In late 2020, the fitness company Wahoo got into the smartwatch game with the release of the Elemnt Rival. Just over a year later, the team at Wahoo has produced an update for the Rival, adding several new features to the already excellent watch. Among these features is the company’s new integration with Stryd, which will allow for quick and seamless connection between the Wahoo Elemnt Rival and your Stryd running power meter. This integration gives triathletes and runners the chance to access so much more information during and after every run, and as every triathlete knows, more information in training leads to quicker times on race day.
The Elemnt Rival
Even if you’ve never used a Wahoo product before, as a triathlete, you’ve likely heard of the company. Wahoo’s most known for its smart trainers, but the team has branched out in recent years with bike computers and, most recently, the Elemnt Rival. The team at Wahoo may be relatively new to the wearables game, but the Elemnt Rival is already equipped to, well, rival other top watches on the scene.
While the Elemnt Rival comes with many of the features you’ll find in other smartwatches, one trait that sets it apart from many other brands is its user-friendliness. Some watches come with far too many buttons and a seemingly endless lineup of screens, but the Rival is simple and easy to use. You’ll still be able to track your swims, rides and runs (along with a number of other activities), but without needing to scour Google for a how-to article to help you understand how the watch works.
Another aspect of the Rival that is perhaps equally as impressive as its simplicity is its battery life. The Elemnt Rival can go 14 days on a single charge in smartwatch mode (meaning when it’s not in use for training). If you turn on the GPS and heart rate monitor features for a workout or race, the watch can last for 24 hours of continuous tracking before needing to be recharged.
Even if you pick up your Rival for a workout and realize that it’s got less than 10 per cent of battery life remaining, you can be sure that it will track your entire swim, bike, or run without dying on you. In training, there are few things worse than missing part of your workout due to a dead watch battery, and that’s not something you’ll have to worry about with the Wahoo Elemnt Rival.
For logging workouts, the Rival connects with your phone, where it will deposit all of your workout stats on the Wahoo Elemnt app (which can be downloaded for free). You can also pair your watch with your TrainingPeaks account so your workouts are all in one place and ready for you to revisit them whenever you please.
Finally, when it comes to racing, the Elemnt Rival has a feature that Wahoo has named Touchless Transition. This will let you focus on your race as you make your way from swim to T1 to the bike and so on, and the watch will take care of tracking each leg of the race (including transitions).
While you’re likely familiar with smartwatches, the Stryd pod may be new to you. This is a small sensor that attaches to your shoe. It connects to your Wahoo Elemnt Rival and phone (there’s a Stryd app as well) via Bluetooth, and once paired to your devices, you can adjust your watch settings to show your power output during runs.
In addition to monitoring your power, the Stryd pod measures metrics like leg spring stiffness (how stiff your leg’s tendons and muscles are), ground time (how long your foot remains in contact with the ground), cadence and more. All of these pieces of data will help you improve as a runner, and you’ll be so glad you made the change.
Why should you care about power?
Remember when you got your first GPS watch? Or how about a heart rate monitor, or maybe your first bike power meter? In each of these cases, you were likely blown away by how much the device and the data it provided you with helped you grow as an athlete. You’re going to experience that very same moment of excited disbelief when you try a Stryd pod for the first time.
Power (and the many other metrics that Stryd monitors) will change the way you run, and in a few years’ time, you’ll look back fondly on the day you added the Stryd power meter to your arsenal. The only regret you’ll have is that you didn’t try tracking running power sooner. Don’t waste anymore time ignoring this metric — let the Stryd pod and Wahoo Elemnt Rival take your training to the next level and get you to the finish line faster next race day.