I attended the Visualized.io conference in November and amongst many brilliant talks was one by @JazzPazz about lifelogging where I first heard the phrase “Data or it didn’t happen”. Much like the phrase I’ve heard many times before, “Photo or it didn’t happen…”, we are now moving towards an age where we have to prove we have seen something, been somewhere, walked that epic walk. I think I welcome this to a point; whenever I see a sweeping statement made in the paper I want to see the numbers to prove it (though stats can of course be spun to say what you want) and anything that makes us question the drivel we are fed in the papers can only be a good thing.
What I don’t welcome is when the stats let us down!
I have started a fitness regime (HA, yes me!) and am on the Couch to 5K running program. I’ve got the podcasts on my phone, I’m signed up to Endomondo and so far it’s been great. Wow, the stats I can get on each C25K running session are awesome and I love being able to see how I’ve improved via the fastest mile, average pace or 12 minute test, I love it. UNTIL TODAY. Today, my GPS let me down and copped out over half way through the run – technology let me down. I had such a great run too; it was cold outside, the grass was crispy and my route took me along an old railway line where birds were darting through the trees and I smashed it. I was able to run each minute session in full and repeated it eight times, I’m recovering quicker between each run and I felt I went faster…but I have no proof!
Data or it didn’t happen.
I know it happened, I know how awesome it felt and that’s something I need to focus on more. Why do I log my runs and share them anyway? It’s certainly not to prove that Usain Bolt has anything to worry about! But I guess it’s for pride in myself, for motivation purposes, a badge of honour (gamification of life…) and to play with all the graphs. In a few months time this will just be a minor hiccup on the graph, but it was interesting to see how much of an effect it had on me. Next run I’m going to do even better to get my stats back on track…unless the GPS lets me down again and then it’s war!