Multisports- Current pace vs average pace completely off — TomTom Community

Multisports- Current pace vs average pace completely off

runnerbeanrunnerbean Posts: 27 [Prominent Wayfarer]
edited January 2019 in Runner & Multi-Sport
I've been dubious about the current pace of my TomTom Multisport for a while but had confirmation on my last couple of runs. Last night, I ran a 5M time trial on a measured course and my TomTom showed 4.99M in 49'36", avg pace 9:56 m/M yet according to the pace graph, I would have been running most of the run around 10:15-45 or slower (http://www.mapmyrun.com/workout/441888851).  Equally, I was running intervals on Tuesday, aiming for 8:30-9:00 m/M for fast intervals, which I think I maintained reasonably well. After I had to stop for a few seconds to open and close a gate, my pace for what felt like the same level of effort suddenly displayed as around 10:30. I had to go eyeballs out for over a minute for the display to creep back down to my target pace. During cool down, when I was jogging along very very slowly, it was showing 10:30 again. I may not be the best pacer in the world but I do know what the difference between 9:00 m/M and 10:30 m/M feels like and TomTom Multisports' current pace often does not reflect what I'm actually running at any given time. Does anyone else get this problem? 
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Comments

  • TP69TP69 Posts: 4 [Master Traveler]
    Hi runnerbean Yes I have the same issue with my Runner. I posted a report about this in the French section of the site, hoping for new development around the instant pace smoothing algorithm. Globally, today, it is impossible to use the instant pace as a trustworthy indicator. The only way to get a reasonable estimate is to use Lap mode with small sampling to get regular average paces (those being right because unsmoothened). As I was mentionning in my post in French it is one of the major request from anyone buying this kind of watch to have access to the instant pace. This could be to maintain a pace during an interval run, to know what is one's pace when exhausted at the end of the race, to maintain a pace after a uphill section or to get back to normal pace quickly after this uphill section. Today this is just not possible and not acceptable. I cannot believe there are not more complains about this. Runners of the forum please react to our messages if you agree with it so that we can make this item a high priority in the development list.    
  • mikefatmikefat Posts: 5 [Master Explorer]
    I have the same problem, i run and the medium pace seems to show it good, but the current pace go bad.
  • IlanIlan Posts: 6 [Master Explorer]
    I have the same problem. I compared it to my friend's Garmin watch, and was completly off.
  • gl00gl00 Posts: 965 [Revered Pioneer]
    yes, I actually noticed that average pace seems to be updated more frequently than instant pace: in the first few minutes of a run, average pace is the one that refreshes more frequently, hence reflects more accurately my instant pace!

     

    there is probably a bug here...
  • runnerbeanrunnerbean Posts: 27 [Prominent Wayfarer]
    I'm glad to hear it's not just me. It does make the whole thing even more annoying though. Average pace is overall more useful to me than instant pace but especially with the inability to review lap pace after the run, I need instant pace for stuff like intervals or to monitor pace drop over the course of a long run. I really hope there's a fix for this sometime soon!
  • accoacco Posts: 126 [Renowned Trailblazer]
    Yes, it's way off and it has been said before, but TT haven't showed any interest so far. I have also repeatedly requested a "lap pace" data field, but no interest from TT in that either. Current pace is difficult to get right, Garmin has problems also, but "lap pace" solves that pretty well and helps a lot when doing intervals. By "lap pace" I mean average pace from the beginning of the current lap, updated in realtime.TomTom, again, please add this. It's easy to implement and REALLY helps a lot.
  • TP69TP69 Posts: 4 [Master Traveler]
    I ran last week a 3*2000m interval run targetting 4min30sec pace and the instant pace has never been right at any instant of the run... I was running with 2 friends: 1 with a Suunto  and the other with a Garmin. Both gave perfect instant pace after 5sec. I can understand having "perfect" instant pace is difficult with 1Hz GPS signals but all other watches found a solution to give some sensible data after a small time delay. Sam, Jürgen, can you give a us an info if this issue is at least taken into account?
  • thegekothegeko Posts: 64 [Renowned Trailblazer]
    I don't want to break the trend of posts here...but I don't have this issue at all. As with most GPS devices, the instant pace is based on a quick measurement at a point in time. For example, let's say I am an awesome runner and somehow can run 9 minutes per mile pace everytime I run. We'll assume I am on a completely flat and level surface. The instant pace would show 9 min/mile. However, let's take a real world scenario. Let's assume I am running around some local neighborhoods. There are some flat areas, and inclides and declines ranging from small to large. During the duration of my run, it might say I am running around a 9:05 min/mi pace, for example. But I look at my watch to see it saying 11:15 min/mi instant pace. It turns out that I am on mile 12 and I am running up a hill with a 22% grade. It's perfectly accurate. Now let's say I get to the top of that awful hill and then am faced with a big downhill of 15% grade. My instant pace now says 7:45 min/mi because I am sprinting and trying not to fall face first over my feet. 

    There really isn't a problem with it...it's just that NO company explains it correctly. 
  • IlanIlan Posts: 6 [Master Explorer]
    You are missing the point. What you are describing is a fair and natural behavior of the pace algorithm. No problem here.

    Whats really happening is that, when compared to other products, and to the subjective feeling of the runner, the numbers dont make sense. There is a bug in the moving window of the pace calculation algorithm, and TT must fix it. 

    Compare it to another product and see for yourself.
  • thegekothegeko Posts: 64 [Renowned Trailblazer]
    I have compared it to Nike+, Runtastic, MapMyRun, and RunKeeper. Unless they are wrong too. In which case, disregard my post.
  • TP69TP69 Posts: 4 [Master Traveler]
    thegecko, I fear you are indeed missing the point. Ilan is correct, there is a big issue with the windowing algorithm used by TT to evaluate an instant pace from the GPS information the watch gets while running.

    To give you an example of a typical run.

    Warm up at 5.5min/km and then intervals running 3*2000m at a target pace of 4.5min/km. Try to do this with your watch and with friends with other watches or even better check your instant pace during 2km and compare to your actual pace over 1km or 2. The pace provided by the watch is completely wrong. I am speaking of the instant one, not the average which is ok.

    It seems that to avoid peaks or unsteady pace with GPS signal sampling TT uses a far too long (or too weird I don't know) window for averaging data before displaying it as instant pace. Other watches have also this kind of algorithm but it gives perfect pace after a few sec after a pace change, not weird and inacurate values for a very long while.
  • runnerbeanrunnerbean Posts: 27 [Prominent Wayfarer]
    Maybe thegeko runs at a very constant pace, so there's less scope for the GPS to have to keep up and therefore he gets a better result. I know my pace varies quite a lot - I can run 9 m/M one moment and then slow right down to 12 m/M because I'm going up a hill or crossing the road. But I do roughly know what a given pace feels like and instant pace often doesn't reflect what I know I'm running. The best way of getting an accurate-ish pace is to use the lap setting with a really small time frame (eg 5-20s) as average pace seems to record pretty accurately but then you can't use any other training program at the same time.

    The pace issue isn't the worst bug the TomTom has and it's not at the top of my list of things I'd like to see addressed but I would be glad if TomTom could at least acknowledge that there is an issue and when they plan on addressing it. 
  • PappaChangoPappaChango Posts: 8 [Legendary Explorer]
    I have the same issue.  I have found that if I hold on my "current pace", that the pace on my miles in lap mode are MUCH slower than what I expected.  I ran with my old Garmin on today and noticed a sizeable (30 second + gap) on my instant pace.  I feel like this needs to be fixed immediately because if you can't keep track of your current pace, what's the point in using a GPS watch in the first place?
  • joanmbjoanmb Posts: 18 [Outstanding Wayfarer]
    Same problem!
  • rodnogalrodnogal Posts: 8 [Legendary Explorer]
    How can be possible, using autolaps every 1km, my instant pace is allways less than 4'30"/km but the average pace is about 4'40"/km!! It's impossible to have an average pace greater than the continuous instant pace!! Tom Tom please check and fix it, there is something wrong in the algorithm...
  • PappaChangoPappaChango Posts: 8 [Legendary Explorer]
    ANY feedback from TomTom about this problem?  Or are we going to just pretend that pace is an irrelevant metric for runners?
  • benfouriebenfourie Posts: 6 [Master Explorer]
    I also experience the same problem. I set up my watch to do Zone training using pace, but it felt like the watch didn't give me accurate information to be able to maintain the desired pace. While running I then scrolled to the "pace" view, but it also didn't give an accurate reading. I used a fitness app on my GPS enabled phone for comparison.
  • TP69TP69 Posts: 4 [Master Traveler]
    I had posted the same issue description in the french section of the site and Sam answered that he was submitting the issue to the developers as at least 3 people had the issue. Now if we add all the ones in the english section +new others in the french section I hope this issue can be made a very high priority as, like it was stated above, if current pace cannot be trusted why using a gps watch in the first place!
  • RomekRomek Posts: 6 [Master Explorer]
    I have the same issue. The watch makes current pace smooth to much. It updates instantly when you change your speed significantly. Updating current pace with small change takes even a minute however.
  • smallssmalls Posts: 1 [Apprentice Traveler]
    I am also having great difficulty with the pace on my gps multisport watch. I went for a run this evening and the watch was saying I was running at roughly 5.00min/km for quite a period of time. I know what that speed feels like and there is no way I was doing that pace. But then when I come home and upload the data from the watch onto the tom tom website or map my fitness it says my pace was about 5.50min/km on the graph. I am finding the actual pace on the screen of the watch vs the pace on the graph are completely different. It is most frustrating. Has anyone heard if this is going to be rectified??? Its most disappointing when you spend so much on the watch and a basic function like this is dismal.
  • jofrjofr Posts: 20 [Outstanding Wayfarer]
    Same problem. Forced to use avg pace since instant pace is always much faster than the actual.
  • AntonioAraujoAntonioAraujo Posts: 7 [Master Explorer]
    Hi,

    I feel the same about you have said about the watch but this issue really metters for me because i used to run half marathons and I can't know the exact and real pace (minutes per kilometer) on real time...

    I have already made a test with two more friends with Garmin watches and the pace and their watches was the same and in my Tom Tom i felt that the pace was not the "real pace" i was running...

    is this a bug that will be fixed or we just have to accept it?

    Best regards.
  • AntonioAraujoAntonioAraujo Posts: 7 [Master Explorer]
    Hi,

    I feel the same about you have said about the watch but this issue really metters for me because i used to run half marathons and I can't know the exact and real pace (minutes per kilometer) on real time...

    I have already made a test with two more friends with Garmin watches and the pace and their watches was the same and in my Tom Tom i felt that the pace was not the "real pace" i was running...

    is this a bug that will be fixed or we just have to accept it?

    Best regards.
  • PappaChangoPappaChango Posts: 8 [Legendary Explorer]
    Hello, TomTom!!  Anyone home?  Why is there no response to this issue?  Why do you bother creating a forum if you are going to ignore the problems that your users are having? 

    And for the record, I fully regret not spending the extra money to purchase a Garmin.  I'm running a marathon on Sunday and will have no idea how fast I am running since TomTom doesn't record current pace accurately.  Great customer service guys.
  • runnerbeanrunnerbean Posts: 27 [Prominent Wayfarer]
    Same here, beginning to regret not shelling out the extra 50 quid on the Garmin Forerunner 910XT (usually availble for around £280 somewhere). I absolutely love the design and lightness of the Tomtom but the lack of decent current pace data, the buggy swim mode, the issues with QuickGPS (mine only downloads the file 2 out of 3 times), the weird training programs (target zones in % for pace goals, with minimum 10%, seriously?! but no %-based HR zones - I prefer setting my zones, then training at say, 70-80% rather than having to remember what BPM that zone corresponds to) and the overly sensitive lap button (accidental laps so far triggered by rain drops, my sleeve, wiping rain off the main screen and accidentally knocking the watch face while scrolling through the data fields) are all piling up into a large irritating mess. I get that not everything can be fixed and that fixes take time but an acknowledgement by Tomtom of each multiply-reported issue, with either a fix timeline or a reason for not fixing it, would certainly be essential in my eyes.
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