Running Naked

That’s right, loyal readers, I ran last night’s fun run naked. Not without my clothes, but without any technology at all. This was a big step for me. As I’ve gotten more serious about my training, I’ve become more and more dependent on my gadgets. I always wear my Garmin, panic if I forget my heart rate monitor strap, and rarely leave the house without my hand held bottle with beans and tissues on board. But, yesterday’s weather was unseasonable and gorgeous, so I decided to run a Fleet Feet West Hartford fun run event – the Groundhog Day Run and run it without any gadgets.

It was a wonderful night for February – 55 degrees and clear. It was humid, but an overall nice night. I asked my local running friend to join me and we set off for West Hartford. There wasn’t much traffic so we got there a bit early – just in time to browse a bit. I found a pair of ViziPro pink Saucony Ulti Mitts (which you know I love) on clearance that I just had to buy. Local friend found a small hand held water bottle. Shopping done, we lined up with the group for the fun run. The premise of the run was that we would run a .56 mile loop over and over, collecting one playing card for each loop. The best poker hand would win a fabulous prize. I have no idea how to play poker, but I liked the idea and figured someone would tell me if I won.

We ran around the block a few times chatting with friends and the miles just flew by. I didn’t mind not having my Garmin and my heart rate monitor. I liked the freedom of not having a pace to check or mileage to confirm. We just ran. The warm weather made it even more enjoyable. I ran in cropped tights and a long sleeve shirt. No jacket, no hat, no mittens, no layers. It was so freeing. I know I cheated a bit since I do know how far I ran based on how many loops we did, but I liked not knowing the exact distance. I didn’t have the little voice in my head saying “hmmm 2.87, maybe I should run .13 more and make it even” or “I should be running faster”. I loved the feeling of running with friends for the simple joy of running on a beautiful night.

It turns out I did win a prize. I am now the proud owner of the Nike Superfly Hat. This hat is super cool. I tried to take a picture for you, but it turns out that it looks like an orb of light in pictures. So, you’ll have to settle for this one:

The whole entire hat is made of reflective material for visibility. The whole hat. It’s so bright I can hardly look at it in the light. I love it. I can’t wait to try it on a run.

Thanks, Fleet Feet, for another great run. And thanks, running friends, for making my first naked run in months a great one. There’s something truly special and uncomplicated about running with friends for the joy of running.

12 thoughts on “Running Naked

  1. What a neat idea for a run! I love the Poker element.

    For reasons beyond my control I ran my first half marathon without my Garmin or my iPod. I didn’t really miss them or the constant need to see my pace/mileage (but I probably wouldn’t do it again by choice).

    • I have a love/hate relationship with technology. I mostly love it and I love the data, but I wish I were a little less dependent on it. Good for you for going a whole race without it!

  2. I don’t really care for the idea of running with a lot of equipment, but I do like to know my distance/pace ect. I guess I’m addicted to the numbers. Since I am stuck, for now, on a treadmill, I will continue to use technology. I use an iPod nano as a watch to track my runs. When I can become an outdoor runner again, I will most definitely unplug myself.

  3. There is a time and a place for the gadgets we have available to us. When we start to over-depend on them to be a part of our run, then we need to look at why and how we are running.

    The other part is that all GPS devices have a certain amount of error built into the system and are not all that accurate at times. Typically I end up somewhere around .05 short per mile with GPS units I have used, not a big deal in the overall scheme of things but it adds up for us mileage hungry runners.

    Running is meant to be fun, sometimes over-gadgetizing your running takes the fun out of it.


    • To me, the gadgets are part of the fun. I really enjoy the data, but I’m a scientist at heart, so that probably explains it. I don’t care about the error or the miles. I think there’s a difference between enjoying the gadget and depending on it. I just like to know. I wear a watch every day for the same reason – I like to know what time it is. Knowing makes me happy. 🙂

  4. Hi DrRachelRuns, Thanks for commenting on my blog. I’ll follow you, my fellow knee ‘friend’. It’s funny how you say you ran naked for the first time! I’ve always ran ‘naked’ so to speak, but today, coming on the UPS delivery truck is my first ever Garmin GPS watch. I’m super excited to have it help me train for the marathon. Stay tuned to my blog as I review it. Good luck with all your races!
    -Allen Ramblings.

  5. Oh yes, I love my gadgets. My Garmin is as demanding as a personal trainer by the time I’ve plugged my workouts in. But, there is something very liberating about running without. I swear I run with a smile when I “run naked” and a frown when I don’t!

  6. That sound like a really fun run! I love that idea. I also love the freedom of running without technology. It reminds me that running is supposed to be simple and enjoyable. Ill save worrying about pace for track workouts!

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