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The Gift: A Little Walking Music, please
December 5, 2014. Because it helps make my time on the treadmill fly by in no time. Whether I'm walking or running, I'm having more fun when I'm doing it with the Rolling Stones. And I'm having the most fun when my music sounds great. Here are the great Ways to great sound.



In, Over or All Around Your Ears?
I'm old school. I like my music when it fills the air before it fills my ears. Gimme a great little speaker. A speaker that connects to my smartphone's music library. Through the air. Via WiFi. And the winner is: the Sonos Play:1. Details a few paragraphs down.

The Sonos is perfect for me because I have a treadmill at home and I'm the only one listening. If your treadmill, bike or elliptical is at the gym, well, you need something a little more portable and private. If you're cool with big over-ear headphones, the wireless (Bluetooth) winners are the Bose SoundLink and the Beats Studio Wireless. And if you're OK with earbuds, you want to stick the wireless Yurbuds Sports or the Powerbeats in your ears. Here's why:

Sonos Play:1
For $199, you get a truly superb wireless speaker that fills an entire room with terrific sound. It took me three minutes flat to plug it into an electrical outlet, download the app and connect it to my iPhone (it works with Androids, too). Liberate your ears and turn up your treadmill. Or just listen to your tunes. Sonos shows you can have great sound everywhere - without running wires anywhere. This could be the first piece of a multi-room system.

It's one part of a perfect pair for me. I'm using it with the Treadmill Trails app I just released for iPhone and iPad (and for Android next week). Download spectacularly beautiful 30-minute Trail Videos to your phone or tablet for 99 cents and feel the great outdoors while you're indoors. Pair it with the spacious sound of Sonos and your exercise machine's ten square feet feel like a national park.

Stick these in your ears
Two excellent Bluetooth wireless earbuds. The Yurbuds Sports deliver clear, clean, balanced and very present sound for $129 ($80 at Amazon right now). The Powerbeats2 deliver a bigger version of great sound for $200. I loved both of these. For my ears, the Yurbuds were more comfortable. So comfortable I forgot about them after a couple of minutes. If you don't mind a cable between your ears and your phone or tablet, spend just $20 for the Yurbuds Inspire Sport. Same comfort, same sound.

The On- and Around-Ear Headphones
The sound quality of both these headphones is fantastic. For comfort and a sure, confident fit, I go with the Bose SoundLink Around-Ear Bluetooth headphones ($220 at Amazon today). Even when you're running at a fast pace, they feel like they'll stay on your head for the distance. (Bose makes an on-ear version that's fine for walking but a little dicey if you're going to run while you wear them.)

And for $380, the Beats Studio Wireless Over-Ear headphones deliver enough sonic power to run your treadmill. Exceptional sound quality. Great comfort. Extreme hipness. They might not go the distance with you over 5 MPH. But they'll definitely jingle your bells.

Treadmill Trails: Don't just run in place. Run in great places.
Get it on Google Play
30-minute HD Treadmill Trail videos for your phone and tablet. For 99 cents each.
Exercise Improves Mood
"Although previous studies have found enhanced mood for up to an hour after exercise, this study found benefits for up to 12 hours following activity, compared to the resting group...Test subjects performed exercise at 60 percent of aerobic capacity, indicating that moderate-intensity exercise – like walking or light cycling – is enough to boost mood." Boost Your Mood at Least Half the Day with Physical Activity", American College of Sports Medicine

Music Improves Exercise
The title of a new study in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise says it all: "Music Enhances Performance and Perceived Enjoyment of Sprint Interval Exercise".