Luxury Swiss watch brand TAG Heuer is the Official Timekeeper of the London Marathon again this year. As the big day approaches, Nuala McBride reflects on how hardcore runners and enthusiasts alike are gearing up for the run
I love running – give me a pair of trainers and I’m off. But ‘why?’ I hear you (like many others) utter. For me, it’s empowering. It allows me to put everything else out of my mind and focus on the simple act of placing one foot in front of the other. Sometimes it’s about beating a time or a distance, other times it’s about the simple act of jogging along. Whether I’m listening to my favourite song or chatting away with a friend, the kilometres whizz by.
So it’s no wonder that the Virgin Money London Marathon gets my heart racing. And it’s not only me – this year a record number of people have entered the race.
The London Marathon is an event like no other. It takes a great city and turns it into a running track, uniting people across the capital as they cheer on the runners. The 26.2-mile route passes many iconic London sites – Tower Bridge, The Cutty Sark and London Eye – but the runners won’t be gazing at these tourist attractions. Instead they’ll be focused on finishing the race, only pausing to grab some water or check their stats. The climax is the last sprint down The Mall, using what little energy reserves they have left to reach a personal best time.
Every runner has their own reason for taking part in the London Marathon, and people have been sharing these often inspirational stories on social media using the marathon’s hashtag, #ReasonToRun. For some it’s to tick something off their bucket list, for others, it’s to complete a fitness challenge. Many people run in aid of a charity or in memory of someone. It’s the collation of all these different motivations that creates a truly unique atmosphere – an atmosphere thick with anticipation and emotion.
One day, I dream of running the marathon, but for now I’m left in awe of these incredible runners. A marathon takes months and months of training, and a watch is an essential partner. It will be there tracking your progress, run after run.
TAG Heuer returns as the Official Timekeeper of the London Marathon this year, with its new Connected Modular 45 named the Official Watch of the event. It’s a watch that offers so many possibilities. For starters, I’m blown away by the fact that there are more than 4000 ways to personalise the appearance of the watch. Even more, it marries Swiss luxury watchmaking with Silicon Valley technology – it boasts software from Google and a processor from Intel – meaning the user can seamlessly swipe between screens, checking the time one second and their Facebook status the next. The timepiece can also track your runs with the built-in GPS, while playing your favourite tunes. It can also run searches via voice commands alone, leaving your hands free.
But TAG Heuer isn’t the only luxury brand embracing sports watches. Whether you’re going for a quick jog or trying to beat your personal best, Goldsmiths has all sorts of timepieces to help you along the way…
One for triathlon fans, this sporty piece from Longines is water-resistant up to 300 metres. It pays homage to those who have dedicated themselves to exploring the oceans – the 41mm dial is a deep blue, reflecting the oceans, and comes complete with three subdials to track your time underwater or on the track (one times up to 60 seconds, the second up to 30 minutes, and the third up to 12 hours).
Need to time yourself on your laps? A watch with a chronograph (stopwatch) function will be very useful, and the Tissot V8 has one – so next time you’re running up a hill or along a straight path, you can check that you are keeping to your desired pace. This watch also boasts a sleek stainless steel case and matching stainless steel strap, blue dial with date and tachymeter, and a quartz movement.
The Hugo Boss Grand Prix brings together a stylish timepiece for the office with additional features for timing your next run. This black ion-plated steel watch has a chronograph function, and its black dial is fitted with three subdials to record seconds, minutes and hours, all powered by a quartz movement. A black leather strap finishes the look.
These and many other sports watches are available to buy online and in our network of Goldsmiths stores nationwide.
Nuala McBride is an aspiring journalist, who enjoys running in her spare time.