Wednesday, January 6, 2010

iPods, pushing myself, and an unlikely song

How many of you run with your iPods?

The iPod controversy is something I have always been interested in. I used to be one of those runners that swore I could not run without my beloved iPod with me. And when asked to explain why, I didn't really have an explanation except that it pumped me up...

As you all may know, iPods and headphones are banned by USAT. In fact, it's one of the most commonly violated rules.

I weaned myself off my iPod last year with running and am quite proud to say that I can run long distances now without my music. Not only is it safer but I feel I don't have that "crutch" that I have been carrying around. BUT! I'm a human being. And that means I'm not perfect, even though I wish I was. *tear* Seriously though, there are some things I like having my iPod for. Take today...

I'm in Tulsa and the Doubletree has a great workout room. Great treadmills, freeweights, and cold water. But no bike. I wanted to bike today. But I wasn't going to be deterred, so I got on the treadmill. Roughly 20 minutes into my 45 minute treadmill workout, a guy gets on the one next to me. Now tell me this has happened to're going along and doing good and suddenly someone goes blowing by you and making you feel inferior. Yeah, that's what happened. This guy starts running at like 7.3 and just eats up the miles. I'm like oh that's terrific. Grandpa marathon man is going to destroy me. As you can probably tell, this was getting distracting. So I made an executive decision. I put my headphones in.

Now I'm at the tail end of my workout. And by tail end, I mean I'm in the last 15 minutes of it. I was maybe one minute into the running interval when Hero of the Day came on by Metallica. For those of you who don't know, this song has a great guitar/drum rift around 2:25 into it, and it basically lasts the whole rest of the song. I don't know what exactly came over me, but I kicked it up to 7.5 and ran that the whole rest of the interval. It felt so good to not only kick up the speed, but to get a little "pump up" into me. I ended up finishing the 45 minutes with such gusto I had to actually "cool down" on the treadmill. I usually just walk around the hotel a little bit to cool down...not today. I know, right?

Anyway, I'm curious to hear everyone's take on the iPod discussion.


  1. you know my take, but i'll comment anyway! commentcomment.


    i use an ipod only for doing cardio indoors. period. i don't mind one while cycling every now and then, but i actually think it hampers my running now. ever since i trained for my first tri without an ipod (which included treadmill running ... god that sucked) since mine had died ... i learned running without it forced me to focus inward. i trained with an ipod for tri 2 and, well ... we all know what happened there. not that i'm blaming it on the ipod.

    but moreover, i do think it's a safety issue if only because pretty much freaking EVERYONE blasts their music too loud. if you can't hear someone say, "on your right/left," it's too loud. 'tis far better to be in tune with your surroundings and your own running/time of zen.

  2. LOL!! I used music to run early on, but like you, stopped. I found that I preferred thinking about stuff when I run. Actually, I've planned almost every elective surgery I've done while running!

    Now, I do not like to be passed while running :-)
    The other day, I noticed some high school runner was catching up to me while I was on a casual run. No No, I kicked it into a higher gear and after I was done, I looked back and felt, Wow, that felt good :-)

    PS I guess we can call it the "Keep your speed up," on final instruction :-)

  3. I used to be adamantly against using iPods while running. However, I've started clipping my iPod shuffle on while I run just for some background noise. I never have it on so loud that I can't hear what's going on around me (I usually chat with my roommate or use the TV in my apartment as a test before I head out). I don't know whether it's helped or hindered at all yet, but sometimes it's just nice to have a little music on while I'm out there.