Monday, February 6, 2012

Get in Gear: Part II

Remember that one time, about five hundred days ago, when I promised to "write more soon" about getting in gear? Yeah, so I guess "soon" is a relative term. To the hundreds of you out there who were holding your breath waiting for the next installment of The Average Jo's Guide to Running, take a deep breath in, then exhale, releasing all the toxins of bitterness and resentment toward me for making you hold your breath for two weeks.

Anyway, let's talk some more about gear, shall we?

App-tly Equipped

Whether you're looking to start running, keep running, or rant about how you hate running, yes, there's an app for that. Thousands of them, I'd guess. I've highlighted below a few of the apps I've found useful.
  • Electric Miles (Free): Whether you're using Dailymile to track your mileage, to participate in the 146 mile challenge, or to connect with other athletes and runners, you might be looking for an easy way to enter your mileage on your phone. Well, look no further. Electric Miles is an app that allows you to log in to your Dailymile account and add workouts easily from your phone. The functionality is more limited than the Dailymile website, but I find it helpful for logging my workouts right after I complete them. (Because by the time I get home and in a place where I can sit down to log a workout, I've generally forgotten the details of my distance and paces.)
  • RunKeeper (Free): I downloaded this app a year ago, but admittedly haven't used it much as I prefer to run without my phone. For the price, I suppose I'm still getting my money's worth. RunKeeper will track your route, time and distance with GPS, and allows you to store your workouts within the app.
  • Runner's PaceCalc (Free): I probably should be embarrassed by how much I love this app. Because it's a calculator. I'm assuming the cool kids love apps like Angry Birds or Shazam, but definitely not calculators. I mostly use this app to obsess over how fast I might be able to run a 10k if I ran it at the same pace I just ran a 1600m rep. Or what the minute per mile pace would be to qualify for Boston in my age bracket. (Never mind that I've never run a marathon, nor am I signed up to run one, nor do I have any hope of qualifying for Boston if I spend more time daydreaming with a calculator than I do actually running.)
  •  Couch to 5k ($2.99): I haven't actually used this app myself, but I've heard nothing but great things. If you're thinking about doing the C25K program, this app might be just what you need to help you get started and stay on track. 
I know I haven't even scratched the surface on all of the apps out there for runners of all levels. If you have an app you've found useful, please share it with us in the comments below!

{More on gear to come soon...ish. We still need to cover winter gear--preferably before winter is over--and talk more about hydration belts. And if there's any other gear you're curious about that we haven't talked about yet, leave me a question in the comments below, and I'll be sure to address it.}


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