Am I the only one who doesn't run to music?

I find it a distraction. I'm a writer and have never been able to write with music on either, it just draws me and I lose focus. I will be so glad when I've graduated and can leave my headphones behind, as it's just one more thing to remember and get in the way. Apart from that, I want to be connected to my surroundings, to the sights, smells and sounds of my journey, the sense of oneness with the earth and sky (even if it is just along the roads during winter, LOL), the rhythm of my feet and breathing.

40 Replies
oldestnewest

I usually listen to funny podcasts, i find that distracts me enough to forget the hell im going through. If i listen to music i become quite conscious of time, and then try working out how long i have been etc, so find that quite annoying.

On the flip side, i cant run with nothing, as i dont like hearing myself pant like a distressed water buffalo!

2 likes
Reply

That gave me a chuckle - thank you :)

1 like
Reply

I've never listened to music / podcasts when running. The main reason is that I don't like feeling hemmed in and, on the narrow lanes round here, I'd be placing myself in peril if I couldn't hear a tractor at 100 paces.

When I was in the earlier weeks of the programme, I'd use a timer to help me keep track of the intervals.

1 like
Reply

I'm a writer too! But I'm afraid I will always have music on when running and often when writing. But if it helps you to 'go naked' then enjoy it!

1 like
Reply

Thank you. It’s interesting the way different people react. My partner can read and do anything else with tv or music on, he likes the background,but I find Im reading the same sentence over and over again.

Reply

I “run naked” aswell and enjoy it. I don’t like the faffing with ear phones/headsets/wires/phones etc. When I do run with music though I quite enjoy the change!

1 like
Reply

Maybe I should try it sometime. But that’s just it, the faffing withall the paraphnalia.

Reply

Wireless earphones....a gift from the gods!

Reply

I mix it up now but the early runs were with music because the sound of me gasping for air was frightening 😂 this morning I just the noise of traffic!

1 like
Reply

Haha, me too, gasping for air 😂

1 like
Reply

No, I don't listen to music, but mainly because I think my phone would die immediately and I'd severely underestimate my timing (which has happened... 18 minutes is apparently not as long as 25 minutes, even if it feels like it...).

I wear hearing aids that are Bluetoothed to my phone, and it draws so much power from the phone that the phone almost can't cope with 30 mins of just being on and playing an app. I need a watch...!

I'm a proofreader, by the way. I just read and get to be pedantic about things, rather than creating prose!

2 likes
Reply

Proof readers are wonderful people!

1 like
Reply

Proofreaders have saved my bacon many times!

Reply

I love running to music! I don't have much opportunity these days to listen to music, so running is my new "me" time. I have my iTunes loaded with my favourite songs and set to shuffle so I never know what's going to come up next. It could be old 70s stuff from my 'yoof' or new music; doesn't have to have a running beat either. I can't stand the sound of my puffing and panting!

1 like
Reply

That sounds tempting 😊

Reply

Sometimes I run with music - sometimes without - just depends on my mood really.

I made a point of not running with music during the C25k programme for the same reason I chose to run before breakfast and never took water with me. Simply because I didn't want to become dependent on needing 'things' before I ran. So, lost water bottle, or headphones would not prevent me running. A bit like you writers having a special place/pen/pad before you can write.

At the moment with the dark early morning runs, listening to music would feel a bit wierd.

1 like
Reply

Yes, I get that. Sometimes I wonder if Im going to get out of the door with all the things I have to remember, including strspping my bad knee ( I forgot once and it got a bit stiff and swollen). I long for the freedom of my youth, when I ran out the door with bare feet and a mini dress and galloped along the country lanes.

1 like
Reply

Most of the time I have something playing in my ears (other than the voices asking me why the hell I'm up at 4:30am running around in the dark)!. It depends on the mood I'm in as to what though, most days is a mix of music styles (heavy rock normally floats my boat), some days it's an audiobook, today it was test match special (it was surreal looking up at the stars and listening to England taking Australian wickets!!)

I have been forced to go without a couple of times when I had audio equipment failure (i.e. some idiot forgot to charge it.....). I found those occasions to be quite uplifting in truth, slightly scary at first hearing my panting but that eased off, and am tempted to do it more regularly particularly as the half marathon I've entered for April has banned any earphones on pain of disqualification!

1 like
Reply

Thank you. Your reply was very evocative and a recommendation for both with or without music 😊

1 like
Reply

I do both it depends on your mood or where you are running. If I run on the busiest street in town then no music Even out on the trail the unexpected can happen like illegal motorbikes so being able to hear is good

Being able to hear yourself think is a must at times or you’d go mad. It seems though some folks have to have noise all the time

I do love music though, and on long runs it’s a lifesaver, it can lift you up, slow you down, speed you up, inspire Thank the Lord for Kenny Loggins 🙏

Reply

Thanks for the insights 😊

Reply

Number of reasons why I don't listen to music although it's clearly a great idea for those that use it.

1. I personally don't need it to start running , to continue running, to run fast or for anything, so that's the only real reason really- the rest is just observations.

2. Feel self conscious about having anything other than the bare minimum (depends on individual and where you run of course) . I am sure you can get used to wearing them , and I know you can get cordless earphones. Whatever. I can do without it.

3. When running the thud of your feet creates its own rhythm so no need to add more rhythm and one thing I don't really get is that the music might have a varying speed in it, (unless you listen to the same song again and again?). I find sometimes my pace is quite surprisingly steady with no music, just from old fashioned plodding along. I get that music passes the time, but if I am going to inflict hard work on my body for 30 minutes I like to get a full experience of nature etc. Its horses for courses and it makes little difference at the end of the day

4. Luddite / grumpy reasons - I am sure their are lots of 40 plus runners who use them however my main dislike for the headphones is that its symptomatic of a younger generation who can't be without technology or a smart phone or something beeping , telling them how good they are. Earphones and music don't equate to smart phones but some people go out with more electronics on them than robocop.

5. One last thing, I have avoided collisions with other joggers because I can hear them approach on gravel, and then of course you can hear nature and the world go by. I can listen to music any time.

Oh, have a great weekend.

1 like
Reply

Except for number 4 (im a 70 year old geek!) I agree with pretty much everything you say. Thanks 😊

Reply

I have tried both and I like them for different reasons. If in a beautiful natural setting, no music is just fine, but in a noisy city setting the music helps me zone into the run a but more. Lately I’ve been listening to lo-fi mixes and soundtracks which are more ambient without words for the most part, and those are nice too. Great to work to as well ( I am a graphic designer and have always had music going while I work) 😊

1 like
Reply

I think if I ran in a city, I might try music. Hwre Im aware of traffic on narrow roads and dark pavements whwre I eant to keep my wits about me. I appreciate your reply 😊

Ah, I hated it at art college when people had music in the studio. I think the problem for me is that it becomes the main focus instead of a background.

Reply

Yes the safety factor is why I usually run through a large cemetery. No traffic to worry about.

At the studio where I worked, most of us were on the same page for music and also used headphones. I cant write decent copy to music either, but it helps to design. Not sure why. I have my own freelance now so its just me I need to worry about bothering 😊

1 like
Reply

Ah, fantastic, having your own freelance business. I did part of a graphics course, branched into photography, decided to have a baby instead (mature student) Went back much later and did a course in photography and digital imaging. Now doing stuff like designing a tarot deck using photos/digital i.lustration, but never used it to earn a living after qualifying. So respect to you 😊

1 like
Reply

Thanks, was really more of a neccesity after we were taken over and everyone laid off, but it worked in the end and I’ve been doing freelance for about 7 years now. The time flies.

1 like
Reply

And its nice to come across someone else in the business too :) Sounds like you are enjoying it still which is a good place to be

1 like
Reply

Yes indeed. I love the creativity of digital art.i wanted to be an illustrator but my drawing wasnt up to it. This way I get to be creative while using my own photos. Lovely to have “met” you and compared notes 😊

1 like
Reply

I still really enjoy designing after all these years too. It's all the other business-related stuff that sometimes can kill the fun. I almost went into illustration also, until I realized there were so many others far more talented and hard-working than me :). Now I just paint watercolours when I feel motivated enough - I have some posted here from year's past: plus.google.com/collection/...

Would love to learn digital painting on a tablet - some of the work I see is mind-blowing

1 like
Reply

Lovely. I love seeing the process with drawing - like looking through a sketch book.

1 like
Reply

Yes the steps are fun and get me out of my head - it's kind of sad when its done.

Its lovely to have met you virtually as well :)

1 like
Reply

I bet it's dead quiet ... (boom-tish!)

3 likes
Reply

You’ve no idea! 😁

Reply

I like both. I normally run to music but did most of C25k without and loved the silence,as I ran in the early morning. Now it's not always possible and of I run in the evening the only feasible place is by the river,which is a boring route without distractions. I find that even with music it's a great moment for thinking.

I always have classical music playing softly in my office at work,and it creates a cocoon without inhibiting writing.

Re proofreading - I shudder to think of some of the horrors that I have risked publishing over the years... 😨

1 like
Reply

I've proof read for the publisher i used to write for (I mean not just my own work) and I'm amazed....

Reply

PS meant to add - I think that running without music is great when you're trying to find your pace or working on breathing.

1 like
Reply

I run to music with cordless phones. I also listen to a story at the same time, it interrupts the music from time to time. I often have a song going in my head even when wearing no headphones at all; my one talent is a very good memory for music and lyrics... and it's really pleasurable for me to hear new aspects to familiar songs every time. It's a kind of meditative concentration. And then I think about the stories the songs are telling and the people telling them. I imagine my favourite fictional characters and think about who would sing a song like this (as if I were casting a musical or something). Generally I float along, I love not thinking about my job/work/kids/housework and just listening and thinking and breathing and feeling the wind... I run along a dedicated bike/walking path near a river so don't have to worry about traffic...

1 like
Reply

That sounds fab.i wish I still lived in Oxford and could run through the parks, down by the river or along the tow paths, or Christchurch Meadow.

Reply

You may also like...