Sunday, December 17, 2006

Nike+Ipod Review

So I bought this about 5 weeks ago. I have an iPod Nano, so I figure what the heck. Its' going for 25 bucks at, at the worst it'll just be something I ebay for half the price...

Well, after 6 weeks, and 110 miles later, I can say, its great.

My first few runs were a bit wonky with it, so I figure I should calibrate it. I did about 1 mile on the treadmill at 6.8mph and then walked for a quarter mile at 3.5 and the next few runs I did with it was just perfect. My local loop of 2.35 miles came up relatively accurate (sometimes it reads 2.2 sometimes it reads 2.5), and if I average it, it usually is more or less accurate. Like any other pedometer that does not use a GPS, it cannot give you 100% accuracy, but then to get 100% accuracy, you really want a unit that tracks altitude changes too (an altitude change of as little of 100 feet per mile can be significant over longer distances).

The use of it is simple as is demonstrated by the nike+ website (link in title). Plug it in, select the "Nike+ iPod" menu item, slip the sensor underneath your shoe, select a workout, and away you go. You can select from "Basic" which just tracks your distance, and time, or go by "time", "distance", "calories". For the last option, you'll have to input your weight and height, but I can't see why anybody wouldn't do it. Oh yes, select a playlist too, or have it shuffle.

Then you go run. If you have it calibrated correctly and your sensor is in a good position, your iPod should start receiving information from the foot sensor and displaying it on your iPod. You can get some rubbish times at times, but generally it is fairly accurate. Don't use it to measure distances as you should know the distances you are running, but it should give you a good idea of what your pace is.

When you press the center button, a voice will tell you how far you've run, what your current pace is, and how long you've run. Press & hold the center button and your "powersong" comes up...its simply a song that you decide beforehand to give you extra motivation, if that type of thing works for you. =)

At the end of the run, the voice will give you a summary of your workout, plus calories burnt if you have input your weight/height, and if you've reached certain milestones, a congratulatory message from Lance Armstrong and some other lady will be given to you.

Note that you do not need to have an Nike+ shoe, you can buy a Marware Nike+ sensor suit,
and it should work just as well as if you had an Nike+ shoe. For my money, I have just been slipping the sensor underneath the shoe and calibrating it, and that works fine for me. I have purchased the Marware Nike+ sensor suit though, and will be reviewing that when I receive it.
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