I exercise a little differently than most people. When hitting the pavement or pumping iron, the average gym rat listens to music with fast beats and inspirational melodies that will motivate them to go the 'extra mile' so to speak. I listen to stories.
It all started when I discovered PRI's Selected Shorts. They broadcast a free weekly podcast of a famous actor reading an award winning short story of two in front of a live audience. Some of the stories, like The Monkey's Paw or The Rocking-Horse Winner, are classics and old favourites. And others are short stories written by famous authors, new gems that I've never read or even heard of before. Although music may push you, the stories inspire me to keep going, if only to work out long enough to hear the end.
Recently, as evident by my lake pictures, on the weekends I've started taking long lopes around the big trail around the lake. These trips are quite long (I'm quite slow) and I've turned to zombies to keep up the energy level. We're Alive is a podcast that has been running since May 2009 and is the tale of an Army Reserve soldier Michael Cross living in the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse. And this wonderfully free podcast is not just a person reading a story. There are different actors that play the different characters, sound effects, music, etc. It is a full scale production.
So if you're looking for something new to listen to, at the gym, at work, on your commute, I encourage you to check these out. I'm a big fan of stories and these two podcasts will tell you stories that can literally move you.
Again, I'm not sponsored by either of the podcasts - just a huge huge fan.