Garmin Forerunner 610 and Garmin Connect on Linux

GETTING PROPRIETARY ELECTRONICS to work on Linux can be a hassle sometimes. More often that not, companies develops controller software for Windows only, or at best for Windows and Mac OS, but neglects to support the Linux platform. Then us that enjoy the freedom and wonders of Linux is often out of luck, or have to reverse engineer a solution. Fortunately a couple of hackers did just that for the Garmin Forerunner 610.

With thanks to Tigge and Dave Lotton it is possible to download files from the watch and upload them to Germin Connect.


Tigge have created the tools to connect to the watch and download training pass files from it. Download from github and install:

» git clone
» (cd openant; sudo python install)
» git clone
» (cd antfs-cli; sudo python install)

Now insert the ANT+ usb dongle, and run this command to download all training pass from the watch.

» antfs-cli

The files will end up in the directory ~/.config/antfs-cli/<id>/activities.


To upload the files to the Germin Connect service, install the GcpUploader made by Dave Lotton:

pip install gcpuploader

Next setup a credentials file for GcpUploader.

echo -e "\
password=" > ~/.guploadrc

Edit the file and set credentials. When setting the username your must write your e-mail address. Otherwise you will get a login failure *1 .

Finally upload all files:

~/.config/antfs-cli/3894281250/activities» -t "running" *.fit
File:    ID: 707690585    Status: SUCCESS    Name: N/A    Type: running
File:    ID: 707690640    Status: SUCCESS    Name: N/A    Type: running
File:    ID: 707690660    Status: SUCCESS    Name: N/A    Type: running
File:    ID: 707688520    Status: EXISTS    Name: N/A    Type: N/A

As seen from the output, already uploaded files are skipped, so if not wanting to specify each file specifically, the *.fit wildcard works perfectly fine. Note that supports other taggings than running. Run --help for more information.


Side note:
For the version that I downloaded (GcpUploader-2015.2.21.3 I had to patch it to accept login with the credentials file:

---     2015-02-28 14:03:14.223948320 +0100
+++  2015-02-28 16:24:35.738408614 +0100
@@ -92,7 +92,7 @@
       self.msgLogger.debug('Using credentials from command line.')
-    elif os.path.isfile(self.configCurrentDir):
+    elif os.path.isfile(configCurrentDir):
       self.msgLogger.debug('Using credentials from \'%s\'.' % configCurrentDir)

If not wanting to venture into patching, also accepts credentials as arguments (see --help for more information).


Addendum: Dave Lotton recommends that instead of GcpUploader, one should use the tapiriik service instead…

F1 Timing App 2013

FOR THE 2013 Formula-1 season I though I would treat my self with buying the official live timing app: ‘F1 Timing App 2013’ by Soft Pauer Limited. At season start it costed around €22 – a hole lot of money of a one season app. So I had high expectations, but I quickly discovered that the app is utterly superfluous and added zero value to the Formula-1 watching experience

The app promises the following features:

The last one I don’t really know what means, but otherwise it sounds awesome. In reality only the Live Text Commentary have any grain of value (it displays some additional official insights into important events happening in the races).

The prime feature of the app is the realtime visual overview of car positions on the track.
Track Overview
It sure did sound great, but unless the race evolves into a train-set of cars, the actual overview clutters due to the overlap. And when watching the race, it isn’t really an information abstraction that is needed.

The secondary high profile feature of the app is the live timing overview.
Live Timing
This would have added great value some many years ago – before the TV transmission began showing equivalent information. You don’t need a costly app for what you can already see on the TV.

All in all, a costly app that has appalling scarce value. A lesson learned, which I will not repeat

Learning How To Run

OMG, I DON’T know how to run properly :-O. That was my realization when I attended a 5 hour training course in barefoot running this weekend, hosted by Claus Rasmussen (

“What?!” you might say. “Running is a no-brainer, just get up, place one leg in front of the other in a fast pace. Everybody can do it”. Well think again! Everybody can do it alright, but most have not learned the proper way of running. Running may seem simple but there is a fine technique to it. Shortly described the proper style involves near-flat footed landing and having a tight and balanced body stature when a foot has ground contact.

To see how proper running should like, bring attention to the very best of runners, like marathon runners or sprinters. One example is Haile Gebrselassie. When observed in slow motion it is quite clear that he has a perfect style. As video documented by Claus the proper running method is actually an inherent “knowledge” in small children, i.e a very natural way of running. But then ,for almost everyone, it gets suppressed later on (via influence by imitation and footwear etc).

Proper Running

Claus’ strategy (my interpretation) for achieving better running was very simple:

  • Learn the proper technique of running.
  • Use barefoot running as a tool for (re)learning how to run.
  • Continue to run barefoot to let the body express its natural flow of running to avoid future injuries.

After some background theory we were first filmed running in our normal footwear for progress comparison later on. Then began the training for improved running. Is was a basic exercise but hard to master (basically it boils down to bringing your heels straight up, relaxing and letting your body do the landing).





When looking at my before shot, it can be observed (1) that I tilt a bit forward. It is clear that I land full bodyweight on my heels (3), and also my landing stand (2) is very wide, giving unbalance and energy loss. In the after shot I have bettered my vertical line, lands flat footed and have narrowed my range.

My full progress as recorded by Claus can be seen here. It looks a bit funny/weird, but it feels right. And when the technique is learnt properly, one can begin adding speed so it begins to look more natural.

Barefoot Running

BAREFOOT RUNNING HAS become quite popular, and now I have joined in on this running trend.

Last summer I saw Martin Toft running in his fivefinger shoes. They looked weird :-D but I was also quite intrigued of the concept of down to basics running. Martin seems to be quite hooked on the barefoot running concept and I’ve followed some of his blogging.

The idea of barefoot running is to nay the modern shoes, and return to the natural inherit principal of running barefoot (or with only very thin shoes). The theory is that this would make you a better and more natural runner, and reduce the risk of injuries significantly. I’ve been prone to get lots and lots of injuries during running, so the last “promise” was the sales-point for me.

So the shoes (Vivobarefoot Evo II) are bought, but first I have to unlearn old running habits, adopted from modern cushioned running shoes. An exciting and well run spring ahead I hope :-)

Vivobarefoot Evo II

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