Thursday, 17 March 2011

Review: dailymile

Having seen the dailymile widgets on a number of other blogs i decided to take a look at it and see how it compares to the tool that Ive been using for tracking my millage.

First off i was a little put off by the fact that i had to signup before i could find out anything particularly much from their website, my first visit a few weeks ago i couldnt be bothered, but this time i decided to give it a trial. Especially since my current tool hasnt got any widgets for this blog, or not that im aware of.

I like that i can use my facebook account to sign-in. Keeps things simpler for a forgetful old codger like me. An import of my workouts from my Garmin Connect account was also very easy. The training overviews are good and easily understandable, perhapes not quite as detailed as my current tool, but then again for details i go directly to my garmin connect account.

I found the challenges, and signed up directly for a couple of them, Ive found having a concrete goal to work towards that tracks my progress closely is a good way to keep me honest in my training. I also found the upcoming races under events, including Vieena.

I also now understand why i see the dailymile widgets on many blogs, the integration of their widget especially into blogger was a one click process.

I found that dailymile also supports gear tracking, in particular im interested in tracking how many miles i have on each pair of shoes, this is a simple process and occurs at the time you import a workout from garmin connect. Only issue i had was that the existing distance on the shoes when adding a new pair is in miles even though i have dailymile set to display in km... mean i had to hunt out a converter and convert the km's given by my other tool into miles first... not a biggie but a small annoyance.

I have also noticed that dailymile seems to be struggling with its success, Ive seen regular error screens indicating timeouts, or other errors as ive navigated around the site. usually a refresh fixes the problem.
So far im very impressed with daily mile, im still finding all the features and will extend this review a little more as i become more familiar with it.

UPDATE 30-Mar:

Ive been using dailymile for a couple of weeks now, after an initial first few days where i got to see the error screen a few times in the last week and a half i havent seen it at all.

another feature that i didnt notice at first was the groups, joining a group gives access to a group specific forum, so for instance the first time marathoners group i joined has lots of questions directly dealing with running your first marathon.

A big part of dailymile that i didnt mention in my intial post is the social side of it. dailymile may not have the most active forums, or the best training analysis tools, but what it does do is support social interaction very well. Your home page shows you a feed of all your friends activities, there are a number of encouragement 'badges' that you can give to people for their workout efforts, or you can just add a few words of encouragement in a comment.

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