How to use the Free Nike+ Running iPhone App to Become Part of the World's largest Running Community.
What is the Nike+Running iPhone app?
Nike+ Running is the latest App to connect you with Nike Running, the largest running club in the world. All you need is your iPhone and the free Nike+Running App downloaded from the App store. This app is an update to the Nike+GPS app.
This is a fantastic program which collects data from all your runs and charts your progress over time. It also allows to you share your runs with your friends and see who has covered the most miles. So if you run alone, you can still part of a group.
The app uses GPS technology to track your runs, so no shoe sensor is needed. The Nike+Running app is compatible with iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 and 4S.
It works in a more limited way with iPod touch (2nd, 3rd, and 4th generations) running iOS 4.0 or later. For example, iPod touch does not support GPS functionality (so you will need a shoe sensor), and the 'Share Run' and 'Cheer Me On' functions require a wireless network connection.
Many people, myself included, find that using this app motivates them to push themselves further and to run more often. Knowing your results can be accumulated over time gives you that little bit more an incentive to get out there and try your best.
How to Use the Nike+Running iPhone App
Download the app and Create an account with Nike running (if you don't have one already).
- From the app store download Nike+Running.
- Next, open the app and create a free Nike+ account. To do this, click on the 'Get Started' button and then click on the 'Sign Up' button. Fill in the required fields and you're off!
You can also sign up on a computer:
- Go to www.nikeplus.com.
- Click on the 'Join Nike' tab on the top right of the screen.
- From there, you just need to add some basic info such as name, gender, date of birth and a screen name which can be anything you like. You can also upload a photo and choose whether you want others to be able to find you on Nike+ and see your success, or if you would like to remain private.
If you do already have a Nike+ account, it's just a simple matter of signing in.
Set Up Your Preferences in the app
The app will walk you through setting up your preferences
- Under the tap 'Profile Details' enter in your height, weight and gender. These details help the app accurately calculate your results.
- You can set a 'run countdown' for yourself, which I love. After you press 'Begin Run', the app can, if you set it to, count down from as much as 9 seconds. I find this gives me time to close the front door and get out the gate. To do this, click on 'Run Countdown' under Run Settings and select your preference.
- Under 'Auto Voice Feedback' you can choose whether you prefer feedback from a male or female athlete. You can also select how often you want to hear this feedback during your run. For example, when I run, I have track-and-field athlete Sanya Richards-Ross, telling me when I've completed each kilometre, when I've reached my halfway point, when I'm almost there (and she also reminds me to select a power song), and when I've completed my goal. She also provides me with my average pace at the same time as these updates so I can decide whether I want to speed up or slow down. It really is great motivation. The voice works while you're listening to your playlist - your music just stops for a moment and then resumes automatically when the voice has finished speaking.
- Select your music. Everyone needs a great playlist to run to. Click 'Run' in the top of the screen and under Run Setup, you can see Music. If you select a playlist now, it will default to that playlist for future runs.
Once you've set your preferences, you're ready to run!
Beginning Your Run
- To record a run, plug in your headphones, click on the 'Run' button at the top right of your screen. Incidentally, while you are on the home screen screen, once you've done a few runs, by swiping your finger vertically up the screen it takes you through a couple of different screens showing your total km's (or miles) run, how far you ran last time, and a goal suggestion for your next time).
- Once you have pressed the 'Run' button, it will come up with your options before you start. Here you have the option of selecting a run based on time or distance, or just a basic run, with neither of these set. This does not mean that it won't record your time or distance during the run - it will, but obviously the audio voice won't be able to tell you when you've reached halfway, or reached your goal. I find it helpful to put in something - if you end up going beyond your goal, great! (In future, the app will automatically select a run distance, or time slightly longer or further than what you completed last time, but don't worry, you can change it.)
- Want cheers from your facebook friends while you're running? Link your account with facebook under 'Share Settings' and turn 'Get Cheers' on under Run Setup. The app lets your Facebook friends know when you are going for a run, and for every 'Like' you get, you will hear a cheer. I never use this, but it's a fun idea.
- All that's left to do now is to press the 'Begin Run' icon at the bottom of the screen to begin timing your run. A screen will countdown to the commencement of your run, depending on the countdown time you selected in settings, and it will start recording your run.
Track Your Progress on nikeplus.com
Once you've completed a run, it is automatically uploaded to your profile on Nikeplus.com. Log in to your account on your computer, and see your progress graphed out in detail.
Nike+ enables you to see your runs on a graph, as well as showing your splits for each run. Each run is added to your total Nike km's and Nike fuel, so even if you don't do your furthest run each time, you still feel as if you're moving forward.
Nike GPS also records the route you took for your run which you can share on Facebook. After your run is completed you can choose to share the results via Twitter and Facebook, and make all your Facebook friends slouching over a desk or in front of a TV feel really lazy.
Push Yourself by Setting Goals
The Nike Running Club helps you push yourself further by rewarding your progress. As you accumulate kilometres, you move up into different levels. As you achieve goals that you set online you are given virtual trophies that stay on your profile, so that you can always see how much you have achieved.
One of the things I love about Nike Running is that it is a kind community! If you don't quite reach a goal, that's okay - you can extend your deadline, giving you the opportunity to still reach your goal at a later date.
Compare your Progress to Others
A new function enables to you compare your results against others in your age group, as well as how you compare to the overall Nike community. Very handy - I now know that most people running my age are running more often, although not as far in each run.
Follow Nike Running on Facebook
Nike Running on Facebook has a lot of great information, including inspirational stories about athletes from all over the world. You can also try to get help from Nike Support from this site if you get stuck. You can join challenges such as 'Run this Town' which is like a competition between cities. There's nothing like feeling as if you're part of something big to get motivated.
Fun Stuff on Nike+
Nike has come up with some great extras to make this running community even more appealing. Even if you run alone, you can feel part of the running community with some of these fun functions.
For example, Run This Town enables you to contribute your running miles to your town's competition. It's a competition that pits cities against each other to see who can run the most. Follow Nike Running on Facebook to get regular updates about upcoming challenges.
Take a Look
If you're still sceptical, go to www.nikeplus.com and check it out.
If you want to read about using nike+ with an iPod and the sensor, you can read my older hub about that (see link below).
And to new runners: Remember, before starting any exercise program, it's always a good idea to get the all-clear from a doctor. And take it easy. Incremental improvements add up to huge results long-term. You'll be surprised how addictive running can become once you get into it.
Hubs About Other Nike Apps
- Workout for Free with the Nike Training Club Program. Here's How!
Nike Training Club offers women the opportunity to create a custom workout program for FREE. Download the Nike Training iPhone app and workout anywhere, anytime. Gather rewards the more exercise you do and share your progress with your friends.
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