So Garmin has these little online challenge thingies that you can do through its app where you’re competing with other people for things like highest monthly step count, most monthly running miles, most miles cycled in a given amount of time, etc. Every once and a while I get in a challenge where someone gets accused of cheating and faking their data.
This week, that someone was me.
So a few things.
1) It should go without saying, but I do not fake my data. Anyone who knows me knows that my walking/running/steps are legit. I’m just putting that out there.
2) There are almost definitely people who fake their data in one way or another. It’s inevitable on something like this (even though the only real “reward” you get from winning these challenges is bragging rights I guess?). However, everyone else I’ve ever seen accused of cheating does not share their individual activities – only their totals (miles, steps, whatev). I share my activities. You can see every walk and run I log and you can even look at the map and see exactly where I went. That would be hard to fake unless I was giving someone else my Garmin and having them do the miles for me.
3) The amount of effort that would be required to fake this data is just not worth it, especially for as long as I’ve had my Garmin (fall 2018 I think?). It’s probably less effort to just do the actual steps, honestly.
I mean, I guess I could be flattered by the fact that people think I’m faking the amount of steps I’m taking, but it’s more annoying than anything.
Aloha. Let’s talk about my VO2 max.
According to this site, “VO2 max, also known as maximal oxygen uptake, is the measurement of the maximum amount of oxygen a person can utilize during intense exercise. It is a common measurement used to establish the aerobic endurance of an athlete prior to or during the course of training. It is one of several tests used to determine an athlete’s cardiovascular fitness and performance capacity.”
Typically, the more endurance sports/activities you do, you are more likely to have higher VO2 max scores. And of course, correlation does not equal causation, but there does tend to be, you know, correlation between these two things.
So what have my VO2 max scores been since the start of the year? Let’s see.
Ohhhh, okay. Random. Cool.
Note that there’s a break in the graph because I had to stitch together two different display screens from my Garmin app.
Of course, another disclaimer here is that I’m not getting my VO2 max professionally measured here; these readings are coming from my Garmin. But I would think any measurement error would be somewhat consistent across time, right?
I just find it weird that there seems to be no pattern whatsoever, and I bet if you looked at this you couldn’t be able to tell if I’d started seriously running at any point during the year and if I’d stopped seriously running at any point during the year.
(Serious 13+ mile runs twice a week started around the end of April I think; I have kept those up ever since, so there hasn’t been a stopping point.)
And like…I am very consistent with the type of exercise I do as well as the duration. It’s not like I’m doing dramatically different exercises on these days. I’m either a) running 14 miles or b) walking 16 miles. That’s basically it.
I also find it weird that I think my circulation has gotten worse since I started running, but that’s whatev.
Body, you’re strange.
Hint: It’s me.
At least on my arms. You can see where I normally wear my Garmin, haha.
Also, ignore how hairy my arms are. I am a yeti.
There are few things quite like the sweet, sweet pain of losing all feeling in your toes, fingers, lips, and nose while you’re out walking for four hours in weather that’s way too cold. But hey, -15 feels tropical compared to that -30s nonsense we’ve had for the past few days, so I took leave of whatever modicum of common sense I have this morning and braved the cold for an outside walk.
It hurt. It hurt good.
(Except for those 10 minutes I spent shivering uncontrollably in the bathroom by the side of the path which subsequently and unexpectedly turned into a panic attack? That wasn’t very fun. But when I was done with that nonsense, the sun had come out, so the rest of the walk was fine.)
Edit: ha, my Garmin picked up the panic attack. Heart rate spike around 1 hour 40 minutes or so.
So today is my first day wearing my new Garmin Forerunner 35 as opposed to my Fitbit, which is slowly falling apart.
The Garmin has GPS (which my Fitbit does not), so I can finally get an accurate assessment of my walking distance.
Let’s give ‘er a roll and see how she does.
Edit: OH MY GOD THIS GIVES YOU SO MUCH COOL INFORMATION.
In GPS mode, it gives you a map of your activity.
It also gives you a plot of your pace. I always wondered how consistent my pace was on a 15-mile walk. Turns out it’s pretty damn consistent.
Heart rate! It was all over the place here. To be fair, though, my route was relatively up and down and had a decent number of stops at lights.
This is freaking awesome. I love it.