Firstly I realised that my iPhone 5 battery was not likely to last the entire 12 hours, especially if I had live tracking on. So I bought a 2800mAh external battery backup Power Bank cover that I slipped onto my phone to give it extended life. This worked amazingly well, and I ended the day with 50% batter power. However as the drama of the day would have it, I forgot to turn life tracking on at the start of the race, so was not losing additional power on internet activity. I could do nothing about it afterwards without restarting my RunKeeper workout - which would have messed all my race times. So it would be nice if RunKeeper had a way to turn on Live Tracking at any stage, even if an activity has been started. So friends and family were left to follow my progress via SMS updates sent via timing mats or using "Find my iPhone".
It was really nice being able watch my progress on my watch rather than having to haul out my phone or have irritating audio prompts. I normally use a Garmin Forerunner 305, but this has run one race too many and now rests in peace. So I was totally in the hands of new technology - the latest in smart watches and RunKeeper.
Comrades is a huge event, placing huge demands on the body, and it is vital to know what your pace is in order to complete this race. Runkeeper is really good at doing this and provides useful information, although at the moment it only gives limited, but important information on the Pebble watch - Pace, Time, Distance.
For some reason my RunKeeper displays a strange block when displaying the distance on the Pebble. So instead of 10:27 it shows a block, as depicted alongside. This is a minor annoyance. What I am a little disappointed with, considering I really am a big fan of RunKeeper, is there support. As an "elite" customer (you pay to be elite), I reported this to them on May 15 (now 3 weeks ago) and have not heard anything from them!
Also I found as the distance got higher and higher it started to drop the decimal numbers and displayed, for example, 63:...km. However, this too was not a big deal as I mainly needed my pace, time and distance.
This is new technology. I was so pleased that my Pebble arrived literally 2 weeks before the big event AND RunKeeper integration happened at about the same time. The timing was awesome, but the technology new.
There is still quite a bit of work to be done to make the integration of RunKeeper and Pebble robust. Besides the strange display and going off near the end, it also would not let me start and pause, which it has always done. Race day nerves for the app?
In terms of the Pebble watch - Pebble Rocks! One of the BEST things was being able to see text messages from friends and family on my watch during the run. You are too tired to grab your phone and read them but I could see their messages as I was running and this made a huge difference. It would have been nice if Facebook messages had also come through, but again this integration does not seem to work properly.
The future of Pebble + RunKeeper + SMS + Facebook + Other is amazing for running. It's still not stable and while cutting edge technos, like myself, love it, for the rest you might want to wait a few more months for the dust to settle and the shiny pebbles to emerge.
...and I finished...just, with about 7 minutes to spare! Crazy...until number 9!
Yours in running easy