UpBeat Workouts

Urban Cow Half Marathon

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Frequently Asked Questions

  1. QuickStart Guide

    1. Tap the Upbeat Workouts icon on your iPhone or iPod Touch.
    2. Tap the green “Just Go!” button.
    3. Tap the Playlists/Music button (default is All Songs)
    4. Tap the Playlist you want to use from the list provided.
    5. You are returned to the Just Go! Screen.
    6. Tap the green Play button (“ > ”).
    7. Start running. You’ll hear a “tick, tick” sound which emulates the tempo you are running (SPM). Once it stops the first song will play in a few seconds matching the displayed Strides Per Minute number shown in the blue box.
    8. Drag the lock arrow at the bottom of the screen all the way to the left to lock the application and assure the iPhone will NOT turn itself off using Auto-Lock.

    Badda bing, you’re working out with Upbeat!

  2. Adjustments while Running

    1. If you find the songs are changing too frequently to your liking then first unlock the application using the slider on the bottom of the Just Go! screen moving it to the right.
    2. Next, tap on the little gear in the upper right of the screen – this is the Settings icon.
    3. Move the Cadence Sensitivity (SPM) slider to the right. The default is 20 but if this is too sensitive you can adjust it all the way up to 30 SPMs.
    4. Move the Min. song change time (seconds) slider to the right. The default is 30 seconds but you can adjust it all the way up to 120 seconds.

    The combination of these two sliders allows you to fine tune Upbeat to your own style. Experiment with different combinations until you find the desired balance of sensitivity for with you to feel comfortable.

  3. Tips for running

    We strongly recommend you use an armband to hold your iPhone or iPod Touch instead of a waist clip! Upbeat works much better with a sung-fitting armband. Here are some cool ones we’ve tried and like so you can click and learn more about each:

  4. QuickStart for using Coached Workouts

    1. Tap on the Upbeat Workouts icon on your iPhone or iPod Touch.
    2. Tap on the red “Coached Workouts!” button.
    3. Coached Workouts needs to know your SPMs or strides per minute so that the music drives your tempo automatically. There are two ways to determine your SPMs:
      1. If you know your 70% pace called “Comfortable Place” you can insert that number manually by tapping on “Comfortable Pace” and the typing it in from the pop-up window. Upbeat automatically calculates your 100% max SPMs or strides per minute. OR
      2. Tap on the red button Run/Walk to Set start running or walking at a comfortable pace which would be at 70% effort. After you have reached that effort, keep running for about a minute and the app will calculate this number for you and automatically put the correct number in the white box for you.
    4. Tap the Done button in the upper right portion of the screen to save it.
    5. You are returned to the Coached Workouts! Screen.
    6. You can now choose a free coached workout that comes with your app. Just tap under the heading “My Workouts” or you can tap on the red button Buy a New Workout and purchase through the iTunes store a workout of your choice for 99¢ - the same as a song. And, like a song, it is your forever. Tap on the blue Play button (“ > ”).
    7. Your new Upbeat Workouts coach will begin to immediately give you instructions about the workout, the purpose for it, and you’ll have a guide and a coach for the run to motivate and inspire. You don’t have to think about what to do. You don’t have to set the pace - the tempo of the song will se this for you, automatically.
    8. Drag the lock arrow at the bottom of the screen all the way to the left to lock the application and assure the iPhone will NOT turn itself off using Auto-Lock.

    Badda bing, you’re working out with Upbeat your new Upbeat coach in an entirely new way that makes your run more interesting and with the support of your coach!

  5. “BPM” – What the heck is that?

    BPM stands for (Beats Per Minute). It is used with music to measure tempo. One beat = one downbeat of the music. Generally popular music ranges from 50 to 180 BPM.

  6. “SPM” – Huh? Never hear of this either?

    SPM stands for (Strides Per Minute). It is used with walking or running to measure pace. One leg stride = one downbeat of the music. Upbeat Workouts matches Beats Per Minute (BPM) of music with your SPM so they are in synch.

  7. Do songs already come with BPM information?

    Sometimes. More and more music these days are adding BPM to the information for each song (along with artist name, album, track number, etc.). If a song has BPM information attached to it when you acquire it, you can tell by right clicking on the header bar at the top of your music file in iTunes. This shows a number of options you can display for each song. Check next to “Beats Per Minute” and it will add that column to your iTunes Music Library so you can see which songs already have BPM info attached. There are many ways to get a BPM for a song into your iTunes music library.

  8. What if a song doesn’t already have BPM information with it? How do I add that information?

    Good question. There are a bunch of different ways to accomplish this. For starters, once you download Upbeat Workouts on your iPhone it uses your BPM from your iTunes Library transfering it into your Upbeat app. Next, Upbeat looks for the songs missing BPM and goes out to our Upbeat server and tries to find a match to your songs to then add BPM data only on your device. If it doesn’t find it there Upbeat then goes out to another server run by Echo Nest which has millions of songs and finds your song there, adds the BPM sucking it back into your device the next time you open the app, bam, just like that! If we don’t find a match for a particular song we don’t give up. We are constantly adding songs to our databases. We check back every single time you use Upbeat behind the scenes (you’ll never know) and update your app song library automatically. (Note: this does not update your computer's iTunes library). If we still cannot get a match these three different ways, then we resort to “Plan B.” Plan B allows you to manually put the BPM into your app (not your library).

    For 100 songs or less missing BPM data – use our proprietary “Tap It Out™” (TIO) application included with every Upbeat Workouts.

    1. Open Upbeat Workouts on your iPhone. Click on “Just Go! (green button) then select the Playlist/Music you want to add BPM data to by clicking on the little blue “ > ” to the right under “Playlists/Music”.
    2. Now you’ll see all your iTune Playlists. Select one by clicking on the blue “ > ” to the right and then all the songs in that Playlist are shown. If the song has BPM data it will show up as a number (for example “95”) . Scroll down until you find a song that has a “0” for BPM.
    3. Tap on that song and you’ll be brought to the BPM page.
    4. It will show the “Current BPM as zero. Tap on the green play button. You’ll hear the song begin to play.
    5. Begin tapping with your finger (index finger is best) on the red bar labeled “Tap to Set”. Keep tapping to the beat. Once the application gets a consistent beat from you it will stop and display the BPM in the blue box. Bingo, you’re done!
    6. Now tap on the button in the upper left corner to return to the previous page. Find another song with zero BPM and repeat the procedure above. Every time you complete the tapping the new BPM info is automatically attached to the song, and added to your iTunes library the next time you synch your iPhone with iTunes.

    For more than 100 songs missing BPM data

    There are a bunch of FREE! programs for both MAC and PC that will suck in your iTunes music library automatically and add the BPM info for each tune. This will save you from wearing out your index finger from tapping out hundreds of tunes. However, these applications are not 100% accurate and can sometimes give you some funky results. Most folks find some of the songs have a BPM value that is twice (double time) or half the actual BPM of the song. If you don’t like the results for a particular song you can always use our Tap It Out™ application explained above to correct the BPM.

    We don't use your iTunes library BPM on your computer in our app. Rather, we directly connect you with our servers first and then if we cannot provide you with BPM detection, then our unique solution TIO, tap it out.

  9. How does the Min. (Minimum) song change time (seconds) work?

    This allows you to adjust the minimum amount of time you want a song to play before the application switches it to another IF warranted because your SPM have changed more than your Cadence Sensitivity is set for. No matter what your pace change, the song won’t change for this period of time, elapsed time triggers the opportunity for a change.

    Example: So if you set Minimum song change time for say 30 seconds and your Cadence Sensitivity (SPM) to say 10, and you are running along at 85 SPM. Now say you decide to burn some rubber and kick it up to 100 SPM. So you've changed SPM by 15 seconds (100-85). The application is going to want to serve you up a song with a faster beat per minute (BPM) that matches your new SPM which is 100 because you set the Cadence Sensitivity to 10 SPM - which means if the SPM change 10 or more the song is switched out. HOWEVER, this song switch won't happen immediately but only after 30 seconds of the current song has played since the Minimum song change time is set for 30 seconds. So after those 30 seconds have gone by, the application will switch to a song with 100 BPM.

    Whew! It’s really easy and not as complicated as it sounds.

  10. Why does the application stop working a few minutes into a run? The music keeps playing but the application isn't adjusting to my strides per minute any longer?

    You MUST go into the device's "Settings>General>Auto-lock" and set to "Never". This keeps the device from going to sleep-mode. If you don't do this guess what - UW no longer receives accelerometer data from the device. So we can't match music tempos to run-walk cadence when that happens. The app still plays music from your library, but there's no match when the device goes to sleep. This is an Apple issue - not Upbeat Workouts - so don't let your Touch or iPhone go to sleep so Upbeat Workouts functionality doesn't turn off.

  11. The application keeps changing songs - why is that happening? How do I stop it?

    The application is serving up your songs to match your strides per minute (SPM). When you first start running it might take a while for you to get into your groove and a steady pace. So your SPM will be changing too, thus the application will keep serving up songs that match your SPM. Once you get going you will settle into a more steady pace and your music will not change as often because your SPM becomes more consistent.

    Another way to adjust this however, is by clicking on the little gear in the upper right hand corner of the Just Go! Screen and sliding the Cadence Sensitivity (SPM) to the right some more. That bar goes from zero (all the way to the left) to 30 SPM (all the way to the right) which means the more to the right you slide it the LESS sensitive it is to changes in your SPM. Sooooo, that means the application will change your songs to match your SPM less often if you slide it more to the right. Try different settings until you find one that works for you.

  12. How do I keep coins, keys, or my hands from accidentally touching the screen so the screen changes?

    Use the slider bar on the "Just Go" and on the "Coached Workouts" screen. You can easily lock the screen from accidental touches by sliding the arrow at the bottom of the screen from the unlocked to the locked position.

  13. Why aren’t songs I added to my iTunes showing up in Upbeat?

    If you add or remove songs from your iPhone using iTunes, you don’t have to worry because Upbeat synchronizes your music in your music library behind the scenes for you every time you use it.

  14. The tempo of my “Coached Workouts” is off the beat. Why? What do I do?

    Heck, it’s possible, that your max SPMs or strides per minute is higher or lower than the number you inserted into the white box in Settings. If the tempo is too slow, increase your max SPMs by increasing our the number in Settings in your “Comfortable Pace”. Or, if too fast, lower the number in your “Comfortable Pace” which lowers your max SPMs automatically. Or in Settings, tap on the red button Run/Walk to Set and start running or walking at a comfortable pace which would be at 70% effort. After you have reached that effort, keep running for about a minute and the app will calculate this number for you and automatically put the correct number in the white box for you.

  15. I don't hear a “click, click, click” sound after tapping the green play button.

    1. Start running. It won’t start clicking until you start moving!
    2. If the iPhone is in pants pocket, clipped to your waist and NOT in an armband the iPhone accelerometer struggles to pick up an accurate tempo. Get yourself an armband and you will have a much better experience.
    3. Occasionally the iPhone accelerometer fails to kick-in, especially on the 3G model. So, quit Upbeat and re-open it. This usually fixes most problems you might experience.
    4. Is your iPhone on mute by any chance? Take it off mute to hear the sounds.
    5. Be sure your volume is up high enough to hear the sounds.
  16. Can I pause a song or skip forward or replay a song during the workout?

    Yep and No. Check out the “Just Go!” screen. See the standard player buttons? There are three different functions. The green PLAY button (hey, that is also a pause button). The double arrows “ > > ” on the right let you “skip one song” and to the “X” button on the left for cancel this song (and don’t serve it up again). For now, and you know, we’ll fix this, we don’t have a replay button so you can listen to that song immediately again. There’s more to come and you can subscribe to our updates by going to our website and tell us how important this is to you and we’ll get right on it.

  17. How do you contact us?

    We want to constantly improve Upbeat Workouts and the best way that we know how is together. Will you please give us your feedback, advice and suggestions? And, you know, we’ll support your suggestions in every way that we can. That’s the kind of folks we are. We want to hear from you. Now. All of the time. Thanks for helping us!

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Feedback from our users

“Runners—you'll want to get this app—Upbeat Workouts! I've been running with an iPod shuffle for as long as can remember. You know how you get a sudden burst of energy in the middle of your run when the right song comes along? Now you can have just the right song at the right time to keep your pace up for your entire run. I need motivation so I bought an iPod Touch just so I could have this fabulous app and the upbeat coaching that I needed.”

— Susan L. Kane
Certified Triathlon Coach
Park Ridge, IL


Coach of the week:  Kellie Haynes

Looking for a great Upbeat Workout for going from zero to fit? Perhaps thinking of trying to finish your first 5K run?

You can do it with Coach Kellie Haynes, who herself began running after the age of 40 and qualified for the Boston Marathon at the age of 50. Kellie is founder and Executive Director of Fit for Girls, a non-profit organization promoting fitness and healthy habits among middle-school girls.

Read more about Kellie»