Just Hit Play

A weekly series where you’ll find a handful of songs to add to your workout playlist.

Ghostland Observatory — No Place For Me

Shoutout to the boys from Austin, TX here. Ok so they might seem a little crazy…

A) They’re based out of Austin


B) They like laser lights a lot


C) Their drummer looks like this


I have absolutely no idea what the lyrics to this song mean, but I just try to think about a dark time or place in my life and how I want to get as far away from that as possible, and that gets me going. Crank this one up loud.


Macklemore & Ryan Lewis — Wings

Macklemore & Ryan Lewis at Sasquatch 2011

Making his second appearance on JHP, this one goes back before he was all over the radio. The cool thing about Macklemore is he’s good for a fun, jump up and down anthem type song, and he’s also good to give you a social commentary song.

Wings is about the addictive nature of collecting shoes and the pressure kids feel to have the best kicks in school. The song has rises and falls with slower, dramatic phrases followed by Macklemore getting angry a la Eminem or Lil Wayne (his idol, I think). The video is really well done, and of course shows off his town of Seattle. I dig the Spike Lee Nike references, too.


I’ve got to cut it short this week, but I’ll be back next Monday with more songs for your workout playlist. Until then, be well.



Melting running shoes, over 8,000 feet elevation gain, eating NASA food, and training on a treadmill inside a treehouse filled with space heaters? That folks, is the Badwater Ultramarathon — one of, if not THE most challenging endurance events in the World.

The training that goes into it, and the pain you’ll endure during, only appeals to probably 0.0001% of the human population, but it’s still inspiring and interesting to read about. Check out this good article and interview with first-time Badwater runner Meredith Dolhare.


How Long Should Your Daily Workout Last?

For awhile now, the Surgeon General’s recommendation and the general consensus has said 30 minutes a day. That, in turn, sparked the question among researchers and those in the health/fitness profession: can this be broken down into two 15 minute sessions or three 10 minute sessions? And what are the subsequent health and performance ramifications of 1 vs. 2 vs. 3 sessions per day? Well, it seems we are still trying to answer that question.

A recent column in the Well section of the NYT, citing several different studies, basically said the benefits of shorter bouts that add up to 30 minutes are either inconclusive or negligible, when compared to the “traditional” single 30 minute bout.


So for those of you out there wanting some resolution to this — wanting to know the most effective route to better health or a faster mile time or more fat loss or _________ — sorry, but it sounds like there isn’t a definitive answer yet. And there may not be for some time (or ever).

My advice: just do whatever works for you, given your daily schedule and your preference. If you like to break it up into smaller chunks or use those federally mandated 15 minute work breaks to exercise, go for it. If you find it easier to just knock it out in one fell swoop before or after work, go for it. Whatever brings you peace of mind or whatever your schedule dictates — do that.

Whatever you do, give it your all. Be well out there…

Just Hit Play

A weekly series where you’ll find a handful of songs to add to your workout playlist. 

It’s another Monday, which means another installment of JHP. I try to bring a variety of music to this segment, so what you end up getting is one or two “normal” songs, when you think about typical workout music, AND a couple others that either are probably new to you or songs that you might not consider something you can workout to.

Also, if anyone has a better suggestion on how I can embed or link music, please please let me know, cause right now I’m just pasting in pics and Youtube videos. Alright, let’s get to it.

The Black Keys — Gold On the Ceiling

If I’m doing a longer distance, lower intensity cardio like a run or bike ride, these guys can really help pass the time. I love their sound, and while 94% of their songs don’t have the intensity for, say, a P90X workout, they’re great for when I can just go on auto-pilot on a run, tune out the World, and listen to some good bluesy rock.


Ahhh…the ’87 Dodge Caravan with the wood paneling…was a finer automobile ever created?

Oh yeah, back to the music…Gold On the Ceiling just so happens to be the current Black Keys song on my running playlist, but you can pretty much pencil in any of their work. GOtC has a nice shuffle to it. Check it out:

Konshens — Jamaican Dance

One of those borderline workout songs I alluded to, this one works for me when I use the power of imagination. This song comes on my shuffle when I’m out for a run and I teleport myself to a sandy beach in the Caribbean with a cool breeze blowing, kids playing soccer with a ratty old ball, palm trees for their goals, and wild roosters running around. It’s that care-free island living, where people dance even when music isn’t playing.


Variety is good, especially on an hour long run, and this song definitely provides that. The only reggae-ish song I own (admittedly, it’s way more pop than reggae), it’s very catchy and wakes me up when my mind is going numb from staring straight ahead and putting one foot in front of the other over and over and over and over and over and over and over….yeah I don’t like running…

The White Stripes — I’m Slowly Turning Into You (Live)

On my P90X playlist, this is one of those angry songs that can really motivate. It’s got that live energy of the crowd, Meg pounding on the drums, and Jack shredding on the guitar and yelling at me. It takes awhile to build, but by the end I just want to punch something or run through a wall.

Here’s the clip from the documentary, Under Great White Northern Lights (a good doc, btw, if you’re a White Stripes fan)


We Were Promised Jetpacks — Quiet Little Voices

OK, first off…best band name ever. Mookie Blaylock is a close second.

So these guys are an indie punk band out of Scotland, put out their first album in ’09, but I only learned of them recently when they came up on a pandora station of mine.

And their song Quiet Little Voices is a two-wayer for me. I could listen to this as a power song on a run or I could have it in my P90X playlist and crank out some pullups to it.

Here’s them singing the song live in London. Caution: a little bit of bad language when talking to the crowd, but the lyrics are clean


We’ll call it good for this edition of JHP. Come back next week for some more suggestions.

Be well, y’all.