Back to My Timex — Again

It seems that with each passing year, I think more and more about the need to run more simply and have less technology to guide my running or training.

I’m at that point in my running again this year.

When I get this urge, I look to see if I still have an old Timex Ironman watch in my dresser junk drawer or, if there isn’t one there, go over to Walmart and buy a new one. They are relatively cheap (compared to GPS watches), easy to use, and are pretty much bulletproof. Plus, I’ve been using them off and on since they were released back in the 1980s.

Last Friday evening, I dug around and found my old Timex in the very back of my dresser’s junk drawer. It was still chugging along, keeping accurate time, just waiting for me to get it out again.

I took it with me, sat down, thought about my running lately, the challenges I’ve gone through and am facing, reread a few blog posts that I’ve written in the past about getting rid of my GPS watches, and after figuring a few things out, I decided that it was time to go back to my Timex – again.

So, I did.

Then I turned off the Garmin, and put it away in the back of that same dresser junk drawer.


I’ve been injured for almost a year (that darn left knee and the subsequent surgery) and all that running data that has been collected on me is biting me square in the arse. My Garmin 245 was telling me my running was unproductive for all my runs and attempting to give me workouts that would have been wonderful for pre-injury Harold.

It was rather annoying.

I’ve been working hard to get back to running regularly, but when you see that the hard effort you just did results in your watch saying it was an unproductive training session. I don’t care who you are, it is rather demotivating, and you wonder why you are working so hard out here when something that I use to help me train tells me I’m not accomplishing anything.

Most readers will say, then don’t pay any attention to what your device is telling you.

Yet, that’s a dishonest or b.s. response.

I know that for me and many others, even though we know that our current running is productive for where we’re at, just seeing that word “unproductive” at the end of a run, where you’ve worked hard to finish — it tends to deflate you more than a little. When you get that result multiple runs in a row… well, it isn’t helpful for where I am psychologically, to say the least.

Then add in last week’s feeble attempts to do two days of Garmin’s 5K training plan, which showed me exactly what kind of shape I’m in (poor) and get some needed words of wisdom from running buddies on Facebook (yes, I do listen).

I made the decision to take off the data-producing devices and focus on…

  • just running.
  • Walking when I need to and then running some more when I can.

This meant ditching my Garmin GPS watches (all 3 of them), with all their bells and whistles that provide so many fantastic data points about me, in addition to my running. I needed to include the Stryd pod into this conversation and all the data it collects about my running.

They are all now sitting in the junk drawer, and I will probably find a home for them shortly. So, if you need a GPS watch or Stryd pod, I know where you might find one, and I can assure you that the price will be right. If you’re interested, let’s talk.

The Timex

That is where the Timex is nice; it tells me how long I’ve done something, and that’s all. It allows me to focus more on just running and not worry about a watch or computer program’s training ideas, beeps or buzzes to go faster, or tell me that my run was terrible.

Tracking mileage is more of a pain, but I ran without GPS for too many years to worry about how to figure out how far I ran. I can go old school (driving the course or guesstimating), or if I’m running with someone, ask them what their watch claims the mileage was. Worst case there are websites, where I can figure out my course’s distance.

Besides, who really cares about what I do for a run (Strava) and does it actually matter if I run 5.0 or 5.22 miles for a run? 

Nobody cares.

As long as I ain’t claiming to be something I’m not, like too many do online. It isn’t like I’m this big influencer with so many followers, claiming to be this great runner.

For me and my running, close is close enough when you get right down to it.

Needless to say, my Spreadsheet RunLog’s categories have changed considerably since the end of March.

Sometimes, I think that getting a simple GPS watch that only tracks time and distance is all that I really need. It is something that I will think about if I decide to go back to using a GPS watch down the road. Because I don’t need my running watch to be a medical-grade device that provides me and who knows who else, all kinds of personal data beyond how far I ran and how long it took?

Let’s be honest, when I have access to all the glorious data that a Garmin and Stryd provide, I tend to obsess over it. When the truth is, no amount of number crunching or fantasizing about the runner I should be, is going to change the runner that I currently am.

  • Old, overweight, out of shape, and still hurting a bit too much from the surgery to run well most days.

I’ll probably get back to running regularly and pain-free at some point this summer. But for now, I’m still in recovery mode, and no amount of running data is going to change that.

Now to get back to running regularly, enjoying my runs again, and not worry about all that wonderful running data that I can mine.


  1. I am glad I have been able to form a healthy relationship with my GPS watch 🤣 (unlike my scale!) I know I am heavier, slower, and so on – I run basically same routes all the time so it has very little meaning to me at this point.


    • Me and my scale have an understanding, it gives consistent readings and I keep it, they might not be what I want to hear, but they are consistent — unlike the new one we tried for Christmas and couldn’t get it to read the same thing twice in a row with a 5-7 pound variance. GPS just makes recording the distance easier, and all the other datapoints, who knows how accurate their blackbox algorithms are? I just keep thinking how much more relaxed my running was before GPS watches exploded into all the other data collection areas. Lots of great noise, but how useful they are for running, for me at least remains to be seen. 🙂 Glad to hear from you again Mike. 🙂


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