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Running Playlist: Music/Running/Playlist App review of the week: Metronome:

Running Playlist
Image source: Wikimedia Commons

What is a Metronome?
A metronome is a device that creates regular ticks (beats) and is used by some musicians to maintain tempo.

As I mention in multiple places on this site, running to a BPM of 180 beats per minute is the optimal foot turnover that a runner should strive for and a metronome is the best tool to use to do this.

If you run with an iPhone, you are in luck because there are dozens of metronome apps out there that you could use.

Most of these apps also allow you to listen to music if you start playing music before you launch the app, thus you get the benefit of running with music and the benefit of having a metronome constantly ticking to help pace yourself.

Since most of these apps were designed for musicians, when choosing an app, you need to make sure it allows you to set the beats per minute you are looking for (180 BPM), and also that you can set the time signature (that is, how often does it produce a “special” tick, which I’m sure is important for music, but if you hear a different sound every 3 ticks, it gets confusing when you run).

I set the time signature to 2/4 so that I have one “regular” tick and one “special” tick and I can associate each of them with my right or left foot touching the ground.

It will take some getting used to running at 180 BPM if you’re not doing so already, but if you keep using a metronome, and controlling how often your feet touch the ground, you will find yourself getting faster very quickly.

Here are links to a couple of my favorite metronome apps:
Free simple and does the job:
Metronome

Not so free, has lots of cool features and does a lot more:
Beats

And of course, you can just search iTunes for the term “metronome” and you’ll find plenty more.

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