Monday, January 04, 2021

#BestSongIHeardToday • Volume II

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The #BestSongIHeardToday series is often centered around hearing great songs while exercising. These posts will tend to drift into health related topics but will always come back to the music that brought you here. This particular series is probably more about a self journal to help me stay on the path of healthy living that includes, listening to old and new tunes. If you're looking for a great mix playlist of 25-30 songs, just click on one of my Volumes above.

(Original Photo Source:

First thing, let the tide of your mind just wash 2020 out to sea. 

This being my first post of 2021, I thought I'd tap into a common but often broken New Year's Resolution- 

To walk or run MORE during the year.

Here's some tips and tricks I have learned through my personal experience for getting out there and moving the ol' body forward.

Walk Everyday for Exercise
There is no fountain of youth, but there is walking. A Walk is one of the essential keys to a life worth living if you are still breathing in your 80's and beyond. No matter your age, don't wait another day to keep your brain and body working together as a team. I mean it, if you're not walking for exercise everyday, you've got to seriously change your behavior now. If you are a busy person with a full-time job and family, 'schedule' a daily walk into your daily planner. 

Walk Outdoors
This pandemic has a host of downsides involved with spending too many hours of the day inside. I know it's easy for me to say this from San Diego, but try to get outside where you can go for a walk at least once a day. Walking outdoors is the best anti-depressant.

Listen to Music While Walking or Running Solo
Music can get in the way when walking or running with someone, let the gift of conversation be the catalyst to put a spring in your step. But, if you are walking or running solo, music can be extremely motivating and calming at the same time to take you faster and farther. Your Smartphone is you #1 mobile music listening device, not to mention it is always there in an emergency. 

If you're new to the blog, I create a new playlist for every post. You may have the two or three minutes it takes to read my typical post, but may not have the time to listen to all the songs in my playlist (for example, this weeks playlist has 25 songs). Several friends of the blog have shared with me that they listen to my Monday playlist when they go out on their walks or runs during the week. I of course think that's a great idea and would suggest you simply bookmark the link here in your phone web browser to- 
Doug Mcintosh's YouTube Playlists

Use a Smartphone Armband
Now especially for running, I would suggest an armband holder for having quick access to your phone. I've been through several armbands before I found the Bone Run Tie Running Armband (pictured to the right). It comes in black or white and simply is attached to the armband by four very stretchable and sturdy rubber bands that securely hold the four corners of the phone. Here it is on Amazon for $24.95. The advantages are: You can directly touch the screen (e.g skipping a song) rather than using the plastic sleeve type armbands where you have to touch the screen through thick and often foggy plastic; or you can quickly take off your phone to use in an emergency, or just stopping to smell and photograph the roses. 

A smartphone GPS Running App is great for tracking your walking or running progress. I have also been through a couple of free GPS apps and found Runkeeper to have a great interface with easy to use features, plus its very consistent with its GPS tracking system. One more tip, turn off your phone, and then turn it back on before you leave the house for your walk or run. The GPS seems to like a fresh start and I found it to be more consistent when I do this as there is nothing more frustrating on a known distance run when your GPS is off like an 1/4 of a mile.
Here is the download for iPhone
Here is the download for Android Phones

Walking Shoes
Walking and running are two different colors in relation to contact with the ground. It is much easier for the average person to naturally walk striking the ground at the mid-sole where one's whole foot absorbs contact with the ground at typical walking speeds of three miles (or less) per hour.

If you often experience 'common' sore feet or foot pain on walks, I would suggest the HOKA brand, known for their thick cushion soles. These shoes feel like you're walking on air, and are great to get you doing longer walks or hikes. 

Note- From personal experience, I would not recommend HOKA shoes for running because they are designed like most current high tech running shoes that cause your heel to strike the ground first and all that wonderful cushion goes out the window when your heel absorbs all the force of hitting the ground at 4+ miles per hour.

Running Shoes
For running shoes and just stated above, I would suggest a shoe that does not force a blunt heel strike with the ground. I have a long history of running injuries that I won't get into here, but since I switched to the Altra brand of running shoes my injury rate during the last two years has been eliminated by 95%. Altra shoes are designed for the foot to strike the ground at the mid-sole like when you walk barefoot. These shoes reminded me of running shoes I had in the 70's when I started running at eighteen. 

Face Masks
People ask me how do you run with a face mask during the pandemic? My answer is simple, it beats the alternative of getting COVID! I run on the streets where I encounter people walking, running or biking as well as run on a narrow trail where I closely pass people. I started with a tube-gaiter mask and that kept slipping, plus I found out most gaiters offer only one layer of protection. I then switched to cloth masks, then to paper masks and just couldn't find a brand that was both breathable and wouldn't fall down. Then I found the ICU - Basic Single Use Face Mask with 3 Layer Construction (50 pieces/box) at Target in a 10 pack, and then at Amazon for $12.99 for a 50 pack. This brand is a little wider than most paper masks designed for adults and is my current favorite.

Anti-Fog Spray for Glasses
If you're walking or running with a mask on and are wearing either eyeglasses or sunglasses, you've probably experienced glass fog. After trying one brand that I wasn't happy with, my daughter Shawna turned me on to the Zeiss Anti-Fog Defender System. The best price I found was at WalMart for $6.98 and $9.99 at Amazon. You just need to spray your glasses and wipe with the provided cloth each time before you go out with your mask on. I don't think there is a perfect product to completely wipe out foggy glasses on a high humidity day, but the Zeiss brand works well for me.

Note - I'm not getting paid for endorsing any of the above products, although that sounds like a good idea. Maybe this is my audition blog post to become a social media influencer for boomers?

Back to Music 
My playlist this week is the second in a series I started last year and plan to continue this year. It's called #BestSongiHeardToday where I collect 25 songs into a playlist from the best song I heard while out on a solo run. I like it because it turns out to be such a random list of songs, mostly 'deep cuts' from albums from my Amazon Music in 'song shuffle mode' that is now up to 29,776 songs. 

Now the first two songs in the playlist have a little special meaning. Both came on during Joe Biden's victory in November. Both gave me a big smile on the trail, and sometimes a smile is all it takes to make the #BestSongiHeardToday.

Stay well and mask-up my friends.
Happy New Year 
and can't wait until the celebration on January 20th!!!

1 comment:

  1. Really enjoying this playlist! Old familiar songs, new songs. It’s no wonder they jumped out at you as you chugged along. The songs are varied, all different artists. Loving it. Your first blog of the new year is very encouraging in tone to get outside and get some exercise and very informative regarding how to equip yourself when you get out there.


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