Part one found here.
Part two = Tunes and Timing
One of the most intense debates in the running world is whether or not to run with music. I know the prospect of running without an MP3 player to those of you who can’t leave home without it might seem awful. The problem is that most half and full marathons forbid the use of music because they believe it can distract the runner, and potentially lead to an accident if you can’t hear a car coming your way. That’s not to say that some marathoners don’t sneak in their headphones, which I say is their own choice, but technically it IS against the rules and I’m not exactly a rebel :)
I ran both halves and also my full without music. For my training runs I only use music when I am running alone and running more than 10 miles simply to stave off boredom. I promise you that if you go sans music your mind will find things to think about and honestly, it can be totally therapeutic. It’s just you, the road, and your thoughts—-but I will admit that sometimes you just don’t need to solve the world’s problems during a run.
My iPod shuffle is my lover boy for times like these and I dig a mixture of tunes for my runs. I know a lot of runners are always looking for new songs so I figured I’d share my newest ‘Spring 2009′ playlist for your entertainment. I hope you like techno and rap music or you might be severely disappointed.
Ah, my little Garmin. I have a serious dependency on this puppy and cannot imagine running outside without it. You know how a treadmill gives you specific information about your run, like your pace, total time, total distance, and calories burned? That is exactly what a Garmin tells you but without the confines of a hamster wheel. I know, why didn’t I think of that?
Here’s the lowdown on Mr.G: it’s a GPS system you wear as a wrist watch. It’s freaking huge—as in Flava Flav’s clock around his neck, but only it’s on your arm. I suppose if you are a big spender you can get a smaller more pricey version but let’s get real—you get used to wearing such a monster on your wrist when it’s completely pimp.
From the Garmin website:
We bought the Garmin Forerunner 205 which cost us about 200 bones. The biggest perk about a Garmin is that you can glance down while running and check your current pace. For instance, at the beginning of a run I tend to get excited and run too fast, like, “Oh crap, I’m running an 8:00 mile and need to slow my roll right now if I want to last.” And sometimes I feel like I’m trucking right along but I’ll check with Mr. G and he’ll tell me otherwise.
The other thing I love about my Garmin is it tells me my exact distance and how many calories I’ve burned along the way. There are many other functions you can trigger on a Garmin—like seeing a visual of your traveled pathway, average speed throughout the run, time of day—and you can upload your stats to a computer to keep a log of your runs.
I consider the Garmin to be a luxury and not a necessity but I can assure you that if you spend a decent amount of time running outdoors you will not regret your decision to buy Mr. G. Nate and I often fight over ours since we only have one but we’re learning to share like adults should do, I suppose.
In a perfect world, I would buy the Forerunner 405CX version seen here on the Garmin site:
Not only is this bad boy teeny and adorable but it would also tell me my heart rate. Of course it costs $370 which means it’s not an option at this point, but a girl can dream, right?
Stay tuned for the final installation of the series: nutrition and training programs, whoo hoo!