5 Podcasts That’ll Get You Into Podcasts

Podcasts. To be honest, my only knowledge of podcasts was when they were a menu option on my old iPod mini and I wondered what the hell they were. I’m pretty sure I concluded I didn’t give a shit, continued playing Greenday’s American Idiot album on repeat, and forgot all about them.

Then I moved to Melbourne the hipster capital of the world.

AND ALL ANYONE TALKS ABOUT IS PODCASTS. Well. And voting for the Greens. And coffee. And buying things from op shops. And AFL. But mostly podcasts.

After months of wondering what the fuck the fuss was all about, I started to think maybe I should be listening to them. Maybe this was the solution to my ornate ability to be so out of touch with music that I’m still listening to Kesha’s only two hits every time I put my headphones in.

And I walk A LOT, which means I listen to Kesha A LOT. I mean don’t get me wrong, I’ve OF COURSE got Ronan Keating’s When You Say Nothing At All in a safe seat (lol can you tell I’ve been getting right into the Australian election) in my recently played, but to be honest, that’s probably the last time I cared about music. I’ve said at least one hundred times ‘I don’t even know what the kids are listening to these days’, and I legit don’t. Taylor Swift got too cool for me, and the soul of my music-listening ears died at that moment. And never recovered.

SO. I thought I’d give podcasts a try. Though, to be honest, I was worried they’d bore me and my mind would wander towards dreaming of carbs and burgers and cheese and I’d miss what was being said, so I was apprehensive.

I got on with it, and look at me now. I’m hooked. I’m a proper little Melbournian. I’ll toddle along in my Zara puffer jacket, in my active wear, full to my oesophagus of avocado, clutching a coffee (in an eco-friendly Keep Cup I shit you not), on my way to KX Pilates, LISTENING TO A PODCAST.

Let’s get a woohoo for Emma. This is the most alternative thing I’ve succeeded at since my mesh wristband phase circa 2004.

I’m wondering if they’ve taken off in the UK in my absence, but given that 87% of England is as awkward – if not more – than me, I assume they haven’t quite reached the mass market yet.

It did take a little perseverance, but these are the 5 that pretty much got me hooked. Granted, I did hear about a couple of them while listening to a couple of other podcasts (the names of which I can’t remember), but these are the ones I’ve subscribed to and that stuck. Ready? Hipster initiation begins now.

1. Millennial

OH HOW GENERIC. Look, I said I’d got into podcasts. I didn’t say this list was going to be ground breaking-ly unique and game changing. But I’m sorry, Megan Tan, you’ve changed my effing life (she’s the host of the show). The tag line is ‘A podcast about what no-one teaches you: manoeuvring your twenties, captured in real time’, and that’s pretty much what it is. But in a good way. Like, my blog is about being in your twenties, but it’s more totally bloody standard. The part of your twenties that’s going on Tinder and deciding you’re the hottest thing on the market, and being sick on the street outside the club, and skipping Uni in favour of eating Chinese in your pyjamas and spending all your money on moving to London to piss the leftover 80p of your wages up the wall after paying 98.4% of your income on rent. That part. Millennial isn’t that part. It’s the other part. The part when you get spat out of Uni age 22 (ish) and suddenly you’re not on a plan anymore. There’s no feeder school, no next step. It’s that part. And Megan Tan tells it so beautifully perfectly. I won’t say much more because I don’t want to ruin it for you if you download it. But it’s so good, and you’ll fall a little bit in love with her. She’s empowering, motivating, and basically she’s the one that makes it all okay.

2. Flash Forward

This one’s cool for those days when you just want to not think about stuff that’s going on. Like the day 51% of my beloved homeland United Kingdom voted to leave the EU and everybody started hating on each other on Facebook and people started taking my jokes offensively (which is a day I’ve feared my whole life). Flash Forward sets the scene of a scenario that could happen in the future, takes you there for a few minutes, and then unpicks what life would be like if that happened. One of my faves was a life with no pets, where breeding animals or keeping them as pets was illegal, and a life without lies, where a 100% accurate lie detector test was developed and a bleeping sound went off every time someone told the tiniest lie – like “it’s great to see you!”. Easy listening and makes you think about something other than your own life.

3. Bowraville 

Okay I do love Bowraville, but I did fall victim to that zoning out and forgetting to pay attention thing that I was worried about. And with this one, when that happens, you miss shit out and have to go back. Good for when you’re keen to focus, but if your mind is likely to drift, save it. It unpicks the mystery of three aboriginal children who were murdered in suspiciously similar circumstances, on the same street in New South Wales. Gripping, and a welcome non-mainstream alternative to Serial, so you can get stuck in without feeling like a total sell out for being late to the party.

4. Modern Love

I’ve only listened to a couple of these, but I do really like them. They’re not love stories, they’re stories about love. Often heartbreak, often mystery, often grief and sadness. Some heavier than others, they’re sort of like a teeny tiny audiobook. But it’ll make you feel better about falling in almost love with that guy you met twice and stalking him via WhatsApp and Tinder’s ‘last active’ features for the most of 2012. Cmon, we all did it.

5. Women’s Health Live Better Radio

This one is for when I’m definitely not keen for having to listen hard. It’s just a radio chat show by the editors of Women’s Health Australia magazine – which I read avidly like my little chia seed/almond butter/amaranth/puffed quinoa/raw vegan bible. But the episodes are nice and casual, short and feature different topics, so if you do zone out, you don’t miss key info (like you would with Bowraville). Now I like this show because I’m one of those wankers people hate. The ones who annoyingly turn down cake because it’s fatty, and the ones who read the back of a packet and turn their nose up at the macros or ingredients. But I’m aware of it and I mock it just as much as you do. So i’m sorry. But this show might only appeal to wankers like me, so if you don’t love it I’m sorry. But maybe give it a try if you too love activewear and going dairy free for no reason.

BYE xx

 

Here’s why you actually CAN get good at running.

Think you can’t run? I feel ya, believe me. For years I chunked about thinking my size 14 curves were just part of who I was, and that my thunder thighs were incapable of transporting my body at a fast enough pace to call it a run.

I was the slowest runner known to man (and my PE teachers enjoyed pointing it out to me), and I seemed to get left behind even doing simple things like trotting across the road (true story).

I’d see people out running on Saturday mornings and literally feel the jealousy penetrating my bones. I’d always wanted to be a runner, but for some reason my wobbly legs said it wasn’t too be. I truly believe some people just have the ability to run and some don’t. For all my trying, I’d never been able to break the barrier, yet there I’d be, cowering in the corner of the gym sulking on the cross trainer when some newbie would hop onto a treadmill on her induction and casually jog for 15 minutes straight declaring she hadn’t run since before her kids were born. Like seriously wtf.

I’d been flumping around the school track for years and nada. I remember one year, year six to be exact, I thought I’d made a sublime escape when somehow my teacher managed to assign a sports day event to everyone but me. There I was fist pumping to myself in the assembly hall thinking HELL YEAH I can just sit on the sidelines like an untameable badass scoffing mini rolls and dairylee dunkers and nobody gon’ tel me no.

Nah.

Somehow she realised and plonked me on the 400m sprint. SPRINT. Ummmmm what? My poor Mum. The poor little lamb had to leave work early to come and endure sports day with all the other Mums cheering on their little Olympians while I was incessantly lapped by my fellow competitors. When I finally flopped across the finish line the entire event had practically been packed up and everyone sent home. No sticker for Emma. No trophy for Emma. No participation award for Emma. No, niente, nish.

I actually have a vague memory of being told I ‘just had to try a little harder’. TRY A LITTLE HARDER? Are you kidding? I can assure you I was trying so flippin’ hard I honestly felt like my thighs were going to pop out of my pelvis and continue running off on their own. Try a little harder. PLEASE.

(Personally I think this is bullshit because if I’d gone into the dumbo class and told the kids they weren’t trying hard enough at maths I’d probably have become very acquainted with a scraper and the underside of a gum-ridden table. But yeah sure I’m just not TRYING hard enough in PE. Okay.)

So yeah. That pretty much scarred me for life and I had a fear of running ever since. I sort of accepted that it wasn’t for me, and that my poor body just couldn’t haul weight around for longer than a few minutes.

Turns out, people like me actually CAN run. And so can YOU. I actually regularly get told ‘I wish I could go running too’. BABES YOU TOTALLY CAN. If anyone knows the feeling of not being able to run it is me. Need I tell you another of the school stories? I’ll save you the pity. But let’s just say when we went to high school and met the infamous 3500m part of the athletics term, well, I pretty much had to be called in from the depths of the track as I’d ‘miss my next class if I didn’t keep up with everyone else’. PE teachers, hey. WANKERS.

I’d actually love to rock up to my old school head to toe in Nike waving a giant flag (perhaps with a marching band behind me for emphasis) and say through a giant megaphone “To all my PE teachers that taught me here between 2002 and 2009, FUCK YOU. I just ran 10k.”

Yep, it’s true. I can run now. Some days it’s 3k, some days it’s 10k. But I can run. Like the effin’ wind (ish).

The key, I think, is to let go of all the reasons you think you can’t run. Whether you’re like me and you’ve been scarred by a lifetime of jibes about your sporting abilities, or perhaps an injury or weight loss/gain, let it all go. Forget the bad memories. It’s just you and the track now.

Start small. You can only run within your means. If you can run 1k, run 1k. If it’s 500m, run 500m. When you feel like you need to walk, walk. But always keep going back to running. Some of my favourite ways to get started are these intervals:

  • 30 seconds run, 1 minute walk
  • 30 seconds run, 30 seconds walk
  • 1 song of running, 1 song of walking (if listening to music)
  • run until lungs feel ready to burst, walk for 1 minute
  • 30 seconds comfortable jog, 20 seconds harder, 10 seconds RUN LIKE MO FARRAH (repeat 10 times)
  • 30 seconds easy, 30 seconds hard

It sounds lame but these little intervals actually build you up really really quickly. Run at least 2-3 times a week and you’ll see a difference so fast I promise. Oh, and get decent running shoes. I’ve learned the hard way that Nike Roshe’s (while totally babetown with a pair of ripped jeans and a striped tee) ain’t a runner’s friend. I’m now rocking the ugliest, chunkiest New Balance kicks (New Balance 1260 V5 Stability to be exact), but they give me the support and shock absorbance I need to not, well, shatter my knee caps.

The Nike + Running app is also my best pal. It shouts out when you reach a certain distance and tells you your pace at the same time, so you can monitor whether to kick it up a gear or slow it down to preserve energy while you’re training your endurance. Oh, and when you’re passing a group of onlookers scoffing a Nandos in the park and it shouts out that you’ve just nailed your 4th kilometre, it sorta feels like you’ve just won gold at Rio16. Just sayin’.

If you like to run to music, go for it, but I’ve actually learned I prefer silence. I can nosey into other people’s conversations in the park, let the wind catch my hair and sort of pretend I’m Delta Goodrem in a music video, or day dream about a load of fantastical shit that’ll never happen like winning American Idol or bumping into Richie off The Bachelor and having an impromptu coffee while gabbing about life. It’s a great mind cleanser, especially for the uptight like me for whom meditation and other relaxation techniques are pretty much useless. Haven’t heard about my meditation experience? Have a read here.

Trust me, you CAN do it. And it feels really awesome when you do. Let go of everything that’d ever stopped you, lace up your hawttt running shoes and stick your middle finger up to everyone that ever told you to TRY harder, BE faster or that you’re anything less than totally rad. RUN THE WORLD, GIRLS.

Peace,

Coco xoxo