Whether you’ve just been bitten by the running bug or doing it for a while now, you know running could be boring sometimes.
Let’s get real. It gets harder to keep going after some time.
What you need is either a good distraction to keep your mind off the miles, or something motivational to give you that extra push.
Nothing like a great podcast to keep you occupied on your next run.
Here are 17 top choices:
1. My Dad Wrote a Porno
There’s nowhere that a good laugh isn’t welcome – even on the tracks.
Unless you mind cracking up while doing long training runs, this will liven up your sessions and make the miles fly by.
With over 100 million downloads as of February this year, My Dad Wrote a Porno is inarguably one of the best comedy podcasts ever.
Hosted by Jamie Morton, he reads chapters from an erotic fiction novel entitled Belinda Blinked, which is supposedly authored by his father. The thought alone is amusingly cringeworthy.
Co-hosts James Cooper and Alice Levine add to the fun with their hilarious ad-libs and naughty comments.
It’s as adult as it gets.
2. The Guilty Feminist
This is another funny podcast to brighten up your time at the oval.
Main host Deborah Frances-White, along with other guest co-hosts talk about modern feminism in a rather humorous tone.
Each episode of the podcast begins with “I am a feminist but…” followed by hosts admitting instances when they’ve behaved in ways contrary to the ideals of feminism.
The witty statements often elicit laughter from the live audience.
The show reveals ironies, hypocrisies, and insecurities of “guilty feminists” in a funnily relatable way.
There was one good episode where Deborah asks a guy from the audience his name. As soon as he answers, “Jamie,” she opens the show with, “Jamie, I’m a feminist but… could you open my water for me?”
Don’t miss: Episode 61. Orgasms with Alix Fox
3. Marathon Training Academy
“Empowering you to run a marathon and change your life.”
Angie and Trevor Spencer are the people behind this motivational podcast. The couple are marathoners – well, that’s after Angie influenced her tech guy husband to ditch the couch.
Together, they put up this podcast and share everyday experiences and actionable training knowledge to runners and aspiring marathoners all over the world.
Feeling a little bit upset about your PR?
Let these trainers help you reach your running goals.
Angie and Trevor believe that anyone can run a marathon. Benefit from their practical coaching and make your runs a little bit less dull.
4. Run, Selfie, Repeat
Listening to her feels like listening to a good friend.
Blogger/podcaster Kelly Roberts is probably one of the most genuine and optimistic hosts ever. That’s why I find it very easy to connect with her.
She talks about “life with a side of running” in a very candid and spontaneous way.
So if you feel like running while listening to a chatty friend speak her mind, she’s a great company.
Episodes could last for 12-50 minutes, depending on how engrossed she is in the topic, I guess.
Being an advocate for body positivity and a healthy lifestyle, she says, “Strength doesn’t look a certain way, it feels a certain way.”
5. The Runner’s World Podcast
As the name implies, it’s everything new in the world of running.
Hear about the latest news, issues, related products, publications and personalities in the field of running every month.
If you like getting updated about running while on your long run, this one’s for you.
Hosts Rick Pearson and Ben Hobson, and their invited guests will fill you in on the stories you might have missed lately.
6. 300 Pounds and Running
Feeling a bit heavy and needing some motivation to start running?
Join Martinus Evans, a plus-size athlete as he hosts this podcast. Martinus interviews other athletes about their journey from their old sedentary lives to an active lifestyle, and the challenges in between.
Get real inspiration as you start or struggle in your journey to fitness.
This is good, serious stuff to help you do that first step or nudge you to go that extra lap.
If you haven’t had enough fun on your runs lately, 5,468 tracks of pure comedy should be enough to satisfy your ha-ha needs. You can sort it by year (when the albums were produced) or by artist.
A plethora of funny clips from Adam Sandler to Joe Rogan, and albums from the 60’s to the latest ones.
Before you know it, you’ve covered your mileage just like that.
True, running while splitting your sides might not prove efficient but it surely will make you have a great time. And as always, time flies while you’re having fun.
So don’t hesitate to incorporate a good laugh with your running routines. It’s also a great abs exercise anyway.
Listen to the full albums on Spotify.
8. U Up?
Are you up for the hottest modern dating podcast? Then U Up? it is!
With one episode having been played almost 70,000 times in less than a month, this podcast has a good following. That number is on SoundCloud alone.
Jordana Abraham and Jared Freid will get you hooked every single time.
Relationships and dating are always hot topics – from toxic relationships, to trendy hook up apps, to something as petty as stalking.
Funny and entertaining, an hour will go by unnoticed as you sweat it out.
9. Alice Isn’t Dead
If you’ve loved Welcome to Night Vale, there’s no reason for you not to enjoy Alice Isn’t Dead.
Welcome to Night Vale was the brainchild of Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor in 2012. And in 2016, Fink’s long travels in vans for the previous show inspired him to create Alice Isn’t Dead.
Fans everywhere can’t get enough of this that a novel had to be released.
This serial thriller podcast is about a truck driver in search for her long assumed dead wife. On the road, she meets eerie characters that will give you the chills.
Care for a scare? You’d be surprised how fast you could run!
Get your heart pounding as hard as you pound the pavement.
Tip: Best played on a late night jog.
10. The Ginger Runner
Comedian / actor / runner / designer / the Ginger Runner himself, rolled into one – that’s Ethan Newberry, your awesome host.
Ethan gets the “extraordinaires,” as he calls them, in the fields of running, training, adventure and also beer.
If you’re looking to get more about this stuff on your runs, he’ll fill you in with the best. Or, you could just be a fan wanting to know what cool stuff he’s up to.
There’s always something good going on weekly on this guy’s podcast. Don’t miss it!
Radiolab is an all-time favorite of mine, whether for treadmills or long runs.
Topics about science and philosophy are creatively presented into light-hearted stories. The sound-effects alone could take you away.
Hosts Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich hit it off naturally, being real-life friends.
One of the most striking episodes for me was Dark Side of the Earth, where both interview a real astronaut, Dave Wolf.
He tells about his “darkest” experience up in space, which you could clearly see in your mind as you listen.
It’s fascinating how they present stories like this and give you such an immersive experience.
It felt so real – like I was really up in space, like I zoned out for a while.
Other stories have topics like sex education, gender issues, morality and issues about free speech in social media. An interesting podcast to run to no matter what you’re doing.
12. Snap Judgment
Host Glynn Washington incorporates pleasing beats with superb storytelling by different people.
It’s almost like listening to rap music at the beginning. And these are real stories, and real people.
It’s great if you can’t decide whether you want to listen to a podcast or put on some music.
Well, now you can do both at the same time! Allow the narrative to entertain you as you conveniently sync your steps to the beat.
One compelling episode for me is the story of Charles Monroe-Kane, author of Lithium Jesus.
He talks about his journey as a faith healer while he struggles with schizophrenia. The Faith Healer is a part of My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy episode of the podcast.
13. How Did This Get Made?
It’s hard to miss this podcast if one of your guilty pleasures is criticizing movies.
My friends always tell me that I ruin everyone’s movie experience. Like when we’re in the theater and I start commenting and whispering in a friend’s ear 15 minutes into the movie. I know it’s an annoying habit.
But it’s hard not to notice how that girl’s white shirt never gets dirty, despite being kidnapped and getting dragged around the jungle, isn’t it?
If you think that’s fun too, then tune in to this podcast. Bring in some fun to your run!
Paul Scheer, June Diane Raphael and Jason Mantzoukas definitely have a lot to say about bad movies.
And it’s definitely entertaining when people make fun of something in a very graphic way.
If you watch out for bad movies because they’re so ridiculous they make you giggle, you’re not alone.
Best comment on the movie Beastly that cracked me up: “I am watching him with open wounds all over his body that I just wanna be like, ‘Can’t someone put some Bacitracin on this?’ “ I died.
14. The Morning Shakeout
This is perfect for your morning runs if you’re serious about setting your mind and mood to it.
The Morning Shakeout gets up close and personal with the pros in the sport of running.
Mario Fraioli draws insight and valuable lessons from experiences of personalities in the field – from coaches, to marathoners, to elite athletes.
Listen to stories of failure and redemption from top runners.
You’ve heard that success is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration. Well, this might be your 1% that will make that other 99% come easier for you.
15. Running Commentary
People have crazy ideas.
Who, in their right minds would do a podcast, while actually running and panting like drained hounds?
Comedians Paul Tonkinson and Rob Deering did! Crazy is not such a bad idea after all.
Join these two on their runs as they talk to you – in short breaths – about running, life in general, their experiences, and everything else under the sun!
It amazes me how they manage to run and keep talking throughout the whole episode, really.
It’s also comforting to not be the only one out of breath while doing runs.
16. Real Talk Radio
It’s definitely the honest conversations you need to hear about what it means to be human.
Real Talk Radio touches on relevant topics such as love, sex, friendship, work and racism, to mention a few.
Nicole Antoinette is all about fearless statements, no sugarcoating and no ads. Yes, you read that right – NO ADS.
This podcast is run solely by people and listeners who pledge and give support for its operation.
Real Talk Radio empowers listeners with unfiltered truth coming from all kinds of people – parents, artists, activists, entrepreneurs, coaches, athletes, and many more.
I love how each intro highlights the points expressed by that particular episode’s guest.
It’s definitely the podcast if you want real stuff to shift your thoughts to while you train.
17. Rich Roll Podcast
One of the main reasons you might have for running is for fitness. And this guy has a lot to say about it.
Rich Roll is a vegan ultra-endurance athlete.
He’s run 40 miles and swum six miles for the Otillo Swimrun World Championship in Sweden. He’s also a #1 bestselling author of Finding Ultra and The Plantpower Way.
He talks to a variety of people – from nutritionists to coaches – on topics such as healthy and sustainable lifestyle, vegan diet, yoga, meditation, and everything about fitness and clean living.
He hasn’t always been vegan and that’s another story.
But the point is the guy never looked back and is in great shape at 52.
One episode that runners can’t miss is Sanjay Rawal on Running as a Spiritual Practice. Check it out here: https://soundcloud.com/richroll/rrp389
Whether you’re doing long or short runs, a podcast is a fine thing to keep handy.
If you’re the type who wants to put your mind to whatever you’re doing and need some tips or motivation about running, that’s great.
Or if running feels like a drag and you want to lose yourself in a topic that’s not at all related to running, that’s cool too.
Just get into those running shoes and make it happen.