Right now, it’s really cold outside. Cold and windy, and I don’t like it. Sometimes you could say that I’m not having the best time while I’m out running.
Most of the time, I truly do love it. It’s a lot of fun, it’s very “freeing”, and all those other things you hear from runners coming down from their runners’ high. Things that make non-runners shake their heads, roll their eyes, and say “This guy has hugged far too many trees.”
A few months ago, I did a post on what I think about while I’m out there. Sometimes, though, it’s difficult to get my mind off my bad day, the poor weather, my tired legs, or to simply forget that I’m running on a treadmill. Here is how I combat the brain bust:
I’m pretty picky about how my music sounds. For a little while now, I’ve been using Yurbuds, which are fantastic. They lock into your ears and don’t fall out, which is especially nice for people using things for any kind of activity. Yurbuds come in different sizes depending on what size the inside of your ear is (they have a little measuring device), and they sit comfortably in there. They deliver great sound to your ears without cutting out ambient noises, such as cars or other runners/cyclers.
I have a pretty eclectic taste in music. My MP3 player is loaded with everything from Phantom of the Opera to Pitbull and Kesha singing “Timber” (which got me through my first indoor duathlon). What I actually listen to regularly is a bell curve. The outliers mentioned above aren’t always what I need. Scrolling through the hours of music I have, it’s incredibly difficult not to list each band/artist. But I’ll stick to the top 5.
(Click on the names to go to Youtube for samples. I didn’t want to fill up this page with videos.)
1. Josh Garrels
I listen to this guy probably more than anyone else. His lyrics and sound are inspiring and calming. I have all of his albums, and for my long road runs, there is simply nothing better. Shuffling through his music makes those long, straight stretches of road seem a little less monotonous. He has a decent variety to his songs, too.
2. The Avett Brothers
This is another band similar to Garrels. Lyrically and musically one of the greatest bands around, in my opinion.
3. Macklemore and Ryan Lewis
I know this group may seem a bit different from the two listed above, but I can’t rule them out. I only have one album (The Heist), and I only listen to a few songs on it for the most part. The link is to “Can’t Hold Us,” which is the song I was listening to when I hit my 5k PR in 2013.
4. David Ford
One of the most recent additions to my musical world. His rough, emotional voice can evoke an adrenaline rush at just the right time.
5. Brandi Carlile
No music list would be complete without a BA female artist, and Brandi Carlile fits the bill quite nicely. This song in particular I can listen to on repeat.
Music doesn’t always do it for me. Sometimes I need something that will take me even further away from the “here and now” of running. Podcasts are an especially great way to forget where you are and what you’re doing, while also learning or being entertained. I’m fairly new to the podcast world, so I don’t have as wide a selection I go to.
Welcome to Night Vale
This is a brilliantly creative podcast about a town in the desert called Night Vale.
It’s creepy, funny, and you can really get caught up in the lives of Night Vale citizens.
No surprise here, the No Meat Athlete Radio is an easy go-to for me. They have great advice about food, motivation, and gear; interviews with big name vegetarian and vegan runners; and plenty more. It’s a really great resource, and it’s pretty entertaining.
This is a members-only area of NMA where Matt and guests go in depth into different aspects of the no meat athlete lifestyle. I’ve learned quite a bit from these monthly episodes – plus I got in at the very beginning, with a special entry price, which is pretty cool.
My friend Eric suggested this, and I’m glad he did. Dan Carlin covers, epically, incredible history. His episodes are long, and there are a lot to choose from.
I’ve been visiting cracked.com for years. With articles like “5 Famous Historical Figures You Didn’t Know Were Perverts,” and “The 5 Most Insane Versions of Thanksgiving from Around the World,” (and thousands of others), how can you lose?
I recently started listening to their podcast, which has similarly interesting topics, except that they’re vocalized to you, so you don’t have to go through the trouble of reading.
What is your favorite podcast, musical genius, or audiobook? I’m always looking for suggestions, and I try just about anything once. Let me know in the comments below!