Week in Review–February 1st, 2014


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 past week.

Saturday: Week in Review–January 25th, 2014
First look at Polar V650 GPS bike computer
5 Random Things I Did This Past Weekend
Tuesday: A look at Suunto’s new Ambit2 R GPS
Thursday: TomTom releases phone app, allows for mobile uploading with TomTom Runner & Multisport units
The Because It’s Cold…and January…Giveaway

In the Queue:

These are items that hit the queue over the past week or so:

Friday: LifeBEAM Smart Helmet with integrated heart rate sensor

Stuff that I found interesting around the interwebs:

1) Stealing and lying within the pro triathlon ranks: It was interesting watching the reaction to this in the comments section of the article.  In my opinion, if one of the world’s top triathletes is willing to steal over $10,000 – and do it from friends, and then setup servers, fake internet domains, fake employees and fake companies to hide it…why wouldn’t that person simply pop a pill or two to cheat when it comes to doping?  Seems pretty relevant to me.

2) Uneasy Rider: Bicycling in Las Vegas: A pretty fun look at one German CES attendee’s attempt to simply rent and use a bike to get around during the show last month.  Entertaining reading. (via Eli)

3) What’s getting run over by a car during a race between friends?  Apparently, friendship was not exactly flying sky-high down in the Tour de San Luis this past week.  Just ignore those paceline punches as well.

4) 102 year old cyclist beats his own record: Darn, I meant to go over and watch this yesterday (it happened here in Paris).  For some reason I thought it was on Sunday.  Congrats! (via BikeHugger)

5) Austin Tri Cyclist publishes free training video: Pretty cool, just over an hour long and easily watchable on YouTube while you’re on a trainer.  It’d be neat to see them publish it up to the Virtual Training suite with a GPX/GPS file, so folks could re-ride the whole thing with the more advanced trainers controlling terrain/speed/etc…

6) Apple TV to offer platform for bike trainers apps?  Well, if they open up to apps as rumored, it would.  Apple TV has a Bluetooth chipset in it (albeit, older non-4.0), but a new hardware variant would almost certainly have BT4.0 (Update: Apparently the current gen does actually have BT4) , which would work perfectly for controlling the Wahoo KICKR, CycleOps PowerBeam Pro, and Tacx units over BT, via apps like Trainer Road.

7) Samsung Glass Competitor coming in September?  Will be interesting to see how this, and the many other heads up display units converging on the market work in the sporting realm.

8) Massive Triathlon Expo in DC and Boston opens for registration: I’ve been to this a number of times in the past, but this year, it’s a bit of a haul to go across the pond for.

9) Farewell Inside Triathlon Magazine: Inside Tri is closing down, here’s a quick look back from Slowtwitch.

10) Life as a bicycle race photographer in Asia: Interesting piece.  Many of the photos this photographer takes are a bit more on the ‘arty’ side, which may or may not appeal to different folks.  Still, good read.

11) Los Angeles to Host 2016 US Olympic Marathon Trials: The event will be held in February, and broadcast on national TV.  Cool stuff. (via RunCompetitor)

12) Industry Standards and Bike Weights: An interesting piece looking at how different companies differ in terms of measured weights.  Worth a quick read.

13) Idiotrod vs Iditarod: Ok, this is funny.  Obviously, you know the Iditarod, but apparently they were upset when a bunch of dudes dressed up and ran around NYC with shopping carts, emulating the famous Alaskan race.  So, they sued.

14) UK Magazine blatantly copies Boston magazine marathon tribute cover: Wow, this wasn’t just ‘sorta copied’. this was ‘thou must exactly re-create’.  Unfortunately, the initial Twitter response from a Boston Magazine Senior Editor was a little…unpolished.

Crowd Funded Projects of Athletic Note:

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. Note that as always with crowd funded projects, assume the project will be late and will under-deliver on features. Thus far, on the numerous products I’ve helped ‘fund’ (except a leather bike handle), that’s been the case.

(Another week with very few interesting sport-related Kickstarter-type projects.  Though, there have been a few Kickstarter projects that have begun or will begin shipping in the next week or two.  That includes the SmartBEAM helmet up above ‘In the Queue’, as well as the Bia watch I’ve previously talked about.  For those interested, reader Eli did find a few semi-sport related, but not so much sport technology related.)

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 is even better) 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?

Site/Firmware Updates:

Garmin FR220/FR620 Firmware Update: This update claims to resolve a bunch of bugs, including some footpod related issues/troubles.  No new features.

Garmin VIRB Edit update: This update was primarily bug fix related, especially around exporting of videos (including some issues that were keeping me tied up on some videos).

Garmin Connect to Suunto Movescount Activity Mover: Somehow, I never knew about this cool utility.  Or, I did but forgot about it.  Either way, if you’re migrating from Garmin Connect (or Polar) to Suunto, this will move everything over. Work Complete!

TomTom Runner & Multisport Firmware Update: This not only includes the new phone app that I talked about (see the full post), but also a firmware update as well.

Sigma Releases iOS app: Sigma is the company behind a few cycling head units.  They’ve released an iOS app for cycling with Bluetooth Smart connectivity. While none of their head units have Bluetooth capabilities yet, I’ve gotta believe that’ll be in the cards. (Post in German, but you can use this Google Translate link to read in English).

Metawatch is working on step-counter: Interesting little photo showing an integrated step-counter into the Metawatch. Smart move.

iPhone Apps:


iPad Apps:


Android Apps:

Ok, we’ll have to skip this week.  I ended up flattening my phone, and in said process all apps re-installed as new.  Thus…yeah.

Windows Phone Apps:

No sport related updates on my phone this week.

Thanks for reading!


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  1. cj

    What sport apps do you have for your Win Phone? Do you use/test the running apps like endomondo and runtastic? Do you test only the brand ones or do you also check out the new comers? Because I know that “My Run” has updates this week. Or do you have a different focus on apps?

    • I’ve got the major ones – Endomondo, Runtastic, Adidas, and a few others. I don’t have My Run, but I’ll check it out and add it. I install pretty much anything that looks relevant.

  2. About the 620 update — after installing it, the watch rebooted at the very end of a run. Lost the last 0.02 miles of the workout which was no big deal but it makes me bit nervous that the next crash could be more severe.

    I’ve seen the odd spontaneous reboot here and there but never during a run. The complaints in Garmin’s forums are about other issues so I am wondering if others are seeing reboots and this is a software issue still being ironed out or if I have an unstable unit.

    • I’ll give Garmin credit on the FR220/620 in the crash department. Early on in the beta cycle…it crashed a lot on me (perhaps every mile or so). The unit never lost a single workout. They changed a lot of the way how it writes to storage as it goes along in case of a crash. I haven’t heard of anyone losing an entire workout due to a mid-run crash or battery loss issue.

      I have heard of folks having random issues where the entire unit just pretends like its brand new again (as if a factory reset happened). But I haven’t seen that myself.

  3. Kyle Polansky

    I really liked the story about the guy attending CES and trying to rent a bike. I know most cities in America aren’t very bicycle friendly, but I would expect a city like Las Vegas to have some type of bike rental program. I also can’t believe the police target people on bikes. When I pass a police car while I’m commuting, I’ll just wave or say good morning if it’s he’s on a motorcycle. Guess next time I’m in Vegas, I won’t try to find a rental bike.

  4. DavidM

    I’ve been bouncing all over the Garmin site trying to find the link to the Forerunner 220 firmware update. I hate to ask but what version is now available and where the heck can I find it? Garmin Express Fit tells me I have v2.2 which I’ve had since I bought the watch in November. The above link in the article leads me to the Forerunner 620 v2.5 update.

    • Here’s the link to the Garmin page for the FR220 (2.50): link to www8.garmin.com

      Grab the Garmin WebUpdater instead, it always works perfectly for me. Just plug it in and good to go.

    • DavidM

      Awesome. Thank you for your quick response, the link and your mention of WebUpdater. It isn’t mentioned anywhere in the manual I downloaded. Whenever I ran the Garmin Express Fit ‘Check for Updates’ I always got a “we were unable to detect if any new updates are available, please visit link to garmin.com to check for any updates” message.

      After going to that page, I somehow managed to miss WebUpdater and the admittedly rather clear description “WebUpdater makes it easy to update your Garmin device software without using an Internet web browser. Just connect your device to your computer, run WebUpdater and follow the screen prompts.” Another moment of great pride for my family. :-)

  5. Mike

    Appreciate the info Ray — will Grab the Garmin WebUpdater after finishing my coffee and when the cat decides to move off of my lap. Was hoping this update would have included a note about the imminent Droid version of Garmin Connect Bluetooth connection to the 220/620. Stay tuned, huh?

    • Rumor mill says mid Feb for Android. But, that could change if bugs slow things. There’s been a few other updates recently delayed due to trying to track down hard to replicate bugs. Which, is good to see.

  6. champ

    Garmin 910xt just released firmware version 3.0

  7. Cam

    Hi Ray

    Any recommendations for a live tracking app so that your supporters know where you are in a race or even in long training sessions? I see garmin have the functionality in their 510/810 paired with a phone (and they have it as a stand alone app for a monthly fee which I couldn’t get working properly)… But are there any other options you’ve come across?


  8. For your convienance, I’ve made a youtube playlist with the music for the ATC racing workout video:
    ATC Racing Music for the workout