The sound of silence

After reading the sound v silence debate on Runner’s World, I am inspired to conduct my own experiment and go for a run without my iPod, although why there even needs to be a debate about it is beyond me as Walkmans were invented for running with, so really it should be compulsory.

Off I go without my iPod and have forgotten I haven’t got it with me before I’ve even got to the gate where I go to switch it on. I haven’t even got to the end of the road before I’ve tried to push in my headphones further into my ears. I start to run and I don’t think I like this running without music thing and I keep thinking someone’s running behind me but it’s just my trouser legs brushing against each other and I get to the traffic lights and there’s a dead mouse or bird or something but I don’t stop to take its photo and I go over the footbridge and it’s all echoey and scary and I need my iPod to protect me and I think why does it feel safer when I can’t hear anything around me, is it like when you’re a kid and you think an axe murderer has broken in to bludgeon you to death, you hide under the covers because that will obviously save you and further down the path is a green chili and I think how did that get there? but I don’t stop to take a photo and then I get to the bridge and I think oh no, I don’t want to go under the bridge without my iPod and as I’m going through the bridge THERE’S A MAN COMING TOWARDS ME AND HE HASN’T GOT A DOG and I think I’m going to have a heart attack but he walks past me without murdering me and then there’s a man with a dog and I’m wondering if maybe I’ve got it wrong about men without dogs and maybe it’s men with dogs you should watch out for but the man with dog is friendly and he says morning and I say morning back and then I see some cherries on the ground and I think there must be a cherry tree here and I look up and sitting in the cherry tree is a bird.

And then there’s a woman yapping away on her mobile and I’m thinking if I had my iPod on I could drown her out and then I’m home and my experiment has come to an end and I have come to the conclusion that I prefer running with music and maybe I should go and start a 16 page thread about it.

Distance: 2.96 miles
Time: 34:48 minutes
Pace: 11:45
Calories: 297
iPods: 0
Dead mice or birds or something: 1
Green chilis: 1
Men without dogs: 1
Men with dogs: 1
Cherries: lots
Birds sitting in cherry trees: 1
Women on mobile phones: 1
Juneathons completed: 7/7
Miles completed so far
37.97 out of 100 / 17 days left


  • I’m all in favour of not knowing I am about to murdered any sooner than is absolutely necessary. I will therefore be keeping the iPod on.

  • I really do not like running without music. It keeps me running at a steady pace, it takes my mind off “stuff” and sometimes, when I think I just can’t go any further it makes me run for ‘just one more song’. I followed advice and ran the London Marathon without music last year so I could “absorb the atmosphere”. Mistake! I’d done all my training to music, so why I thought it would be a good idea to run my first 26.2 miles without it I’ll never know. It was a bad idea and I’ll never run without music again.

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