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Garmin Forerunner with Foot Pod vs Nike+ Sport Kit

Updated on March 8, 2011

Serious exercise enthusiasts are not satisfied with merely knowing that they have survived a hard workout - they want to measure is as well. This is understandable because without knowing where you are you cannot plan on where you are going. Workout history points out weak and strong points of an exercise routine and can show where changes are called for.

Great Workout Companions

Garmin Forerunner with Foot Pod vs Nike+ iPod Sport Kit - Both Great Exercise Companions

I know how important feedback is. Several workout diaries reside in a special place in my antique cabinet. Date, time, temperature, distance, pace and route are some of the tracking points I used - a lot of history but it was hard to analyze. Of course I had a workout watch that measured time and laps - but that never seemed to be enough. Since I ran on a high school track I even carried pebbles to disburse so that I would not forget which lap I was on. Then I realized that I could just move over a lane each time I completed a lap. If another jogger felt like talking to me on their way around the track I would often forget to move over a lane and then I would run an extra lap to make up for what I may have missed. I knew there had to be a better way - and now I know that there is.

New technology making fitness monitoring easier and more accurate is the addition of devices such as Foot Pods (Garmin) and Sport Kits (Nike+) that attach to your shoes. These wireless devices accurately measure distance and speed traveled.

The Garmin Forerunner 50 (fitness watch) paired with a Garmin Foot Pod offers high versatility at a low cost. It is a compact wireless workout device that not only interfaces with heart rate a monitor but it measures time and distance when paired with a Foot Pod. The Foot Pod is strapped to your shoe with your shoe strings. You can really concentrate on your workout and not on your monitoring equipment, The Forerunner watch nor the Foot Pod has to be turned on - your movement starts the monitoring whether inside or outside. Then when in close proximity to your computer the USB ANT stick (looks like a USB memory stick) automatically and wirelessly syncs your workout data from the Forerunner 50 to your computer. Data from your workout can then be analyzed.

The Garmin Forerunner 305 fitness watch is equipped with GPS monitoring. It can also be used in conjunction with the Garmin Foot Pod when indoors by switching from the GPS to the Foot Pod.

Nike+ iPod Sports Kit works in a similar way. Nike has specially designed running shoes that have a built in pouch to hold the Nike Sport Kit. The Sport Kit can also be attached to any other pair of shoes with sensor pouches that can be purchased 3rd party.

What makes the Nike+ Sport Kit different is that it talks to you through your iPod Nano. The Nike Senor (attached to your iPod Nano) translates your workout data from the Sport Kit to your iPod Nano. Information on the go - your distance, speed, pace and yes even the calories burned can be spoken to you in real time. Your music can be randomly programmed or it can be automatically adjust according to your pace. The Nike+ Sports Kit can be highly personalized with the way you want to monitor your workout.

Apple iTunes makes available special music mixes for your workout pleasure. Some offer workout tips and motivation that is spoken over a mix of music, Other Playlists are designed by top athletes that are geared to motivate you throughout your workout. You can even watch videos and podcasts from top sporting individuals.

The fun does not stop there. You can sync your data to iTunes or to Nikeplus.com, Analyze your data for personal satisfaction or compare it to other runners from anywhere in the world. You can even challenge one of those runners to a virtual race.

Nike+ Sport Kit will only work with the iPod Nano. Neither the iPod Nano nor the shoes are included in the Kit so what you purchase in the kit is the Sport Kit and the Sensor. Separate purchases designed to work with the Nike+ Sport Kit include Nike+ armbands and Sport Sleeves that holds your iPod Nano and Shoe pouches that hold the Nike+ Sports kit,

If you are using the new version of the iPod Nano, be sure that the accessories are designed to fit it.

I think that any of these electronic workout gadgets are great! Motivation is so hard to come by sometimes that whatever it takes is often worth the price. That is not to mention the fun you can have just keeping track of every step of a workout and comparing it to the last workout. Both my thumbs are up.

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    • gidtset profile image

      gidtset 7 years ago

      I use a Garmin Forerunner 305 and I am very pleased with it.

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