Wednesday, January 13, 2010

product review: audiofuel - move to the beat

back in december i was contacted by audiofuel in regards to sampling some of their running mixes. i let them know that i honestly don't run with music most of the time, but that i'd take the tunes out for a spin when i got a chance. i've never been big on running with music, but occasionally i need a little extra boost on those exciting treadmill runs.

thanks to daylight savings and the recent (ridiculously) cold temps, i've spent a little extra time on the treadmill lately. lucky for audiofuel, that meant more time to see what their beats are all about.

audiofuel is based in the uk, and essentially compiles tracks specifically for running. the music is designed to match your stride and push your pace. the claim is that other music has too slow of a beat for running. i can boogey down to my share of upbeat, new hits out there on the radio, but there is also something about this (audiofuel) running music. while a new jay-z song does pump me up, you can't exactly run to the beat of your favorite hip-hop songs. (c'mon, you've never tried to match your stride to the beat of a song? i know it never works out for me.) while the audiofuel tracks didn't allow me to practice my rap skillz, their beats jived with my leg turnover effortlessly. the less likelihood of tripping up on the treadmill the better.

audiofuel tracks are categorized into one of three intensities: blue for walking/jogging, green for average/easy pace, and red for those fast, intense runs. available in each of these intensities are compilation tracks (with or without coaching voiceover), long run tracks designed to prepare you mentally and physically for a marathon, and individual tracks ranging in length from 3-to-7 minutes that can be made into your personalized playlist.

i was sent three compilation-style tracks - excelerator dj mix (red), adrenaline junky dj mix (red), and rollercoaster dj mix (green). i haven't yet sampled the rollercoaster dj mix, but i enjoyed both the excelerator and adrenaline mixes.

excelerator dj mix – very soundtrack-y. i felt like hollywood was filming a video montage of my training. i find this song good for steady-state runs; the music doesn’t stop for an hour and your brain can zone in and out, leaving you plenty of time to imagine your upcoming feature film.

adrenaline junkie dj mix – great for speedy runs. this track had the coaching voiceover – which provides information like the beats per minute (bpm), how long the section is and when you should really push it. it also gives common tips we can all be reminded of mid-run like “focus on your breathing” and “keep your shoulders relaxed”. it would be great for a fartlek run because you could use the different paced pieces of music to divide up the easy/hard minutes of running. i think it may also work for an interval workout. as with the excelerator, the music never stops but the coach’s voice breaks up the pieces whenever the pace changes.

audiofuel surprised me with this new "running music". i always thought i needed some upbeat hip-hoppyness to get me going. it's nothing i would car-dance to, but it can hold it's own out on the roads (or treadmill).

to shop audiofuel go here. prices are in euro's, but upon checkout you can pay via paypal or credit card. for a free audiofuel sample go here!
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23 comments :

  1. Very cool! I always run with music in training, it makes me feel much more motivated. This sounds pretty great since I think it's a challenge to put the right mix together. It's nice they contacted you!

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  2. Thanks Lindsay for a great review.

    It is hard to find a good song to run at pace, but when you do, it makes it easier.

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  3. COOL! I dont run with music, because I think I'd lose my life on the roads (especially in the winter) and I can only tolerate a dreadmill for 2 minutes... but interesting because at track races when I warm up I use soundtracks from movies (Jurassic Park, Gladiator, Peter Pan... the list goes on... occasionally Superman...)

    Question: What is the Max BPM they have you running at?

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  4. Great Review Lindsay. I always use an mp3 when I am on the treadmills. I go through my playlist until I happen upon a song that I can go stride for stride with the beat. I then, remember the songs. Later, I list them in order and create my own designed workout. slower music first for warm ups, then more aggresive, then slower for cool down. I like their idea, the same I have been doing for a year. Their music just reminds me of Grand Turismo on the Playstation. lol. Have a good one.

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  5. I need to post my review of audiofuel too! I think it is a very innovative idea. However, like you I don't really run with music. Hope you have a nice weekend.

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  6. Excellent review! Sounds pretty cool and something I might try out... I have definitely tried matching my stride/pace with tunes on mu iPod and it rarely works out.

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  7. great review, sounds interesting! I love running with music, I think it helps *solidify* my me time, and helps me zone out, which is really what running is about to me anyway. I really notice a difference in my running during a triathlon as those are always ipod banned... so I might have to try to get used to it at some point! Oh well.

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  8. Interesting. There's a guy out here in L.A. (you may have seen him on Twitter - @HellaSound) that does the same thing. Iactually listen to news podcasts during my runs - kind of kill two birds with one stone.

    Thanks for the vote of confidence! Yes -8 weeks and I'm still motivated and roaring. Now if I cold just put the kibosh on this cold!

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  9. I always run with music especially on the treadmill!

    Question for you, I noticed during your review of 2009 you noted that you did a lot of long runs on the treadmill. Do you have any tips on what you do? My longest is 12 on the treadmill and the last few miles were tough!

    have a good one!

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  10. That sounds fun!!! I want to try- especially if it'll make me feel like I am in a movie!

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  11. Thats kind of an interesting concept. I usually just use my music to keep my mind off what my legs are doing, not to try to sync the two.

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  12. Hmm, maybe I shouldn't have passed on reviewing some samples their music. I too usually don't run with music and so seldom run on a treadmill that I didn't think I could make much use of it. That was BEFORE this cold front, though!!

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  13. Your reviews of these were awesome... anything that could possibly make me feel like a film star has to be awesome!

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  14. Very cool! Thanks for the review.

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  15. Lindsey, thank you for the sweet comment on my post. I really appreciate your support.

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  16. This sounds great, nice review Lindsay. I would really like to try the red one!

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  17. I don't run with music either. This actually sounds like Rave music, from the little clip I heard at their website.

    I used to run with music, but in the end I think it actually distracts me.

    Very interesting concept though.

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  18. I love to run with music and it makes the hours go fast. I even have some comedy on my Zune player which really gets my through the long runs when pushing through the walls. Laughing out loud, and not caring if anybody can hear you, is uplifting. Mandatory on the dreadmill, which I have been using more of then I care to with all the cold air. Would somebody bring the heat back please!

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  19. Great review. I've never heard of them and am now curious about them. I sometimes run with music and most of it is older, from the 80's so it would be good to have different music, especially music made for running.

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  20. Interesting. I run with music on my trail-based long runs, but for me the lyrics are more important than the beat ... I need the words to motivate me or remind me of my awesomeness. I always thought mixes like this were mostly instrumental - is that the case?

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  21. Thats a great review Lindsay! Thanks!!!

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  22. Interesting stuff! I used to listen to books and podcasts but with all my speedwork it's all about the bang tunes!

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  23. Thanks for reminding me about this - I think Jill had mentioned them on twitter and then I forgot what the name of the company was, to go and look it up. I like it when you can zone in and out while running, and seeing that I have still some more track workouts to do on the treadmill due to my schedule, I just might download some of them.

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