By Jarrod Shoemaker
One of the most important pieces of data is not the single data point you get from a workout or parameter reading from your Ember, but instead the many data points that you get over time. If you remember way back to Algebra and slope and lines, you can make lines between two points by drawing a straight line, but that is not the most effective way of measuring most data because it changes over time, so you need a line that curves, following the ups and downs of the data points.
Most people see hemoglobin as a static number, but that is not true, it is affected by many different factors. Usually, you only see hemoglobin when you get a blood test done, but with Ember, you can now track it multiple times a day.
What I have learned by continuously tracking my hemoglobin for the past 3 years is that your hemoglobin numbers change all the time. Some of the biggest factors influencing change in hemoglobin are dehydration, workouts, sleep, and training load. Your body is constantly working to keep balance, so being able to monitor these fluctuations allows you a much quicker insight into how your body is adapting.
One of the best features of the Ember is the Smart Gauge that you can monitor multiple parameters and it is easy to see trends over time. Each parameter’s Smart Gauge showing typical high and low values, and in the middle is your 30 day average for that parameter. This is a great tool to use to monitor where your values are currently at.
The best part of using these trend values is that you can see adaptations to training or elevation. When you are training well your body will respond and the blood values for hemoglobin should rise and then remain steady (as there is a limit to the amount your body naturally produces). Your resting heart rate should start to be a bit lower (same thing, there is a limit to how low your heart rate can go and still keep you alive!). And if either of these numbers starts to head the opposite direction it can be a big indicator that your body is tired or training too hard, and you need a break.
Overall, data is great, but more data can help paint a much larger picture of how you are adapting to your training and allow you to make smarter more educated decisions to continue to improve.