A few months ago, I decided I wanted to obtain some sort of high tech gadget to keep track of my running workouts. I use a Garmin Edge 305 on my road bike, so I was originally thinking of saving up for a Garmin Forerunner 405. I saw an ad for Tech4O in one of my running magazines, Runner's World perhaps?
I visited the Tech4O website to find out additional details on the products they carried. I ended up getting a Trail Leader Pro, which retails for $199.99. The Trail Leader Pro arrived right around the holidays, so I wasn't able to test it out right away. I had family visiting from out of state for 2 1/2 weeks, the kids were on break from school, and my husband had a couple of out of state business trips, so I wasn't getting in as much running as I normally do.
I finally took a look at the Trail Leader Pro right after Christmas. I was training for my next half marathon, the ING Miami Marathon, and thought it would be a nice piece of equipment to use on my training runs.
Bells and Whistles
The Trail Leader Pro is the ultimate running partner. It comes with a heart rate monitor, wireless PC USB link and software. The Tech4O Trail Leader Pro has a myriad of functions of interest to road runners, trail runners, hikers and adventure racers. I'm not the most technical savvy person out there, so I am still learning how to use all the features.
Trail Leader Pro Features
- Highly Accurate Accelerometer-based Exercise Mode (speed, distance, calories, steps, pace measurement)
- Weather Forecast
- Count Down Timer
- Digital Compass
- 2.4GHz Heart Rate Measurement
- PC Link Capability
I normally use my Tech4O Trail Leader Pro in distance mode. Distance mode shows three lines of data. The lowest line displays the time of day while the middle line displays total miles run. My favorite line is the top line which you can toggle to display:
- Calories burned
- Exercise time
- Moving time
- Current speed
- Maximum speed
- Average speed
At the end of the half marathon at ING Miami, the TLP read 12.1 miles instead of 13.1 miles. I'll have to tweak my stride setting, which is currently setup to 36 inches. I do run/walk ratios and the further I run, the shorter my strides become and the more walking I do. So guesstimating my stride length has been a bit of a challenge. I was pretty sure I didn't have it set quite right, I've been using Map My Run to map different mileage runs starting from my house, and the Trail Leader Pro has been registering just a bit less than what the Map My Ride site says I've been running.
I figured running the half at ING Miami would be the final test to see if I needed to go in and readjust my stride length. I'm also not sure if I'm using the logbook mode correctly. I followed the Trail Leader Pro manual to erase the memory before I left for ING Miami. The TLP beeped approximately 4 1/2 miles into the race saying that my memory was full. I had the same problem the very first time I attempted to use the TLP in logbook mode, 4 1/2 miles in to a 8 mile run it beeped and said the memory was full.
I'll have to see if there is a way to increase the memory capacity. The PC link and software will be pretty useless if the memory fills up after only 4 1/2 miles. I've done two half marathons so far, and will be doing my next half at the A1A Ft. Lauderdale Marathon on February 22. I would eventually like to attempt a full marathon and would love to be able to use the logbook function for my training runs. I'll keep you updated on my continued use of the Tech4O Trail Leader Pro. I'll also let you know if I get the problem with the logbook mode figured out.
Lynn Smythe AKA the Bike Diva