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Apple, Nike to tie iPod nanos into gym equipment

Leveraging a partnership that began two years ago, Apple and Nike said Tuesday they hope to again redefine the way people work out by bringing the Nike + iPod experience to gyms around the world beginning this summer.

The shoe and iPod makers said they're actively working with major gym equipment manufacturers such as Life Fitness, Precor, Star Trac and Technogym to make their cardio equipment Nike + iPod compatible so health club members can easily track workouts on cardio equipment like treadmills, ellipticals, stationary bikes and stair climbers.

Come this summer, Nike + iPod Sport Kit users will be able to simply plug their iPod nano into compatible equipment at the start of their workout to automatically record their progress. Users can then connect their iPod with their computer to upload the workout to NikePlus.com.

"The iPod is an essential part of millions of people's workouts and now users can easily set goals and track their progress with Nike + iPod,” said Greg Joswiak, Apple's vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing for iPod. "We're excited to be working with Nike and leading equipment manufacturers to bring the Nike + iPod experience to the gym."

Among the participating gyms are 24 Hour Fitness nationwide and Virgin Active Health Clubs internationally, where members will see workout data from their Nike + iPod sport kits converted to “CardioMiles” following each work out, so that they can easily set goals and participate in challenges with runners and with users of other cardio equipment.

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Since its inception back in May of 2006, runners have used the $29 Nike + iPod Sport Kit to log close to 50 million miles, according to Nike. The kit includes an in-shoe sensor and a receiver that attaches to iPod, allowing runners to track data on time, distance, calories burned and pace.