Running Gear Review – Nike Plus Vs Garmin Forerunner 205-305 GPS

As a gadget and tech junkie, it was to my good fortune that my initiation into the world of distance running roughly coincided with the appearance on the market of several new high-tech running gadgets: the Garmin Forerunner 205 and 305, and the Nike+ system. I have used both the Garmin Forerunner 205 and Nike+ for greater than 6 months each, and what follows is a review and comparison of my experiences with them.

The Nike+ System

Back in 2007, I was just beginning my life as a runner, and I was looking for tools to help me progress. The Garmin Forerunner and Nike+ systems both had instant appeal to my techie side, however I was initially hesitant to invest the several hundred dollars (at the time) needed to buy a Forerunner. I was also swept up in the excitement surrounding the introduction of the Nike+ system, and my first pair of “real” running shoes were Nike+ ready. Since I owned an Ipod Nano, and had shoes that could accommodate the little Nike+ foot pod accelerometer internally, I decided to give Nike + a try. In the interest of full disclosure, I’ll say at the outset that I no longer use the Nike+. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean that I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone since it does have its benefits and uses. The Nike+ certainly helped my running in those early days, and the motivation provided by the on-line Nike+ challenges was great. I liked being able to gauge my pace, track distance, and record my runs on-line. But for a perfectionist like myself, the Nike+ has some major drawbacks.

The most serious problem I had with the Nike+ was that it was only really accurate if I ran at the same steady pace on every run, and stuck to more-or-less flat ground. Any deviation from the pace you calibrate it at messes up both the pacing data as well as the distance recording for your run, and at times I found these measurements to be quite far off. Now, for many runners this is not a big deal, but if you like to mix up your training and include things like intervals, tempo runs, and long, slow runs, the Nike+ comes up way short. Furthermore, for me as a road racer, tenths of a mile and accurate pacing data matter a lot, so these shortcomings presented some major problems. That being said, I’m glad that I used it, and it did help a lot when I first started out. Even after I upgraded to the Garmin Forerunner 205, I did still continue to use Nike+ for treadmill runs (this probably goes without saying, but GPS doesn’t work on a treadmill). The Nike+ recordings on a treadmill are accurate enough, and in my case are more accurate than the readout of my treadmill’s own data console (it has never worked quite right for some reason).

I do believe that the Nike+ can be a valuable tool for a new or recreational runner. It’s cheap (less than $30.00), so it won’t dent your wallet too much if you decide you don’t like it, and the website and on-line community associated with Nike+ are both motivational and interesting. If you’re a new runner just starting out, or an experienced runner who tends to run most of your runs at the same pace, then the Nike+ would be a great addition to your running toolbox, and would surely provide some motivation for you to hit the road. However, as mentioned above, it has some major drawbacks for a serious runner who cares about missing tenths of a mile or needs really accurate pacing information.

Garmin Forerunner 205/305 GPS Wristwatch

If you want a personal running computer that will allow you to take your running to the next level and permit you to mix up your training runs with speed and long distance, you’re going to need something more than Nike+. I, unfortunately, am a perfectionist, and the inaccuracy of the pacing and distance data provided by Nike+ continually bugged me (and I was growing tired of mapping my runs on-line to figure out actual distances that I had covered). So, after about six months of consistent use, I decided to relegate the Nike+ to the treadmill only, and I asked Santa for a Garmin Forerunner 205 for Christmas. Sure enough, the fancy new GPS wristwatch was in my stocking, and it has not been absent from my wrist during a run in over a year. Simply stated, this is one of the coolest and most useful gadgets of any kind that I own, and it has allowed my running to progress in ways that probably would not have otherwise occurred.

First, let me explain the difference between the two current-generation Garmin Forerunner models (a fancy new waterproof model is on the way – the Garmin Forerunner 310 XT – but I’ll explain in a bit why I’d still go for one of the current ones for now if you’re considering a purchase). The two current models are the Forerunner 205 and the Forerunner 305. The only real differences between the two watches (besides color – the 205 is blue, and the 305 is red) are that the 305 can sync with an included heart rate monitor, an optional foot pod accelerometer (for the treadmill), and an optional speed-and-cadence sensor for your bike. Otherwise, from what I can gather, they are virtually identical. Given the minor price difference between the two Forerunners (about $10.00-$15.00 more for the 305), it would seem to make sense to go with the 305 if you’ve decided to buy a Forerunner.

So, I have now been using the Forerunner 205 regularly for over a year, and I have absolutely nothing but good things to say about it. The pacing data is right on (I have run enough chip-timed races with the 205 to verify this), as is the distance data. In addition to time, current pace, and distance, I have three data screens (which is the max on the 205/305) set up to show such variables as average pace, elevation, percent grade, calories burned, and time of day. Of all of these, the only one that seems somewhat iffy from time to time is the elevation, though if you smooth it out in one of the training programs that sync with the Forerunner, elevation patterns look pretty good as well. So far, I have pretty much exclusively used the Forerunner in its most basic mode – to simply track my data while I run. It is possible to configure things like training/pacing partners and interval workouts on the watch, and to use it as a (very) basic real-time GPS mapping device for things like hiking, but I haven’t used it much for this. In addition to running, I have used it while walking, snowshoeing, and biking (less extensively), and it works great for all of the above.

For me, the two features that matter most from a training and racing standpoint are accurate pacing and distance measurements, and as I said above this is where the Forerunner blows away the Nike+. I actually trust the Forerunner more than most of the on-line mapping programs when it comes to calculating distance, and being able to import all of my data into the computer is great. For the latter, I have skipped the included Garmin Training Center software and instead use an amazing, free program called Sportracks. Sportracks downloads all of the data from the Forerunner and lets you look at it in almost any way that you could possibly want. Among other things, Sportracks gives you GPS route maps, tons of data graphing options (e.g., pace vs. distance, pace vs. elevation, mile splits, etc.), and keeps a detailed running log that includes run times/dates, weather conditions pulled from the internet, distances run, and calories burned. As a scientist who loves data, Garmin Forerunner + Sportracks makes me one very happy runner.

A few last comments about some potential concerns with the Forerunner bear mentioning. One of the concerns I initially had about these watches was their size. Yes, they are big, but I have never noticed it as a nuisance while running, and I actually think the size is a positive rather than a negative since it makes it easier to read your data on the go. This is one of the major reasons why I would probably not consider upgrading to the newer and smaller Forerunner 405 – if you pack too many data streams on a small screen then things could get awful hard to read at mile 20 of a marathon. The other concern someone in the market for a GPS watch might have is the forthcoming new Garmin Forerunner 310 XT, which is waterproof to 50m and offers wireless data transfer. It would take a lot of new bells and whistles for me to spend an extra $100-$200 to choose to purchase the new 310 XT over the current 205 or 305. The new watch looks sportier, and the wireless sync feature is nice, but I don’t really care if I can dive to 50m with it on. If for some reason I’m out for a run and I wind up 50m underwater, I probably won’t be resurfacing to make it back home anyway (though in all seriousness, I can see how the 310 XT might be useful to a triathlete). For me, I’ll stick with the 205/305.

Hopefully I’ve given you a feel for what the Garmin Forerunner 205/305 can do. Really, there’s probably a lot more that it is capable of than what I have discussed here, but the best way to experience it is to try it out. As a runner who has now completed 1,266.01 miles (did I mention that I love accuracy!) with the Garmin Forerunner 205 (and it’s still going strong, with no major problems), I can honestly say that next to my running shoes, this is the most essential piece of running gear that I own. I highly recommend the Forerunner – get one and you won’t be disappointed.

A Home Insurance Guide For New Home Owners

To cover your private home, you need the best insurance policy which is the home insurance policy. It offers personal insurance protections, and liability insurance for home accidents.

Home insurance policies work with time. This means it expires. This policy has 7 major types;
i. Major homeowners insurance: this covers both the home and property against losses caused by disasters like vehicles; fire (lightening, volcano eruption, aircraft, wind, vandalism, self damages, smoke, theft, explosion and others.
ii. Also the basic homeowners insurance covers damages done by falling objects, water, electricity and snow including the first coverage.
iii. This covers the above coverage and also special items.
iv. This plan is also called renters insurance coverage and it protects and covers personal items / properties.
v. This particular plan provides your building and property full risk coverage.
vi. Your personal property is covered from disaster and it is called cadmium coverage.
vii. This plan insures older homes with historic value and it is restricted to monetary values ​​and repairs of the items in question.

Without insurance, you can still legally own a house. But it will be hard to establish a business relationship with any mortgagor.

When you desire a home desire a house insurance policy, you will be asked to present information on your kind of house, the value of your possession, and the kind of coverage you want. Your premium rate will be determined by the kind of liability coverage you desire.

To get a policy with reduced rate you need homeowners' insurance quotes.

Where to get the cheapest quotes from a trusted websites?

Work at Home Business – How to Choose the Right One

The first time I thought about starting an Internet based business was several years ago when the company I worked for decide to do some serious cutting back. Although I did avoid being laid off, my paycheck was nearly reduced by one half. To even have a job was something I was grateful for, but my new reduced paycheck was not even coming close to paying the bills and living the lifestyle I had become accustom to.

Since I felt myself to be somewhat computer literate, I figure I could make a living on-line. After all everything I saw and read showed me it was the easiest and fastest money I would ever make. The truth is I was spending a lot of money and seeing absolutely no return on the money I was investing in all of these "programs" that promised me I would so be sitting on some tropical island drinking from a coconut and soaking up the sun.

I must have tried half of the programs out there at one point and it did not take long to realize that the $ 10 for this program and the $ 49 for that program that I was spending was getting me no where but further in trouble as far as finances go. The more I did and the more I tried the broker I seem to become. I even stopped for about six months because I became so dis-enchanted with it all.

It was after this break that I slowly started thinking that there has to be a way to make money on-line. I figured if I quit jumping from program to program and picked one to work on and owe myself to it that maybe I could succeed. At that point i did more research and decided I needed to build a list of subscribers I could market to. I found what I thought was a good program and sure enough I started building a small list of opt ins to market to.

The next step was what to market. I did learn the first time around if it cost nothing to get into a particular business, then nothing is more than likely what you will get out of it and that is exactly what I got. The lesson there for me was that this is a business, and in the real world how can you expect a business that does not cost anything to start make you money enough to live on? You simply can not.

The beauty of having an Internet based business is despite you rarely making anything from nothing, with even a minimal investment of one hundred dollars, you can start a profitable business that will build into something you can make a good living from. I finally hit on a business that will allow me to retire at least several years ahead of my official retirement age (I am now 56) and finally see some degree of success.

This is something that yes you have to work at, but it is real and it is an investment and the best part, it cost less than $ 100 to start. There is a monthly web maintenance fee, but lets face it. if you are going to have a business whether it is a brick and mortar or on-line based, there are operating costs involved. That's why when we make more than we spend it is called profit. I do not know why that was so hard for me to get in my head when I first started, but hat is the way it is.

What this business is based on is helping people sell their big ticket items like cars, campers, boats, planes and even houses. Most people either advertise their stuff on EBay or Craig's-list, and some are successful and that is great. The problem is simply that the two places I just mentioned are single sites where your ad is posted one time per site.

What we do is post ads for them and post to multiple sites at a time so giving them ten or even twenty times the exposure and so increasing their chances of finally selling their item and selling it faster faster than they could otherwise. This is a huge advantage for anyone wanting to sell their item, especially in this economy.

The one thing I like is that this will be capped at a maximum of 10,000 affiliates world wide so that the people who do choose to be a part of this business are assured they will make plenty of money as compared to some on-line businesses that have five or six times as many "associates" and only the top five percent or so actually do well.

I am happy to finally have found something that is real, profitable, and recession proof that I can count on to help me retire far ahead of my original plans, and help me live more comfortably along the way. Yes I have to work at it and yes it does take some of my free time, but I found out early on that the old saying still holds true. You can not get something for nothing. Big Ticket Depot and Big Value Depot are proving to be valid rivals for a share of the online auction industry. Maybe you need to look at this opportunity to see how easy it is for you have your own work at home business, and break free from your current situation.

Use Financial Calculators To Realize Your Financial Goals

Online money calculators are a good way to keep your financial future in check. You can find these calculators for free online to determine things like your monthly mortgage payments, the amount of money you will need to save in order to reach a goal, or to compare loan and investment terms. As a result, these calculators can prove to be very worthwhile to just about anyone interested in planning and preparing for their financial future.

Types of Financial Calculators Available

There are many different types of financial calculators that can be found online. The one you choose will there before be dependent on the task which you would like to perform. There are investment calculators, mortgage calculators, car loan calculators, retirement calculators, debt management calculators and credit card calculators. Based on this list you should be able to see that there is a calculator to suit just about any financial situation you may have.

Information Needed to Use Financial Calculators

The type of calculator that you choose to use will determine the nature of the information needed. In the case of loans, like your mortgages, credit cards and auto loans, you will generally need to enter the interest rate at which the loan will be charged, the amount being borrowed and the duration for which the loan will last. Other information will of course be needed in the case of a mortgage calculator.

Savings calculators like your investment and retirement calculator generally require the interest rate at which money will be earned, the duration for which you plan to save and in some cases the amount you plan to save, whether monthly, bi-monthly or yearly. In the case of retirement calculators you would need to enter additional information depending on the retirement scheme being used.

Benefits of the Financial Calculators

These calculators can be used to provide you with a wealth of information. For instance, if you a set financial goal, these calculators can be used to determine how much you need to save each month at a given interest rate for a set time period to meet your goal. This can greatly help you in designing your budget to meet both your present and future needs.

In addition, if you plan on purchasing a new house or car, you can use these calculators to help you decide the price range that you can afford. This will help to prevent you from choosing something that will only put you in debt. If you have credit card debts that you would love to erase, you can also use this medium to help you determine the amount you need to pay each month so as to completely erase your debt with time.