waterproof headphones: Is there a better way to break training blocks than playing your favorite tunes? Training for a triathlon can be painful at times.
Sure, it’s exciting to sign up for a new race and start planning. But after the first couple of weeks, when you start building endurance and spending several hours a day swimming/running/cycling, it’s nice to have some sort of entertainment to keep you going. My secret to powering through any and all triathlon workouts is putting together custom playlists that match my training pace.
It makes sense (at least to me): you can assemble playlists the same way you plan workouts. I’m in the ‘build’ phase, I’m listening to something more stable, while in ‘pack’ mode when I have to muster all my energy to push my limits, I listen to a more up-tempo playlist. I will choose. When I want to make sure the workout is as thorough as possible, I curate a playlist to match my workout cadence; It’s all for the better!
The best part is that I don’t have to leave my music behind, even when I’m in the water because some of the best waterproof headphones can literally be used for pool swimming! Even when I’m in the final stages of training and practicing transitions, I can just keep the headphones on because they work just as well for running – the joys of living in the age of technology!
To clarify, when I say waterproof headphones I usually mean bone-conduction headphones, not sweat-proof headphones. While some powered headphones are quite waterproof and, in theory, can be submerged in water – such as the excellent Jaybird Vista 2 – the way they produce music is different from corded headsets, which are less than ideal for use in water.
Bone conduction headphones, on the other hand, produce sound by resonating your cheekbones, which may sound strange at first, but they produce a sound that is very similar to real headphones. Better yet, they leave the ears open, so when running, you can still hear everything around you (called ‘spatial awareness’), while enjoying music when you’re out and about. making them a safer option than noise-canceling headphones.
For the same reason, waterproof headphones (again, the corded type) are not suitable for cycling because there is too much wind noise around the ears. You can use earplugs with these headphones, but that defeats the purpose of spatial awareness. If you need isolation, you’re better off using in-ear headphones. Earplugs are a good option for swimming, though, as you’ll still be listening to music through wired headphones, but they’ll keep water out of your ear canals.
There’s just one drawback to waterproof headphones: they’re often MP3-only, so you’ll need to download all your favorite songs and make them available offline. Of course, most of us use Spotify/Apple Music/Youtube Music these days, so asking people to buy their music as MP3s might be a bit of a stretch too. But you don’t need all your songs as MP3s. It’s enough if you have a good selection of them so you can mix and match when needed.
Should you get waterproof headphones for triathlon training? I’d say the answer is a resounding yes. They’re versatile (can be used for swimming and running), durable (stronger than standard headphones), and have great sound quality (you’d be surprised). No wonder they’re so popular – you’ll see many triathletes use them for training. I found them extremely useful for triathlon training as they helped me overcome tedium and some very difficult workouts during my training.