Why I’m Ditching iPhone Running Apps

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Do you run with your iPhone?

I used to. But now, this beauty is mine. I recently purchased my first GPS running watch — the gorgeous, TomTom-powered Nike Sportswatch. And paired with an old iPod model, I’m detaching my iPhone from my runs; I wanted to share why.

I used to have a system. I would pump out my music on my iPhone through the music app or Spotify (which is so great) and then track my distance, time and pace through another running app; I’ve used Runkeeper, Runtastic and Nike Plus.

After starting up both apps, I would run with my iPhone in my left hand, since I’ve never been a fan of those armbands. However, it’s hard to run with a bulky iPhone and I would often switch hands since my arms would tire.

More importantly, though, I’ve been concerned with the accuracy of the calculations in these running apps I was using. I understand that they rely on a GPS signal to calculate distance, pace, time and calories burned. But I didn’t like the idea of these calculations being conditional. Sometimes Runkeeper would tell me my pace was 5:30/mile when I wasn’t even running. Of course, I knew this wasn’t right, but I wondered what else was off because of a lack of signal. If the pace is off, after all, so is the distance and other factors.

I looked into the Garmin Forerunner 10 before stumbling upon the Nike Sportswatch and ultimately chose the ladder because it connects to the Nike Running app that I already use. It’s great to log my runs, but now I am more confident that the GPS signal is more accurate than an iPhone. It’s also great because there are linking sensors in the Nike Sportswatch that seem to improve when you plug it into your computer before your run. Seems that it updates the signal before you even start!

Now, I just had one problem — how was I going to listen to my music? That was the downside; the iPhone rolls these features into one device, which is awesome.


I ordered an iPod nano 6th generation on Amazon because of its size and touchscreen. It’s such a baby, I’m afraid I’ll lose it, but it seems to be what I’m looking for: an mp3 for working out. That’s all I needed!

I absolutely love the combination. I feel like I transitioned to a true runner with the watch, but not carrying my iPhone has been the icing on the cake. And now, I can enjoy running through DC with beautiful views like this.


Do you run with your iPhone? Would you ever consider tossing it on your runs? 

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11 thoughts on “Why I’m Ditching iPhone Running Apps

  1. I used to run with my iPhone too (on my arm), but switched to a the Forerunner 10 and a nano and love it! I feel so much lighter on my runs now that I’m not bogged down by the iPhone.

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