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America, March 15, 2010

4 Reasons Why RunKeeper is the Best iPhone App for Runners

Running across Petworth
I'm a runner. I love to run. And I run around the world. But I really dislike most of the run tracking tools.

For the longest time, I lived by the Garmin Forerunner 205 but as cool as it is to track my runs with GPS, the watch was a pain to use. It always took forever to get a fix and sometimes it would loose GPS tracking in the middle of a run. Worse, the run tracking software is crap.

Then I found RunKeeper, by the way that its been most influential on my running - a Facebook post. I saw a cool run map on Justin Thorp's profile and clicked through to what is an amazing iPhone application.

Here's the 4 reasons why Runkeeper has bettered my runs:

  1. RunKeeper is quick and easy: As an app on my iPhone, I don't need to track yet another gizmo or its power cord. And its just too simple to use - tap on the app & tap on "Start Activity" - and off you go!
  2. Runkeeper starts up fast: The Garmin always took 3-5 minutes to get a fix - no fun on a cold day or when pressed for time. The RunKeeper app is working before I can decide which way to run
  3. Speed, Distance & Pace shout outs: I cannot stress how motivational this feature is. Every 5 minutes, Runkeeper tells me my progress, which has helped tremendously with keeping up my pace and quickening my overall run. Its empowered my inner coach to keep me going and make me faster.
  4. Facebook integration with maps!: Like I said at the begining, RunKeeper can post cool maps to your to Facebook, which are my most popular Wall posts. Knowing that my friends are watching my workouts is great peer pressure reinforcement to run faster and more often
Now RunKeeper can do even more than this, but these 4 features have me hooked already. And its so much better than Nike+, where I have to remember to put a doodad in my shoe - hard when you run in multiple pairs of shoes.

So enough of me rhapsodizing on how great the iPhone app is - get Runkeeper today!

PS: This is an honest love for Runkeeper - I don't get any benefit from them for writing this post or you clicking on a link. I just want you to run better & more often

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I LOVE RunKeeper myself, will probably never by the ForeRunner, but I fear that once I start running longer distances (over 15) that the battery will run dead before I finish. That is the only down side IMO. Other that, awesome data. I love it.

Caleb, I've not had an issue with the iPhone running through its battery with RunKeeper - after an hour/7 miles, its used ~30% of the battery. So you'd need at least 3 hours of running to kill a full battery. I'd be worn out long before the battery!

Two battery-saving tips: First, turn off 3G. Second, even more important, click your iPhone's lock button at the top once RK starts to "sleep" the screen. You should get 4-5 hours now. Longest I've done so far is a 3 hour bike ride and still had about 20% battery left. Hope this helps!

i had a garmin 305 for 5 years & loved it. it always worked great for me. never had any problems. uploaded all my runs to their website and was able to post every run/map to facebook, etc. it was great. but it just died. the back completely cracked & moisture got inside it. so i had to decide. spend $350 for one (1st one was a gift from my husband) or try to use the iphone my wonderful husband gave me as a gift last xmas. i decided to be smart & utilize this fancy iphone. read many reviews & decided to try runkeeper free version first figuring i'd not like it compared to my garmin & have to try many other apps. i have used it for 2 weeks now and I love it. i don't get heart rate as with my garmin 305 but i guess i can live without it. and the maps on the runkeeper website aren't interactive from what i can tell. garmin's website garmin connect let's you open the maps in regular google maps & it has a player where you can play your run route and pause & resume it any where along the route. but i guess i can live without that also. so for "free" it's great. and i'm carrying less stuff on my runs. it's an mp3 player for tunes, cell phone for safety & gps tracker for logging runs all in one. can't beat that.

another tip for saving battery i read on another review, turn off wi-fi before starting activity. forgot to do this on my 2nd run & my battery was almost depleted on a 6 mile/67 min run. i'm training for a half marathon & i need my battery to last 13 miles.

The RunKeeper website is very interactive - as you track speed and altitude on the horizontal bar, you can exactly where on the map the runner was. Much better visuals and functionality that Garmin's desktop software. I never tired their web-based run reports.

But regardless of functionality, Garmin requires you to sync with a laptop, while RunKepper does it automagiclly right from the iPhone - no syncing required.

Last battery tip: don't use RunKeeper's (or any) music music program. I know some people need the crutch, but running in an auditory cocoon is dangerous to you & others.

Another good tip for saving battery, on app's settings, turn off send location data.
You'll save a lot of baterry (trust me). All you have to is resend to runkeeper your activity after you finish it.
Hope it helps anyone...

RunKeeper FTW.

A new feature I'm digging is the ability to broadcast your status in a race live on the Web is pretty hot. Used it today for the Cherry Blossom 10 miler.

I've read your review about the app, yet i can't see why you 've name it the best iphone app. The 4 reasons above are the must have feature for almost any of the other apps available. You could have name it most popular or something like that, but my advise is to search around a little, check out the other apps, and then share your attitudes with the rest of the world.

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