336 Metric Centuries

A few days ago I wrote about how I had run a half marathon 71 times since I’d joined Strava (read about it here). This got me thinking about various other statistics. I have completed 100 miles on 113 occasions, although the most recent 100 miler was a couple of years ago, but I was completely gobsmacked when I saw how many 100 km days I’d had. The title of this blog post is correct, on 336 days I have completed 100 km. That is on average 38 times a year. Most of those have been cycling, although on a few times I might have been out and cycled slightly less and then added in a few extra km with a walk or a run. Sadly there isn’t a single day where the 100 km target has been passed with running only, maybe one day.

As for elevation, I have climbed at least 1000 m on 350 days, and on 272 days I have completed at least 5 hours of activities. I’ve also been given Kudos 100 times on 266 occasions, although that is slightly more arbitrary because if you want more Kudos just follow thousands of people and many of them will follow you back, giving you extra Kudos.

I have to be honest and say that I’m surprised by these figures and had probably forgotten just how much training I used to do. I think the mix is a little better now a days, as I enjoy going out with Helen and our silly pooch for long walk/runs, or cycle touring with just Helen. Cafe stops is something we are definitely looking forward to once lockdown 3.0 is over, as well as exploring new areas again.

What about swimming? Last year was a terrible year as I only went for a swim 30 times, and over half of those were before the first lockdown. Looking at my stats and I’ve swam 1 mile on 316 occasions, 2km 300 times and 1 hour 177 times.

71 Half Marathons

A bit of a random statistic for a sunny Tuesday afternoon. Since joining Strava I have run 71 half marathons, or to be more precise, according to Veloviewer, there have been 71 days where I have run at least 21km. I know that a half is 21.1km but knowing what I’m like if I made it to 21km I would definitely run that extra 100m. I’ve been a member of Strava for almost 9 years, so it works out at 8 half marathons a year, which isn’t too shabby.

Veloviewer also tells me that I’ve run 11 marathons and 456 10kms. That is one and a quarter marathons every year and a 10km every week. If I continue at my current rate then I will complete my 100th Strava half marathon approximately three years time.

I have also done a number of half marathons before I joined Strava, but my statistical record keeping does not allow me to know exactly how many I’ve completed, although I have done 8 half marathon races before Strava.

Anyway, I quite like 21.1km as a distance; long enough to be a challenge, but short enough that I am not in too much pain the next day.

Strava Freebies

At the start of the UK’s lockdown I reached the milestone of completing 900 Strava Challenges. Naturally I emailed Strava to ask for some free goodies. They said ‘yes’, but that it might take a while as no one is going into the offices at the moment. Well, last week I received a small package containing a t-shirt, socks, water bottle, cap and a couple of stickers, all branded with the Strava logo.

I have to say that the socks and t-shirt fit really well and are incredibly comfortable, so a big ‘thank you’ to Strava.

Since my initial email I have now completed over 1,000 challenges, but I think I’ll wait a bit longer before begging for more freebies.

Running Report Card

One of the good things about Strava is that they like to share the data with third party apps. The most famous is obviously Veloviewer, but City Strides is another site that I like to use. An ultra-running Strava friend recently shared a link to the Running Report Card.

It’s all very easy, just follow the link and connect with Strava. You then get your own personalised report card with a whole load of interesting stats.

As you can see with all of the climbing, Lancaster is fairly hilly.

A fun filled five minutes, but if you run on Strava you should check it out.

Strava Anomaly

I upload pretty much everything to Strava, even two mile walks with my lovely wife and our silly pooch. I used to add walks as a ‘run’ but now that there is a separate walking challenge each month, walks are uploaded as a walk.

However, my Garmin 920 doesn’t have a walk function, so I use the run function, and then when it comes to uploading the walk I change the sport from run to walk. This is where the anomaly occurs. Strava thinks that as this activity is now a walk, it must remove this distance from the monthly running challenge total. As of yesterday I had run 14 miles so far in November, but when I uploaded last night’s 2 miles walk, this total dropped down to 12 miles.

Fortunately there is an easy fix. Leave the challenge and then rejoin and it will display the correct total.

1000 Strava Challenges

I’ve completed 1,000 Strava Challenges. Actually I’m at 1,016 as I hit 1,000 a couple of weeks ago. I still enjoy the challenges, although I think that there might be too many of them. September was the biggest month for ever, completing 52 challenges in one month alone. It took me almost one year to complete that many all those years ago. However, with all these new challenges there are loads that I don’t manage to complete.

I had a thought that maybe I should call it quits and not do any more challenges; leave it at 1,000, but then I completed a few more without realising it. In the end it doesn’t really mean anything, although sometimes it does push me out of the door if I know it is the last day of a challenge and I’m nearly there. I’m definitely fitter for them.

I will keep on doing them, and then I will keep on blogging as I reach ever greater mile stones. Here’s to the next 1,000.

Anyway, you can read about my 300 milestone here, 500 here, and 750 here.

Do you do the Strava Challenges?

Flagged Strava Activity

We’ve all lost a KOM and had a quick look at who the culprit was. I expect that sometimes it is an error. They’ve left their Garmin on while driving home, or logged a ride as a run. I’ve done it a couple of times, and I’ve also had to flag a couple of erroneous activities from friends. Unfortunately, it appears that Strava no longer sends notification if an activity of yours has been flagged. Fortunately, Veloviewer lists any flagged activities you might have. I only upload my Strava activities to Veloviewer once or twice a month, and I’ve had a flagged activity listed for a few years. A two mile walk where the GPS was a bit funky at the start. I couldn’t be bothered to crop the activity so I left it flagged.

However, when I uploaded Veloviewer this week there was a second flagged activity. A hilly 200km ride back in July 2013. At the time I was doing a lot of big rides, and often fairly quick. This ride my average speed was just under 18mph. I have plenty of friends who can average faster over longer distances. There wasn’t anything untoward about my ride, especially as I was wearing a heart rate monitor, so I have absolutely no idea why someone would feel the need to flag it, and I’ve had no reasoning from Strava.

Anyway, I unflagged it and hopefully it will stay that way. Here is a link to that particular ride. Can you see anything wrong with it?

https://www.strava.com/activities/70158098

Strava Local Legends Challenge

The Strava Local Legends feature has been around for a couple of months, which is plenty of time for the excitement to have settled down and for people to have ‘found’ a few segments that they can or are Local Legends. (I first blogged about Local Legends here.) Currently I’m Local Legend on 12 cycling segments and 3 running segments, but that could all change each and every day.

To try and spice up the Local Legend I have come up with a trio of segment based challenges.

1000 Athletes.

Quite simply the challenge is to become the Local Legend on a segment that has been completed by at least 1,000 different athletes in the past 90 days. A couple of the segments where I am Local Legend have over 900 athletes, but they have been over 1,000 a few weeks ago. They probably will again if we have a week or two of nice weather.

100 Efforts

Sometimes it’s not enough to be just the Local Legend, you want to destroy everyone else. Therefore, the second challenge is to complete over 100 efforts of a segment in 90 days. One segment which I cycle along most days and I though that I might be close to the top, has been completed over 80 times by the leader. Breaking it down, you need to complete a segment every day for 80 days, and then twice a day on the other 10 days. Quite a challenge.

An Iconic Segment

Some segments are definitely more iconic than others. For me, this would be any hill segment from Simon Warren’s Toughest Hills books. We’re very lucky here in that climb 76, Jubilee Tower is only a couple of miles away. I’ve climbed it 52 times in the last 8 years. The Local Legend leader has climbed it 49 times in the last 90 days. It also looks like there is a bit of a rivalry, as the second place athlete is on 48. It’s a tough climb and I can’t imagine cycling it that many times, so this is probably the hardest of my three challenges.

Will you be able to manage any of them?

Strava Local Legends

Over the last month I had spotted a couple of friends in America becoming ‘local legends’, in that they had ridden or run a particular segment the most times in the last 90 days. This functionality has now been released in the UK, but only on the mobile App, and I think only to subscribers. If you go to your profile on the App, scroll down to Segments near to the bottom and you will find a tab with all of the segments where you are the local legend. Currently I am the local legend on one cycling segment and five running segments.

Over the last few years I’ve looked at segments less and less, as it has become almost impossible for me to reach the top ten. This function means that segment hunting rewards athletes of all abilities, as speed doesn’t factor into it. I also like how the graph illustrates how many different athletes have done each segment in the last 90 days. Yesterday I was the local legend on a segment that had over 900 athletes completing it. Alas someone else took my local legend status from me. I like how this encourages you to go out, but unlike KOMs, it doesn’t encourage reckless or dangerous cycling.

On the downside, I like to ride or run somewhere new. Whether this be tile hunting with Veloveiwer, or new streets with City Strides. Additionally, the segment above, ‘Bowerham work commute’ is one that once the University is fully open again I will lose. Commuters who ride the same route day in day out will obviously have an advantage for certain segments. You can also see that all of the running segments where I am the local legend I have only run once as they are fairly obscure. The local legend status also isn’t available for every segment; I’m not sure why.

Anyway, I think this is a brilliant addition to Strava as segments were definitely becoming a bit stale.

 

City Strides Salisbury

I have blogged about City Strides a couple of times in the past, and once again I felt that it was time to revisit. Previous blogs can be found here and here.

A couple of months ago I became a supporter for one month, where I paid the minimum for extra features. One of these features allowed you to search for ‘nodes’ from streets not completed, aiding the completion of more streets. The other premium feature was to jump you up the queue for uploads from Strava to City Strides. During the early stages of lock down it sometimes took two or three weeks for a run to be analysed on City Strides if you weren’t a supporter. Fortunately this has been rectified and the lag is currently less than a couple of minutes, so while I haven’t paid extra this time I might in the future once again.

Anyway, this past week I have been ‘working from home’ at my mother’s house in Salisbury. Two birds with one stone in that I can visit for a week without having to take any time off work, one of the few benefits of this whole virus. It also gives me chance to tick off a  few streets away from my home town of Lancaster. One of my earlier criticisms of City Strides was that not all cities were available; Salisbury being one of the missing ones. This has kind of been remedied. I say ‘kind of’ as the whole county of Wiltshire is one city, with over 6,000 streets. Hence why the Strider with the highest completed streets in Wiltshire has completed less than 5% of them. In the last week I have managed to complete 58 new streets,  by far the most I’ve ever managed in one week. However, the current world leader has completed nearly 500 streets this week. He either lives somewhere with lots of very short streets, or he is very good at plotting a route to maximise street capture, something that I’m a bit hit and miss with. Anyway, below is a screen shot of the streets that I have completed in Salisbury, not all from this week as I have run (and walked) on many other occasions over the last few years.

Salisbury

As you can see there are still plenty of ‘low hanging’ streets available to complete next time I’m in the area.

Anyone else out there a fan of City Strides?