There are many opinions in the running community about running and listening to music--whether it helps or hinders training and performance, and whether or not it is safe. My post today looks at why it’s good to run without listening to music on headphones.
Running outside without headphones means that you are much more aware of your surroundings, your breathing and your body movement (form). Listening to music can often distract you, which can prevent you from hearing traffic, bikes, or other noises, such as dogs or, perhaps most importantly, if someone is running after you.
Enjoy the silence and soak up your surroundings
Going out for a run is a great way to clear your mind, let go of any drama and to focus on you and the open road. By running without headphones, you can enjoy being outside while being disconnected from extra noise. It can be a great time to think and mentally make plans as well as meditate in your switched off ‘zone.'
Protect your hearing!
There’s nothing like cranking up the volume to push yourself when training, but have you thought about the damage you might be doing to your ears and hearing? Running without headphones means you can think clearly and not have to worry about damaging your hearing due to an hour of loud music.
When running with friends, it can be a waste to just plug into your headphones and ignore everyone around you. Instead, use your running time to chat with friends and catch up rather than tuning out. Running with friends is a great way to multitask and be social.
There may be times when listening to music whilst running is more appropriate, such as when running on the treadmill or even running a marathon/ultra marathon to alleviate the monotony. While there is evidence that running with music can help motivate you to run longer distances and faster, there are also many benefits to running without listening to music.
It’s a very personal preference and I’ll leave it up to you to decide. But if you are a runner that always runs with headphones on, why not give it a go to see what it is like to run without listening to music? You may find you like it.
UK born and based currently in Australia, Zoe has a passion for running as evident by her participation in excess of 30 running events, including five marathons, over the past 14 years. Wanting to share her enthusiasm for running, five years ago Zoe started a blog for the everyday runner “The Girl That Runs“. This blog has quickly built up a strong following amongst runners of all ages and experience levels looking for advice with easily relatable content.
Main Photo Credit: Peter Bernik/shutterstock.com; Second Photo Credit & Third Photo Credit: Maridav/shutterstock.com