“Being able to share my race experience with my family and others with an improved level of detail via RaceJoy was pretty awesome.”
On May 14, Rob Gomez, placed first and won the Maine Coast Marathon with a finish time of 2:34 averaging 5:54 minute miles. Rob’s time would have been even less if it weren’t for an unintentional detour at the race caused by a volunteer accidently sending people the wrong way (something we actually see more than you would expect and something all race organizers and runners clearly wish to avoid). It was a cold and rainy day and Rob chose to run with his phone and use RaceJoy so that his family could track his location and progress since they could not make it to the race site.
We get some of the faster elite runners using RaceJoy, but many prefer not to carry their phone and are concerned that the extra weight might slow them down. Clearly, this was not an issue for Rob as he flew through the course.
We asked Rob a few questions about using RaceJoy…
-Why did you use RaceJoy?
Both my mom and my daughter wanted to follow my progress in the race but neither could make it to the course to watch in person. So, I thought using the RaceJoy app would be a great way for them to follow my progress more closely from afar than more traditional online tracking methods allow.
-Were you concerned that carrying your phone would slow you down?
A little bit, but I had run with my phone in my hand on numerous occasions before, even during workouts, and I realized that it didn’t bother me that much to carry it that way. It was raining pretty hard on race day so before the race I just started the tracking on the app and then put my phone in a Ziploc bag before stuffing it in an iPhone carrying arm band. The phone stayed perfectly dry and the arm band kept the phone close to my shoulder and therefore closer to my center of mass; that way, I was able to expend less energy carrying the phone during the race (as opposed to carrying it in my hand). Besides, an iPhone 6S is only a little over 3oz, so we’re not talking a lot of weight. In the end, carrying the phone didn’t bother me at all. An extra 3oz of weight isn’t going to slow anyone down very much – we’re talking maybe a few seconds over the course of an entire marathon. I was more than willing to make that trade-off.
-What was your experience with using RaceJoy? Did you like it? Did those tracking you like using it?
RaceJoy has a very easy-to-use and self-explanatory interface and it performed exactly how I expected it would. Not only were my family members able to follow along without any trouble, I found out after I had finished that other folks were following my progress as well on the app. Being able to share my race experience with my family and others with an improved level of detail via RaceJoy was pretty awesome.
RaceJoy was designed to meet the needs of all runners. Our initial planning meetings included a product roadmap that met the needs of what we call the “Serious Steves”, the “Novice Nancies”, and the “Fit & Fun Fran & Frank”. Where cheers may mean a lot to the first time marathoner, the Serious Steve may be more interested in just having the ability for others to track his/her progress with mile splits.
If we could, we also would recognize the slowest runner/walker in RaceJoy since those coming in last have an equally impressive story to tell. We’ve talked to many of you and know the struggles you have faced and the determination it takes to keep going and complete the goal you set out to accomplish. During the race, we live monitor the race field from RaceJoy’s monitoring system and we don’t stop until the last runner is in. If you are in the last of the pack and are using RaceJoy, know that one of us is tracking you and rooting you on!
For those of you that would like some coaching guidance on your running, Rob is actually a personal coach and offers a variety of options for all types of runners that you can do with him remotely. He has a strong background in running and in 2013 was New England Runner Magazine’s Maine Runner of the Year. Clearly, he knows what he is doing! You can find more information here: https://www.easternshoretraining.com/.
Thanks, Rob, and all of you who use RaceJoy and continue to support us in changing the race experience. We will catch you at the next race!