“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it.” 

I run outside year-round – I actually prefer 20 degrees and cloudy to 70 degrees and sunny. But for most people (i.e. normal people) summertime is the kickoff to forgoing the indoors and finally getting outside for some runs.

While I love my iPod to help pass the time on the treadmill and drown out gym noise, I leave it at home when I run outside. In fact, it has been several years since I ran outside with headphones. Here’s why I do and why you might want to try it too.

Proper Pacing
You know that feeling when your jam comes on? You get pumped and excited and your pace spikes to that of an Olympic sprinter. Then exhaustion.


Take the shoes – leave the music.

Beats and tempos change with different songs and it’s only natural your body follows too. Whether too slow or, more likely way too fast, music can really wreck your pacing effort.

Go Wandering
There are so many reasons I love running, one of them being mental time. It’s my time for me, just me, to clear my head and de-stress. Skipping music on outdoor runs allows my mind to wander and relax.

Good Thinking
I also do some of my best thinking while running. I’ve mentioned this before; it’s not like Nobel-Prize-level thinking, but good thinking. New blog ideas, ways to approach a challenge at work, how I can prioritize the rest of my week.

Enjoy the Environment
“Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it.” Yes, this. Again. If you don’t recognize this quote, A) I feel bad for you and B) Order “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” right now and watch it.

Outdoor running is an opportunity to appreciate all the natural surroundings out there. Removing the distraction of music heightens the senses to take in and appreciate all that’s around during a run.

Safety First
You didn’t think we’d make it thru this entire blog without talking safety, did you? Ditching the headphones makes you more aware of surroundings. Cars, animals, other people – being aware is the best way to stay safe when running, especially early in the morning and after the sun has set.

Who else skips music for outdoor runs? Are your reasons like mine or do you have others to add? Please share in the comments. Or connect with me @lindsayinreallife on Instagram or @LindsayIRL on Twitter.


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