Its been a LONG time since anyone posted anything to the Polar forums for iSmartTrain (iST), and I thought it was time to fix that.
If you're one of the Polar S625X/S725X HRM users who got left behind when Polar's interface(s) wouldn't work with Macs, and/or when Apple changed the way the Mac USB ports interface with USB devices which ensured Polar's interfaces would never again allow your wrist unit to send its data to your Mac - but you really want to use iST - there are some developments you should know about.
If you run or cycle with an iPhone, and use a Polar H7 Bluetooth LE HR sensor, the Runkeeper or Runtastic apps will record the iPhone's gps data and the H7 HR data, merge it, and upload it direct to their respective websites. Leave the Polar wrist unit at home.
But RK and RUN activity analytics aren't that great ... not as good as iSmartTrain's in my opinion. Using RK or RUN as your primary run or ride tracker just doesn't tell you very much about a specific activity that can help you train, but they do give you a pretty GPS track picture.
On both RK's and RUN's websites, you can export a .gpx (gps export) file of your run or ride, which includes data for latitude, longitude, altitude, distance, speed, and heart rate data. Everything but calorie burn and ambient temperature.
Stuart recently released a beta update of iST - V4.1.1 Beta 4 (Build 92) - which can import a gpx file from RK or RUN (and probably any other activity tracker that can export a gpx file but don't quote me on that), extract all that data I just listed, and dump it into iST. Without ever touching your Polar wrist unit or fighting with Polar's bizarre usb-serial interfaces to your Mac.
If you're handy with SQL databases, you can access iST's data using a Mac app like "DB Browser for SQLite" and add calorie burn for each activity, if you happen to know it. I know RK calculates calories if its got an HR feed, so you can just input the value they come up with. Its a bit of a pain to do it this way, but it IS doable. If you don't care (a lot) about calorie burn, then you're set.
If you want calories included in your iST data, well then ... Stuart is researching calorie calculations to see if there's an algorithm that could be added to iST to extract calorie burn from the gpx data together with your personal physical data. If he's successful in this effort, you can get all your activity data without having to use the Polar wrist unit. At all.
I don't have the hardware to track riding cadence and power data, so I can't say for certain that its importable to iST... but I'd bet that if RK or RUN (or similar) apps track those activity parameters, that it can be brought into iST as well.
What I'm saying is that iST is changing, and if you haven't checked it out recently, maybe you should.
Discussions on the Polar range of Heart Rate Monitors
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