Running without music

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I went running without music last night. And heard and saw way more than I ever thought I would.

Surprising sights and sounds!

Surprising sights and sounds!

I participated in the IOA Corporate 5K out at Lake Eola Park in Orlando last night. There were about 18,000 other runners out there and the event was a lot of fun. But there was one drawback to so many people crowded into one place. And no, I’m not talking about the porta potty situation. There were plenty of those. No. It was when we were on the street, in our corrals, that the inevitable happened.

My phone was happily streaming iHeart radio when it went suddenly still. Quiet. I tried rebooting, even as I knew time was ticking toward the starting gun. But nothing. Then we realized that, with so many corporate and plugged-in people in one place, the signals just must have been overloaded! So, pouting, I crammed my phone into it’s case on my running belt and tucked my left earbud into my shirt to join its useless brother.

Then the race started and I bopped along to the music provided by the visiting radio stations until we made the first turn. Then, radio silence. Except for sounds I never heard out running by myself and not even during other races.

My breathing, urging me to keep my cadence even and my pace steady. The whoosh of the fountain and the bracingly lovely breeze through the trees. The pounding of so many other runners’ sneakers it sounded like I was running with the bulls. In a good way.

I felt a part of something last night. Of a herd, maybe. It was surprising and fun and I discovered that running without music isn’t the end of the world.

Still, I missed my Maroon 5, Coldplay and Neon Trees…

Hey iHeart, where’s my Maroon 5?

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So all of a sudden my iHeart radio has morphed into something I don’t recognize. I always play my Maroon 5 station, and used to be able to count on every fourth song played being one of theirs. I know that might make me sound anal, but when I listen to iHeart on my phone while I run that translates to Adam Levine rooting for me every time I pass a mile marker. Okay, so I don’t run lightning fast, lol.

Back to today. Ran just over 5 miles and heard precious few Maroon 5 songs! And they played songs from artists I wouldn’t normally think of requesting, thanks. Since I can barely get my water back onto my belt while I’m running I’m not coordinated enough to take out my phone and skip a song.

Okay, so maybe I was getting into a rut. Maybe I was a little tired of the other songs they’d linked into the station and played over and over for the past few months. Genie in a Bottle, Rumor Has It, etc. And I’ll admit that more than once this morning I grumbled, “Damn it, where the hell is my Maroon 5–ooh, I like this song.” All American Rejects, Keisha, Lady Gaga. Maybe iHeart has something there. Pushing me forcefully out of my rut. And then, bam! As I was cooling down on the porch (raining sweat everywhere) they play a Justin Bieber song. Slowly I drew my phone out and tapped the screen. Sorry, Justin. My rut is too old for you!

Do you have an iHeart “ah ha!” moment?