Monday, October 24, 2011

With or Without an iPod

There is a great debate among runners as to whether you should or should not run with an iPod.  Let’s look at the argument from both sides:

  • A good beat gets you motivated.
  • Music can be a welcomed distraction from negative thoughts that tell you it’s time to quit.
  • Great tunes make the time pass by faster for long runs that seem to never end. 
  • Your running partner has an especially irritating breathing pattern or loud footfall, you can block it out with tunes (if I run with any of you readers...I promise, I'm NOT talking about you).
  • If you have headphones on, you cannot hear what is going on around you, which presents a safety  issue (there are a lot of distracted drivers out there and people who wish to do innocent people harm).
  • If your favorite song is distracting you, there is potential for your good, strong running form to turn into slumped shoulders and cross body arm swinging.
  • A lot of races ban runners from wearing headphones during the race.  If you train with headphones and then find out you can’t run with music on race day, it can do a number on your PMA (Positive Mental Attitude)!!!
  • Sometimes the music moves you to break out your latest sweet moves from Dance Dance Revolution, and let's be honest, that's not going to get you a PR in your next race.

I would say that on at least 25% of my runs, I definitely have my iPod with me.  After reading several articles about running with music though, I’ve had a change of heart.  I try to hit the road/trail with just my thoughts and the scenery around me for entertainment. 

Which side are you on?