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October 18, 2012

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What exactly is the Activity Pacer feature?

by apelosi

Overview

The Activity Pacer feature is a unique training and racing tool exclusive to the Magellan Switch series product line. It utilizes a combination of predefined goals, average speed/pace since the start of your activity, as well as current speed/pace to help you achieve your goals and predict your final outcome.

Example

The easiest way to explain the Activity Pacer feature is with an example. Let’s start with a pretty common one, “I would like to run a full marathon in under 4 hours”. It just so happens that’s the default setup for the 3rd Activity Profile named “MRTHN”. Distance is set to 26.2 miles and time is set to 4:00:00 (pace is auto calculated to 9:09/mi). Let’s assume the race starts at 7:00:00 AM and that’s when you begin recording your activity.

Scenario 1: Ahead of Goal, On/Ahead of Target Pace

Let’s say you have run the first 20 miles in 3 hours giving you an average pace of 9:00/mi. Good job, you’re ahead of your goal! Based on your average pace, you are 3:12 and 0.35 mi ahead and your estimated remaining time is 55:48, estimated total time is 3:55:48 and estimated time of arrival is 10:55:48 AM.

You can slow down to a Target Pace of 9:40/mi for the last 6.2 miles and still achieve your original goal. Since you’re Current Pace (9:28/mi) is as fast or faster than your Target Pace, you will achieve your goal if you continue at your current pace. Way to stay on pace!

 

Scenario 2: Ahead of Goal, Behind Target Pace

Let’s say you have run the first 20 miles in 3 hours giving you an average pace of 9:00/mi. Good job, you’re ahead of your goal! Based on your average pace, you are 3:12 and 0.35 mi ahead and your estimated remaining time is 55:48, estimated total time is 3:55:48 and estimated time of arrival is 10:55:48 AM.

You can slow down to a Target Pace of 9:40/mi for the last 6.2 miles and still achieve your original goal. But since you’re Current Pace (9:52/mi) is slower than your of Target Pace, you will not achieve your goal if you continue at your current pace. Pick it up!

 

Scenario 3: Behind Goal, On/Ahead of Target Pace

Let’s say you have run the first 20 miles in 3 hours and 6 minutes giving you an average pace of 9:18/mi. You’re a bit behind your goal. Based on your average pace, you are 2:47 and 0.31 mi behind and your estimated remaining time is 57:40, estimated total time is 4:04:40 and estimated time of arrival is 11:03:40 AM.

You must speed up to a Target Pace of 8:42/mi for the last 6.2 miles if you still want to achieve your original goal. But since you’re Current Pace (8:40/mi) is as fast or faster than your Target Pace, you will achieve your goal if you continue at your current pace. Way to pick it up!

 

Scenario 4: Behind Goal, Behind Target Pace

Let’s say you have run the first 20 miles in 3 hours and 6 minutes giving you an average pace of 9:18/mi. You’re a bit behind your goal. Based on your average pace, you are 2:47 and 0.31 mi behind and your estimated remaining time is 57:40, estimated total time is 4:04:40 and estimated time of arrival is 11:03:40 AM.

You must speed up to a Target Pace of 8:42/mi for the last 6.2 miles if you still want to achieve your original goal. Since you’re Current Pace (9:20/mi) is slower than your Target Pace, you will not achieve your goal if you continue at your current pace. Pick it up!

 

Configuring Your Goals

The Activity Pacer feature can be enabled/disabled and configured for each Activity Profile. That means you can setup different Activity Profiles, some with the feature enabled, others with it disabled, and different goals for each Activity Profile that has the feature enabled. To access the Activity Pacer configuration, first go to Settings Mode (hold Down button until a Menu appears and select Settings). Then navigate to “Activity Profile > All Profiles > [Activity Profile] > Activity Pacer”. From here you can enable/disable the feature, set what goals to specify, and specify the distance, time and/or speed/pace goals. Make sure you’ve activated the Activity Profile you’ve configured. You can select the Active Activity Profile by navigating to “Activity Profile > Active: [Activity Profile]” and selecting the Activity Profile from the list.

Tracking Your Progress

Head back to Activity Mode (hold Down button until a Menu appears and select Activity). Depending on the goals specified, you will be presented with either 1 or 2 additional data screens (press Up and Down buttons to navigate between available data screens). Begin your activity recording (press the Record/Enter button). The values of the data fields on those additional data screens will constantly update to help you achieve your original goals as well as present you with estimates based on your progress thus far.

When specifying 2 goals instead of just 1 (distance & time, distance & speed/pace, or time & speed/pace), the Activity Pacer feature is able to tell you not only whether you are ahead or behind your specified goals, but more importantly exactly how fast you need to move from now until the end (Target Speed/Pace) in order to achieve your goals as well as your estimated finishing results if you continue moving at the same Average Speed/Pace. The color of the Target Speed/Pace field will inverse if it is slower than the Speed/Pace goal specified/calculated to give you a visual indicator to pick it up if you want to achieve your original goals. The color of the Target Speed/Pace, Time Behind and Distance Behind fields will inverse if your Average Speed/Pace is slower than the Speed/Pace goal specified/calculated to give you a visual indicator you are behind your original goals.

All the Nitty Gritty Details

There is 6 different ways you can setup the Activity Pacer feature depending on the goals you choose to define. The following shows what additional data fields and indicators are displayed based on the goals specified.

  • Distance + Time:
    • Goals: Specify a distance & time and the speed/pace is automatically calculated. Used to complete an activity of a predetermined distance within a specified time goal. For example, “I would like to run 26.2 miles in 4 hours (9:09/mi pace)”.
    • Data Fields: Displays two additional data screens with Current Speed/Pace, Target Speed/Pace, Time Ahead/Behind and Distance Ahead/Behind on one screen and Remaining Distance, Estimated Remaining Time, Estimated Total Time and Estimated Time of Arrival on the other screen.
    • Indicators: If your Current Speed/Pace is slower than your Target Speed/Pace, the color of the Current Speed/Pace field will be inversed to alert you to pick it up if you want to achieve your original goals. If you are behind your specified goals based on your Average Speed/Pace, the color of the Target Speed/Pace, Time Behind and Distance Behind fields will be inversed to alert you that you are behind your specified goals.
  • Distance + Speed/Pace:
    • Goals: Specify a distance & speed/pace and the time is automatically calculated. Used to complete an activity of a predetermined distance within a specified speed/pace goal. For example, “I would like to run 26.2 miles at 9:09/mi pace (4 hours)”.
    • Data Fields: Displays two additional data screens with Current Speed/Pace, Target Speed/Pace, Time Ahead/Behind and Distance Ahead/Behind on one screen and Remaining Distance, Estimated Remaining Time, Estimated Total Time and Estimated Time of Arrival on the other screen.
    • Indicators: If your Current Speed/Pace is slower than your Target Speed/Pace, the color of the Current Speed/Pace field will be inversed to alert you to pick it up if you want to achieve your original goals. If you are behind your specified goals based on your Average Speed/Pace, the color of the Target Speed/Pace, Time Behind and Distance Behind fields will be inversed to alert you that you are behind your specified goals.
  • Time + Speed/Pace:
    • Goals: Specify a time and speed/pace and the distance is automatically calculated. Used to complete an activity of a predetermined time with a specified speed/pace goal. For example, “I would like to run 1 hour at 7:30/mi pace (8 miles)”.
    • Data Fields: Displays two additional data screens with Current Speed/Pace, Target Speed/Pace, Time Ahead/Behind and Distance Ahead/Behind on one screen and Remaining Time, Time of Arrival, Estimated Remaining Distance and Estimated Total Distance on the other screen.
    • Indicators: If your Current Speed/Pace is slower than your Target Speed/Pace, the color of the Current Speed/Pace field will be inversed to alert you to pick it up if you want to achieve your original goals. If you are behind your specified goals based on your Average Speed/Pace, the color of the Target Speed/Pace, Time Behind and Distance Behind fields will be inversed to alert you that you are behind your specified goals.
  • Distance:
    • Goals: Specify a distance (time and speed/pace are irrelevant). Used to complete an activity of a predetermined distance with no time or speed/pace goal. For example, “I would like to run 8 miles, let’s see how long it takes me.”
    • Data Fields: Displays one additional data screen with Remaining Distance, Estimated Remaining Time, Estimated Total Time and Estimated Time of Arrival.
    • Indicators: None.
  • Time:
    • Goals: Specify a time (distance and speed/pace are irrelevant). Used to complete an activity of a predetermined time with no distance or speed/pace goal. For example, “I would like to run for 1 hour, let’s see how far I can go in that time.”
    • Data Fields: Displays one additional data screen with Remaining Time, Time of Arrival, Estimated Remaining Distance and Estimated Total Distance.
    • Indicators: None.
  • Speed/Pace:
    • Goals: Specify a speed/pace (distance and time are irrelevant). Used to complete an activity of a predetermined speed/pace with no distance or time. For example, “Let’s see how far and long I can go at 7:30/mi pace.”
    • Data Fields: Displays one additional data screen with Current Speed/Pace, Average Speed/Pace, Time Ahead/Behind and Distance Ahead/Behind.
    • Indicators: If Average Speed/Pace is slower than your specified Speed/Pace goal, the color of the Average Speed/Pace, Time Behind and Distance Behind fields will be inversed to alert you that you are behind your specified goals.

Take Away

Activity Pacer is a powerful feature that can help you achieve your training and race goals. Don’t let this comprehensive explanation scare you. Once you use Activity Pacer, you’ll see that it’s easy to set up and intuitive to use. You’ll no longer have to burn calories doing math in your head and you can re-purpose that energy to achieving your personal bests!

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1 Comment Post a comment
  1. Bertoni
    Oct 1 2015

    Hi,

    I would like to know if it is possible to upload a GPX file in the watch and then follow the breadcrumbs in the navigation screen. Also, if that GPX file has time and peace itself, I would like to know if then the watch would tell me if I am behind or ahead the virtual runner. In other words, I’d like to compete against myself.

    Thank you!

    Reply

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