Running became a regular element of my lifestyle more than 20 years ago (more later). I wish I had embraced running earlier in my life, but still no time machine to fix this. It’s something I do for my personal gratification and fun, a very intimate moment I deeply cherish. A private moment in my day, the ideal start of the day for an introvert: I’m sure many runners share these feelings. Let me share what running means to me. So, while I covered more than 50,000 kilometers based on my Nike tracking solutions (initially Nike+ in 2006, then more recently the Nike Run Club app on my Apple Watch), I don’t consider myself a pro, but simply a passionate, daily addict.
Over the years my “setup” has dramatically evolved thanks to different “technological eras” in wearable devices. In the early days, I embraced Nike+, consisting in a sensor in my left shoe, a receiver attached to the Apple iPod and traditional (wired) headphones. For quite some time I added my iPhone to my hardware equipment, a solution I happily ditched for the Apple Watch as soon as GPS tracking was added (series 3 if I remember correctly). Nowadays it’s just the Apple Watch series 5, AirPods Pro, and Nike sunglasses.
That’s basically it. When running in very hot and humid conditions, a wristband is another indispensable addition to my running setup. My current running shoes are the Nike Pegasus Zoom Turbo, while top and shorts vary according to weather conditions. Nowadays, I primarily run in a very warm and humid environment, opting for basic shorts and a t-shirt.
The pre-run preparation is very basic. I stretch for roughly 15-20 minutes in warm conditions initially, progressively adjusting to the external temperature to reduce the initial impact. I follow a series of exercises learned at a tennis camp in Florida, warming up all muscles, not just the lower part of my body. I find this full-body approach to work well for me, “waking up” my entire body after a good night sleep.
From a dietary perspective, I can only run empty stomach. I don’t drink or eat anything: probably not an orthodox approach, but this is what works for my short runs (10Km on average, not extending more than15Km). Similarly, I do not carry any water supplies: I don’t feel I need it and my first thought once the run is over is definitely not drinking. A mouthguard completes my setup, a recent addition after I tripped while running in Seattle.
As mentioned, I track my runs using the Nike Running Club (NRC) app. I wish the app had more features and a better UI, currently enjoying regular feedback every kilometer plus the final recap. As a precaution, I constantly keep an eye on my heartbeat, something I would encourage everyone to include in there routines. For the majority of my runs, alternative music or tech, finance and cultural podcasts, often a source of inspiration while occasionally I prefer “radio silence” to better concentrate on my upcoming challenges throughout the day.
Techno Geek. Book author. Lover of running, tennis and digital photography. Vice President EMEA in GoDaddy in the United Kingdom.
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