A reader via Twitter reminded me of it this week.  I’d love to hear from folks that have tried it, how well it works.  In short, it takes your Withings WiFi data and create a small .FIT file to upload to Garmin Connect (essentially emulating an ANT+ scale file collected via a Garmin wathc).  (via Sam)

8) Treadmill desks, how practical are they?  Funny, I was just wondering about this the other day.  And while the article itself is good,  check out the person they quote in the article, he blogs about the desks/experience at almost the same detail level as my reviews.

9) Top 10 Biking Cities in the us…via how people commute: This is a pretty innovative way to look at bike trails.  Check it out, cool stuff.    (Via Tyler)



10) RedBull Downhill Ice Racing:  This is sorta like the ski jumping.  Same level of nuts – just without the altitude.  Crazy Canadians. Really cool though.

Crowd funded projects of athletic note:

This is a bit of a new section that I’ve been toying with adding.  Most of this content used to be found within the main section, but I figured I’d just call it out up here and make it easy to find.  I regularly sift through Kickstarter and Indiegogo (plus a few others on occasion) looking for sports projects.

Here’s the projects of note that are new:

Syre: Waterproof iPod Nano Bluetooth-enabled watch band: This band takes your iPod Nano and makes it both Bluetooth enabled, and fully waterproofed for sports.  Now, if only we could get app support on the Nano, and a name (Syre?) that we could pronounce.  Then we’d have a killer product.  Until then, it’s simply just ‘interesting’ for me.  Of course if you always run with your Nano, then this might be awesome for you as you could get rid of the wires and wear it on your wrist.


Tethercell: Bluetooth Smart AA battery controller.  Essentially it allows you to turn on/off battery powered devices by creating a tiny battery wrapper that has a Bluetooth Smart sensor in it.  Like a remote switch.  I’ve been pondering this since I heard about it at CES last month.  I’m not 100% sure I have a solid use for it yet in sport and fitness.  Though, I feel like there has to be some, I just haven’t figured it out.  Given the low-cost compared to most projects, I went ahead and backed for one unit in hopes I figure out a creative use down the line. (Funny side note: I was talking about this with one of the Wahoo guys at CES, he was rather excited about it.  It would allow him to automatically cut the power to his kids toys from his phone.)


Projects still ‘open’:

These are projects I’m tracking, or have been tracking recently.

Orp: Goal almost reached.  I think they’ll actually manage to make it.  They had a substantial gap last week when I checked in, but with less than 6K to go (on 90K goal), and 10 days left – hopefully they’ll just eek over the top.

Amiigo: Funding goal slaughtered.  Still open for a while.  This is another health and fitness tracker, sorta like the Nike Fuelband or the Jawbone Up.  Except the core difference is they measure more stuff (like skin temperature, heart rate, and blood oxygen levels), and they’ve got an open-SDK, so developers to do whatever they want to do with the unit.

Integrated Seat Post Bike Lock:  Funding goal almost reached.  They’re $8K away from their $48K goal, they should hit this.  It’s an interesting idea that replaces your seat post with a cable lock system.  The lock doesn’t just secure your seat post, but then wraps through your frame to the object of your choices.  Interesting idea.  I likely won’t jump in on this one, as I don’t personally have a need for it.  But some of you might.

Bike Tire Pressure Sensor: This project was cancelled on the even prior to the funding period running out.  Bummer.  Hopefully we’ll see it pop-up in some other form down the line.

Leikr GPS watch: Goal reached.  It actually closed last night – successfully.  Looks like they had a handful of substantial $5K backers come in about 2 days prior.  Likely either team members or private backers.  Either way, congrats!

Sports Technology Software/Firmware Updates This Week:

Each week I quickly highlight some of the new firmware, app, software and website service updates that I see go out. If you’re a sports technology company and release an update – shoot me a quick note (just one liners is perfect, or Tweet it at me) and I’ll make mention of it here. If I don’t know about it, I won’t be able to post about it. Sound good?

Swimlog updated: Focuses on new features for teams/squads.

Trainer Road adding new functionality:  They now will broadcast out the Virtual Power stream (including CompuTrainer power meter data) as an ANT+ power meter, meaning you can connect your Garmin to it.  Further, they now have integration with CycleOps Powerbeam trainer.  Very cool on both fronts.  Oh, and just to clarify, these are on internal builds, but should be out shortly.

LeMond announces new company: Greg LeMond this week officially announced the (re?)-launch of his new company, which is centered around the Revolution Trainer.  As I talked about a few weeks ago based on my discussions with them, the near-term focus is fixing all the issues with the PowerPilot.

iPhone App Updates this week:








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  1. TriAbel

    That flipturn video is just wrong…

  2. Hi, It is Adam from PeriPedal. I just wanted to mention that PeriPedal (an indoor bike training application) has had the ANT+ Power broadcasting ability for some time now. If interested sign up for the beta!

  3. Diana W.

    Thanks for posting the Flip Turn video. It was funny!

  4. Sam

    Redbull crashed ice is in my city! hehe Very nice event!

  5. dboatRunner

    Unfortunately, the nike+ software on the ipod nano doesn’t work exactly. You cannot upload your runs to Nike+ via iTunes! Try it out! It’s frustrating since it’s been a problem for more than a year…..

  6. Tim

    I’ve been using the Withings to FIT tool for awhile and it works great.

  7. Eli

    The seatpost lock is still a cable lock so easier to cut then a ulock :(

  8. Too bad you forgot to mention the world championship cyclocross in Louisville.
    But I think only Belgians were interested in that event :D

  9. Benny Perales

    Will the Amiigo need any other accessories to do all it says it will? An example would be, does it need a HR strap? Also, When doing curls does it just record the arm you are doing and then doubles it for the opposite arm and do you later go and put in the amount of weight you used later?

  10. Lars Ejaas

    Hi Ray
    First and foremost: Thanks for a great BLOG!

    I have tried the Withings2fit to get the Withings weight data into Garmin connect.

    It works very well. However, please be aware that email addresses at Withings are case sensitive. I had to play a little around with this to get it to work. I ended up writing the entire email in lowercase and THEN it worked :-)

  11. LV Bob

    Sadly, the Amiigo project seems to have disappeared from the radar. After saying a month ago that they would be on-site at the manufacturer which should let them update more frequently and that the first batch should ship at the end of August, they’ve just kinda disappeared. I hope this is not another crowd-sourced project that just fizzles and that it is just running late (as most do).

    Does anyone have any information regarding the project?

  12. LV Bob

    Seems I spoke a couple of days too soon: Amiigo has just updated their website with new information including revised shipping dates. And it appears they have also managed to improve the product along the way. I am anxious to get my hands on one of these.

  13. Richard Kaufmann

    A pulse oximeter in the Amiigo? This smacks of “hey, the heart rate stuff we licensed from Philips has it, so” instead of “our market needs it.” From what I can tell, pulseox is useful for cardiac patients, mountain climbers and test pilots. I guess it would serve as a warning sign if the numbers started falling during exercise, but from what I can tell this is a true outlier.

    In other words, I’d rather have had my Amiigo a few weeks earlier in exchange for dumping the feature — but if it’s “free,” maybe it’ll be good as a bragging point.

    And at this rate, I’m hoping for Christmas. I’ve been in the engineering game way too long to not notice the “day for day” slipping syndrome.