Discovery is meant to be invigorating. We created heatmaps in Movescount to encourage your adventures. From finding new routes to experiencing them, this article will help you to think less about how and more about how awesome! In this tutorial we will show you how to draw a route based on the heatmaps and how to sync it to your Suunto watch.
What are heatmaps?
Heatmaps show the tracks frequently used by the Suunto Movescount community all over the globe, based on millions of Moves. You can find rich, topographical maps showing where your new favourite route travels.
Finding heatmaps is straighforward. Log into movescount.com, and you will come to your profile page. At the top there are three tabs: Me, Map, and Community. Click on Map. As a default, you will be brought to a heatmap of your geographical location and shown the heatmap of your default activity in Movescount. It will look something like this (on the dark map setting):
You can search other cities or regions by typing the name of the place into the “search location” box on the top-right corner of the screen. You can change the activity (i.e. running to trail running) at the top left, and this will bring up the associated heatmap in that area.
Creating a new route
You can create a new route straight from a heatmap, as well as from a public move, or a public route in Movescount. We’ll start with creating a new route directly from heatmap.
Firstly you’ll want to zoom into the map close enough so that you can see that you’re tracking the right street or trail (you can now max zoom in on the map and still see the heatmap track). When you have found the location where you would like to start your route, go to the bottom left corner of your screen and tap on the blue circle with the + sign. Click ‘Create New —> Route.’ From here you can drop you first pin and begin creating your route.
Some tips on drawing a route
If you are making a route that travels generally via roadways or trails, use ‘follow roads walking’ for the best representation of the track. You can find this function at the bottom of the map page, along with the editing tools; undo, clear, and simplify (which reduces the nuances in the route). Zoom in and out of the view via the +/- buttons at the bottom-right corner.
When you are completed, give the route a name that will be easy for you to distinguish from others you may create. You can add a description, and tags and make the route private or public.
How to sync the route with your watch
The easiest way to sync your newly made route is used the slider at the bottom of your list of routes and indicate you’d like to use the route on your Suunto watch. Then connect your watch and the route will sync automatically.
You can go to the ‘“watches” tab on you profile to see all your routes and manage them from this page as well by clicking on the slider associated with the Suunto watch you are using. Then connect your watch and the route will appear when you’ve indicated.
Using existing routes
One of the best ways to discover new places to run is via existing routes, This streamlines the process of building go-to tracks and trails. To do this, search the location that you are interested in, and then choose the activity you want the route for (i.e. running or trail running) from the menu on the top-left. Initially you’ll see the heatmap only. Then navigate to the tabs below the activity type, and click on “routes,” and this will bring up all the saved, public routes that have been made by the Suunto community. You will see icons indicating these routes.
You can hover over the route to see the distance, and then click on the icon and the route will be highlighted. If it looks like “the one,” click the “+” sign at the bottom right of the route dialogue box and it will be saved to your routes. Then you simply sync the route to your Suunto watch as described above.
If you don’t have a Suunto GPS watch but use some other GPS device, you can still enjoy the benefits of Movescount's heatmaps and routes; once you have found a route you like, you can export it as a kml or gpx file on your computer and use it as you like.
We live for discovery and have been putting together a detailed list of some of the best running routes in cities around the world, including our hometown of Helsinki, find them here.
For each city, we’ve tapped the local runners who’ve run these routes, lived these routes and have shared a part of their city with you, and we’re just getting started, more is coming!