Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Where to store that training data?

Being able to plan and record training sessions is important for anyone who has more to think about than just triathlon. Finding a suitable method to do this is challenging as well. There are many different solutions out there ranging from home made spreadsheets to bespoke software. Depending on what you are looking to do depends on which solution is best for you. Here are some of the solutions that I have tried.

Run Keeper

Run keeper was the first training log site that I used. When I first started using the site I was using a mobile phone with built in GPS to record my runs. The site allowed me to install an application on my phone, press start and go running. The app would give me updates, in a friendly female american voice, every 5 minutes telling me my pace and overall distance. After finishing the run it would prompt you to upload it to the website which it would do in a short time ready for viewing later.

From the website you can easily see your splits and map of where you have been. Shortly after I started using the site I bought a Garmin forerunner. The data can be easily uploaded via a simple form.

Garmin Connect

After getting my Garmin I started to use the Garmin connect website. Garmin connect loads of information about your work outs. If you have a Garmin device it really is a one stop shop for storing and analysing all of you training data. The Garmin connect website has many more features such as training plans but when I was using it there wasn't anything relative to triathlon.

But you do get lots of different graphs and charts to look at and being a triathlete that is what really counts.

Excel Spreadsheets

When I first started getting coached I used a combination of Dropbox and Excel Spreadsheets to read the training plan and record session information.

This was a nice solution as I could access the plan from anywhere and enter data into without having to have an internet connection. Which made the training journeys to meeting in London a little less monotonous. I still used Garmin Connect website to store data from my watch and enter the summary details into the spreadsheet.

This did have some slight draw back. There was only a limited amount of space to enter information. If you wanted to record extra data then you would need to create a new column, which as is with all excel documents, would mess up all the formulas and ages to correct.

However the trade off between having limited functionality and the ability to access my training plan from my phone without having to have an internet connection was well worth it.

Apollo Race Day 2

Apollo Raceday was created by PhysFarm with British Triathlon. It's a desktop application that allows you to manage your training plan and record all of the you data. You can download data from your Garmin devices straight into the program. There is no need to have an internet connection, except when you want to sync the data with your coach.

After entering data about each session you can easily see the Training Stress Score which allows you to see if you have been working hard enough, or too hard. However the application is quire complex and has loads of features that aren't so intuitive. But from an athlete's point of you it is simple to use and allows you to record all sessions that you do. Running and bike sessions can be downloaded straight from you devices with support for other power meter devices.

One nice things is that there are numerous ways of entering data for a given session. So for the time that you have either left you watch at home for a track session or you can't used your watch in the pool there are input forms that all you to enter the splits and still calculate a Training Stress Score for you.

There are many other solutions out there that allow you to do many different things, these are just some that I've used.


  1. Training for any race can be time consuming. In fact, that's why many people decide against challenging themselves with a triathlon. Not only do you have three sports to train for instead of just one, you also have specific gear that you need in order to complete a triathlon.

    training for a triathlon

  2. Hello! Just reading this bit about training logs (or I guess "trogs"?). You don't always have to mess about with the formulae in Excel when adding extra columns - if you are interested I can show you workarounds. I've been an accountant for over 20 years, and am boringly overly familiar with most of what Excel can (and can't) do. Sad. True.

  3. Very great article with interesting information for many people. I love sport and try to train as often as I only can. By the way I know one very useful GPS tracking service which can help you if you are sailor, more details about Uboro u can read here.