I'm doing the Cozumel Ironman in November. This will be my first.
I have a Garmin 305 which as you may know, the battery won't last for the whole race. So, I'm planning to use a regular Timex for the swim and bike legs (in the bike I have a bike computer with cadence) and use the Garmin only for the run portion.
Does anyone has experience doing this? because you have to turn the Garmin 305 on in the transition tent before the marathon (otherwise, if you turn it on before - like in the swim-bike transition - it will run out of battery) and it takes a while to get the satellite signal.
Hopefully someone can provide some insight on this! Thanks!
I agree with you. The Edge 305 is too bulky to run with it. I meant the Forerunner 305.
Forerunner 305 has a known battery life issue. I understand. You can search the Net and find some solutions for extending the life, but using some type of extended battery seemed really complicated to me.
Here's what I've done in the past.
Swim: Who cares, just wore my Timex
Bike: I used my Forerunner 305 and continued to wear my Timex. Sounds like you'll just have your Timex on and watch your pace and cadence on the bike computer. I perfectly reasonable approach.
Run: I have an old Forerunner 301 that works fine and has a long batter life. I just used that on the run. Sounds like you're big issue is that:
(a) you can't keep the 305 on the whole time or it'll run out of juice, and
(b) you don't want to wait for it to find satellites etc.
I can't tell how competitive you are or your expectations for the race but here's one man's opinion:
If you are fast enough that you are looking to qualify for a Kona slot, then you probably wouldn't be posting the question... you'd already know how to run by feel with the Timex
If you're not competing for a Kona slot and just looking for a good finish in the race, just turn on your 305 when you first get into transition. If you have powered it up the day before such that it knows what hemisphere you're in, it won't take too much time. Use the boot up time to your advantage! I see most people taking off out of T-2 too quickly and they'd be better off taking a couple extra minutes to fuel, hydrate, and get their wits about them before heading out on the run course. Two erxtra minutes in transition is nothing if it saves you an hour on the run because you bonked.
I really appreciate that you dedicate a while to my post. You totally nailed it.
No, I'm not looking to Kona qualifying. At least not yet. Cozumel will be my first Ironman.
I think I will follow the approach you mentioned: Turn it on the day before, turn it on as soon as I pick up my T2 bag (I'm planning to turn it on before putting running shoes, eating, hydrating, etc.) and then go off running.
The other option I was thinking was to ask my wife/friends to hand it to me as long as I'm out from T2 but that's risky in terms that there could be a chance of not finding them/seeing them in the middle of the excitement of running a marathon after biking for 112 miles J!
I had the same thoughts while training for IM Forida...then fate intervened. My 305 fell out of my car and I ran over it while backing up. I then proceeded to my local Fleet Feet store where I purchased the 310xt. Problem solved. It has a 20 hour battery life and you can use it during the swim.
What is even riskier is that could be considered "outside assistance" i.e. you can not technically get drinks, food, etc from non course aid stations etc.
Why not keep the 305 with you, maybe on your bars, turn it on and take it with you entering T2, and hopefully during your transition it has a chance to sync with the statelittes.
I'm planning on using my Forerunner 305 at IMCDA in late June.
Here's a thought, though - I am using my Garmin on the bike, not on the run. Because bike is where pacing issues really come into play - I think that especially as a novice but really in general, the most useful thing about racing with a HR monitor is to keep pace where it should be when 'arousal' is high (i.e. first third of IM bike ride, after a taper and with race-day excitement!). By the time you get to the run, you're basically just focusing on keeping on moving, and it really isn't likely to be a question of using HR to keep control of your pace. So I'd definitely recommend rethinking, using the Garmin on the bike (just turn it on when you get on your bike, I think people basically wait for the satellite to pick up over first mile or so and don't worry too much about the fact that it hasn't got the exact correct mileage), then have the Timex for the run.
I have a cadence, speed, pace bike computer that I'm planning to use to pace properly. It will be my first ironman so I want to keep the marathon under 4 hours. For me, accurate running pace is definitely a must.
I'm an embedded software engineer and have written software for a number of GPS receivers, including the SiRF which is in the 305. Strictly from the technical point of view there are a couple of good options...
- ride with the 305 and just turn it on several minutes before you finish the ride; so it will have acquired time and ephemeris from the GPS constellation and computed a position before you start your run
- or, if possible, power it on in the run transition area before you start the swim, and then power it off after it acquires a position, and then go do the swim. This way when you power it on after the ride, it will still contain a valid constellation almanac and the "last known position" will still be the current position. In these conditions that receiver should acquire a position in about 30 seconds.
Good luck! Jeff
This is great advice. I like both options. Thanks for your help!