Thursday, March 6, 2008

The VP of 3P

Runners Lounge Take it and Run Thursday this week is all about Gadgets, Gear and Equipment. With that in mind I wanted to introduce you to my little friend, here he is and he is little but when I have a bad day boy can he kick my butt! He is the VP of 3P; pace, performance and perseverance he is Virtual Partner! He is a duathlete; he rides a bike; both mountain and road and he runs; roads and trails and he is always just ahead or just behind me!

I admit that I am a running gadget freak, my side table drawer is laden with them; Polar watches, iPod, Nike+, several abandoned MP3 players, stopwatches, extra headphones, Bluetooth thingys and cables, chargers and batteries for all of them and more. One gadget that never gets a coating of dust, well unless I am running through the desert, which happens, is my trusty Garmin 305. My 305, you have got to love this thing, I have had mine nearly a year have piled on over 1000 miles on it and it’s never let me down. It has a feature rich menu of options which I won’t go into in depth as I know a lot of you have one but the VP is one I have only started using recently and at the moment only on my road bike while on the trainer. To do this you need to use the Garmin Cadence Monitor which is easy to fit, self calibrating and costs around $30. Another sensible option is the quick release strap which allows you mount the watch body onto your handlebars and gives you a longer strap that can go over clothing if you running in the winter, ok enough of the Garmin product placement. Programming VP is a cinch, distance and time are the two setting and it calculates you pace for you combine this with the pace alert, press start and you’re in good shape.

For the solo trainer like myself the VP provides some stiff competition, he never warms up or eases off nor does he draft! He never gets injured, well unless you really drop him and he will be there come rain or shine. For a runner he provides a sensible balance and makes getting on the bike more fun through the addition of a little competition. After you workout you can use Garmin Training Centre to compare runs/rides to see where and if you’re improving, you should be improving right?!?

Go on, press Mode and dig into that menu, your Virtual Partner is waiting to be unleashed.


  1. If only VP would motivate me. She'd probably just piss me off and then I'd have to buy a new one. Sad, but true.

  2. I still have yet to use him. He kind of scares me to be honest with you. I have a feeling he would probably kick my butt and then I'd be sad the rest of the day that some computer generated image beat me at running LOL

  3. I have never actually used my VP. Maybe I should. :)

    Thanks for the post.

  4. Oddly...I've never used VP. I have no idea how to set it up. Maybe Sunday I'll play around with it, it's a 'fun' run.

  5. How do you know VP is a "he"? :)

  6. My Garmin 201... sucks. Sorry.. it's true. the signal is the worst. once in a race I used the virtual partner and liked it... until i almost fell in a pothole in the road. i was so focused on my garmin. It was kind of funny!

    I always say that I am not into the gadgets but the truth is I AM!!

    Cool stuff!!

  7. I haven't leaped into the world of Garmin yet - someday...

    I am keeping this is a note for my wish list.

  8. With the amount of time I spend running around on the trails by myself in grizzly bear country, ya reckon I would own a GPS so I could at minimum see distance and elevation BUT no....I just bought myself this super-cool techy thing called....a "watch"!!

  9. I thought I was a gadget freak until....I met you.
    I will have to say I do love my Garmin 305, but have never used it to it's full potential. I have never used the VP feature.
    I know, I know, I don't know what I am missing.

    I have dropped my iPod from my list of running gadgets unless I am on a treadmill.

  10. Thanks for stopping by and for commenting! I was noticing your marathon times...I HOPE that I can someday keep a 9:28 pace for 26.2 miles! Awesome!!


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