I found something had really shifted when I went back to running after having my twins. The period from them arriving to reaching a point where I was able to carve out a regular slot for running (three years!) saw me change a great deal in terms of what I can listen to when running, in a way I hadn’t expected.
Pre-kids, when running, I always listened to music, usually pretty up-beat music with a good tempo, and I would happily pop on a whole album and listen to that when out.
However, I feel now that my brain has been re-wired. The constant state of perpetual juggling I’m in, between job, and house, and kids (and the millions of things that involves), hospitals, blood tests, medications…means than my brain constantly looks like this: *@!!!!@&*!!
When I got started back into running, I automatically went into Spotify to listen to a playlist, and found, instead of helping me switch off, it was stopping me from switching off. I found myself constantly skipping through songs, unable to attach to anything for very long, feeling ultimately more anxious than before the run began.
Having thought about it, I realized that my brain, as it is now, needs the opposite: one long-form version of entertainment.
I decided to try a podcast – something I never listened to prior, as certainly for the past 3 years my life with the twins/freelancing around them in any spare hour has not been compatible with disappearing off for 30 mins + to listen to something for my own entertainment and pleasure.
And that’s exactly what I needed! Something longer to attach to, which I can concentrate on in a way that my mind both needs and craves.
I signed up for an Audible audiobook subscription, and listen to one book a month, and in addition have been listening to Desert Island Discs, Russell Brand’s Under the Skin, the Guilty Feminist and An Irishman Abroad.
Training for a marathon provides the perfect opportunity to try new podcasts, and on my list are:
- Running Commentary
- Woman’s Hour
- Giovanna Fletcher’s Happy Mum Happy Baby
- Another Mother Runner
- Dirty Mother Pukka
- Robin and Josie’s Utter Shambles
- Marathon Talk
- Running Stories Radio
- Radio 3’s Arts and Ideas
- Dan Snow’s History Hit
- Des Bishop
- One Year No Beer
That should set me up for a while (!). I’m looking forward to all the listening ahead, and I’m sure it’ll provide a welcome distraction as I push my body beyond what it really wants to be doing (which, let’s face it, is not double-digit runs at barely-o-clock in the morning!). I’ll update on what I’m listening to as I go.
Any other podcast crackers I’ve not mentioned? Let me know!
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