Week in Review–April 2nd, 2017


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 and Facebook, 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 in the past week:

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

Monday: Week in Review–March 27th, 2017
Tuesday: 5 Random Things I Did This Weekend
Wednesday: Garmin Forerunner 935 In-Depth Review
Wednesday: Garmin’s Running Dynamics Pod (RD Pod): Everything you ever wanted to know
Thursday: TrainingPeaks New Structured Workout Integration with Garmin Wearables
Friday: Xert Training Platform In-Depth Review

Phew…that was a busy week!

Heads up: Speaking/Event Coming up


Just a super quick heads up that I’ll be delivering a keynote at the Connect IQ Summit on April 19th in Olathe, Kansas.  My session will be sorta like my Symposium session I’ve done for a number of years, except highly focused on apps.  The good, the bad, and the ugly. This is the first year for the summit, which is aimed at developers and companies looking to build apps atop Connect IQ.  I’ll admit, I’m fairly impressed with the pretty strong showing of companies they’ve got lined up.  Including one of the biggest US airlines, one of the biggest US telecoms, and a boatload of other fitness and non-fitness companies alike.  Pretty much every endurance sports fitness platform company seems to be signed up.  Should be interesting, and I think there are still a few days left to sign-up, so I’m looking forward to seeing the final list.

In any event, like most events I go to, I’ll be using this time to meet with various companies in the space.  A number of you have reached out already, and I’ll be scheduling time, mostly on April 18th (the day before).  Looking especially forward to writing about what some of the smaller companies are doing.  As usual, if you plan to go and want to meet up – definitely drop me a note.  I’m only in town for 48 hours before I jet off to Sea Otter.

(Preemptive side note: No, I’m not getting paid to speak, and yes, I’m paying all my own travel expenses.  I do however get the opportunity to make everyone in the room nervous…as always.)

Sports Tech Deals

Continuing the Garmin plan for basically a sale every week, here’s this week’s newly saleable stuff:

Garmin Edge 520 – $50 off (now $249) – My overview here (through April 29th)
Garmin Edge 1000 – $100 off (now $399) – My review here (through April 29th)
Garmin Varia Radar – $50 off (now $149) – My review here (through April 29th)
Garmin Vivofit Jr. – $10 off (now $69 – through April 15th)
Polar A300 – $30 off (now $99) – My overview here (through April 13th)

I do feel like the Edge 520 sale may be to counter Wahoo’s BOLT however (which is priced at $249).  Either way, I’d consider the Edge 520 at that price a pretty good deal. Certainly the lowest I think we’ve ever seen it.

I’m not really expecting anything of note here beyond Garmin continuing their newly rolled out 2017 mantra of ‘always have something kinda-sorta on sale’. Basically, following a page from the TomTom playbook.

The DCR Podcast:

Here’s the low-down on what was covered this past week in the DCR podcast:

– Electronic and wireless shifting – where are we going?
– Fenix 5 or staying the course with a Scosche?
– Manual workouts in Garmin Connect, Training Peaks, and Strava
– The best callers of the DCR Podcast
– How heart rate rebroadcasting works
– Live streaming and action cams
– What pro athlete would I love to follow live in a workout?
– Plus…a special Ben Hobbs podcast bonus extra!

Thanks for listening! Subscribing and rating in iTunes is much appreciated, and be sure to send in your questions via the voice mail widget at the bottom of the podcast page!

YouTube Videos I Published:

Here’s some YouTube goodness that I published this past week:

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) Guaranteed Boston Bib Cheating Scheme Exposed: Another very solid investigation from the crew at Marathon Investigation.  This one is absolutely worth reading – and is kinda unreal.

2) Cape Town Cycle Tour Crazy Winds Compilation: While many of us probably saw the snippets of the absolutely nutty winds during this race a few weeks back, this compilation definitely helps put it all together. (via Larry)

3) A swimming desk: Move over Wahoo KICKR desk, it’s the swimming desk.  And…the one and only of this post type I’ll include in here. (via Tedder)

4) Bike lanes Are for ‘Illegals’: As always, no reason to let the comments section get political. But, this definitely deserves mention. Maybe we can get some USAT Drafting Officials out there.  Should help.

5) Elevator Marathon Prank: Well then, that’s a new one.

6) Fitbit’s looking for a sports-focused PR person: Like I did a few months ago, sometimes I see sports-tech positions that may be of interest to folks here. If you’re based in San Francisco…this could be your deal.

7) Wahoo updates Github with ELEMNT BOLT mount: Wahoo Fitness has published to Github the details for the ELEMNT BOLT mount, for those who want such details.  They note that other bike computer companies are free to use the design as well. (via Murray at Wahoo Fitness)

8) Phil Gaimon attacks Torrey Pines KOM: As you may remember, Phil has been using his retirement to snipe Strava KOM’s that are from dopers or long-suspected dopers.

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 are 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?  Oh – and if you want to get a head start on things, this page is a great resource for watching Garmin firmware updates.

Garmin Fenix 5 BETA Firmware Update: Some new features, some bug fixes, some other random stuff. 5X and 5S here.

Garmin FR935 Firmware Update: Exact same firmware update as Fenix 5, except, for the FR935.

Garmin FR735X BETA Firmware Update: This adds in Connect IQ fixes needed for the Training Peaks app, as well as the RD Pod support and more.

Garmin Fenix Chronos Firmware Update: The massive update taking all the possible Fenix 5 features and putting them in Chronos.

Garmin Edge Series Firmware Update: A Connect IQ & Elevation fix, for basically everyone. Edge 520, Edge 820, Edge 820 Explore, Edge 1000

Polar M600 gets Android Wear 2.0: Sweet, it’s out!

Suunto Spartan Series Firmware Update: This was a biggie, with a ton of significant tweaks including the addition of an interval function.

Zwift gets update: This now shows you a ride reporting post-session, including a map of where you went.

Thanks for reading!


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  1. Kyle

    Ray, I hope you will post a video of the conference. I’m interested and always like to watch the ant+ conferences

  2. Thomas Wylie

    Since the Varia is on sale and I’ve just got the 935 (which I believe is compatible) do you have any videos of how it works with wearables?

  3. Basile

    About #2: I love this gif from reddit: link to gfycat.com

  4. Jac

    Pretty sure that swimming desk is an April Fools joke, but I wish it wasn’t!

  5. Mr. T

    I wish people would not give Derek at MI any more links. This guy is bent on shaming all sorts of people. (Yes, he tried to shame a dead guy). It’s one guy, he stalks people who he is investigating.

    Moreso he goes on letsrun.com (and other sites) and posts under numerous aliases to drive traffic to his site. He is as bad as cheaters IMO.

    This site used to be about gadgets not other stuff.

    • “This site used to be about gadgets not other stuff.”

      Which site? This site? DCR? I’m confused.

    • Graham R

      if you mean DCRs site.. i would say it still is – and.. if you don’t like these posts.. don’t read the week in review or “weekend” posts if you only want the tech reviews.. or.. …

  6. Joe E

    Seems the Beta for the f5 does not fix the Stryd connection issue. Have you heard anything from Garmin on this?

  7. JD

    Don’t forget about the REI 20% off one item deal, until April 10th. It might not be exactly a sports deal, but it does help buy some sports gear. In fact I am debating on using it for a new trainer, but not sure if I should pull that trigger or not since you mentioned the Flux possibly might change things up starting at the end of this year.

  8. Hoping the ConnectIQ summit means they have plans to improve the platform and get some more real and useful apps kicked off. If there is more interest from third parties maybe that signals some kind of payment scheme, or god forbid at least ditching the crazy fees to integrate with the platform :)

    Regarding your fees and travel – I for one wouldn’t see this as making you biased. You’re a key industry figure and you get invited to speak at industry events. This is your job and I don’t think those events should leave you out of pocket. This is very different from accepting money/freebies from Garmin for reviewing their products. In this case they need you more than you need them, and let’s face it your advice will be extremely valuable to them. This would be the same for any non-sales industry event where it’s normal for consultants to charge for their time. Maybe you don’t need the money, but having spare money isn’t a bad thing either!

  9. Chris B.

    My question is now Garmin Edge 1000 vs. Garmin Edge 820. Both are now the same price! Decisions, decisions!

  10. Steve

    Ray- I’m very tempted by that 520 price (along with some Clever training points) – do you think there’s anything new on the horizon from Garmin (I’m committed to their ecosystem) that would make me regret the purchase? I don’t ride much – and just use my 735xt when I do – but a new toy is always fun…

    • ekutter

      Ray probably can’t respond to whether new products are on the horizon but given these discounts and the age of especially the 1000, it seems pretty likely there’s a new one just around the corner. But even if there is, $250 for the 520 is a pretty darned good deal. My bet, though, is on waiting to see what comes out. Seaotter Classic would be a ripe time for any announcements.

  11. Jeff Tignor

    Glad to soon have you back in Olathe, Ray. Are you doing any group rides or runs in connection with the Summit?

    • Probably not any rides, merely because time is so tight. Though, I could see a group run potentially the morning of the 19th. Let me do a bit more coordinating…

  12. Chris

    Awesome that you’re speaking! I applied for the conference yesterday, still waiting to hear back on next steps (ie payment)

  13. Lucas

    I think it’s worth noting that while Phil Gaimon’s Strava quest has been spurred on and publicized by his goal of displacing dopers from KOMs, he’s also just chasing a number of very popular segments regardless of who held the KOM. The Torrey Pines climb is just such a segment—a super popular climb in the San Diego area but the holder of the KOM Phil was chasing is a young pro with a clear history.

  14. Adam

    You used to include some crowd funding projects that caught Your attention in these weekly posts. Did You change Your habits or there just isn’t anything interesting going on? I really enjoyed checking most of them.

    • Yup, I still do. I just roll them into the main ‘Stuff I found’ section up above.

      I found that the number of sports-fitness things that were interesting has declined, so it was kinda odd keeping a dedicated section empty week after week for them.

      I’m also being a bit more picky in what I highlight from crowdfunding campaigns.

  15. I’m headed to the Connect Summit in Olathe.
    Which tract are you speaking in?
    I live right down the street from Garmin, and while I’m a gadget geek, I’m not IT, but interested in the Connect side and apps for training myself and my athletes.
    Looking forward to be immersed in the nerdiness of it all!

    • I’m speaking in the ‘everybody’ track for the keynote. :)

      It’s on Wednesday, though I don’t have the specific time handy at the moment. But definitely…see ya there!

  16. Eli

    Looks like Lezyne is improving their bike computer’s navigation functionality: link to blog.lezyne.com

  17. Sudeep

    Quick note about 8). Phil Gaimon is going for all sorts of KOMs, not just sniping them from dopers and suspected-dopers.

    In the video, Robin Carpenter, who previously held the Torre Pines KOM isn’t one of his targets for associate with doping.

    a Robin Carpenter fan.

  18. Josh W

    I’ll chime in as well on the Phil Gaimon link. This wasn’t going after a doper or suspected doper. Robin Carpenter is a young pro who is very clean. Or at least has no suspicion around him.

    The way your text is phrased is pretty misleading.