When I began running, I didn't even wear a watch. I didn't want to know how slow I was, nor did I want anyone else to know! However, I always carried my phone, just in case I collapsed and had to call for help or died and someone needed to locate my body. I began using MapMyRun on my computer to determine how long my run was and to map out courses when I was following training plans for races. (We will look at those later.) I discovered that I could log a workout to learn how many calories I had burned, how my speed compared to a previous workout, etc.
Enter my first Smart Phone. MapMyRun was available on my phone! I could simply start the app and let it map and log my workout. I could save the workout date with a simple tap of my thumb. No more following roads on a map with my cursor. No more entering my time by hand. It was all there - even my running music. The MapMyRun app changed my life!
If you are new to running and own a Smart Phone, I would suggest finding an app that suits you and put it into use now! MayMyRun works for me, but it isn't the only app out there. Let's take a look at MapMyRun to get you started.
Create an Account
Go to MapMyRun on your PC or Smart Phone and create an account. You will then be able to fill out your Profile information and About Me. Enter as much or as little information as you would like. The more info, the more accurate your data feedback will be. Always hit SAVE before moving to the next category.
Membership: Choose FREE. You may want to upgrade later, but that will cost you. Let's stick with the free version until you are familiar with the app. Hit SAVE.
Display Units: Choose your settings miles vs. kilometers, Fahrenheit vs. Centigrade, time zone, etc. Hit SAVE.
Privacy: Choose wisely! I like to keep my sleep habits and body mass index to myself! You may choose Public, Private, or Friends which will allow you to share your info with friends on social media. Hit SAVE. You can change these settings at any time.
Connect: Choose which social media accounts you want to use to share your MapMyRun info. Hit SAVE:
Email: Choose what notifications you would like to receive by email. Hit SAVE.
Log a Workout
After creating an account you are ready to log your first workout. Hover your cursor over the Home tab. Create a Workout, Log a Workout, and Import Workout will appear in the drop down box. Choose Log a Workout. Fill in as much information as you have available. Activity Type, Duration, and Distance are the most important pieces of information to include. You can then calculate your calories burned - always a good bit of info!
Choose whether to share on social media and then hit SAVE!
You have just created your first workout. You are beginning to generate data that will keep you informed and excited about running!
MapMyRun App for iPhone
If you have an iPhone, logging a workout is as easy as listening to your running tunes! Search the App Store for a FREE MapMyRun app. Do this AFTER you have set up an account and your info will be uploaded to your phone. Log into MapMyRun on your downloaded app.
Music: We can't run without music! Your iTunes should auto sync. From the menu at the top of your screen choose Music. Your iTunes options will open. Find something to keep you company on your run. Then hit the Record arrow at the top left of your screen.
Activity: You can track activities such as walking, crunches, yard work, swimming, and of course, running. Choose one. Now go do it! When you are ready to begin hit Start Workout.
Pause and Record:When you take a break or when you are done with your workout hit the Pause Workout button at the bottom of the screen. You will be prompted to Slide to Finish or Resume Workout. If you choose Slide to Finish you will then be prompted to Discard or Save Workout. Choose Save Workout. A summary of your workout will shortly pop up on your screen. You can also view it later in more detail by logging into MapMyRun on your computer.
Congratulations! You are well on your way to becoming a runner!
Whatever your fitness level, you can begin today to improve. If you think you can't run, chances are you are wrong. It may take a little longer (you have to walk before you can run) and it may hurt a little bit (life hurts) but as I like to inscribe my book, The Hard Run: Painful Lessons from a Running Granny, "Life is hard. Keep moving forward!"