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Published May 16, 2012, 06:54 PM

New technology takes running to the next level

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - More than 20,000 runners are expected to take to Fargo-Moorhead streets Thursday, Friday and Saturday for the Fargo Marathon. Its popularity has exploded and so has the sport of running.

More than 20,000 runners are expected to take to Fargo-Moorhead streets Thursday, Friday and Saturday for the Fargo Marathon. Its popularity has exploded and so has the sport of running.

Nowadays most people don't just lace up their Nikes and hit the pavement. New watches track, calculate and encourage runners to reach their potential.

Beyond Running Owner Sally Loeffler has seen running accessory trends change with the years. The hottest this year are watches.

Sally Loeffler – Beyond Running Owner: “You can use to track your distance, pace, time, mileage.”

If you’re the type of runner who needs a little extra motivation, not to worry - the watch does that to. This feature is Beyond Running Co-Owner Jason Overland's favorite.

Jason Overland – Beyond Running Owner: “Definitely helps be more prepared, when you have a training plan which most people do and you need to go out for whatever it might be, a ten mile run on Saturday and you want to do it at a certain pace, your watch enables you to know exactly what pace, how far.”

After each run Overland plugs his watch right into his computer, this allows him to track every mile he has ever run with the watch and even tracks his progress.

Jason Overland: “Scrolls through your total miles, your fastest mile, your fastest kilometer, you fastest 5 K, and your fastest 10 K.”

Have you ever been out on a run and wanted to stop for a cup of coffee afterwards, but realize you don't have your purse or wallet on you? Well now there is a running accessory making it easier for you to make purchases hands free.

Sally Loeffler: “It also has a debit card chip that you can fill up, and so you cannot have to stuff sweaty dollar bills in your shorts.”

The Vitaband not only allows you to make purchase on the run. It also has several features to keep you safe.

Sally Loeffler: “You sign up for a service on line that has all of your medical information, so that if you were to get injured during a run there is an emergency number and you have your own personal number so that the emergency responders call in and find out important information about you.”

It seems the days of just a simple bottle of water and good pair of shoes are over, and technology will continue to evolve and run the world.

The Nike edition of this type of watch runs about $170. The Garmin edition, which even allows you to track distance in the water, runs about $400.

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