Couch to 5K week 4 playlist

If you follow me on Twitter (and if not, well…) you know that for the past few weeks I’ve been trying to conquer decades of sedentary lifestyle by way of the Couch to 5K iPhone app. It’s been working out very well so far!

One thing I have yet to do is consciously plan out a playlist to correspond to the cycles of walking and running that are a key to the Couch to 5K program. Well, on Thursday I will be running the final day of week 4, nearing the halfway point (what??!!) in the program, so it’s time to remedy that situation.

Here then is my Couch to 5K week 4 playlist, for your consideration:

Action Song Artist Time
Warm up One More Robot / Sympathy 3000-21 The Flaming Lips 5:00
Run The Distance Cake 3:01
Walk Little Fishes Brian Eno 1:30
Run Smells Like Teen Spirit Nirvana 5:01
Walk And I Love Her The Beatles
Run Highly Suspicious My Morning Jacket 3:05
Walk Pigs on the Wing (Part One) Pink Floyd 1:25
Run Uprising Muse 5:05
Cool down Computerworld Kraftwerk 5:08

It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Clearly I focused primarily on the timing and general mood of the songs when programming this playlist, giving… well… absolutely no consideration whatsoever to the transitions between the songs. But I think it will still be successful. It helps me a lot when running to focus on the music and to think, “OK… I run until the end of this song.”

And yes, when I get to running for the entire time, I will have a song for that. I have 14 songs in the library on my iPhone that are over 20 minutes long.

More than you ever wanted to know about Mark Summers

Know Mark Summers? He hosted the messy Nickelodeon game show Double Dare way back when, and these days he’s the host of Unwrapped on Food Network, which I am, unfortunately, watching as I write this. (Hey, it was that or the routine weekly post-SNL broadcast of the Guthy-Renker infomercial for the Midnight Special DVD collection.)

The show is moderately interesting as a glimpse into the operations of various quirky businesses in the food industry (such as the one they’re talking about now, whose corporate office is a 7-story replica of a wicker picnic basket that would put Beebe Gallini‘s powder puff factory to shame). But the most distinctive thing about it is the maddening, Shatner-esque start-and-stop cadence of Mark Summer’s voiceovers. I’m sure he doesn’t really talk that way, at least I hope so, but on TV, he’s so programmed into this particular way of speaking — which presumably originated long ago in broadcasting schools with the desire to sound enthusiastic and engaging, and be easy to follow — that, ironically, I can barely concentrate on what he’s saying due to the way he says it.

I was not aware until I set about writing this post that Mark Summers is also a spokesperson for OCD, as detailed on his stunningly mid-’90s-style website. Wowwee. That site must have seemed freakin’ awesome at the time, what with its 3-D animated GIF logo, frameset navigation that unpredictably disappears on certain pages, etc. I don’t mean to mock a psychological condition, but you’d think someone with OCD would have no truck with this. It certainly hasn’t aged well, and I find it funny that the company that designed and (apparently, given its URL) hosts it still has the audacity to tout having been featured in a 1999 magazine.

P.S. This is what I get for drinking coffee after 5 PM. 8 hours later I’m still up doing… this.

New items in the Room 34 Store!

As usual I’m sure these will be of no interest to anyone besides me and the two and a half people who read this (and only marginally interesting to them), but why not take the opportunity for a shameless plug?

I’ve added a couple of new items to the Room 34 Store, including a Tai Chi & Chai Tea coffee mug and a Rosie the Riveter infant “creeper” (known to those of us not afraid to commonize brand names as a “Onesie”). Be like me! Deck out your infant in 60-year-old war propaganda!