I used my new Nike + iPod for the last two days. I have to tell you I LIKE IT! If you have an iPod Nano and you run (or walk) for fitness or training you need to get one. For $30 it's a winner. At first glance it you might think you need to buy a pair of Nike+ shoes. But after reading Nike+iPod FAQ you'll see any old shoes will work. People (and vendors) have come up with creative ways to attach the sensor to any shoe. Some folks can knit and Nike+iPod Shoe Hack made a little cozy to hold the sensor. Some floks used duct tape. You can see Nike+iPod Shoe Hacks and Accessories for the ideas others came up with to attach the sensor to their shoe.
Me? I used a coin wrapper, a couple staples, and some tape. The sensor just needs to be secure and not move around. You can always shell out the $$$ for a pair of Nike+ shoes which have a compartment designed in them for the sensor. But that takes all the fun out of it.
OK so it attaches to any shoe, but why do I like it? It's small, wireless, and just plain slick. That white stub on the end of my iPod is the receiver for the shoe sensor. It's also easy to use. Best of all it keeps you company by talking with a sexy female voice as you run. And that sure helps me run! She tells me how many calories burned, time, or mileage depending on the type of workout chosen. You can choose a male voice if you want. I already knew about how far I ran, and about how long I run, so I chose calories. I entered my weight and how many calories I wanted to burn and started running. After a bit she reduced the song volume and told me "50 calories burned so far." She then brought the volume back up so I could hear the music. She repeated the process again and let me know "100 calories burned so far." She keeps it up every 50 calories until the last 50. For the last 50 she cranks up the volume and counts out every 10 calories until I reached my goal of 600 calories burned. She then told me the distance, and work out time. You can get her to tell you then workout status at any time by pressing the iPod center button. If you hold the center button for a couple seconds she plays your power song so you get that extra kick to get up that big A$$ hill. NEAT! You can buy workout playlists and even training sessions from people like Lance Armstrong if you want.
After the work out you can dock your iPod and it will upload (for free using iTunes) to nike.com the work out data and you will get a nice graph. Here is the graph for my run today. Across the top is the workout distance, time, pace, and calories. The curve bents down at the end because I stopped running and left my iPod going while I took the pictures. The dots along the graph are the mile markers. If the mouse hovers over the dot it shows you the time for that mile. The red towards the right is when I pushed PowerSong. You can set goals and create challenges for yourself. Also you can have a private running club and see your others club members runs, and challenge them - "1st one to 100 miles this month gets a free beer" - stuff like that. It's all free and easy to use.
The iPod itself stores the last 1000 workouts. You don't have to use iTunes or nike.com. You don't even have to listen to music while you run. It has a 'no music' option. You can even tell it that you are walking and it'll keep track of that activity. The only complaint I have is with the music blasting I can't hear the beep of my heart monitor watch. If you want to know how it works read EETimes article Runners get iPod virtual trainer.
So "Satisfaction" by the Stones is my power song what's yours?