Well not that kind of naked--OUCH! I mean running Garmin-less. I'm not afraid to admit that I'm a bit of a slave to my Garmin. I'm more competitive with myself during training runs than I am in races- weird I know. I constantly look at my watch not only to see my splits, but to know my pace pretty much at all times.
I don't have a great answer other than it's my personality to run with some type of purpose. Considering I run the same route after work, its not "for fun" because I know it like the back of my hand. There isn't much "beauty in the run" because I see it everyday whether its running, or even during my commute back and forth to work. I run by myself so there isn't great conversation to be had (without people thinking I'm crazy of course)...
So for me, my "purpose" is surrounded by numbers, and I'm very numbered oriented when it comes to running (in real life I'm not that analytical) because I like to see progress or have something to shoot for during the run.
This week I decided to leave my watch at home and just run for the heck of it. I know, I know it seems silly to think that its THAT big of a deal for those who do it all the time, but for me, its a big step.
What I found with running by feel
- My time wasn't that affected- I wasn't trying to go fast (by my standard times), but it just so happens that my total times were pretty much the same as when I'm "pacing for a time"--- okay okay I did have to look at my phone before the run and after... I swear not once during though.
- I didn't go out too fast which meant I had energy on all the big hills I normally struggle with and generally walk a little (oops)
- Although I don't have splits to prove it, I felt as though all my splits were negative
- One of the runs I was REALLY stressed. I generally don't "stress out" but my mind was so occupied, I literally couldn't feel anything going on in my body.... I just went and then suddenly I was done with the run (this might be worth trying out for a race)
- Piggy backing off stress--- without worrying about my time, I was able to spend the entire run to work out what is currently going on with me with "gazelle intensity" and felt better and have a solution after the run---- HUGE HUGE win.
So maybe there are some benefits to every so often run 'naked', but I don't think I'll ever be brave enough to do it during a race.
What are some benefits that you have fun running naked?!?!?