Running Metronome for Linux

The cadence of a runner, is the number of steps that the runner takes per minute. For people interesting in practicing running technique and form, cadence is often one of the focus points. If your cadence is too low you may be overstriding which can cause all sorts of injuries. Whether or not there is an optimal cadence, and how this might vary with pace, appears to be the subject of some debate. In any case, it is often hard to gauge what your pace is when running without a foot-pod that measures this explicitly. You can of course try to count your steps while running and keeping track of the time, but this is cumbersome to do during a run, especially when you are getting tired. It is popular to use music where the beats per minute (BPM) of the music approximately matches your desired cadence, and there are multiple services that help you find good music corresponding to a given number of beats per minute.

If you want to focus on the cadence, and not get distracted by counting, or music, a metronome can help you keep the right pace. I had problems finding audio files that I can put on my portable mp3 player that just contains the output from a metronome, so I decided to write a little piece of software to generate mp3’s with nothing but metronome-like bleeps at the right rate. I have tested it on Ubuntu 11.10, and Ubuntu 12.04 but fully expect it to work on most distributions, old and new (as long as they have the Boost library). If you are not interested in the metronome itself, but just want some files you can use while running — here is a list of files with varying bpm that I generated, feel free to download and use them on your own device if you so desire:

Each file is 2 minutes long. If you want a different number of beats per minute, check out if it is already available in the full list. If not you can download and compile my metronome software to generate your own files. This also goes if you want a different duration.
(There are also other metronomes available for linux, but I decided it would be more fun to write it myself.)

Waveform at 1000 beats per minute from the metronome







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