how do you know the distance you run?

I know this is silkly question, but i am confused.

when we go out running or jogging, how are we supposed to know exactly how far we go?

is no like the street is marked with signs telling us the kilometres or miles we do, is it?

I get the distance i run via a website, where you click wiht then mouse on a map and it tells you the distance, but it means having to get into the website everytime you run to do it, and it takes time, and even then it is not totally accurate because you are marking with the mouse but is not exectly the same spot on the street you run........................................becasue the street has bends that the map on the webste doesn't,

when i hear other runners talking about miles and k, i wonder how do they know exactly they distance they run?


  • Often when you know what pace your steady pace is, you can get really accurate on distances by the time you are out running.
  • I guess and round it up to the nearest ten, unless I run more than five miles then I call that a marathon, it's just the way I motivate myself. image
  • i tend to take a really long piece of string with me......
  • Good run guide is useful too.
  • I used to drive the car round the route....... then I got a garmin 305 and saved a fortune on petrol.  image
  • So I bought myself a garmin and all I really needed was a piece of string
  • I use to work out routes in advance, then a Garmin to get a more exact distance from the run itself.
  • or find someone else who owns a garmin who you can run  with image

    (ahem) "with whom you can run"

  • Some of our route is drivable so I measure it that way ........ but the farmers round here dont like you driving across their fields for some reason! So I use a Pedometer as well, I think its reasonably accurate, but may be wrong!

    The string sounds a good idea! what about loo roll?

  • Hog-mouseHog-mouse ✭✭✭
    Sally Wood 10 wrote (see)

    Some of our route is drivable so I measure it that way ........ but the farmers round here dont like you driving across their fields for some reason! So I use a Pedometer as well, I think its reasonably accurate, but may be wrong!

    The string sounds a good idea! what about loo roll?

    loo roll wouldn't work very well in the rain - but useful if you get caught short.

    I tend yo use Anqet but you can use bikehike or any number of similar mapping sites - heavens - RW have one don't they.

    edited for some strange typos.

  • I have recently got Sports Tracker on my mobile - it tells me via gps exactly where I have been, how far, how quick, my minutes per mile and so on. You can upload it to their website instantly and keep track of your progress, ain't technology brilliant!!
  • MartenkayMartenkay ✭✭✭

    It does not need to be exact because you are training . You can estimate using any of the suggestions above and if you are doing short intervals you know the distance between lampposts in a built up area. Two important things are

    1) know the difference between yards/metres and miles/kilometres


    2) err on the side of caution with your estimate. Better to think you are doing 7min miles and find you have estimated 1.3 miles than find your estimate was 0.7 of a mile!

    If you really need to use accurate distance go to a track. If there is a local 10K race use that course or a local Parkrun go to the park.

  • I never got on with Mapmyrun. Before I got a Garmin, I used to measure my runs on a 1:25,000 Ordnance Survey map. That was very accurate, but did tend to trap me into doing the same few (already measured) runs every time. I'm too anal just to go out and run - I need to know the distance and time. The Garmin gave me the freedom to run wherever I want and still have all the stats at the end of the run. Highly recommended.
  • Mapmyrun works for me, and now i have a GPS too.

    I can usually estimate the distance pretty accurately anyway just based on how hard I ran and the time out.

    Also I do seem to have pretty set routes that I know I can do in say an hour or 90 mins or whatever - so once you've measured them - you know for the future.
  • runkeeper, audio alerts on the mile to let you know average pace and current time.... I don't like running without it.
  • Thank you for the advice.

    I tried the cord idea, but it got tangled when i turned the corners.........................image

    I have another quiestion. I was planning to buy one of those NIke running bands that tell you the distance. They are about £40,

    does  someone know if they are good?

  • I was under the impression you had to have the nike trainers with the sensors in to use the bands.
  • No, you don't have to have Nike trainers (Nike+, specifically) to use the bands. You just need to be able to attach the sensor to your shoe, which can be done with a little pouch that sits on the lace, or stuff it in the tongue label if you can.
  • I am just looking into getting one, the sportsband are £30 on Amazon and the pouch for the sensor is about £2.50.  Its either that or I spend abit more and get the Garmin Forerunner 205 for around £80 image

  • @Booey - Garmin 205.
  • @Intermanaut - The Garmin is defo looking more favourable, I keep thinking if I spend £30 on the Nike its £30 towards the Garmin image
  • If you're looking at upping the spend to the Garmin for the extra £12 or so you may as well go for the 305 and get the HRM as well.

    Being able to train in specific heart rate zones (or in my case see how far off cardiac failure I am) is very useful and is definitely worth the extra spend.


    Danny B
  • But not helping my bank balance Danny image
  • CindersCinders ✭✭✭
    Have you tried ebay at all for deals on Garmins?
  • Still don't get the point of training to a heart rate. I train to pace because I know whether I'm on target for the time I want. If the HR programme tells me to lower my heart rate, that means slowing down. Screw that. If I want to finish in a given time, and that means that the engine has to work harder, so be it.
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