I’ve taken my time to write this post because I’m not sure whether to come clean about my sins or to attempt a bluff.
I was sent the Nike+ Sportband to try out at the beginning of the week but as I don’t have holes in my running shoes I couldn’t possibly go running before I had some hi-tech means of carrying my speed sensor – you wouldn’t catch me putting gaffer tape on my Kayanos unlike Joggerblogger and Jogblog.
The little thingammy pouch that I ordered from ebay arrived just before I left for work on Wednesday though, so I pretty much had no choice but to pack my bags and prepare for an enforced running commute.
My first impressions of the strap weren’t great, I wondered why Nike would design the watch to have a ridiculous piece of plastic wedged underneath the usb face. It angled the watch and meant I kept catching it on my sleeve. Thankfully I spotted the photo of joggerbloggers sleak sportband before I went out in public, the plastic bit is meant to be thrown away! Moron. Now I’m wearing it as a watch although I have to ask the person sitting next to me to read it as I haven’t got used to deciphering the vertical numbers and the screen is too dark but I still think it looks cool.
Anyway, back to the running.
When I left the house it was chucking it down so I packed the long sleeve top again, of course when I left work it was flippin scorching and just to ensure that I got heat stroke at the edge of a deserted canal I left the building with my empty water bottle in hand. With no means of re-entering the building I had to set off sans hydration system – bollox!
3 seconds later the Sportband is telling me to start walking but the garmin is persistently ignoring my request to locate my position. I can’t start walking now or the garmin will have a paddy fit. By the time the gps picks up the Nike system has gotten bored and gone back into clock mode, who can blame it?
I was feeling hot, sweaty and lethargic so I pretty much ignored both gadgets for the first 4k as thoughts vacillated between diving in the canal and diving in the canal. When I entered Brentford I headed straight for the nearest shop where I knocked back a bottle of water before I reached the till and handed over 90p for an empty bottle of plastic.
I set off again but now thoughts were of cool beers, enjoyed by the rivers edge. As I’ve never been known to resist the lure of beer and I was just about to reach the Thames river bank, I rather shockingly dived into the next shop and came out with a can of Stella. Now beer can’t be shaken so I paused both gadgets while I wandered down to the river. I thought I’d just enjoy my can and then carry on with the run.
Oh baaaaad runner! I thought it would be rather pleasant sitting with my legs dangling in the river enjoying a refreshing brew but the reality was rather seedy. I’m clearly a runner – running clobber and shoes, beetroot face and sweat, not one but two running watches and headphones in ear, only I’m walking and not just walking, this is no-good can swigging bum walking. About 300 hundred proper runners came past me in and in the end I realised I wasn’t enjoying this whole cool beer thing and tipped it all away.
Running was pretty tricky from here on in, 300m run, huge gasp, hands to temples and then walk for 1km – repeat. Nice treat at the end as there was a new piece of graffiti on my steps. Not quite Banksy but it isn’t bad.
Painful but the Sportband faired pretty well.
Total garmin distance (running only): 5.78km
Nike Sportband distance (running only): 5.65km
No way of telling which was the most accurate but they were close enough to ensure that I’ll never bother calibrating the Nike Sportband.
Post run, the usb face automatically uploads (after inserting into the usb port of course) to the Nike+ website and displays whizzy graphs.
The Nike+ website is pretty good if you like online motivation. You can join no end of challenges to push you out of the door and it looks like the next Nike organised run will be a worldwide Nike+ only event. The sportband is a great way of a gaining entry to the event, its also got to be one of the cheapest available speed and distance monitors on the market.
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