Ear Joy: Our Favorite Summer Podcasts

Mother runners love a podcast. Spending a run (or a car trip or just a few minutes of downtime) hanging out with some stories in our ears is just what we need to reset our brains and take on the day's next challenge. So much has the potential to bring us down right now that this month is a good time to focus on the pods that have brought us joy.

"Joy" is one of those words that mean something different for everyone. My joy is sparked by a host who clearly loves the story she's telling you, which is why I was thrilled that a new season of Lauren Ober's Spectacular Failures just dropped. Rather than dryly recount all of the mistakes that went into the ultimate failure of, say, Schlitz or Kodak, Ober talks to you like she's your best girlfriend telling a dishy story. The new season even includes a cooking segment -- Ober is talking about Blue Apron -- and you feel like you are at the table with her, eating pasta and reveling in her delight about the story she wants to tell you. —Adrienne

In the market for some more pod joy? Read on.

Nope, The History Chicks is not the history class you sat through at school. This show introduces subscribers to real and fictional female characters in history. Hosts Beckett Graham and Susan Vollenweider dive into the lives of every episode’s subjects, looking into their challenges, successes, and any other juicy tidbits they can find. For fans of The Crown, there are two Wallis Simpson episodes. Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Coco Chanel, and Pocahontas are just a few of the other women who have been covered in the past. And unlike what we've been taught in our history classes, these episodes dive into the real women and the real stories. I learn something new every day. You know, so I can add even more random trivia to my brain to impress (or annoy) my dinner guests with when we can have dinner guests again! —Maggie, social media maven

I am a sucker for any sports-related story, especially one with lots of great reporting. The ESPN 30 for 30 podcast called Heavy Medals, which goes deep into decades of Olympic gymnastics (Mary Lou! Carly Phillips! Simone Biles!) and Coach Bela Karolyi, has me walking the dogs multiple times a day just so I can binge listen. Spoiler alert: He's not the hugging teddy bear he often is portrayed as on NBC Sports.—Dimity
I have one moment to share. On Finding Mastery, Blake Mycoskie, founder of Toms, shared the best piece of advice he's ever gotten: "The more you give, the more you live."  As a business owner, spouse, parent, coach, I can't agree more. The more you guide your actions from a place of generosity, the more that comes back to you. —Coach Liz
From the fitness end, I have been enjoying:  BE with Champions by Greg Bennett, a triathlete. He interviews a range of athletes at the top of their sport from Ironman triathletes to runners to Formula 1 Drivers.  —Coach Jen

True crime podcasts are getting too sudsy (or idiotic!) and overproduced for my tastes, yet I still like intrigue served up with a few plot twists. Here two well-done podcasts fit the bill: Wind of Change, which explores a rumor (or fact?!) about whether the CIA wrote The Scorpions' anthem, "Wind of Change," in order to help bring down Communist regimes. (Honestly: It's intriguing, and I dare you to not play the song 100x during the course of enjoying the podcast!) The other is American Skyjacker, the intriguing tale of a daring man during America's "Golden Age of Hijacking."—Sarah

4 responses to “Ear Joy: Our Favorite Summer Podcasts

  1. Thank you so much for these recommendations! I just found my new favorite podcast “Cautionary Tales” from listening to Adrienne’s recommended podcast. I love binge listening to a new pod!

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