Week in Review–August 19th, 2018

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:

Sunday: Week in Review: August 12th, 2018
Monday: 5 Random Things I Did This Weekend
Tuesday: Wahoo KICKR CLIMB In-Depth Review
Thursday: The Bontrager Edge 1030: A Swanky Black Edge 1030 with Deeper Integration (Hands-on)
Friday: FulGaz rolls out Apple TV App–First Ride Details

YouTube Videos I Made This Week:

Here’s what hit the tubes over on the You of Tube, definitely don’t forget to subscribe there to get notified of videos the second they hit!

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) The physics of riding an 80ft wave: Like the author, I have zero desire to ever be anywhere near an 80ft wave (no matter my vessel). However, the physics of it are all interesting. (via Lauren G.)

2) A brief mention on Global Triathlon Network: Cool to see them give me a quick mention in relation to some aero stories. (Thanks to Maxis for the heads up)

3) Adidas is partnering with Twitter to stream high school American football games: That’s kinda cool. Obviously pretty limited in scope, but still super cool (if you grew up with Friday night football games being a big thing in high school).

4) Google may implement ‘AI’ based coach: Interesting, but let’s ensure we don’t get too carried away with the term AI and whether this is real AI, or just simply a slew of if/then statements. (via Gerald Z.)

5) Attachment to make your bike an e-bike in seconds: This was a Kickstarter project last fall that a reader just brought to my attention. Interesting stuff, though, the company still hasn’t shipped yet. So might still be a ways away. (via Aashiek)

6) Arion Running Efficiency and Power Meter Insoles Lets You Invest In Them: Unlike a Kickstarter, you don’t get a product – but instead shares in the company. I’ve got them on my radar to touch base again with. I had a pair from last year, but it was early beta and I’m looking forward to seeing what the final units look like/hold up.

7) Why Ethiopia’s running success is about more than poverty and altitude: Interesting article for sure, though, seems a bit odd to not mention doping anywhere in here, given the country has virtually no anti-doping program and their top national coach was recently caught in such a scheme. Obviously, many countries dope of course. But I feel like anytime you’re talking about pro athletes performing unusually well (no matter the sport), the topic should be at least mentioned.

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 and a few other firmware updates.

Garmin Edge 1030 BETA firmware update: Bug fixes.

Garmin Fenix 5 Series Firmware Update: Added abnormal heart rate alerts, Android canned text replies, and a file of bug fixes.

Garmin Fenix 5 Plus Series Firmware Update: Same as above, but for the Plus series.

Garmin Forerunner 645/645 Firmware Update: Added manual altimeter calibration, Android text replies, and a bunch of fixes.

Garmin Forerunner 935 Firmware Update: Mostly bug fixes.

Wahoo ELEMNT/BOLT Firmware Update: Minor bug fixes.

Thanks for reading!


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  1. James Mangold

    Hi Ray
    What bike stand/platform are you using in the vlog on the trainer comparisons?

  2. Eli

    Google does like to keep adding neural network functionality so it has a strong possibility
    link to emberify.com

    search terms make it hard to find though as exercise, training, etc are all used for not exercise things

  3. John

    At first I read the Fenix update as they were canning (getting rid of) text replies on Android devices and I was wondering how I missed Garmin adding that feature before. Any word on that coming to iPhone at some point?

  4. John (different one)

    Still no Galileo update for the Edge 1030… :-/

  5. Thijs

    There used to be mopeds with a similar drive to that Rubbee. Kills your tyres.

  6. Tom

    Dear Ray – thank you for your video comparing the sound of kickr vs neo. It really seems there is not much of a difference there.

    Maybe you or the other folks around could help me a bit with my decision on which trainer to buy. I am looking at the following options – a. tacx flux (€550), b. elite direto (€ 650) or c. kickr core (€ 800). It seems as if the main difference between direto vs core is the noise level, right?
    Any more thoughts /guidance ? THank you so much to all of you

    • I think it depends on whether you plan to get something like the CLIMB. Since the CORE is compatible and the others aren’t, that’s one aspect to consider.

      Beyond that, I think most people would say the road feel is slightly better on the CORE than the Direto/Flux, merely because most people would say a KICKR17 was better than those two (and this is basically what that was).

      Accuracy wise they’re all fairly similar. I’d rank the Direto and CORE the same here, and the Flux a bit behind it.

      Ultimately, ways I’d narrow down a decision:

      A) Do I care about noise? If (really) so, CORE. Neither of the other two are ‘loud’.
      B) Do I care about KICKR CLIMB, if so, CORE.

      From there, you can can look the nuances of specs and try and decide. But it’s all very very similiar.

    • Tom

      Thanks a lot – the climb is not an option for me, the noise level however is important.

  7. Jeremy Churcher

    Ray, I note you have had the Arion insoles and Runscribe pods along with various other run related products but can’t find any significant feedback on how you found them, whether they add value. There are a number of products claiming to help improve your running form I just wondered whether you had any thoughts which had not got as far as a full review. Many thanks. Jeremy

  8. Bradley Dunlap

    This is so stupid, I’ll admit, but do you know the one feature I wish my Fenix 5 had that my older Garmin Vivosmart had? I liked that if I met my steps goal by some multiple of my goal, it would do another celebration and say 2x, 3x, etc….

    I really wish they would bring that into the Fenix 5 as well.

    • Chris

      heh, now that I think of it – it is a tad annoying that my girlfriend’s $149 Vivoactive HR has a feature that my $600 Fenix 5 doesn’t…

  9. Eli

    With Extended Display Mode being added to the newer firmwares on the Edge devices I wonder if Varia Vision will get an update soon. Also would be nice if garmin finally opened up the ant+ profile as its still not available for download:
    link to thisisant.com
    Unless I’m missing something and its under a different name. Also one of the problems with trusting garmin being in control of Ant+

  10. “let’s ensure we don’t get too carried away with the term AI and whether this is real AI, or just simply a slew of if/then statements.”
    agreed! term is too often used in a inflationary way.
    in your opinion, when/where does AI in the realm of coaching start?

    • Chris

      True, many people (especially in management) confuse AI with a step by step IF-THEN loop of events that were initiated by a human, like a stack of dominoes. But at least to me, true AI is about initiating actions – not continuing them. Now while I could potentially see the ‘coach’ doing a litany of analysis of your O2 saturation, tidal flow, bp, hr, base metabolic level, etc and creating a training plan tailored to you: that to me really still isn’t AI. It’s just luxury-grade personalization that may or may not help you. And it may be even able to update on the fly as it receives new metrics, but I still don’t see that as AI.

    • Defining what is AI is always kinda tricky.

      Instead, I think it may be easier to define it according to the circumstances.

      I think Chris gets close – but I’d take it a step further. IMHO, true AI in this scenario would be when the system starts to look at metrics that weren’t initially programmed. For example, pulling location data and account for impact of travel – like me flying AMS to NYC today and the impact on my body – just like my actual coach would do.

      Or, coming up with coaching recommendation that most humans wouldn’t think of. Something that makes a human coach cock their head and go “Huh, that’s an interesting idea – it might just work”. To me, that’s AI.

    • Eli

      Giving a training plan based on lots of data that you feed it is AI, at least what AI is from the perspective of those who work with it and not scifi authors.

      Its about training a neural network. As I said earlier, Google is in this field. The hard part is what do you train the network with. What is the input data and what is the results from that input that you’re training the network with. You can’t just feed it noise and expect it to produce a useful training ai, even google has limits to how much computer power they can use to train the neural net.

      for example:
      link to ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

    • Google is certainly in this field, as are a number of other companies.

      However, I’m far less confident Google is going to be doing AI in this segment. I suspect, given they’ve got no meaningful experience in sports exercise science, that they’re just doing programming with some simple pattern matching. Perhaps a sidedish of machine learning.

    • Eli

      Google fit was just updated (so useful for getting more data) and google has a new patent for google coach: link to mysmartprice.com

    • beppo

      makes sense.
      and i like that idea of yours about using location data to adjust load based on travel stress
      … as your actual coach just does it if you pay him a lot and so he can afford to stay close to a very small number of athletes.

  11. Chris

    Hey Ray,

    I was hunting and pecking via Amazon and I saw that a seller is selling the Magene trainer here in the US with local delivery. Being I’m not sure how the link system that you have for Amazon works, I thought I’d give you the link and then if you can add it – great. If not, well at least then it’s nice to see that apparently there is more interest in it than simply in Asia.

    link to amazon.com

  12. Richard M

    Hey all,

    Has anyone still had undercounting of elevation issues with the Garmin 935 10.10 update? It doesn’t seem like it is fixed at all for me, still seems to be the same issue. Did Long’s peak yesterday and the total elevation gained was off by ~1,000′ (lower) and the max elevation was also off (lower) by 400′, even though I was sure to calibrate the elevation via my phone and my friends watches to make sure the watch started off right, not too low, not too high. This is annoying because clearly in FW 8-ish the elevation was pretty spot on – within 10s of feet. Thanks!

    • Eli

      Sample size is tiny but almost same ride last weekend and the weekend before on both my Edge 1030 and 935:

      week – 935 – 1030
      1- 1,572 ft – 2,106 ft
      2- 1,909 ft – 2,031 ft

      1030 was running 5.00 both weeks and 935 was 9.7 week 1 and 10.10 week 2.

      Seems better to me

  13. David Flynn

    Any plans to review the Arion insoles any time soon? I believe they have been shipping them a while and am interested… but wondered if you are currently testing, or in contact with the company with a view to testing.

    • Nothing at present, though they are at least nearish by me.

      I ran with them a long time last year, until the hand-built beta units I had basically disintegrated. Which is to be expected for anything that’s still a prototype.