Nearing the holiday season in 2005, I expressed a vague interest in running to my sister. She – quite literally – ran with it, and crossed me off her list of people she was obligated to buy Christmas presents for with the purchase of a bright, shiny, and new Running for Morons book.
Between Christmas and the New Year, I read the book, cover to cover, and decided that I –Yes I! – would follow the eight week run/walk to 30 minutes running plan outlined in a nifty, easy-on-the-eyes chart... hell, anybody can do it! The book thought so. And who are you (who am I?) to argue with a book? That, my friends, would suggest some serious mental health issues.
Despite the fact that running 30 minutes straight (read: without breaking for coffee and/or a snack two, maybe three times) seemed to be a feat nearly insurmountable at that point in my life, I dragged my ass out of bed every other morning at 6am and walked to the gym where I would grudgingly step onto the treadmill for a torturous 30 minute run/walk combination. Two minutes walking, one minute running... ad nauseam...
It was quite the chore back in my early days o’ running. I armed myself with whatever I believed could divert my attention long enough to keep me on the treadmill for the allotted amount of time: my iPod, an US Weekly, an InStyle, a prime spot in the gym where I could view a television equipped with closed captioning, tuned to a morning "news" program. I needed entertainment. I needed distraction.
I am unable to identify the point at which everything changed – an "easy mile" stopped being an oxymoron; four or five miles started to seem a reasonable distance to run on a weeknight (you know, just like for the hell of it); the torment of the treadmill turned into a mild addiction, and my need for the Us Weeklies, the Instyles, and the talking heads evaporated. One day, they were just gone, leaving my iPod and I alone on the treadmill.
But yesterday at the gym, when I turned up the speed on the treadmill, pressed play on the iPod, and heard the all too familiar opening chords of “New Slang,” I looked around for something to read, maybe a Sodoku puzzle to fill in, a television to watch... something. I realized I was bored... with my Playlist.
Which brings us to now. Right now, I'm wondering if any of ya'll have suggestions of songs worth shelling out $.99 for on iTunes. I'm desperate to switch up the repertoire, and without a car, without a radio, and without much interest in a "music scene," I'm at a complete loss.
Below is my running playlist… I tend to stick to oldies and alternative rock (is that what one would call it?) when I run. I can’t run to fast pop music or rap, so Britany Spears, 50 Cent, or what have you aren’t going to get me moving; and I despise techno as a rule (though if I hear it in a salon or gym setting I simply cannot help but do what I like to call my “um-cha” dance). I'm looking for songs with solid, slow-ish beats, that I can potentially sing to (though the singing is ever-so-counterproductive to the actual running). Thoughts? Your help will be rewarded... not monetarily (what is this "money" you speak of?)... but with my unconditional love. That's worth it, right?
New Slang/The Shins
Pavlov’s Bell/Aimee Mann
Take Me Out/Franz Ferdinand
Gimme Shelter/The Rolling Stones
You’re So Vain/Carly Simon
Soul Meets Body/Death Cab for Cutie
Ain’t No Sunshine/Bill Withers
Seven Nation Army/The White Stripes
Summer In the City/The Lovin’ Spoonful
What Goes Around/Justin Timberlake
Steady As She Goes/The Raconteurs
About Her/Kill Bill Vol. 2
Suddenly I See/KT Tunstall
Ain’t Too Proud to Beg/The Temptations
I Will Follow You Into the Dark/Death Cab for Cutie
Going Through the Motions/Aimee Mann
Here it Goes Again/OK Go
Ohio/Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young
How to Save a Life/The Fray