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Running Revelation: I'm OK Without Music

Running Revelation: I'm OK Without Music

In our RunningSugar community group, FitSugar member nancita had a surprising realization while running over the holidays.

I have always been one of those people who has to run with music. I even own an iPod Shuffle expressly for this purpose, since the jostling is bad for my big, hard drive-based iPod. But on a recent trip to visit my mom, I forgot my iPod Shuffle at her house. At first, I was going to use this as an excuse not to run and just go to the gym until I could get it back.

But over the long New Year's weekend, I was too antsy for a workout, so I set out on a music-free run. I can't remember the last time I did this — probably when my iPod died halfway through a run. I couldn't believe how easy it was. Since then, I've done several music-free runs, and it's so liberating. Especially first thing in the morning, I get so lost in my thoughts, I don't even miss the music.


Do you consider music a must have when you run? If so, I suggest giving a tunes-free jog a try.

If you're already an avid runner or are thinking about starting it up in 2010, become a member of RunningSugar so you can post your own questions, thoughts, and revelations about this outstanding form of exercise.

Join The Conversation
runningesq runningesq 7 years
bbeccaa - who lifted what ban? From what I understand, it's up to each RD whether or not to allow mp3s in road races.
rivekkah rivekkah 7 years
I always prefer music- mostly just because I like having the beat for my pace. However, when I was training for my half marathon it was before they lifted the ban on mp3 players so I forced myself to run long runs without it.
Spectra Spectra 7 years
I've done it before, but I do prefer music when I run. Outside it's not as bad because there is interesting scenery and people around, but on a treadmill, I would die without music or a TV to occupy me.
shiningeyes shiningeyes 7 years
I don't know if I could make a complete and total shift to running without music. But oddly enough the longest run I did yet was on a day that I accidentally left my ipod at home. I was totally able to zone out and just run. It was great.
bethinabox bethinabox 7 years
If I shift from the treadmill to outdoors, I'll definitely give going without music a shot. But as long as I'm inside... No way.
katyharper katyharper 7 years
Have y'all seen Bride Wars, when Anne Hathaway's character says that "running with music is for people who can't be alone with their thoughts."? This made me think of that. I think I'm going to try to run without an iPod if it will ever warm up enough to run outside again!
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 7 years
About half my runs, I do without music.
runningesq runningesq 7 years
no, tsp, it's not true.
tsp tsp 7 years
is that accurate... that running with an iPod is bad for it because of the hard drive?
Susmita Susmita 7 years
I found out the same thing -- would never run without the ipod, and specific playlists which were devoted ONLY to listening while running. I stopped on one particularly dark and rainy morning, where I realized the cars couldn't see me, even with my headlamp. Every once in a while I take the ipod, but normally run w/o music. It's actually rather meditative. One exception -- if I have to run on the treadmill (e.g., recent bad East Coast weather...), I desperately need the distraction of the music!
runningesq runningesq 7 years
Not just good etiquette fit -- I would say that is absolutely necesasry to thank the voluneers! to the OP: I never listen to music during races. iPods and the like are banned for safety reasons and I think you miss out on a lot of the race atmosphere with earbuds. During training... I often listen to audiobooks, but during Ironman training part of my "mental training" was to 'practice' remembering my mantras, best memories, etc. I turned off my audiobook halfway through an 18 miler and thought about all my good moments from training, the happiest moments from my life, etc. It was great !
Fitness Fitness 7 years
Tonye, It's great that you thanked the volunteers — that's good race etiquette.
ayabeachgirl ayabeachgirl 7 years
I like running without music outdoor. You can get lost in your thoughts. But not on the treadmill, it's just too boring.
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