What is the big deal about Nike + iPod Nano?

          Have you ever wondered what the big deal about the Nike plus iPod is? I mean sure, it can track how many miles you ran, how many times you ran in a week, and the distance you ran but you can get the same output in any old pedometer so it should be the same right? Wrong, wrong, wrong! The Nike + iPod Nano definitely changed my view of running because my old view of running consisted of pain and getting winded easily (so I wasn’t too psyched about the idea). If you can imagine running while getting entertained with your favorite play list of music or having your own personal trainer telling you how far you have to go, wouldn’t that motivate you to run? It certainly made me motivated to run more. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the benefits of the Nike + iPod Nano.

What are the goodies for this gizmo?

          One of the biggest advantages to the Nike plus running system is that you can customize it to your needs. For example, say you needed to run for only 20 minutes (because you have a very busy schedule) you can set the Nike + iPod in the New Workout selection to the settings of time and then input 20 minutes and choose a favorite play list on your iPod to run with and there you go, put your ear buds, get your run and rock on! The same idea applies if you only want to run a certain amount of mile(s) or if you want to burn a specific number of calories (because maybe you’re feeling guilty about the cupcake you ate that your co-worker brought in).

Other nice features include: setting a specific goal and target date (for example : burning 3500 calories in 4 weeks or running 3 times in one week) If you do achieve your goal, famous athletes such as Sanya Richards and Allyson Felix congratulate you on your achievement (getting props from the pros is always nice!) This is a great workout tool for an effective fat burning exercise while making efficient use of your time.

          Nike also does a nice job of tracking your runs, duration times, dates and times of your run, total calories burned, average miles per run, and total miles ran in one graphical representation in the Nike+ Runs side bar menu. Every time I see this graph I just get pump up because I can see my progress growing rapidly. Nike also has color levels for the types of runners based on miles ran (similar to a martial art color belt system).

Here are the Nike level color designations:

Yellow (0-49km, 0-30mi)

Orange (50-249km, 31-154mi)

Green (250-999km, 155-620mi)

Blue (1,000-2,499km, 621-1,552mi)

Purple (2,500-4,999km, 1553-3,106mi)

Black (over 5,000km or 3,107mi)

          Right now I’m in the orange level which is not too bad. I’ve ran a total of 116.66 miles based on the Nike+ running website (only 39 more miles to get to the green level, woo hoo!) Oh yeah, by the way, if you have been slacking off on your runs your mini avatar will start saying something to get you motivated again.  Nothing seriously offensive (like your high school football coach) but enough to get you moving.

What’s the cost? 

           In my opinion, Nike sets a decent price of $99 for the lunar shoes (which by the way is the most comfortable running shoes ever made) you have to buy the shoe because if not you have to cut a hole in your old shoes to fit in the sensor—I did it before and believe me it didn’t work! It’s better to buy the shoes that are Nike + approved. The sensor cost as low as $19.99 plus tax but I saw some shoe stores charge a little bit extra so shop around. A word from the wise: shut down your sensor after use or else it will drain the battery life and you will have to buy a new one! (Sorry once these babies are drained they are gone and you will end up having to shell out another 20 bucks). The only other downside to the sensor is that it doesn’t have any indicator lights that it has been turned off. I think this is a given but you must also already own an iPod Nano.

Overall impression 

         I was a bit of a skeptic at first, but when I realize the usefulness of this product and the ease of use it turned me into a running addict. The euphoric feeling of accomplishing something so monumental that you didn’t think it was possible (I ran 6.32 miles at one point which I thought I couldn’t do). The best part? It’s all recorded baby! You can even post your accomplishments in Face book and get some major recognition from your friends.

           All in all, this is a great product especially because of the features that come along with the iPod Nano system. Motivating yourself is the key in keeping a consistent track record of your runs and I think Nike and Apple combine their two technological expertises together to create an effective fat burning and calorie burning system while keeping your mind off from running. I never thought I would end up enjoy running until I tried the Nike plus iPod running system.