Playlists are so 2013.
Sure, music can help to boost your workout performance, but most would agree that listening to the same set of songs day after day (no matter how up-beat or catchy), starts to get old pretty quickly—and most of us don’t have an unlimited amount of time to spend updating our libraries with new songs.
That’s where podcasts come in. Ever since Serial (which, of course we had to recommend) exploded, these downloadable radio shows have become all the rage.
They make for the perfect workout companion (and especially for longer cardio workouts, ahem, runners) because they make the time fly by keeping your mind occupied with an exciting and interesting story.
Here are a few we recommend you add to your play queue.
Each episode of Radiolab is an investigative story. The hosts cover an eclectic range of fascinating topics examining everything from the literal dollar price of a human life to the history and advancement of American Football.
2. Dear Sugar
This podcast will both inspire and enlighten you. Listeners write in to hosts Cheryl Strayed (author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Wild, which is now a major motion picture starring Reese Witherspoon) and Steve Almond for advice about their most pressing concerns, and no topic is off limits.
For exercisers who haven’t already been sucked into this sensational podcast phenomenon— this story will keep you so entranced that you'll literally forget you’re even working out. P.S. Make sure you catch up on the first season soon, because host Sarah Koenig eventually plans on creating a new season.
This show is similar to Radiolab, but may be even more interesting. Each week hosts Lulu Miller and and Alix Spiegel investigate a new invisible force—ideas, beliefs, assumptions, emotions—that controls human behavior. The goal: to make you see your life differently.
5. Radio MD: Train Your Body
Got a question about health and fitness? Melanie Cole, host of Radio MD’s Train Your Body will answer it, and she’ll keep you entertained along the way. She covers everything from whether or not trendy workouts are actually worth your time to gym locker room etiquette, making sure that every show is absolutely educational.
6. Call Your Girlfriend
Tune into this podcast when your running buddies bail. Each episode is like catching up on your favorite gossip column, only so much better because hosts Anne Friedman and Aminatou Sow are refreshingly intelligent and not to mention, hilarious.