Podcasts are becoming increasingly more popular and for good reason. While jamming to a Spotify playlist during an intense cardio session can be great for keeping up your pace, tuning into something more stimulating for the mind can have many benefits. Primarily, you can learn something new about a topic you had never previously considered. There's also an array of genres to fit your mood, so you can listen to two scientists discuss the future of an area of research, or alternatively listen to your two favorite comedians talk about their weirdest experiences on tour. And let's be honest, we all know you didn't want to study for your finals anyway.
To get you started, here are 6 popular podcasts from all different genres!
1. "Stuff You Should Know"
Hosted by Josh Clark and Charles W. "Chuck" Bryant, published by HowStuffWorks
This podcast takes you on a journey through any topic you could ever want to learn more about, from the ins-and-outs of gerrymandering, to how LSD is produced, to the validity of the "5-second rule." While you will not become an expert on any one topic from this podcast, an episode might spark your curiosity for a new interest or passion.
2. "Why Won't You Date Me?"
Hosted by Nicole Byer
You might get strange looks when you're dying of laughter while walking to your 8 a.m. with your headphones in, but this podcast is totally worth it. Well-known for her stand-up and role as one of MTV Girl Code's experts, comedian Nicole Byer hosts her very own audio show to explore just why she can't seem to tie down a relationship. As she words it, she's "smart, funny, has a fat ass and loves giving blow jobs," but still finds herself single as a Pringle. Listen to Nicole hysterically recount her experiences on dating apps, going on dates with fans, and discuss the issues with the modern dating scene.
Hosted by Sarah Koenig
Originally developed by "This American Life" (another great podcast), this critically-acclaimed show won a Peabody Award in the genre Investigative Journalism. The podcast is a true-crime style series that follows a true non-fiction story over multiple episodes, leaving the audience on a cliff-hanger every week. If you're a fan of "Criminal Minds" or "Making A Murderer," you'll love this nail-biting podcast.
4. "The Joe Rogan Experience"
Hosted by Joe Rogan
If you've ever listened to podcasts, you know "The Joe Rogan Experience "is the OG of podcast shows. Still keeping a 5.0 rating by listeners, the show hosts a variety of guests for extended discussions on the guest's particular expertise. This show typically produces longer podcasts, usually running over 3 hours long, which would be perfect for a flight or car ride. Rogan is a comedian, sports commentator, actor, and television host, which explains his diversity of guests on the show. Guests have included MMA competitors, leading scientists and researchers, famous athletes, and comedic companions of Rogan. Most notably, Rogan had Elon Musk smoke a joint on the show while discussing Musk's outlook on life and plans for the future.
5. "The Guilty Feminist"
Hosted by Deborah Frances-White
This show will give you a little piece of mind (and a lot of laughs) as someone who supports the feminist movement but feels hypocritical when fitting into stereotypes. Produced in the UK, comedian Deborah Francis-White has a new guest on each episode and begins with a dialogue of "I'm a feminist, but..." admitting to doing something that an ideal feminist would not support. The show addresses the problems within feminism where women want to be taken seriously in an authoritative position, but also not shamed for wanting to look attractive as well. Additionally, the show is recorded in front of a live audience, so White hilariously interacts with the crowd during the shows live recordings.
6. "The Genius Life"
Hosted by Max Lugavere
As one of the lesser known health and nutrition podcasts, "The Genius Life" show hosts an impressive guest list while discussing some of the more important areas of healthy living, mainly focusing on fueling your body for brain health and longevity. Host Lugavere is a health and science journalist, nutrition expert, and New York Times best-selling author who was originally inspired by the health issues of his mother that developed cognitive impairment and early signs of dementia at a young age. He is also a "core expert" on the Dr. Oz Show and has a popular Instagram that educates followers about the brain-boosting power of things like healthy fats and exercise. Listeners can learn about cutting-edge research from experts in nutrition and how the standard American diet is having adverse effects on our cognitive function.
So the next time you have a long car ride back to your hometown, going on a nice run, or better yet, trying to procrastinate studying for finals... check out these podcasts to keep your mind busy!