Thursday, September 2, 2010

Strapping On My Tap Shoes

Warning:  This post is a bit of a rambler :)  It's probably a pretty good indicator of how scrambled my brain has been lately.  Hope you enjoy it ... in spite of it's many hops and jumps!

I have never been a dancer ... I know that's a big surprise!  I like to dance with my kids and with my hubby ... but I have absolutely no aspirations to be on "So You Think You Can Dance?"  To be completely honest, there was the time in the 2nd grade when I stayed after school and joined Mrs. Skoumal in learning some tap-dances.  My favorite memory was when we were dressed as flappers and traveled to a nursing home to perform.  I'm sure we were entertaining!  And I guess I should also include the dance classes I took in college ... I got pretty good at the fox-trot and have even tangoed.  But I can honestly say that I don't see a future for me in dance. :) But that doesn't mean I don't admire dancers.

As a kid I remember watching "White Nights" with Gregory Hines and Mikhail Baryschnikov and being astonished at their astounding dancing abilities.  I have absolutely no idea what that movie was about :) but their tap dancing and ballet certainly left an impression on me.  Recently, Brett and I enjoyed watching one of our favorite TV shows, "Psych" and being treated to a tap dancing dance-off featuring Dule Hill.... definitely a toe-tapper! :)  All that being said ... I'm sure you are wondering where this is going :)  So do I!

The other morning when I was strapping on my tennis shoes for my early morning walk, I was surprised to find that my steps out the door made a little tappity-tap-tap as I walked.  I soon discovered that as a result of the GJ City work crews tarring, gravelling and re-tarring our neighborhood streets, I had accumulated quite a layer of pea-sized gravel and sticky residue on the bottom of my sneakers.  A few minutes of shuffling around in our wet grass took off a majority of the little tappers, but it still made me smile a bit as I headed out on the trail.

Now this rabbit-trail of a post is starting to get to where I intend it to ... and that is, "What do you enjoy listening to when you are working-out?"  Or better yet, "What do you do to distract yourself from your heart pounding and your huffing & puffing as you tax your body for a good cause?"  If you are like me, I really do like exercising ... but mainly I like looking back on having exercised and experiencing those good feelings of having exerted myself a bit.  To keep plugging away at my work out (besides being too far from home to stop!) I like having something good to listen to.  I mainly listen to podcasts seeing as it is the only time during my day when I can hear an entire radio show from start to finish without being interrupted to change a diaper or get someone a snack. I upload all the podcasts through iTunes right to my iPod ... then plug in and go!

Here are a few podcast that I enjoy ... and then I would like to hear from you.

  • For an interesting twist on weekly news, you might enjoy "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me" the NPR News Quiz.  This show consists of a panel of journalists (all with amusing senses of humor) and and a host who takes them through a variety of questions from the week's news.  Sometimes it can get a little dicey ... but more often than not, it's very amusing and just a little educational.  
  • For a good laugh and some great instruction in how cars work, I enjoy listing to NPR's "Car Talk".  This show is hosted by two brothers from Massachusetts and they are a crack up.  I figure I am burning twice the calories by walking and laughing! :)  
  • Another favorite is "A Prairie Home Companion" with Garrison Keillor.  These podcasts are just his stories from Lake Wobegon and only run about 15 minutes ... but in a given morning I can listen to several of them in a row and enjoy hearing Garrison Keillor's wonderful storytelling.
  • Finally, if you want to exercise your brain as well as your body, you might check-out NPR's "Sunday Puzzle".  These podcasts are about 10 minutes long and consist of word-puzzles read by Will Shortz, the New York Times crossword puzzle expert.  Sometimes I can figure them out as I walk along ... other times I have to listen to just one and then "puzzle" on it for a bit.
So ... what keeps you moving?  Send me your favorite music, podcasts or audio-books and we'll all have new inspiration to get some exercise!

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