Apple Watch Noob, can I get advice? (Also C25K)

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Original poster
Sep 21, 2010
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6,780
I have a very specific use case in mind, and I'd like to know from those with experience if the AW is a good fit, and if so, which one would be best.

I currently go jogging with my iPhone and Airpods. I use three applications, Music, Podcasts, and a C25K app*. Problem is, I basically can't stand running with my phone. I hate having it on my arm, in my pocket, in a pouch, anywhere... It's too big and heavy, it flops around, or it is inconvenient to use the UI while running.

The last straw is when I took my arm band case off, it slipped out of my hand and went flying, and the screen cracked when it hit pavement. It was in a very good case at the time, but cracked anyway. That was a costly fix. Then despite being more careful now, I almost did it AGAIN last night.

I do picture AW being an exercise companion. I don't think this would be a daily wearer, except if I go for a day hike or backpacking or something, but that would be rare.

So I want to switch to an AW for all those reasons. A few questions:
  1. Most important question: Does AW support background audio multitasking? I need Podcasts or Music to play in background, but C25K to play in foreground. This is critical.
  2. Can anyone with experience with AW C25K programs recommend one of them? Audible and haptic feedback for the run/walk intervals would be great. And it should work with podcasts and music (I don't need integration, I just need it to not interfere with playback).
  3. Do I need LTE for any of that? I assume not, but I don't know. Can podcasts and music can be stored locally? I don't need to make calls or text.
  4. Can anyone recommend a specific AW model that would be best for this particular use case?
Thanks in advance for any helpful advice.


* For those who don't know, a C25K app is a jogging program designed for zero-exercise couch potatoes to run a 5K after 7 weeks of training. It has a 30 minute exercise regimen alternating between walking and jogging. First day is just a couple of minutes jogging and mostly walking. Each day is progressively more jogging. It provides timed alerts to let you know when to alternate between walking and jogging.
 
Last edited:

Shirasaki

macrumors G4
May 16, 2015
10,039
3,920
Apple Watch can easily handle audio background playback while you use your C25K app, as long as the watch app itself doesn’t have their own sound that is interfering with music playback. What I mean is in iOS, some apps can exclusively takeover music playback and stop anything you are playing in the background as they have their own tracks.
Apple Watch CAN store music locally. But what I use is to sync music from iPhone stock music app to Apple Watch. This means you need iTunes to manage your music and/or your library.
LTE will help you get connected while you jog or walk. But this is not required.
There are a few models but most come to personal preference. As of today, Apple Watch series 3 only has aluminium as GPS only model while SS, AW edition, some aluminium AW and AW Hermes are all LTE version. For you, perhaps a GPS only version is good enough.
 
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matrix07

macrumors 603
Jun 24, 2010
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1. Yes, AW support background music multitasking. I'm running with NRC and listening to music at the same time. When voice feedback occurs, music will be faded down & when voice feedback finishes, music is faded right up again.
3. AW can store music locally by syncing playlists from your iPhone. LTE will give you freedom to choose any music you want on the fly though, presuming you're using Apple Music.
4. Aluminium S3 would be fine for your situation (or even S2 if you want to save some money).
 

Resqu2

macrumors 6502a
Apr 23, 2011
764
177
I have a very specific use case in mind, and I'd like to know from those with experience if the AW is a good fit, and if so, which one would be best.

I currently go jogging with my iPhone and Airpods. I use three applications, Music, Podcasts, and a C25K app*. Problem is, I basically can't stand running with my phone. I hate having it on my arm, in my pocket, in a pouch, anywhere... It's too big and heavy, it flops around, or it is inconvenient to use the UI while running.

The last straw is when I took my arm band case off, it slipped out of my hand and went flying, and the screen cracked when it hit pavement. It was in a very good case at the time, but cracked anyway. That was a costly fix. Then despite being more careful now, I almost did it AGAIN last night.

I do picture AW being an exercise companion. I don't think this would be a daily wearer, except if I go for a day hike or backpacking or something, but that would be rare.

So I want to switch to an AW for all those reasons. A few questions:
  1. Most important question: Does AW support background audio multitasking? I need Podcasts or Music to play in background, but C25K to play in foreground. This is critical.
  2. Can anyone with experience with AW C25K programs recommend one of them? Audible and haptic feedback for the run/walk intervals would be great. And it should work with podcasts and music (I don't need integration, I just need it to not interfere with playback).
  3. Do I need LTE for any of that? I assume not, but I don't know. Can podcasts and music can be stored locally? I don't need to make calls or text.
  4. Can anyone recommend a specific AW model that would be best for this particular use case?
Thanks in advance for any helpful advice.


* For those who don't know, a C25K app is a jogging program designed for zero-exercise couch potatoes to run a 5K after 7 weeks of training. It has a 30 minute exercise regimen alternating between walking and jogging. First day is just a couple of minutes jogging and mostly walking. Each day is progressively more jogging. It provides timed alerts to let you know when to alternate between walking and jogging.
I’m going to give you some unsolicited advice on the Couch to 5k programs, when I started running 2 years ago I tried several and didn’t have any luck. They don’t teach you to pace yourself, just run or walk. When you start out running or jogging don’t go faster than a pace that you can carry on a conversation with and not be completely out of breath. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with walking some but just don’t try to overdo the run part. I started 2 years ago at 48 years old, couldn’t run a tenth of a mile (.10 mile) now I’m looking for my 2nd half marathon to do. One other thing that changed my running life is to get fitted for a proper running shoe. They make a stability or a Neutral and you need to be in the right one. Brooks are great in my opinion.

Now for the watch, I’d just get a series 3 since it’s been out a while. It will do everything you want it to.
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Original poster
Sep 21, 2010
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Thanks everyone for the replies. Unfortunately I just missed the $50 off sale at Best Buy which ended yesterday. I will pick up a Series 3 when there is another good sale somewhere. Maybe it will be $100 off when the Series 4 comes out.
 

KUKitch

macrumors 6502
Jan 10, 2008
403
242
England
I’m going to give you some unsolicited advice on the Couch to 5k programs, when I started running 2 years ago I tried several and didn’t have any luck. They don’t teach you to pace yourself, just run or walk. When you start out running or jogging don’t go faster than a pace that you can carry on a conversation with and not be completely out of breath. I’m not saying there is anything wrong with walking some but just don’t try to overdo the run part. I started 2 years ago at 48 years old, couldn’t run a tenth of a mile (.10 mile) now I’m looking for my 2nd half marathon to do. One other thing that changed my running life is to get fitted for a proper running shoe. They make a stability or a Neutral and you need to be in the right one. Brooks are great in my opinion.

Now for the watch, I’d just get a series 3 since it’s been out a while. It will do everything you want it to.
Good advice - conversational pace! And yeah series 3 should be great, LTE or no
 

justiny

Contributor
Jul 28, 2008
606
1,505
Bubbletucky
Thanks everyone for the replies. Unfortunately I just missed the $50 off sale at Best Buy which ended yesterday. I will pick up a Series 3 when there is another good sale somewhere. Maybe it will be $100 off when the Series 4 comes out.
You’ll start seeing some Grads & Dads sales as we get closer to Father’s Day (ironically, I bought mine on a Mother’s Day sale, then the wife got jealous and we bought hers on a Father’s Day sale). BH Photo & Video has some models on sale right now and they have a good frequency of deals.

BTW, you are going to LOVE LOVE LOVE walking/jogging/running without your iPhone. Bluetooth headphones and an WATCH can’t be beat when compared to armband cases and wired earbuds. Now that I have a smart lock on my house, I don’t even need to bring a key. Pure heaven.
 

ActionableMango

macrumors G3
Original poster
Sep 21, 2010
9,527
6,780
I'm in week 6 of C25K so I will most likely finish it before I even get an AW.

But I figure my question is still relevant because I may in the future try other training programs in the foreground and want audio in the background. Completing C25K is an important milestone, but not the end of the journey.
 
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Burningtime

macrumors newbie
Jan 2, 2015
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BOSTON, MA.
I'm in week 6 of C25K so I will most likely finish it before I even get an AW.

But I figure my question is still relevant because I may in the future try other training programs in the foreground and want audio in the background. Completing C25K is an important milestone, but not the end of the journey.

I was in the exact same boat as you and just recently got an Apple Watch (Series 3 refurbished, not Cellular.)

I love it so far. Leaving my phone at the apt and going for a run, then stopping by the supermarket and using Apple Pay on it to grab things on the way home. It's great. I use the C25K app, but I have also started just using the Workout app that comes with the Watch and both work great. The watch will let you listen to music and then give you a little haptic feedback when C25K wants to alert you to run or to walk.
 
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