Podcast Picks Part Two

Last summer I wrote a post highlighting some of my favourite podcasts. Since then, my love for podcasts has continued to grow and I probably listen to at least one a day now, often more. I listen to podcasts when I’m running, completing my bike workout at the gym, when I’m walking, on my drive home (I still like the radio in the morning) and when I’m doing bits and pieces around the house if I’m by myself. All that means I go through podcasts quite quickly, and while I still listen to (and love) all the ones I highlighted before, I’ve now added a few more to my regular rotation, so thought it was high time I wrote a follow-up post:

Running For Real
In my previous post I mentioned that I had begun listening to the Runners Connect Run to the Top podcast, hosted by elite GB athlete Tina Muir. I ended up listening to all of Tina’s back catalogue and found myself following her blog closely as I found her so relatable and “real”. So when Tina announced earlier this year that she was leaving Runners Connect to start her own business, which would include a podcast, I knew I would be a ¬†listener. The new podcast follows a similar format of having a guest interview, with some comment either side from Tina, but the focus is very much on the realities of running and wellness, the ups and downs we all encounter and how we can overcome them to become stronger. Tina is always very honest so listening to the podcast feels reassuring, like a chat with a friend, and I look forward to downloading a new episode every week.

You can find out more about Tina and Running for Real on her website

Marathon Training Academy
This is one that I often saw referenced in other blog posts about podcasts to listen to, and I was aware that husband and wife hosts Trevor and Angie had a big following so decided to give it a go. Then, in a strange coincidence, they did a crossover episode with Martin and Tom from Marathon Talk (my favourite long-run podcast) and I became a regular listener from that point. Angie is a registered nurse and running coach, while Trevor is a much newer runner so it is an effective pairing. They produce three podcasts per month and their format includes some recent running news, updates from listeners, a feature interview or race report segment and some training tips. Great for learning new things or highlighting an interesting guest to look into further and I love their tag line, “you’ve got what it takes to run a marathon and change your life.”

You can learn more on the MTA website

Sparta Chicks
On the surface, it may seem a little strange that I find myself listening to a podcast hosted by an Australian coach/PT, but I was led to this one through my interest in Tough Girl Challenges. Host Jen Brown was an interviewee on TGC and she mentioned that she would soon be starting her own podcast. I enjoyed the interview so took a look at her website and signed up to her email list so I would know when the podcast launched. I love it because like TGC, the focus is on sharing inspiring stories from women (and the occasional man) who have chased their dreams. A regular discussion topic is how we can overcome fear and self-doubt, in particular the imposter complex that makes us feel like we’re not good enough, when we most certainly are. If you’re a fan of Tough Girl Challenges and looking for something else in the same vein, then this may be one for you.

Visit the Sparta Chicks website for more information

Dirt In Your Skirt
I think this is another one I discovered through Tough Girl Challenges as host Margaret Schlachter was an interviewee. Margaret is an OCR runner and while many of her guests come from the obstacle racing field, it’s certainly not all of them and OCR is not always the focus of the discussion. Interviewees are always female and the tag line of the show is to “explore new topics, conquer old fears and inspire those around us”. I’ve not yet managed to listen to all of the episodes, but am really enjoying the different topics discussed as I catch up. I’ve learned all sorts of things I was unaware of about tiny houses, bee keeping and coffee! And of course I’ve heard from inspiring women who have taken on male-dominated fields and been successful.

The Dirt in Your Skirt website can be found here.

Run Selfie Repeat
You may already be familiar with this blog from New York-based runner Kelly Roberts, however earlier this year she started a podcast to accompany it. Kelly is very honest and often uses her own experiences of grief, shame and self-doubt to help encourage others to overcome these barriers and move forward positively. If you read her blog then you will notice some overlap, however she also invites guests on to give advice on mental strategies, training plans and other running-related matters. Kelly is a strong voice in the running community, having started the #sportsbrasquad in the summer of 2016 and her own #bqorbust campaign to try and qualify for the Boston marathon. Being a strong character means that she can ruffle some feathers and it seems people either love her or hate her, but she is doing a lot of good and is a really positive role model for women.

You can read Kelly’s blog and find out more here

Run Eat Repeat
Another blog I’ve read for a while is this one from California-based Monica Olivas. The blog does exactly what it says in the title, discussing running and eating (both VERY important to me!) and I love Monica’s conversational style. The podcast is a new departure for her as she looks ahead to how she can continue to add value to her blog and share her ideas within the running community. There are usually a couple of episodes a week featuring chat from Monica, some guests, training tips and encouragement. They’re a good length for a commute ( the Fast Friday episodes are usually around 10 minutes long) and while the podcast is in its early days, is developing steadily.

Check out Monica’s website for more information

So there you have it. Six more podcasts I’ve added to my weekly rotation and listen to regularly in addition to the ones I highlighted last time. I’m always on the lookout for new podcasts to try, so if you have any suggestions for me, why not add them in the comments below…

Are you a podcast fan?
When do you like to listen?

NB Nobody has offered me any incentive to write this. It’s simply an honest post highlighting more of the podcasts I enjoy.


Tough Girl

Back in the summer of 2015 I spotted a tweet from double Olympian and Commonwealth Games medallist Liz Yelling sharing a link to a new podcast she had been interviewed for. Thinking it sounded interesting, I downloaded the podcast and loved it. I immediately subscribed and downloaded the handful of previous episodes so I could catch up. I was hooked and have remained a huge fan ever since. What was that podcast? The Tough Girl Podcast hosted by Sarah Williams (I wrote a bit about this in my Podcast Picks post last summer).

Everything Sarah wants to achieve through her podcast, website and social media channels really speaks to me. Her core aim is to motivate and inspire women and girls, to provide positive role models of women pushing boundaries and taking on challenges. Whether that’s running, cycling, swimming or something completely different like climbing, rowing or powerlifting, the chances are there’s a podcast episode to suit you. Nor does it matter how old you are – Sarah has interviewed guests from 17 to 70 – and age should never be a barrier to trying something new. These are the very things I feel passionate about. So many women are put off participating in sport or taking on challenges for a variety of reasons, and I want to try and help break down those barriers, perhaps even be a positive role model, and show that we can all do ANYTHING we put our minds to. For me, this podcast was perfect and listening to all the incredible women on it made me feel part of something special.

Such was my passion for Sarah’s mission, I found myself getting more and more involved. First, I became part of a team of volunteers helping her with some of her social media commitments (you can follow her Facebook page here and female listeners can become part of the Tough Girl Tribe, a closed group of supportive and like-minded women). More recently, I decided to financially help support the podcast by making a monthly contribution through Patreon. For me, this was important as Sarah puts so much time and effort into everything she does and produces some fantastic free content. Support on Patreon is really the only way she can earn an income from that work right now, and while the content is free there are all sorts of costs involved in producing a quality podcast, maintaining a website and so on. I get value from the podcast and wanted to do my bit to help out.

A week ago I was lying on the floor of my Paris hotel room with my legs up the wall to start my post-marathon recovery. I’ve done this after every long run this year and like to use the time to catch up on social media posts. On marathon days there are always loads, but one in particular caught my eye. One of the awesome members of the Tough Girl Tribe had put up a post inviting other members to write positive, inspiring messages for me to read after the race. As I scrolled through the comments, I noticed one from Sarah asking me if I would like to be a guest on her daily podcast, a short daily update she has been producing to help keep her accountable during the preparations for her next challenge. I have been listening to these podcasts and been struck by how honest and real Sarah has been – not every day can be completely positive, regardless of what social media might have us believe, and sometimes we have to acknowledge our struggles and be honest about how we are feeling. It was listening to these episodes that motivated me to become a patron of the show.

I’ve never been on a podcast, nor have I vlogged or shared video/audio content of myself on any social media platform, but I agreed to the podcast interview as I thought it was a great opportunity to discuss my running and perhaps inspire someone else to give it a go. I feel like I know Sarah having listened to all her podcasts and having a previous conversation with her, so I knew it would feel like a chat between friends. The interview took place via Skype on Wednesday and the episode went live on Friday morning (I got a bit over-excited and shared it just about everywhere!). It’s not long, only around 15 minutes, but I’d love for you to have a listen. If you don’t already subscribe to the Tough Girl Podcast (or Daily Podcast) then I highly recommend it. I listened to the latest instalment of 7 Women 7 Challenges during the Paris Marathon as I wanted to be inspired by the awesome women involved and their words will forever be linked in my mind with different parts of that day.

I was delighted to be interviewed and so wanted to share it with you today. You can access the show notes for the episode and listen via Libsyn here (or if you prefer to use your favourite podcast directory, search for Tough Girl Daily Podcast). Alternatively, you can listen via the YouTube link below. I hope you enjoy it.

If you’d like to find out more about Sarah Williams, check out this interview she did for another blogger or visit her website.

And remember: If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.

Podcast Picks

In the June 10th edition of Friday Finds, I included an article which explained why running is the perfect time to listen to podcasts. According to that article, the act of running helps to free up some space in our minds for processing ideas. That means that either we can be more creative with our own ideas, or that we can be more receptive to the ideas of others. When I first started running I was so tied to my iPod that I didn’t believe I could run without it, but these days you’re more likely to find me listening to a podcast (a running one of course) and saving the music for a race so my playlist still feels fresh. My preference for podcasts has been touched on in one or two posts, so today thought I would dedicate a post to rounding up some of my favourites.

Marathon Talk
This is where it all started for me. I had been aware of Marathon Talk for some time, but I think it was in the early part of 2015 when I began the Jantastic challenge that I became a committed listener. Hosted by Martin Yelling and Tom Williams, this weekly podcast looks at the news from the world of running, offers opportunities for listeners to get a mention for rating their run or getting on that week’s marathon podium, and features an interview with a guest every week. I often find myself laughing out loud at some segments of the show, which makes me look like a bit of a lunatic when I’m running, but as someone who often runs alone, this feels a bit like having someone beside me chatting away and filling me in on all the news. I’ve even managed to get a mention a couple of times!

This is my go-to podcast for long runs and you can find out more on the show website.


The Tough Girl Podcast
I absolutely LOVE the Tough Girl podcast which was started by Sarah WIlliams in August of 2015. I first came across it when Olympian Liz Yelling tweeted a link to the episode she was in around September. I listened to the episode and loved it so much that I went back and listened to all the previous ones immediately. Every week Sarah interviews an inspiring woman who has taken on some sort of challenge. There have been runners, cyclists, sailors, and all manner of challenges covered. Sarah’s driving force is to motivate and inspire women and girls, to show them they CAN take on a challenge, whether that’s running their first 5k or cycling across a continent. I just love anything like this, and Sarah’s mantra, “if it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.” I really look forward to downloading a new episode every week and listen to it on my midweek run – fantastic motivation to push hard!

To learn more about Sarah Williams and Tough Girl Challenges, visit her website.


Runners Connect Run to the Top
This is a more recent discovery for me. Having become a real podcast aficionado, I’m always on the look out for something new that I might enjoy and noticed a few bloggers mentioning this one. In a way, it’s a bit like Marathon Talk as each weekly episode is centred around an interview with a guest. But unlike Marathon Talk, this one is based in the US (although hosted by GB elite athlete Tina Muir who now lives in the USA). I first gave this a listen towards the end of the school term, I think in June, and have since been making my way back though all the previous episodes. Although Tina may make brief mention of a time of year or recent race of her own, the focus is on the interview therefore it doesn’t really matter when you listen to it. I’ve now listened to all of the episodes from this year and have been thoroughly enjoying the range of guests. I’ve also been reading Tina’s blog and really like how honest she is about her training and how she is feeling. It’s reassuring to know that an elite runner suffers the same worries and anxieties as the rest of us!

This podcast has been seeing me though my weekly session of bike intervals in the gym. If you fancy it, then check out the Runners Connect website.


Running Commentary
A recent entry to the podcast world, this is one I’ve been with pretty much since the beginning. The hosts are comedians Rob Deering and Paul Tonkinson (who also writes a column in Runner’s World) and the format of this one is a little different. Basically, the guys record the podcast as they are running, and in the main it simply follows their random running chat (and we all know just how random that can get when we’re deep into a long run – often they will be discussing something then one of them will suddenly point out a bird or something!). They are beginning to introduce some guests to the show, but the idea is that the guest runs with them rather than being an interview edited in. Most of the time this is one I listen to either in the car or while doing odds and ends around the house, however I recently had an amusing incident whilst listening to it as I walked into town for some errands. When I run, I only put one earphone in, however since I was walking I was using both. Because the guys are recording on the run, there is inevitably the odd bit of heavy breathing. You don’t really notice this if you’re running too, but on this occasion I got a real fright at a particularly heavy breath as I though someone had crept up behind me, before realising it was just my podcast! Maybe I should stick to listening to this one elsewhere!

You can catch up wth Running Commentary on Facebook.


The DC Rainmaker Podcast
Another one I’ve listened to from the start, this one indulges my techie side. I do love a gadget, especially a bit of sports tech, and have been reading the DC Rainmaker blog for a while. DC Rainmaker, aka Ray Maker, announced last year that he would be launching a new podcast with his friend Ben Hobbs of TRS Triathlon and I was intrigued. The focus here is to answer sports tech questions asked by podcast listeners. While the questions might not always relate to gadgets/brands that I have, it’s still interesting to listen to and the banter between the two hosts can be amusing. We also learn a bit more about Ray and his life as an American in Paris. I usually listen to this in the car on the way home from work as the length is about right for my journey and I can let it drift over me a bit as I concentrate on the road.

You can find out more over on the DC Rainmaker website.



Lazy Girl Running
I’ve long been a reader of the Lazy Girl Running blog by Laura Fountain and read her book The Lazy Runner a couple of summers ago. The podcast is a little more intermittent in release, however it’s usually a chat between Laura and a guest, or Laura and some of her friends taking on an event. This is another one that is usually recorded on the run in order for both the host and the guest to maximise their time, and whenever a new episode is available it’s another one that suits me on my journey home from work. Thanks to a recent episode I discovered the Jasyoga website and even ordered the accompanying book. Yes, I am really easily influenced sometimes!

You can find out more on the Lazy Girl Running website.



So there you have it. These are the podcasts I listen to regularly, although I have been known to listen to the odd episode of other ones if there’s a guest or topic that interests me. I can just about fit these into my week through a couple of runs and my car journeys home from work (I like to listen to the radio in the morning) but I know if I spot something else that interests me I’ll no doubt add it into the mix and try to find time for it.

What about you? Do you like to listen to podcasts? Any recommendation for me?


NB no affiliate links or sponsored content here. Just a genuine post featuring the podcasts I enjoy listening to.