MilestonePod Review 2016 | Milestone Sports

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Milestone Sports maker of the Milestonepod just released their new MilestonePod (Version 2) August 2nd, 2016.

So what is exactly the Milestonepod and how can it help you?

Milestone Sports MilestonePod Running Review

You can think of the pod as your running coach.  It’s a small sensor that attaches to a running shoe to provide metrics based on the user’s running or walking workout.   Their motto is “Go Beyond Pace” and that is exactly what the pod does.  It analyzes 13 key metrics

  • Cadence
  • Calories burned
  • Distance
  • Duration
  • Foot Strike
  • Ground Contact
  • Leg Swing
  • Pace
  • Rate of Impact
  • Runficiency (running efficiency)
  • Shoe Mileage (Odometer)
  • Steps Taken
  • Stride Length

Milestone Sports sent us an early release of the new Milestonepod.  It looks much more professional than the earlier version, with a very sleek refined look.  To me in ranks up their with Polar and Apple for great looks and sex appeal.

MilestonePod Evolution V3 V2 V1 Version 3 2016

The Pod came in a nice black box, but I am not sure if this will be the final packaging or not.

MilestonePod Milestone Pod Running 1

Opening up the box, the pod was protected in bubble wrap.

MilestonePod Milestone Pod Running 2

The pod also came with a quick start user manual.  Unfortunately Olaf our pug decided the manual was something good to eat.

MilestonePod Milestone Pod Running 3

After opening up the bubble wrap the pod was contained in what looked like a computer components bag.

MilestonePod Milestone Pod Running 4

The pod uses a CR 2032 3 volt battery.  When adding the battery, the minus side goes towards the inside of the pod and the Plus side goes towards the outside.  The pod is supposed to be water proof with a rubber 0-ring seal protecting the battery and internal components.

MilestonePod Milestone Pod Running 5

Here is a comparison between the new Pod and the previous version. Aesthetically the new pod is much more refined and has a very professional look to it.  One really nice advantage of the new pod over it’s older version, is you don’t have to unlace your shoes to attach it.  More on that later.

MilestonePod Milestone Pod Running 6

Price Point

Before I really dive into the MilestonePod, one thing really stands out, namely the price.  In the world of Gadgets, price is ever climbing.  Buying a Garmin or a Polar requires a second mortgage.  Ok maybe it’s not that bad, but you’re forking out hundreds of dollars.

How Much Does The MilestonePod Cost?

It has a retail price of $24.95, which to me is an insane value for what you get.

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So How Does It Work?

Milestone Sports have created an Apple and Google Play app that allows you to upload pod information that was recorded while you ran.  In order to use the pod and view the data that it records, you will need to download the app.  You will also need to register either with an email account or your Facebook profile.  Once everything is setup, you simply go for a run and after it’s over open the app and sync over Bluetooth to the pod.  It’s super easy.

MileStonePod App

How Do You Attach The Pod?

The new improved MilestonePod clips on to the laces by inserting one part under the laces and the other on top.  Once in place, you simply twist the pod clockwise to lock (You should hear a little click).  After your shoes wear out, you can simply swap the pod to a new pair.   Yes that is right, you can keep using the same pod even after your shoes wear out.  With the older version you had to unlace your shoes to attach the pod.
MilestonePod attaching the pod
Each pod has a replaceable battery that is suggested to last 6 to 8 months.  The pods themselves can store up to 20 hours of data between syncs, which means they can easily store a 3 marathons and then some (Assuming you’re running faster than 5 hours per marathon).    The storage isn’t enough for say a 100 mile ultra, that is unless you’re ULTRA fast and can go under 20 hours.  In my first and only 100 mile ultra race, I clocked a time of 29:47 (That’s 29 hours 47 minutes), so it wouldn’t have recorded everything.  Still 20 hours is plenty for almost everyone.

Battery Life

The Pod uses a very common CR 2032 3 volt battery.  This means you don’t have to worry about charging the unit, but will have to keep an eye on battery life occasionally.  When you’re downloading data from the pod, one of the screens that will flash up is a battery indicator screen displaying the battery life.  You can also view the battery level in app by clicking on the Milestonepod icon from the Dashboard.
MilestonePod Battery Indicator 2 MilestonePod Battery Indicator 1

No GPS signal needed

Since the MilestonePod is a non GPS unit, you don’t have to wait for the unit to acquire a signal.  The pod uses sensors and an accelerometer to record information, so you can use it both indoors and out.  Milestone likes to say “The Pod works anywhere and everywhere”.

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Viewing A Workout

This is where all the fun is.  After you have done a workout, you simply sync the app (in my case an the Milestone iPhone app) to your pod and it uploads the recorded workout information.  Syncing was extremely smooth and I never experienced a problem.
Currently the bulk of information is displayed in 1 of 3 areas
  • Dashboard
  • Run Log
  • Run Details (Details, Laps, Graphs and Strike)

The section I find most interesting is the Run Details screens.  It gives you all the basics like date, duration, calories, steps and pace, but then it goes into really cool stuff including

  • Foot Strike
  • Cadence
  • Ground Contact
  • Rate of Impact
  • Stride Length
  • Leg Swing
  • Runficiency

MilestonePod Run Details Screen

The running analytics are pretty detailed and show exactly where you might need improvement to become a better running.  For instance, I normally have a cadence of 175 – 178.  Elite runners have a cadence of 180, so if I want to potentially get faster, I should increase my turnover by a few steps per minute.

MilestonePod Cadence

Another example is leg swing.  Currently I am 100% MID and to get faster I would want more leg swing to get into the High category.  Obviously I have a lot of work to do to get more efficient.

MilestonePod Leg Swing

 

You can also view laps (currently each mile or kilometer is recorded as a lap) and graphs of the above information compared to pace and time.

Overall Impression

Milestone Sports has done an amazing job.  Being able to test both the earlier version and the new version of the MilestonePod, I can confidently say Milestone is doing a fantastic job.

Runners are going to love the information the pods deliver.  It will show them exactly where they are deficient and will show how to make tweaks to their running style to get faster.

The fact that the units retail for less than $25 is a huge incentive to just try it out or give one to a friend.

Are There Any Downsides?

If you were hoping the pod would give you real time data as you are working out, you’re going to be disappointed.  Currently the pod is designed to give post workout results.  For real time stuff you will still need a watch or app.  My suggestion is if you have the money, get a Garmin 920XT.

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During the hot summer months I typically rotate running shoes.  This means that if I want the pod results for each run, I would need to swap it out to the other shoe or buy multiple pods.  Milestone Sports suggests that you don’t swap the pod because it could through off the results.  Their recommendation is to buy separate pods if you have multiple pairs of shoes.  This of course will up the cost to double or triple depending on how many shoes you own.

Even though the Pods allow for calibration, I have yet to see my pace go under 6:40.  I have compared the recorded pace to both Polar and Garmin GPS watches and there is 10 to 40 second difference per mile.  In many of my runs, I will be running at or close to 6 minute pace based on the Polar or Garmin, yet post workout the pod shows nothing below 6:40 pace.

In my observations the sweet spot seems to be around 7:15 to 7:50 pace.  When I am running slower than that pace, the pod seems to record me running faster and when I am running faster, it seems to record me running slower.

The overall distance recorded for a workout seems very close to both Polar and Garmin.  Today for instance I ran 7.87 using my Garmin and the pod recorded 7.95.  Since you can’t manually shut off the pod, the difference in distance could because when I finish my run, I am still walking and the pod is still recording activity.

Bottom Line

We give Milestone Sports and the MilestonePod a big thumbs up.

For those who are looking to boost their running performance, the MilestonePod will certainly show you what YOU are doing right and what YOU are doing wrong.

Check out Milestone Sports to get all lowdown on the MilestonePod.

 

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Tom Crandall

Tom has been writing about running, cycling and fitness since 1988, covering everything from the product reviews to the latest in fitness trends. Tom is the Editor-in-chief of 10KstepsDaily.com, EndTheTrendNow.com, AntiqueOutings.com, MiniatureReview.blogspot.com and a few other publications, he began racing in college while getting an Information Resource Management degree at George Mason University. Based in the cycling-crazed city of Austin, Texas, with his wife Kathleen and pug Olaf, Tom enjoys running, walking or riding most every day. Location: Austin, TX USA

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