Naked running - 18th July 2021

Phil - running coach
by Phil - Marathon coach and parkrun fan

Sorry to dissapoint anybody looking for a saucy blog post. By "naked" I mean running without any technology.

I was all ready for a run recently, but I couldn't find my Garmin. I spent ages looking for it in all the usual places but had no luck. I was just starting to get really stressed out when I realised that there was nothing to stop me going for a run. The need for a running watch was a self-imposed constraint. What would be so bad about running without the run being officially recorded? I wasn't planning on a structured session, just an easy run, so I absolutely didn't need my watch to record pace, heart rate, or recoveries. I'm not particularly concerned about showing off my runs on Strava (well, maybe some of them, but definitely not what was going to be a fairly slow plod). It wouldn't upset any of my weekly mileage stats since I could just add the run manually. And I didn't need any details about calorie burn, recovery time, or any of the other features that watches provide theser days.

So what was I so worried about? I really don't know, but something was still bothering me.

I did consider using the Strava app on my phone, but I figured this would be a great opportunity to try to find out exactly why I was so obsessed with my watch.

So, I did the run without any gadgets and it was fine. The most eventful thing that happened was when I had to stop at a road and my hand automatically reached for the pause button where my watch would have been.

I think what bugs me is that I'm quite an ordered person and not recording a run feels like there's something I haven't finished; something that isn't in its place. It's still nagging me now a few days later. It doesn't really make sense to me: I still did the run and will still get the training effects. And I know in a week or so I'll have forgotten all about it.

I've heard a lot of runners have this mild addiction to gadgetry. Is it a problem? I don't think so. For me, much of the fun of training is being able to track my progress well and look back on what's worked and what's not. Of course, you can do that without a running watch, but wearing one makes it so much easier.

So, I won't be dumping my watch any time soon. But I'll try not to worry so much next time I can't find it...