Well I've had the Stryd Power Meter for a couple of weeks now. When I purchased the device, I also purchased, the digital book "Run with Power" by Jim Vance to help me learn the intricacies of how to use the device. The book recommended to run normally without paying too much attention to the wattage or any other data provided by the Stryd Powercenter website. Well that is actually more difficult then it sounds. The little power window on my Vivoactive behaved just like a power meter on a bicycle. When I ran up a hill, the power numbers went up; when I ran down a hill, my numbers went down. When I sprinted, again the numbers increased and when I slowed down, they would decrease. Certainly there seemed to be some technology that was measuring something in the way of my effort.
In my first post, I was confused because when I checked my run on Strava. The run cadence was over 300 and the power numbers were not present. A quick check with the internet forums, I found that Strava run power activities need to be saved as a bike ride. That corrected the situation, but now my run mileage was showing up as bike mileage. As a triathlete who likes to follow his statistics this is mildly irritating but certainly not a deal breaker. For now, it is best to use the Stryd Powercenter to analyze your runs
The reason you buy a Stryd is for the data! Everyone's favourite.
For now I have only used the Stryd Powercenter web app to view my runs. First up, the effort map
This was a run that had some hill repeats, some easy running and some walking. As you can see, the red line signifies higher effort while the green is lower effort. Alright, that is kind of pretty but it does not really show you much.
Let's check out the expanded stats
As the picture shows, there are a number of new metrics you get to play around with. The definitions as follows:
Many of the metrics most athletes would be familiar with but look at some knew ones:
Leg Spring Stiffness (LSS): from the Stryd Blog "Think of your leg as a spring upon which your body “bounces." The stiffer the spring, the less energy you must produce to propel yourself forward with each step. This new metric measures the stiffness of the muscles and tendons in your leg. Increases in LSS can indicate economy improvement over time." The higher the number the better
Form Power : again from the blog "is essentially your “running in place” power. It is another metric that is now available in Stryd’s PowerCenter. Decreases in your Form Power over time, when running at similar training speeds, is a good indication that you have improved your running economy. Highly trained and economical runners may already have near optimal running form but can monitor how Form Power changes with fatigue.
Vertical Oscillation (VO): This is a measurement of how much your torso (centre of gravity) bounces up and down. In running, energy is both used to propel you forward and up and down (lifting the legs off the ground). Minimizing this 'bounce' can be beneficial as more energy is used to propel you forward instead of up and. Here, the lower the number the better.
Ground Contact Time (GCT): The amount of time your feet actually spend on the ground can be measured to help indicate where further efficiencies in running can be obtained. As your running pace increases, the contact time should decrease.
So far, the device has performed as expected. I am attempting to learn to use it properly and dare I say, writing a blog about it is helping me understand how to use it.
Up next in part 3: The power test
Do you a Stryd or any of the new Garmin watches that also measure some of the same metrics?Let me know what you think in the comments. Feel free to ask a question too, if you need some more help.