It’s no secret that Strava recently took away nearly all the previously free features and now only offers the previous premium features to paying subscribers. We asked the team for their favorite Strava features to help us decide whether it’s worth paying up for the subscription features, or just hanging on to those free ones for dear life!
Here are their faves:
Anyone else finish their run and immediately check out the stats? Both hands up over here! Heck, we get excited mid-workout if it’s going well to get home and upload it so we can geek out on the numbers. This was a popular feature with many runners on our team and Derek Siebert said it well, “I really like the way Strava displays intervals/strides graphically. Far exceeds usability compared to Garmin Connect. Nobody wants to see their graphs fading down after viewing a run.”
Lots of runners on the team are doing cool adventures these days by themselves or with a very small group, especially with races being uncertain, so safety is a biggie. Both Derek and Jeff Urbanski often have their phone on their runs and sending Beacons to family at home is a great, automatic feature, for both convenience and safety.
More info on Beacon: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/224357527-Strava-Beacon
“Uh oh! Annie just stole your CR!”
Anyone else get a little peeved to see that email subject? We don’t love receiving that email and we’ll admit, we get a little pep in our step thinking about others getting that email when we’ve taken a CR, so we’re a fan of leaderboards. #runnerconfessions
Derek highlighted this feature as well, as leaderboards are a way to keep it fun and competitive, and while free athletes can see the top 10 on leaderboards, subscribers can see lots of different filters on the leaderboard.
More info on Leaderboards: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/360030851772
Back in the day when we traveled to new cities (thanks covid!), figuring out where to run always added a little stress to our trip. Andrew Kisslo especially likes this feature: “The Build your own Segments does all the work of length, vert etc. On the phone you can tap ‘locate me’ and pick a distance, and it then creates routes around you based on all strava routes etc for hills/no hills etc.”
We’re also big fans of motivating ourselves to run with picking different routes to try out, so this one’s high up on our list as well.
More info on Routes: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/216918387-Strava-Routes-on-Web
Not clothing, not accounting, it’s Grade Adjusted Pace! I can distinctly remember running hill repeats up 50th St. in the dark, in the rain, in the middle of winter in Seattle, thinking, “At least my GAP pace will be awesome!” Super helpful to see that grade adjustment, and even to see the grade of some of the hills on our runs, both road and trail. Slow miles weren’t slow, they were just hilly!
More info on GAP here: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/216917067
Another timely feature as some of us head out the door alone on a new adventure run, or as we check out a route that’s new to us is the ability to download other athletes’ GPX tracks. Super cool feature that both Ana Valencia and Tara Fraga use for their trail adventures!
More info on GPX tracks here: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/216918447-Downloading-a-GPX-route-from-another-athlete-s-activity-Premium-
Coach Erin Hunt likes the correct distance and correct elevation buttons. “If your watch goes a little wonky and you know the distance or elevation isn’t correct, strava can fix it for you and also revises your pace. I use it every run and there’s always a slight discrepancy between my watch and Strava. You deserve those extra miles your watch didn’t pick up.”
More info on Corrections here: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/216917707-Bad-GPS-Data
Is it worth it?
For the vast majority of the runners on the team, this was a resounding Yes! Lots of features that runners have gotten accustomed to, like Beacon, GAP, and downloading tracks, are ones that they can’t imagine not having at this point. Strava also offers a discount for paying annually, which makes it even easier to pay less for premium features.
For a list of all the features and a comparison of free vs. subscription: https://www.strava.com/subscribe
This was also a great article explaining lots of the subscription features: https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/216917657-Strava-Subscription-Features
There you have it – a list of our favorite Strava Premium features, brought to you by the awesome runners and coaches that make up this team. A special thanks to all the runners and coaches on the team who helped contribute to this article. Onward!
Team RunRun is all about connecting runners with coaches. We’re a growing team of over 600 runners and over 90 coaches, all supporting the goal of being better runners and therefore better people, and a better world. We embrace that journey with passion, grit, focus, and care.