Strava matched runs were mentioned in a recent email that I received from Strava and it’s prompted me to do my own post about them. You can read what strava engineer Steve Lloyd says about them here.
Matched runs (rides, swims aren’t yet matched) are those tracked runs within your strava activity feed that you’ve completed multiple times. For instance the screen shot (above) shows that I’ve ran a particular local 10K (well it’s pretty much 10K) 47 times. Apparently I’m trending faster though as I sometimes run this route at a slower pace with my wife the trend in this instance is misleading.
On training routes that you run as a guide to your current fitness the trend analysis is quite useful. I’ve got a 16m out and back route that I use regularly during marathon training and to know that I’m trending faster on it is good training feedback and motivation. Actually, I’ve just checked my stats and I’ve ran it 15 times and am currently trending faster!
To know that you’re trending faster on your local parkrun is also good to know. Though if your parkrun finish time interests you enough, you’ll already be monitoring your performances (possibly via the runbritain rankings). Many strava users will have matched runs from their commutes, favourite training routes and track sessions.
The thing is though, it strikes me that there’s a lot of similarity in strava between matched runs and routes. By definition a matched run presumably applies to a common, matched route? It says so in the screen shot… “47 Runs on this Route”. So I don’t get why there’s a distinction between a matched run and a route?
I know you can create a route from an activity. In fact I’ve just tried that on an activity that I know is 8.1m (cos I’ve ran it 36 times with strava, and many without) and the generated route comes out as 9m so that’s no good as it’s too inaccurate. Why can’t a matched run become a route? Or the ability to give a name to a matched run would be good.
Maybe you’d like to know if someone you compete against is trending faster or slower? You currently can’t do that as matched runs are private to you.
It does occur to me that maybe the difference between a matched run and a route is direction? Maybe running a “matched run” anti-clockwise is much faster than running it clockwise whereas a route is a route no matter which direction you run it in?