One of the perks of my job is that, from time to time, companies will send me goodies to use/try/have in hopes that I’ll give a glowing review of their products either here, on the podcast, or on the social medias.
I appreciate getting to try some stuff, but one thing that I’m 100% firm about is that I will only speak honestly about the products that I receive.
If a company wants me to talk about their product favorably? Make a good product.
Send me something that sucks? And I’ll tell my audience it sucks.
Y’all remember the Soleus watch review, right?
So today, I’m going to deliver the good, the bad, and the ugly about a couple of pieces of running tech that I’ve been able to use/test/evaluate in the past few months.
Get ready, because I’m about to unleash some truth today y’all.
Apple AirPods: Do They Work for Runners?
A couple of things before we dive into the Apple AirPods:
- I’m an unabashed fanboy of everything Apple. Except the Apple Watch. I have no desire to own one of those.
- I bought the AirPods, at full price, with my own money.
So, do Apple AirPods work for runners? For me, the answer is unquestionable yes!
I’ve been using my AirPods as the only headphones I wear for the last couple of months and I absolutely love them!
In case you’re not aware, the AirPods are a completely wireless set of headphones that connect to your phone/device via bluetooth.
When I first heard about the AirPods, I almost immediately decided to pass on them.
I mean, the regular Apple headphones have a hard enough time staying in my ears when I run. But when one falls out, at least I have the cord to help catch them!
If a wireless AirPod falls out of my ear, it could be gone for good!
My other concern was the sweat factor.
I run. In Florida. Year round.
Ergo, I sweat. A lot.
Will the sweat make them even more difficult to keep in my ears while running? And, even more concerning, will the AirPods keep working after sweating all over them few times?
Plus, I’m pretty cheap. And the thought of spending $160 on a pair of ear buds was a bit beyond reasonable, in my opinion.
After cheering at the Star Wars Half Marathon at Disney this spring, however, I had second thoughts.
While watching the runners go by my, I saw dozens of runners rocking their AirPods and they seemed to be doing just fine.
I started to have second thoughts about my decision to dismiss the AirPods, and started to look into them a bit more.
Apple AirPods: My Experience
After doing some research, I decided to pull the trigger on a pair. And I’m so glad that I did!
The AirPods are comfortable in my ears, so much so that there are times when I’ll have finished my run a couple of hours ago, only to realize that I’m still wearing the AirPods!
They don’t fall out at all, which was a huge concern of mine going in. Granted, since getting the AirPods I’ve tried to always wear a buff while running to help ensure that they stay in place. But there have been a few runs where I didn’t take the buff and had zero issues with the AirPods falling out.
And as for the sweat issue, it’s been a non-issue so far.
I try to dry them off after a run before putting them back in their little carrying/charging case, but I’ve had no issues with sweating in them. I’ve even confidently worn them in light rains.
In some reviews I’d read, I heard people say that they accidentally put them through the washer and/or dropped an AirPod into puddles and they’ve continued to work.
Obviously, soaking a pair of AirPods is probably asking for trouble, but if they can handle the spin cycle they can probably handle a sweaty half marathon, right?
To be clear, Apple makes no claims of the AirPods being water/sweat resistant. So there’s that. But in my experience, they work just fine even in the heat and humidity of Florida in July and August.
Another concern I’ve heard from runners is the question of battery life.
If you’re going to be out for a long run, will the AirPods keep going as long as you keep running?
Apple claims that you can listen for 5 straight hours on a single charge.
I can neither confirm nor deny that claim.
They also claim that when the batteries in the AirPods are dead, 15 minutes in the charging case will provide you with 3 hours of listening capability.
That claim I can mostly confirm.
When it comes to battery life, I have had zero issues.
The only issues I’ve had is having the battery in the case run down on me, which was my fault, and then the AirPods dying because there was no charging happening when they were in the case.
As long as you plug the case in every couple of days, you should be just fine.
Apple AirPods: The Verdict
If you run with any type of music/podcast/audiobook, these jokers are worth their weight in gold.
There are some minor frustrations when it comes to turning up the volume and things of that nature, but overall I am not upset at all that I shelled out the cash for my AirPods.
They are great, and if you’re on the fence about them I’d definitely encourage you to take the plunge!
The Milestone Pod: What Is It?
The Milestone Pod is a little device that attaches to your shoe that tracks all of the things.
Total Miles. Cadence. Foot strike. Impact. Ground contact. Pace. Etc.
See, all the things.
I’m not that data obsessive, but when I got my Pod I was excited to give it a shot.
Getting started with the Milestone Pod is pretty simple.
The Pod comes with a battery in it already, so there is no need to charge the device before you get started.
All you have to do to get started is download the app, sync the Pod, and hit the road.
After the run, the data comes in and you’re able to “see” a bit more about how your run and how you can possibly improve your “runficiency”, which is the score that you get based on all of the data recorded on your run.
For the most part, the data seemed pretty accurate to me, at least in that it was what I had expected to see, so I have no qualms with that aspect at all.
But I do have one pretty big qualm…
WTF Milestone Pod?!?!
The Milestone Pod is designed for use with one pair of shoes at a time.
Meaning that if you rotate your shoes, like most of us probably do, you need to get multiple Milestone Pods to accurately track the data for all of your runs.
My thoughts exactly.
Sorry, but I’m not going to buy 4 or 5 of these jokers so I can have one on each pair of shoes I own.
You can reset the pod for a new pair of shoes, but doing so will erase all of the data that you’ve accumulated with the shoes you are wearing them for.
If you’re rotating your shoes daily, this is a problem.
Milestone Pod: Verdict
If you could use the Milestone Pod with several different shoes without losing the data, I’d probably recommend it.
As it is, I think some (many?) runners get a little too over-analytical when it comes to their data, and this device has the potental to make that situation even worse.
For those of us that enjoy some data but don’t get hung up on every number that is “above/below the ideal”, as if there is a universal ideal, it could be useful.
But since you can’t measure the data from one pair of shoes to the next, which is a huge design flaw in my opinion, I can’t give the Milestone Pod anything more than a meh.
The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly
Well, there you have it.
My take on Apple AirPods and the Milestone Pod.
If you have any questions or would like further clarification on any of these products, just let me know!
Leave a comment below, holler at me on social, or shoot me an email with your questions and I’ll be happy to help you understand either of these products more completely.
***Legalese: I received the Milestone Pod for free for being a TailWind Trailblazer. I have no knowledge of any relationship between those two companies, and to my knowledge, I have never had any communication with anyone associated with Milestone Pod. The thoughts/opinions/reviews of each product are 100% my own. My reviews have been in no way influenced by anyone associated with any of the companies or products discussed in this post/episode.***
Have You Used Either of These Products Before? What Are Your Thoughts?
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