Summer runs can be incredibly brutal, with the heat, humidity, and early sunrises. But if you have hopes for a strong fall or winter season race, summer running is unavoidable. One of the many ways I keep myself motivated during difficult runs is to have a great podcast to listen to. Sometimes I lean towards podcasts for runners that are focused on running tips and race recaps, other times I want a great story that’s going to keep me entertained. And maybe less focused on lactic acid that’s building up in my calves.
I’m constantly asking friends and family for podcast recommendations, and I’ve certainly found a few over the past couple of months that have held my interest. Here’s the 20 podcasts I’d recommend for long runs, hard runs, and even to help you get through a strength workout.
Podcasts for Running, by Runners
For times that you need a little push to get going or get out the door. Or a few tips to help you conquer the next long run. Here’s the best podcasts about running.
Run Hard, Mom Hard – One of my favorite new podcasts! This gem is hosted by two ultrarunning mothers who interview other ultrarunning moms. They cover topics like mental health, motivation to keep running with a house full of kids, and how being moms can make us stronger runners.
Ultrarunner Podcast – Just a good ol’ podcast about running ridiculous distances. Hosted by Eric Schranz who usually interviews other ultrarunning guests about their incredible adventures. It’s sure to keep you interested and laughing, and will likely provide you with the occasional running tip that only seasoned runners can give one another.
I’ll Have Another with Lindsey Heins – Lindsey is an avid runner with a sweet and bubbly personality. She interviews a wide variety of athletes in the sport, including OCR runners, ultrarunners, and strength experts on an expansive number of subjects. Sometimes inspiring, sometimes hilarious, always genuine.
For the Long Run – Yet another running podcast that is formatted in an interview-style, For the Long Run offers a more humorous and mindful perspective than many running podcasts out there.
AtoZ Running – This podcast is so unique because it is hosted by a powerhouse couple, who are both inspiring runners. They speak with guests who share tips and tricks, as well as great perspectives on the sport as a whole.
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True Crime Podcasts
Because runners are notorious for stumbling upon dead bodies. And also because there are few things that can make you forget you’ve got another 10 miles to go like a good true crime story.
Forgotten: Women of Juarez – Forgotten explores a very unique criminal phenomenon that more people should know about. The epidemic of murdered women in Juarez, Mexico. While these murders are often brushed aside as being cartel-related, there may be other explanations for the femicide. And certainly this is a story that needs to be told.
Morbid – Hosts Aliana and Ash cover a host of topics that aren’t exactly true crime in nature (like spooky ghost stories), but have an incredible way of storytelling that will keep you engaged. They explore unsolved disappearances and closed murder cases in depth, and in a way that makes the podcasts almost addictive.
The First Degree – This true crime podcast has a truly unique twist. The three hosts always have information from a true crime story presented by someone who is somehow related to the case. Like a woman who escaped the horrors of the Jonestown Massacre, or the woman who found out her high school sweetheart was a well-known serial killer. The story becomes much more intimate through the first degree guest, and gives listeners a unique chance to relate to the story.
Atlanta Monster – This podcasts covers, in depth, the multiple murders of young boys in Atlanta, Georgia in the 80s. Through the lens of investigative journalism, the listener is able to hear the background of the crimes, along with the arrest of a man who has maintained his innocence ever since. Listeners are forced to come to their own conclusions, as there doesn’t appear to be a clear-cut answer to who done it.
Hell And Gone – Now in its second season, Hell and Gone covers cold case murders that have taken place in small town Arkansas. Both seasons focus on the murders of young women that have not been explained in a thorough and interesting manner.
Sometimes you just need something interesting and exciting to listen to during a difficult run. These podcasts have got you covered.
And That’s Why We Drink – This podcast is sort of like a grab bag of crazy stories about everything from murder to aliens to cults. Hosts Christine and Em take turns diving deep into interesting and disturbing stories that will help you forget you’ve got two more hill repeats to go.
The Missionary – The Missionary is an ongoing podcast that covers the story of an American missionary who established a non-profit in Africa that was centered around child hunger in Africa. Unfortunately, after many child deaths, the organization came under fire as another example of white saviorism gone wrong. This podcast explores issues of race and unchecked belief systems.
Hope in Darkness – Another investigative journalism-based podcast, this show explores the experience of a young, American man (Josh Holt) who traveled to Venezuela after meeting a woman online, falling in love, and then getting married. During his trip, he becomes suspected and arrested for conspiracy against the Venezuelan government. The podcast digs deep into the issues of human rights and corrupt governments.
Uncover – This podcast covers a unique and engaging story every season, in detail. Season 1 covered the experience of a woman who left the NXIUM cult, and each season since has explored topics like mass hysteria, murder, and unsolved cases. The stories are great, and the detail provides listeners a unique experience.
The Lost Kids – This podcast shares the story of the origins of the “Troubled Teen” industry, and the disappearances of several teens sent to these kinds of unlicensed facilities.
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For times that you just need an inspiring story to get you moving in the right direction.
The Jasmine Star Show – Host Jasmine Star focuses on helping creative listeners find their passion and build successful businesses. But along the way, she talks about subjects like imposter syndrome, finding your own strength, and sharing your authentic self with others.
Rise – Another podcast that aims to encourage entrepreneurs, but often ends up telling relatable and inspiring stories about people who have overcome difficult circumstances, but continued to reach for their best selves.
Grit Podcast – Billed as a podcast to “help women step into their calling,” this podcast encourages listeners to recognize and own their inner strength in a resilient way.
DNF – A podcast focused on runners and athletes who share stories about the times they have seemed to give up or quit something, only to realize that following their instincts was the exact right thing to do. When one door closes, and another opens, a DNF is born.
The School of Greatness – School is greatness is another podcast focused on helping listeners build the life of their dreams through self-development and self-improvement.
Thankfully, new and great podcasts are released every day. What amazing podcasts have you been pulled into recently? I’m always looking for a good one!