Sound vs Silence

To run with music or without? Join the debate

21 to 40 of 527 messages
02/06/2008 at 17:32

I know this debate has been had many times but I did want to make a comment on the article - should safety not feature in it somewhere? I don't mean the risk of getting your ipod nicked, I mean the general lack of awareness of other road users that running with music blaring out creates. I've been run into a couple of times by other runners who were completely away with the fairies listening to their music and didn't look where they were going. Grrr... I really do think people sometimes underestimate the importance of hearing - if you're going to listen to music at least be aware that you are a sense short!

I must admit I have occaisionally listened to music on some of my long winter marathon training runs, but mostly I run without. Especially now it's summer, the days are longer and it's easier to get offroad - who wants music when they can have birdsong at dusk?

02/06/2008 at 17:45
I tend to go out with my MP3 on 99 per cent of the time, the only problem it causes is road crosing and not hearing people coming out to either side or dare i say it from the rear. no jokes please., i find music motivates me especially rocky themes or the likes of on long runs
02/06/2008 at 17:48

This is a 'marmite' subject, some people will always hate the idea of running to music and others will swear blind that it is fantastic, for me I can run with and without, although I do prefer to listen to music when out on longer runs.

Some music can be extremely motivating and therefore music and running will always exist together, but every now and then i is good to head out early on a Sunday morning with nothing but the sound of your breathing to accompany you.

But at the end of the day it is always nice to have a choice, sound or silence?

02/06/2008 at 18:00
I listen to 5live on my long runs (runs of over 2h). That way I can listen to the footy and get my run in. During the week I never wear anything as the runs aren't long enough to get bored. Also, it gives me some 'me' time, when I can think things through or just concentrate on the run and how I'm feeling.
02/06/2008 at 18:09

I had to add my two pennies worth here. in fact i was thinking about posting this very subject on the forum last week, but was too scared as i have read the outcome of other various threads!! all gets very heated doesnt it?!

Right, when i first started running i always had my ipod on. period. as i did all my training on my own and in the winter used the treadmill 99% of the time i couldnt get into it unless i had foo fighters, paramore or biffy clyro belting wicked tunes in my ear. however.....

One day i went out for a run (with my ipod blaring)and couldnt make it up this one hill. when i stopped and switched the music off i realised it was because i was going too fast and i was struggling for breath- id overdone it without realising. so the next time i did that route i left my ipod at home. It was a spring day and the sun was shining, there was a breeze and as i live in the welsh hills there was some beautiful scenery. i just reached the top that same crippling climb and as i reached the top, i could hear all the birds in the trees and just the general sound of the country. i felt elated at being able to reach the top. i could also feel everything as i was climbing it, my breathing, my pace, my form and i decided- who the hell needs music if your missing out on all this? i climbed that hill a lot easier because i was tuned into my body.

So in short, whenever i run now, its in silence or with my newfound running buddy. I use postive phrases and mantras in my head if im struggling up a hill these days and they work a lot better. (or i imagine my exes smug face and tell myself if i stop hes won- works every time!!) If your mind is focused your body can carry you through to your goal, lose your focus and your body will give up too. Think music should be definitely kept to the gym and spinning classes!!

However, i am also a great believer in personal choice so i think its a case of each to their own, especially for long distance runs. (how was that for diplomatic)

02/06/2008 at 18:11

oh and i forgot to say about safety- how can you hear whats coming round the bend or if someones coming up behind you if youve got your ipod on?

Iron Pingu    pirate
02/06/2008 at 18:15
When I started out running I found music really helped.  Then I lost my MP3 and found I actually liked running outside without it.  Im trying to get my speed up at the mo by doing interval training on the treadmill and have found music really helps.  Plus I find treadmills mind numbingly boring.  So outside, no music, on the treadmill, music.
02/06/2008 at 18:35

Always take my ipod with me, stick the earphones in and then sometimes turn the music on, sometimes not depending on the run and the general mood.  Being female it can sometimes be useful to ignore infantile remarks (from males both young an old - why do men do that?) pretending to listen to music!

I always check as much as possible on traffic, whether crossing roads, running round bends, or even running past driveways.

Each to his/her own - don't think its up to any of us to say what is right or wrong for someone else.

02/06/2008 at 18:48
I tried it a few times and sort of liked it but found myself playing with it on my longer runs and also found on shorter ones it's not worth it and again spend time playing with it and so don't do it anymore and find that I don't play with anything now and enjoy it more.........as for running with music I don't know about that?
02/06/2008 at 19:03

Choosing a man (Seaton) who says he can't imagine listening to a new CD at home /has no preference of music  is not really a fair test? 

The argument is more about  whether he can be persuaded to enjoy music rather than enjoy whilst running????

I love my MP3 when I run - would never wear it on the bike or to race. I would wear it to swim and have a waterproof holder for doing so. It helps me shut out the outside world (traffic/hecklers/passers by)   In the countryside yes I could miss the birds and bees but I tend to not wear it in lanes for traffic safety anyway - off road the same but for personal safety so as to hear someone approaching.  I'd never wear it in company either

02/06/2008 at 19:04

I've tried it once or twice, but don't like it.

For me running is a chance to be alone, with my own thoughts, communing with nature & with people I pass. Music just gets in the way.

If some enjoy it then fine, but I find it very sad that people on here often say they couldn't possibly cope with running for a half marathon without music. It just shows how we have become dependent on a constant soundtrack to our lives.

I think they should be banned in all races. Not because they offer an unfair advantage, but because they are so anti-social. Part of racing is about being part of a community, and headphones get in the way of that. (Not that people should chat all the way round, but it's a case of being polite to those around you).

02/06/2008 at 19:11

Should we ban deaf people from running, because it's dangerous - I think not - so why should people not be allowed to wear Ipods.

02/06/2008 at 19:13
think about it Ed
02/06/2008 at 19:14

I'm thinking

02/06/2008 at 19:25

Strangely nobody ever mentions hearing damage as one of the safety issues of iPod/MP3 player use - in my 20s i often had earphones from my walkman stuffed in my ears listening to music when i commuted -my hearing is ok but it isnt as sharp as it was -especially with a lot of background noise in pubs for example

Everybody always says they dont listen to to it that loud but the concentration in ear may affect hearing in the long term

Deaf and hard of hearing people have often much better  developed other senses and awareness due to not being being able to hear so are probably safer than hearing people in a lot of situations

02/06/2008 at 19:40

'tis a free world - choose what you want.

Me I much prefer the sound of silence - or at least the sounds of my surroundings including my gasping breath, footfall on the tarmac (from which I can tell if I am footstriking smoothly and properly) and luckily enough the countryside sounds that I am fortunate to run through

I cannot over emphasise the safety aspect though both from traffic and personal safety. I literally pulled a wandering teenager off the road onto the pavement recently as he stepped off listening to his MP3/iPod into the path of a car (whose driver was on a mobile!!!) and he simply had not looked or heard it coming.

Then last week I was overtaking a female runner on my early morning run who had earphones in. She looked totally shocked to find someone right on her shoulder as she turned round to look back just before a corner. Fortunately for her it was just a gasping old geezer (which may have caused the shock/horror) but she obviously had no prior warning of my approach. Thought crossed my mind then that it was not a good idea to be so vunerable.

02/06/2008 at 19:48

Thank you Gas Ed, the very same argument I had last week on this very subject.
Apparently I caused at least one person to have a sleepless night.

Some of us have no choice but to run in silence.

I'm saying no more because I tend to upset too many people on this subject.

02/06/2008 at 19:50

Where's Cougie?

02/06/2008 at 20:27
I only ever listen to music on long runs when I'm on trails and paths.  I can't listen to just music, I have to have the radio on so there is some chat as well to distract me from the endless miles................... yes, ultra runner!!!!
Bionic Ironwolf    pirate
02/06/2008 at 20:39
I never listen to music when out training, in fact I haven't even bothered to buy an Ipod, I'm one of the "communing with nature" group. I run almost exclusively on forest trails with my dogs, and find it very relaxing to be away from all the everyday noise that accompanies me everywhere else from the minute I get up until I go to bed. There's enough noise in the world, it's refreshing to me to be able just to listen to the birds and other forest sounds, after a tough day at work it really helps me to unwind. I've been running long enough that I can enjoy it for itself,  don't need distractions to take my mind off where/how far I'm running, I just enjoy being able to do it. I appreciate there are others who need distractions or can't live without noise, but it's not for me.
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