The beauty of the podcast world is that you can find high-quality, free information on practically any subject from fitness and nutrition to sports, politics, and personal success. All it takes is a simple click to either download a single issue or subscribe to the whole enchilada.

The next time you're in the gym, try switching from pop tunes and heavy metal to podcasts that help your body and mind get swole.

1. Barbell Shrugged

Barbell Shrugged

Barbell Shrugged offers some of the highest-quality content you can find on lifting and performance, paired with an exceptional quantity of content. The show has almost 300 episodes under its weight belt, featuring interviews with some of the top researchers, trainers, coaches, and athletes in the field.

As you recommit to improving your conditioning in the new year, immerse yourself in back episodes of Barbell Shrugged. It'll take you awhile to get through them all and, even if you do, don't sweat it; new episodes come out every week.

2. Shredded by Science

Shredded By Science

Shredded by Science. The name alone is enough to make you want to download it, right? Here's another reason to give it a listen: It's not geared for the average lifter, but for personal trainers. The show's hosts are committed to increasing the knowledge of fitness-industry professionals by taking a close look at fitness dogma, trends, and research.

Of course, if you're not a trainer, you may not want to listen to every single episode, but most episodes are general enough to grab the attention of anyone looking to expand their fitness know-how. Try finding another podcast that asks the soul-searching question, "have you got Bigorexia?"

3. The Mike Dolce Show

The Mike Dolce Show

Mike Dolce is a tough, smart guy. He's so tough and smart he was voted the World MMA Trainer of the Year from 2013-2016, during which time he was responsible for the pre-fight weight cuts of UFC athletes like Johny Hendricks and Ronda Rousey.

Dolce's podcast features interviews with athletes, doctors, researchers, dietitians, and bodybuilders. He never holds back from expressing his opinions on training and nutrition, which always makes for a riveting program.

The Mike Dolce Show is part information, part entertainment, and part motivation. If you're a fan of strength training or fighting sports, you'll love this podcast.

4. The School of Greatness

The School of Greatness

The School of Greatness is hosted by Lewis Howes, a former Arena Football League player and New York Times bestselling author. His podcast isn't strictly about performance as it relates to making gains in the gym—it's about making gains in life.

Howes interviews people from all walks of life, from dog-whisperer Cesar Millan to Dr. Oz to tennis player Maria Sharapova. What his guests have in common is that they've all achieved some tangible measure of "greatness," even with the odds stacked against them. If you're striving toward big goals, this podcast will help you tune in to your own indomitable spirit and forge ahead to realize your own personal greatness.

5. TEDTalks Health

TEDTalks Health

There's nothing more motivating than a killer TEDTalk. And if you're into modern medicine and well-being, you'll be totally amped listening to the TEDTalks Health podcast.

The best part about the show is the sheer breadth of topics addressed. Tune in to talks about the brain benefits of deep sleep, how to stay calm under stress, or why some people struggle to stick to an exercise program. All these talks are presented by doctors and researchers well-respected in their given field, so you can rest assured that this is all top-quality information.

6. The Model Health Show

The Model Health Show

Shawn Stevenson, the host of the Model Health Show, is one dialed-in dude. Sure, he likes fitness as much as the next guy, but he's more concerned with total health. That's why his show provides high-quality, trustworthy information on a broad range of health-related subjects.

Tune in to the Model Health Show to learn about intermittent fasting on one show, the science of setting goals on another, and using progressive overload to get stronger on still another. Stevenson's been hosting his show for years, so he brings with him a library of about 250 shows, meaning you'll be set for audio accompaniment for nearly a year's worth of workouts.

7. The GMB Fitness Show

The GMB Fitness Show

If your goal is to be the best in the gym and in life, then it's time to start listening to the GMB Fitness Show. GMB is an organization that promotes the concepts of physical autonomy and unhindered movement. Its goal is to teach people how to move without aches and pains, and it provides a balanced, but focused, approach to training.

Listen in on shows about overcoming strength deficits, changing habits to maximize performance, injury recovery, and how to combine different training plans. The podcasts touch on pretty much every subject, so you're bound to run across insights and information you haven't heard before.

8. The Podcast

The Podcast

Last, but not least, you'd be remiss if you overlooked The Podcast. Hosted by editors Nick Collias and Heather Eastman, this relative newcomer to the world of podcasting makes up in quality what it has yet to gain in quantity.

Each of's 80+ episodes feature in-depth and often humorous interviews with experts on the subjects you're most interested in—physique building, physique enhancement, and workout programming. For added motivation, check out the stories from athletes who share the secrets to their own success.

About the Author

Laura Williams, MS

Laura Williams, MS

Laura Williams, MS, is a freelance writer and exercise science instructor.

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