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Following a knee injury I decided it would be better to have pair of running trainers instead of normal everday trainers for going out jogging. I heard about this Nike+ iPod Sport Kit and bought it along with Nike+ trainers to go along with it.
~~~What is it?~~~
The Apple Nike+ iPod Sport Kit comes with a small sensor which fits under the sole of your left Nike+ running shoe, or if you don't have Nike+ trainers then you can buy a pouch which can be tied to your laces, that the sensor is placed in. Along with the sensor you also get a wireless receiver which plugs into the bottom of your iPod.
All you have to id place the sensor in your trainer then put the receiver in your iPod. Once you've done this you calibrate the sensor so that you can get accurate information from your run. You could choose to do this by running a mile on a treadmill, but I chose to use the Nike website to create a run around my area then use it. Just in case my stride length differs from treadmill to ground.
From the menu on your iPod, you can choose whether you want to run a certain distance, for a certain time or burn a certain amount of calories. You can also just do a 'basic' workout which just lets you get on with it and you can stop whenever.
You can keep track of how you're doing during your workout by pressing the centre button. A male or female will tell you your stats. I chose the male as the female had that annoying whiney American accent which was irritating (I've got nothing against Americans ). Once you've completed your run, you will see a summary of how you've done. Distance, time, average pace and calories burned will all be shown.
And if you've completed some kind of new personal best, such as running further than you've ever done previously, you'll get a message from a sport star such as Tiger Woods or Lance Armstrong.
This data can then be uploaded to the nike website, where you can keep track of all your runs.
You can of course listen to your music while running. You have the option of listening to your playlists or shuffling your songs. You can also listen to an album, but you'll have to start playing the album before you set up your workout. This is because you can't browse through albums when in the Nike+ area, you can however select ' Now Playing'. I hope that makes sense.
You can also set a 'Powersong', which you can use when you're struggling during your worlout by holding the centre button on your iPod. Mines is 'Eye of the Tiger', which unsurprisingly is the most popular choice.
~~~Nike Running Site~~~
This is where all your workout data is sent. The website keeps track of the total distance you have ran, total time spent running, average pace overall and calories burned. It also shows your personal bests for set distance such as 1km, 1 mile, 5km, marathon, etc. This is also stored on your iPod.
Apart from keeping track of your stats you can join upto challenges with other members of the site. Challenges include completing a certain distance or competing against one another to complete a distance in the fastest time. You're supposed to get virtual medals and ribbons for doing these challenges, but despite winning some I haven't received any virtual recognition.
As I mentioned before, you can creat your own course from the website. Using Google maps, the website allows you to plan out a run around where you live or anywhere else in the world for that matter. It'll tell you how long the course you have created is. And you cn also keep track of how many times you have ran the course.
For me this is a great piece of technology to have for anyone who regularly goes running or walking. The fact that all your data is stored online, and in a more basic state on your iPod is for me a great motivation to keep getting out there and clocking up those miles.
For roughly £20 you won't be wasting your money and after over 100 miles my sensor is still working accurately.. even though I don't switch it off when it's not in use.
The only minor fault I've had is after one of my runs the data wouldn't upload to the website. This was probably more to do with the site itself rather than the sensor (supposedly getting updated). After a few more runs however it did start to uplaod again and no runs were missing.