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A little bit of Pokémon Go research

I’m currently refining my approach to collecting data and hope to formalize my data collection so that I can gather more data and publish averages instead of anecdotal evidence. In the meantime, though, today I wanted to test a very hard effort on the bike with my phone in my pocket and adventure sync enabled … on the exact route I use on my commute into work given enough time (I have to take a shorter, more direct route many mornings).

This is a route I have been riding for a few months about once a week with an emphasis on staying under what I’m nearly 100% convinced is the 6.5 mph (10.5 kph) biking speed limit for earning distance. Today, I was racing an incoming storm, but I had plenty of time to make it into work. So I decided as a compromise I would ride my longer route at nearly max speed to beat the storm. I would also have a data point for adventure sync when riding my typical route well above the Pokemon Go speed limit.

Today’s results: average speed > 15mph, commute time < 30 minutes, distance earned from adventure sync = 3.5kms. Normal (< 6.5mph on the hills) commute approx = 4-4.5kms earned, BUT it takes closer to one hour to make it into work.

Update, day 2 results: average speed again > 15mph, commute time 40 minutes, distance earned from adventure sync = 4.5kms. Note that this was a route that is one of my “longer” commute routes with lots of climbing to optimize amount of time spent at 6.5mph (on the climbs) while still getting good exercise. This commute takes over an hour if I’m sticking to the 6.5mph “on the hills” approach and typically earn a little under 5kms.

Fast approach advantages:

  • A lot of fun riding (safely) at a hard effort on routes I normally cruise very slowly
  • Close to 20 minutes saved
  • Many fewer cars passed (see my separate radar project:
  • Works in flat areas where you would normally never be riding under 6.5mph (that’s really slow)

Fast approach disadvantages:

  • Cannot play Pokemon Go at all (or use the “plus” accessories)
  • Related to the first point, it’s possible to have missed five unowns and a shiny wild charizard
  • Always wondering whether adventure sync will work “this time” (i.e., did I close out the app completely? will anything else happen to make me lose hours of riding credit translated into steps b/c of adventure sync failure?)

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