Nike+ iPod touch (or nano) App – Missed Run Syncing Issue

I’ve been using Nike+ in one form or another since I had an iPod nano. It was a light music player that could also track my runs. My first run was synced on April 15, 2008. I then transitioned to use it on an iPod touch, and now on an iPhone.

Using the service on the iPod nano and iPod touch required a shoe dongle that tracked steps and some other metrics like how long your foot was on the ground. The technology they used to track a run was based on a study conducted in 1970 at Penn State. The background is pretty interesting.

When I began using the service on the iPod nano it required you to sync the recorded runs through iTunes. It worked most times with ease but from time to time I would forget to either record the run or there would be an issue during the sync and the data would not get sent to the Nike+ site.

If I forgot to record a run, there was a site called Nike+ Edit, that is now defunct, that would create a xml file with the appropriate information that could be place in a special folder on the nano and would then be synced the next time the iPod was attached to iTunes. If I just needed to re-sync a run it was as simple as moving a file from one folder to another. Moving the files around on the nano was easy because it could be setup to be used as a hard drive, which allowed you to drill down into the hidden folder structure.

When I started using Nike+ on an iPod touch I thought it would work the same way. After every run I would plug the iPod touch into my computer and sync it with iTunes. Assuming that iTunes would then send the run data up to the Nike+ website. It did not work this way.

Since the iPod touch has its own network connection, the Nike+ app on the iPod touch was designed to send the run data via wifi directly to the Nike+ servers, no iTunes sync required. That worked fine if I ended a run at home and let the app sync to the Nike+ servers at that time. But if I ever tried to send the run data to Nike+ when not in wifi, the app would try to send the data to Nike+, fail, and then move it to the local history in the app. This happened many times. I was left with a few dozen runs that were stored on the iPod touch but were not synced to the Nike+ service.

The app gave me no option to re-send the run data to the Nike+ servers. This is probably to avoid letting people game the service and add a single run multiple times to their cumulative mile count. I thought I had lost these runs and they would never be synced to the Nike+ website.

I got to thinking that I may be able to do a similar trick I used with the nano and simply move files around in the file system. But on the iPod touch there is no Apple supplied means to see the file structure of the iPod touch. I was also hesitant to believe that the iPod touch would have the same file structure for storing the run data.

A few months passed and I came across a desktop app that lets you view an iPhone or iPod touch file structure without jailbreaking. I settled upon iExplorer, which is a free app. It helped me solve a different issue on my iPhone before I realized it would work in this application as well.

Here is how to re-sync those runs.

Connect your iPod, nano or Touch, and navigate to the following directory using iExplorer.


Amazingly the iPod Touch is setup with a similar structure as the nano was! The random number “2X345FOOBA” is the unique name of the shoe dongle you are using. If you have used more then one you will see a folder for each dongle that has been connected to the iPod.

Find the files in the directory with the dates of the runs you need to re-sync and move them into the below directory.


Now open the Nike+ app on the iPod touch and it will give you the option to send the “latest” data to Nike+. Just make sure to do this while connected to an internet connection or you will have to run through the steps all over again.

Update: Here is a screenshot of iExplorer and the folder structure. Some of the comments have mentioned that they could not drag the files from the synced folder back into the latest folder. Unfortunately I can’t figure out why that would happen. I just tried it tonight and did not seem to have any issues. If it’s still an issue for you, I would suggest contacting iExplorer support.


27 responses to “Nike+ iPod touch (or nano) App – Missed Run Syncing Issue”

  1. Lee Eccleston says :

    hi i am right at the step ready to move the file from synced folder to latest folder, but I cannot copy file, or drag and drop it into folder on the left, how can you move the file in iexplorer?

    • jpliskow says :

      Hmm, I don’t remember that being anything special. I’m not at my computer this weekend. I’ll try take some screen shots when I get back.

  2. Shona Hutson says :

    I am having the same trouble with moving the file across.

  3. jpliskow says :

    Unfortunately I’m not sure why you can not drag the files into the other folder. I’ve updated the post with a screenshot so you can better see what the folder hierarchy looks like. I hope that helps.

    I don’t have much experience with iExplorer beyond the few times I have used it. If the issue continues I would consider contacting the developers directly. Here is a link to their support site.

  4. Mike says :

    iExplorer revealed the files as described. I copied a couple of the *.xml to my computer just to have a look. I do not know how, but my last run shows on the iPod as sync with Nike, but is not in either directory. The summary shows, but none of the data and since the xml file of this run does not appear in these directories, it seems that is why it would not synch with Nike+. I think it tried to connect when I got back in the house without a good save to the iPod.

    iExplorer worked great, just no data to find. iPod Touch (2nd Generation, Windows Vista Home Premium 32 bit)

    • happymanuk says :

      Hi – did you find a fix for the no data issue? I seem to have the same with a Ipod touch 2nd gen. Seems when I go to explore the file, it just doesn’t exist, however it does appear in my ipod run history (odd!) thanks Phil

      • Henk Boon says :

        I have the same issue: no data file, but it does appear in the list of run history. Also an ipod touch 2nd gen.

    • Steven says :

      Mine has done the same thing a couple of times… I’m on here today b/c it happened today with an 8.5miler! If it were a 2-3 miler I wouldn’t have cared, but this is my primary running log. I tried to Garmin answer (create a Garmin account and use the file transfer to get it to nike+) but I guess it doesn’t work anymore with the newer formats. I couldn’t get iExplorer to work, but I did get DiskAid to work with the same directories to view the workouts.

      The run shows synced in Nike+ iPod App on my iPod Touch (3G iOS v 4.3), but there is NO RECORD of the run in any .XML file. Otherwise I would move it over.

      I tried to copy an old run of the same distance- modified the XML file to have the correct date formats (inside and name of the file) but it doesn’t show in my Nike+ iPod App.

      How is ALL the data available about the run in the App but not in ANY file I can find in the directory? IDK. Have you any luck yet? Thanks,

    • Steven says :

      no luck using the directory view (it was subdued or greyed out) with iExplorer, but I played with DiskAid… and my run history online. I found a similar run, used an XML editor and changed the dates. I then moved it to my latest folder as in the instructions, and then synced it using iTunes… it never showed as an unsynced run in nike+ iPod App. But it did upload to Nike+ online through iTunes.
      It SCREWED my avg time per mile/run b/c I walked with my wife the last couple of miles- but- it’s the distance I want to track most of all, so, I’ll live- it’s better than nothing!
      For some reason, it didn’t count towards my mileage goal- but eh, those are just fluff anyway.
      Good luck

  5. Priya says :

    Hi, this worked wonderfully for me, I wanted to upload my iphone 4 Nike+ipod data to the webpage as some of my old runs were not on the page. As the iOS5 removed the sync through iTunes, i was struggling to upload them. Thankfully, read your blog and with the iexplorer i was able to move the old runs from ‘synched’ to ‘latest’ folder and then when i open the Nike+ipod, i was able to see the runs with the provision to send them to Nike+. Thanks.

  6. Lukas says :

    Hi, I would like to thank you for this post — this worked great for me today! … Lukas

  7. Michelle says :

    This was SUCH a big help! For some reason my first workout didn’t sync, but all the others have. By following your steps, all of my workouts now show on my ‘activity calendar’. THANKS! 🙂

  8. Abbie says :

    You are a brilliant and wonderful person. This worked beautifully and it was really simple ❤ thanks!

  9. Jonathan says :

    Thank you for the help. My Nike + Sensor was going on me and then the sync’s stopped working, nothing was going my way until I found this solution. It Worked perfectly for me and I am no IT guru. Took more time to find this then it did to fix.

    Thanks to this I didn’t lose a month of runs (even if some were off). Thank you for making my night.

  10. Maura Tunney says :

    Thank you so much! I thought I would never get this run back!

  11. Tracy says :

    I had no issues transfering “synced” files to latest and when I opened nike+ in my settings on iPod touch, I hit the “send to Nike+” but once the website opened…nothing transferred…still stuck on last sync from April 2012….any suggestions?

    • Tsvetan says :

      Im having the same problem (using iphone 4s). After i click on send to nike+, safari opens asking me to login, but after i login i can only see my runs i’ve done using the running app. Any ideas??

  12. Tracy says :

    For some reason my iPod Touch is not sending runs to Nike+ “wireless” over an internet connection even though I am connected. I hit the “send to Nike+” and then it will open the website where I am prompted to login, once I am on the site, it still only has my runs from when I was using my old nano…when I try to resend…the Nike+ app on my iPod shows in the history that it has already been sent. I then go back through and open iExplorer and repeat the process which I am successful only to have it fail when I try and open Nike+ website.

    • jpliskow says :

      Does it help if you log into the Nike+ website before sending the workouts?

      Sounds like you have at least been able to “trick” the app into trying to resend the run data by moving the files around.

      Anything after that could be a Nike+ issue.

      Let me know if the preemptive login helps.

      • Ian says :

        One of my runs hadn’t synced properly. Using all the tips here I was able to move the xml file back into ‘latest’ synced second time around. Also tried copying a run and altering dates opening xml with notepad. This also worked so this can help when my ipod runs out of battery mid run. Thanks to jpliskow especially and to others for helping me solve not one but two problems I had with the ipod and running.

  13. ikhsan says :

    Hi there, just want to say thank you for the trick. It worked well with iphone 5!!!

  14. Mooselet says :

    THANK YOU for this post! You fixed my issue, where Nike Tech Support did not! 🙂

  15. LMB says :

    Thank you for all your work!

    This looked promising for me. I had a bunch of runs in the Nike + iPod app which were marked as ‘synced’ but had not synced. The iExplorer was successful at allowing me to move them back into the ‘latest’ folder. But alas, if I now try to sync them (either from the app, or in the ‘settings’ menu) they still don’t upload. (I had logged in to the Nike Plus site on my phone before hand).

    I have enquired with Nike but no reply yet.

    Does anyone have any other ideas?

  16. Lee says :

    Me too

    “I had a bunch of runs in the Nike + iPod app which were marked as ‘synced’ but had not synced. The iExplorer was successful at allowing me to move them back into the ‘latest’ folder. But alas, if I now try to sync them (either from the app, or in the ‘settings’ menu) they still don’t upload. (I had logged in to the Nike Plus site on my phone before hand).”

    I am using iphone 4

  17. Kish says :

    This worked Great, Thanks a lot!

    For some of the people having issues in moving the files, what I had to do was right click on one of them and say “open in finder” or i’d guess “open in explorer” on windows and you can move them there.

    Thanks a lot!

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