What is Strava?
Strava is a well-known digital platform for multisport tracking where users can make free accounts and become a part of the Strava community. Once joined, you can record and upload workouts, add friends and like each others activities, known as giving kudos. The platform has a smartphone app that can sync directly with your smart watch or bike computer, you can include photos and comments on uploaded activities and join various challenges, as well as set yourself distance goals each month. Strava is the Swedish word for strive and the company aim to promote an ethos of personal development, acceptance and mutual encouragement across their users.
Many beginners may be enticed by sporty friends to download Strava and keep track of their activities, whilst becoming part of a wider online sporting community. This can be useful to get to grips with different routes in your area, compare your performance over time, and a useful means to start holding yourself accountable for keeping fit. Best of all, all your sporty friends probably already have Strava, and you can link up with them, have a nose into what theyre up to, and impress with your own fitness escapades.
Recently, Strava has introduced a subscription option where only paid members can access tools such as route builder, goal setting, training plans and fitness over time analyses. Arguably most useful, though, is the ability to create routes, which you can then upload to your fitness device and follow on the fly. As for whether you should invest in this, its worth really considering your reasons for using the app and what you find useful. If you are new to an area or often like to explore new places, it may be worth investing in the 47.99/year to get access to this facility. Or if youre really into your metrics and wants all the juicy details on the development of your fitness over time, the insight of your cumulative fitness, fatigue and form can be illuminating, but bear in mind that these stats are only available if you use the app often and train with power meter and heart rate data. Also handy is the ability to take a look at your training log, which can be set to show all types of activities and give totals at the end of each week, a useful way to visualise training bulk and future training planning. Along the same vein, we liked the matched activities information available to subscribers, which allows you to compare your efforts over the the same routes over time. If you are only a casual Strava user, or are not yet Strava-obsessed, then perhaps you wouldnt get the most out of the subscription option since you can still interact with other users and upload workouts on the free version of the app.
Long-time Strava users may remember the fly-by feature where you could see a map of all Strava athletes who were also tracking their ride/runs that you come into contact with when on your own activity. This allowed you to have a nose into other local athletes training and routes and find out more on that speedy guy with the aero wheels you saw 10km into your own ride. However, this feature is now opt-in only due to safety concerns over the potential for athletes to be followed or intercepted on their workouts, especially for athletes who often follow the same route in isolated locations or during antisocial hours.
Another means to safeguard your data is to put your account on private mode and create a privacy zone to hide the exact start and end locations of activities so that your home address is not evident when uploading workouts into the community. For your loved ones peace of mind, you can choose to set up Beacon which will send a text to a designated contact with live tracking details to follow as you complete your activity. In summary, Strava can be dangerous in terms of it being a social media platform, which will always carry certain cyber risks, but the Strava team has put measures in place to protect users against harmful activity and a bit of cyber common sense should keep users safe.
What you really want to know is: what exactly the app can offer you, and is it worth creating yet another social media account? Well, lets get into it
Your profile and personal activity tracking
Like may social media profiles, you have the option to upload a photo of yourself, write a short bio, and your profile will also display your weekly totals of swim/bike/run, or whatever activities you most often do. The bottom of your profile will also show your routes, segments, posts and any gear you have inputted as often in use (this can be useful to know when you pass the 500-mile mark in one pair of trainers and it is time for new ones). Also in view is your trophy case showcasing all the challenges you have successfully completed and what clubs you are a part of. Of course, you have the option to set all of these details as private and only those whom you allow to follow you can see this information.
The Strava Community
Follow friends accounts, exchange comments and kudos on their activities, join clubs, and take a peek at their photos, whilst judging their activity name choice (yes this is a very important part of the posting process) all of this is a big part of being a Strava user and you will learn quickly that Strava scrolling can be pretty addictive. One of the major selling points to Strava is that it is now so widely used amongst the fitness community that youre bound to find people you know already on the app when you sign up, a ready-made support base of fellow sports enthusiasts just waiting for you. There are all sorts of challenges to motivate and keep you on track towards your fitness goals, these include 5k, 10k and half marathon monthly challenges, as well as total distance challenges each month, and even partner challenges like run a total of 50 miles in April to raise awareness for Prostate Cancer.
Special Strava features:
Segments Also motivating is the personal achievement tracking during activities, which lets you know when you have ran your fastest 5k, fastest split, or where you rank in the top ten on a segment (a segment is a section of road/trail and has been mapped and named as its own segment). Athletes can like to challenge themselves by racing the top times along these segments to see if they can rank a high score, we call this segment chasing and many watches and bike computers can even be set to give alters to indicate the start and end of a segment when youre out training.
KOM and QOM The KOM refers to the king of the mountain and is the fastest male athlete on a segment. QOM, you guessed it, means queen of the mountain and refers to the fastest female athlete on any given segment. These revered titles are competitively won, the name originates from gruesome mountain ascents where the fastest riders up really were treated like royalty.
Local Legend Introduced only in the past year, this title is reserved for the athlete who frequents a segment the most often out of all athletes who traverse it. Hence the name, local, this title is generally only won by locals who often ride/run along a certain segment which is likely to be in the area they live. This title is a nod towards inclusivity as it does not take into account an athletes pace or distance, this is merely about frequency, which gives athletes of any pace the chance to proudly grab the title.
Streak challenges This is a relatively new type of challenge where a user can take on a streak goal, an example of which is uploading an activity four times a week for four weeks, with each activity needing to last at least 30mins. You can check your challenge progress under the challenges tab, and you are awarded with a virtual rosette when a challenge is completed. Signing up to (free) initiatives such as this is a great way to hold yourself accountable and to commit to regular weekly exercise.
Likelihood is, if youre asking this question, then you dont have the Strava syndrome. This term is used by the Strava golden oldies, the Strava-obsessed, the avid Strava scrollers, those who spend most of their run contemplating the perfect ironic-sounding title for said run. You know who you are. If theres one drawback of Strava, or similar such sports tracking apps, its that there is a possibility to become too competitive with your peers and negatively compare your performance with theirs. This can happen to anyone. Getting too in your head and self-depreciative about your performance is nothing to be ashamed about, in an era where people now publish their exercise results across social media platforms, are we really surprised that such issues can sometimes arise? When this happens it can be helpful to bring yourself back to your why, your reason for exercising and why you love what you do. If your why has been obscured by a burning desire to create the funniest Strava post that will accrue the most kudos, perhaps it is time to gently re-evaluate your priorities and re-find your love of the sport. Remember, if its not on Strava, it did still happen, no matter what your sports watch tells you to the contrary.
Persuaded to give Strava a try? Download the app here.
Please note that all information and opinion in this article has been independently given and is not affiliated with Strava in any capacity.
Top photo illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images.
- Craft Guild of chefs reveals the names of chefs through to next stage of The National Chef of the Year competition - Premier Construction Magazine - July 21st, 2021
- Beating Breath of the Wild like its Snake took careful planning and infinite patience - Destructoid - July 21st, 2021
- E-transmission: The allure of toxic leaders - Daily Sun - July 21st, 2021
- Clairos Sling paves a brilliantly inspired and elegantly orchestrated road to comfort - The A.V. Club - July 21st, 2021
- CBD Infused Drinks: Everything You Need to Know... - Marketscreener.com - July 21st, 2021
- Meet Simone Ferretti, an astute name and personality climbing his way to the top in the social media industry. - The American Reporter - July 21st, 2021
- 10 Lessons Bungie Should Learn From Destiny 2s Season Of The Splicer - Forbes - July 18th, 2021
- Album reviews: KSI All Over the Place and Willow Lately I Feel Everything - The Independent - July 18th, 2021
- Delhi University to admit students based on cut-offs - The Indian Express - July 18th, 2021
- 6 Ways The Internet Is Slowly Transforming Our Minds 2021 Tips - BollyInside - July 18th, 2021
- SmugMug Source Preview: Say Goodbye to NAS Servers and Hello to the Best Cloud Storage Yet - Fstoppers - July 18th, 2021
- Album reviews: KSI All Over the Place and Willow Lately I Feel Everything - MSN UK - July 16th, 2021
- RBSE 10th and 12th Result 2021: Schools Complete Uploading of Marks, Rajasthan Board Results Expected Soon rajresults.nic.in - Jagran Josh - July 16th, 2021
- How Scrybe Streaming Is Disrupting the Music Industry, Interview With CEO Christian Phyfier - The Ritz Herald - July 16th, 2021
- Best iOS and Android apps we used in 2021 (so far) - Mashable - July 16th, 2021
- Prontonn receives USD 9 million of funding - Inventiva - July 16th, 2021
- In Defence of HIKAI - The Shillong Times - July 16th, 2021
- The Echo Show 10 Is The Only Smart Display That Follows Every Step Of The Way - MensXP.com - July 16th, 2021
- Who is Baby J? BTS responds to rumors, debuts Permission to Dance on Jimmy Fallon show - MEAWW - July 16th, 2021
- Bill Ackman Sent a Text to the CEO of Mastercard. What Happened Next Is a Parable for ESG. - Institutional Investor - June 20th, 2021
- #ATA2021: Telehealth Is Key to Equity and Access for Every Patient Population - HealthTech Magazine - June 20th, 2021
- The Secret Is Out That Confidential Computing Is A Hot Trend And Seriously Crucial To AI And For Self-Driving Cars Too - Forbes - June 20th, 2021
- CBSE 12th Result 2021: Schools Asked To Hold Practical Exams Online, and Upload Marks by 28 June - AglaSem News - June 20th, 2021
- Cardiff cyclist catches up with driver and gives him piece of her mind after cat call - Nation.Cymru - June 6th, 2021
- After Making Example of Jon Rahm, PGA Tour Expects Vaccinations to Increase Significantly: Opinion - Pro Golf Weekly - June 6th, 2021
- Doug Fishbone show at the Crawford couldnt be more timely - The Irish Times - June 6th, 2021
- Why Developers Prefer Creating Apps That Begin As iOS-Exclusives? We Spoke To Two Developers Ahead Of WWDC 2021 - Mashable India - June 6th, 2021
- Young Juno nominees on why theyre moving to the algorithm of TikTok - 660 News - June 6th, 2021
- As EVM theories fade after Mamata Banerjees win, here is all you need to know about how EVMs cannot be hacked, no matter who wins - OpIndia - June 6th, 2021
- Downloading our thoughts to the mainframe may be the stuff of science fiction but humans have been imagining it for centuries - The Conversation AU - May 20th, 2021
- Google Photos to end free unlimited uploads: What it means to you - SlashGear - May 20th, 2021
- How to start vlogging - Creative Bloq - May 20th, 2021
- Many Latino men haven't gotten vaccinated. Misinformation, fear and busy lives are factors - Los Angeles Times - May 20th, 2021
- GFRIEND to officially disband; Members upload handwritten letters for fans while Sowon has a special message - PINKVILLA - May 20th, 2021
- Google Photos unlimited free storage is ending this month, so what are your options - India Today - May 20th, 2021
- Severe weather soaks spirits in rain-ravaged area - "We're trying to hang in there" - Port Arthur News - The Port Arthur News - May 20th, 2021
- Assams fictional superhero Advitya all set to hit the screens in fancy outfit without mask - The Hindu - May 20th, 2021
- '1000-Lb Sisters' Season 3: What Happened to Tammy Slaton's Forehead? - Showbiz Cheat Sheet - May 20th, 2021
- Netizens Baffled Over Moms Photo Of Daughter Sinking Into Concrete - Latin Times - May 20th, 2021
- [App Fridays] How 1MG is meeting the rise in demand for teleconsultations, medicines amid COVID-19 resurgence - YourStory - May 20th, 2021
- Steven Crowder Sues YouTube for Silencing Conservatives: 'This Is the Big One' - CBN News - May 20th, 2021
- First Lady hands over 30 000 books - The Herald - May 20th, 2021
- Free to fly again - The Garden Island - May 11th, 2021
- Here's How to Record a Video That's Three Minutes on TikTok - Distractify - May 11th, 2021
- Dishonest censorship scare may torpedo Bill C-10, a chance to update broadcasting laws for the modern era - The Globe and Mail - May 11th, 2021
- AI-Based Editing That Learns Your Style? Fstoppers Reviews ImagenAI - Fstoppers - May 11th, 2021
- Google Photos unlimited free storage offer ends this month, and here are few things you should keep in mind - India Today - May 9th, 2021
- Here's how to touch of death with 2 combos as Gill, Rose and Ibuki in Street Fighter 5: Champion Edition as showcased by LPN - EventHubs - May 9th, 2021
- Feel Better Yoga in Burlington launched online-only memberships in response to COVID - Burlington Times News - May 9th, 2021
- Sinn Fin hopes to use controversial voter database for Dublin byelection - The Irish Times - May 9th, 2021
- Dogs at polling stations are the real stars of the Scottish Parliament election - The National - May 9th, 2021
- Dodie on growing up on YouTube and her new album Build a Problem: I didnt have any boundaries - iNews - May 9th, 2021
- 40 Must-See New Movies to See This Summer Season - IndieWire - May 9th, 2021
- MTV: Who is Tyler from Catfish? Updates on his relationship with Stefany! - Reality Titbit - Celebrity TV News - May 9th, 2021
- Guided By Voices Earth Man Blues May Be the Power-Pop Heroes Best Album in Decades - Rolling Stone - May 1st, 2021
- How to turn on TikTok's new auto captions - Mashable - May 1st, 2021
- As seen on CBS This Morning: Protecting Veterans' digital accounts with a free service offer and book from GoodTrust - VAntage Point - VAntage Point... - May 1st, 2021
- COVID-19 update: Faculty and staff vaccinations - University of Denver Newsroom - May 1st, 2021
- Sonny Fodera & Just Kiddin' team up with Lilly Ahlberg on 'Closer' - We Rave You - May 1st, 2021
- The Kid LAROI Talks Without You Remix Featuring Miley Cyrus and Putting Raw Emotion Into His Music - Variety - May 1st, 2021
- Were These Migrant Teens Framed for Arson That Left 13,000 Homeless? - The Daily Beast - May 1st, 2021
- Blockchain startup S!NG wants creators to lean on NFTs to protect their intellectual property - TechCrunch - April 27th, 2021
- How to upload and view 4K images on Twitter for Android and iOS - HT Tech - April 27th, 2021
- Worrying Kwon Mina Instagram post is removed as fans share support on Twitter - HITC - Football, Gaming, Movies, TV, Music - April 27th, 2021
- Mathilde Tantot: French Model Who Suffered Wardrobe Malfunction Breaks the Internet with Bare-All Snaps - International Business Times, Singapore... - April 27th, 2021
- Twitter now allows you to share pictures in 4K on Android, iOS - Moneycontrol.com - April 23rd, 2021
- Of OTTs and more! - The Times of India Blog - April 23rd, 2021
- Nodal officers to check availability of beds in pvt, Govt hosps in G'gram - Daily Pioneer - April 23rd, 2021
- Fighting COVID-19: Vaccination picks up in Jammu and Kashmir - indiablooms - April 23rd, 2021
- Billions of bugs: Meet the cicada chasers trailing Brood X - CNET - April 23rd, 2021
- Fashion Society stitches together first virtual fashion magazine - The Poly Post - April 23rd, 2021
- BTS drive for Smart urges PH youth to 'live your passion with purpose' - Manila Bulletin - April 23rd, 2021
- Dortmunds strict squad rules and fines revealed with Arsenal star Aubameyang branded punishment king dur... - The Sun - April 23rd, 2021
- All that you need to know about Facebook group cover photo size - TechPluto - April 23rd, 2021
- Jimmie Johnson ready to make his official jump from NASCAR to IndyCar this weekend - ESPN - April 19th, 2021
- Sushmita Sen's "Meditation In Action" Post Is Beating Our Monday Blues. Watch Her Workout Video - NDTV - April 19th, 2021
- Vaccine passports for COVID-19: How they'll be a part of global travel - CNET - April 19th, 2021
- Creators On The Rise: Gunnar Deatherage Is Stitching Himself A Career On TikTok And YouTube Shorts - Tubefilter - April 19th, 2021
- Guest blog: Why broadband has never been more important for a residential care home in the midst of a global pandemic | Business & Finance -... - April 19th, 2021
- From Kaviya Maran to Aditi Hundia, women who grabbed IPL cameramen's attention over the years - DNA India - April 19th, 2021