Wednesday, May 5, 2010

100 kilometer challenge or my love story with my Nike+

I have to say that for the low price of $39.99, I may have found the best running gadget ever. The Nike+ is a little device you can insert inside the sole of Nike running shoes that acts as a pedometer recording your mileage, speed and time. It is connected via a sensor onto my ipod, which keeps track of the data and lets me know of my progress during my run, all the while allowing me to listen to music that pumps me up.

Once my workout is done, I simply plug my ipod into my computer and my itunes library sends the data to the Nike+ website. And there, my friend, is where I get hooked. This website keeps track of all my runs and compiles them into cool charts and a complete history of my runs so far. It also allows me to set challenges and goals for myself, and find running buddies if needed. My progress can be posted on Facebook to let my friends know how I'm doing, which, although not necessary, is a great way to validate my runs to the world. There are other websites that do similar things, but I find that the Nike+ website is engaging and extremely motivating. Imagine my surprise also when, after finishing one of my runs, Paula Radcliffe herself (for those of you who don't know her, she is one of the best female marathonians in the world) congratulated me on beating my fastest 5 km time. Now that's motivation. A few days later I beat it again, and this time Lance Armstrong offered his heartfelt congratulations on MY achievements. Way to make me feel special Nike+. I appreciate it!

All this to say that since I began using my Nike+, the simple act of tracking my progress has given me wings and so much pride. Not to brag or anything, but since I started using it on March 18th, I have ran 15 times for a total of 15 hours 40 mn 32 secs, 139 kilometers and burnt 10708 calories with an average speed of 06'46 mn per kilometer.

My goal this month is to run 100 kilometers by May 23rd. I only have 44 kilometers left to go. For the first time since I started this journey, I am beginning to see that my success on half-marathon day will not  be measured in the time it takes me to complete the race, but in the numbers of kilometers I will have been proud to have run along this journey.

If I can go from not exercising at all to running 100 km a month in just 15 weeks, then I know every one else can do the same too. Just as in birth, it's a question of confidence and believing that you can do it, or as Nike would remind us: Just do it!

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