How Your Library Can Help You on Your Next Run

Sounds kind of funny doesn't it, that your local library could help you on your next run, but it can. If you don't know, when I fill in the time between weddings, I can be found working a few hours here and there at my local library.  It wasn't until I worked there that I realized how many awesome resources there are available.

I'm going to let you in on some information that you may not realize is FREE and available to you.

MUSIC, did you know that most libraries have digital libraries that allow you to use your library card to not just checkout music.  But actually legally download for FREE to keep for life?

Mine for instance allows me to download and keep up to 5 different songs a week.  It's a program called FREEGAL.  You use your library card number and information to log in.
The music is actually top hits, and popular stuff that is on the market today as well as lots of music from the past.
(I use this all the time, it is awesome to help build your running playlist!)
Not to mention, all the money you save on buying tunes you can put towards race fee's and gear!

OTHER MUSIC, say you want entire albums or hard to get songs.  There are programs like for instance HOOPLA that if your library is signed up for it.  You get to use and checkout these items FREE, and generally they checkout for 1-3 weeks.  Then the item automatically returns themselves at the end.  Want it again, just check it out again.  Or if you are sick of it, just let it return and try a different album.
My library allows up to 10 album downloads a month.  It's pretty cool, and we are talking brand new releases from popular artists!

WORKOUT DVD'S, want to mix a little cross training into your schedule? Yoga, Dance, Jillian Michael's, etc.  Most libraries carry almost any workout dvd you could possibly want, and many you haven't even heard of. You could even go back in time and go Sweat'n to the Oldies with Richard Simmons, LOL.
Don't see the DVD you want, just ask your librarian if they participate in inner library loans, and you can have it sent to you from another library that does have it!

How awesome is that!  How often have you bought a workout DVD only to get bored of it after a few weeks or a month and it just sits in your collection now? Imagine if you didn't have to waste your own money anymore, and you could use a different workout DVD every week/month etc...

AUDIO BOOKS, want to loose your mind on your next long run to a great book? Or try something new and learn a new language while you run?
Download these onto your phone or Ipod for FREE and remove them when your done.
Most libraries have several versions available, I personally enjoy using OVERDRIVE and find that one to be the easiest, but you can also use HOOPLA or any other your library uses.

BOOKS, no matter if you want to try the popular Whole 30 diet, or any other great healthy cookbooks, Galloway, or healthy living, exercise, diet etc...  Your library likely has them all, if they don't have the one you want, ask them to order it in.  Or have them do a library loan, and get it from a different library that does carry it.  Yes, all of this is FREE for you to use.

Libraries have all these awesome FREE resources for you.  I haven't seen very many items other bloggers talk about not available at my own library for free, minus the popular P90x, Beachbody (At least mine doesn't carry that one.)

Most things come in both hard copy or  digital, so you don't even have to go to the library to get them. You can download them from you phone, tablet or home computer.

I will admit, there are some cities with some very small libraries, and they may not have everything you could want.  However, even small libraries generally participate in library loans with other libraries.  You won't know if you don't ask!

(TIP, if you don't have access to libraries in your area.  Next time your near a larger big city see how much they charge for an out of area pass.  Depending on the yearly fee, if you use it, it might cost less than buying workout DVD's or Music on your own, and then you'd have unlimited resources with their online services!)

So next time you want to try something new, why not try it for FREE at get it from your library.  That way you can try things out and make sure you really want it before you buy them, or just use them while you need them, return them to the library and then move onto the next thing.

Do you take advantage of your local library to help you with your workouts?
Do you download the libraries free legal music to add to your playlists?
Did you know all these resources are easily available for your FREE use?


  1. Ooh... I never thought about the library for music! I'm going to have to look into that. I love borrowing e-books from the library and I'm going to try borrowing an audio book from them too.

  2. We used the library all the time when I was a kid. We got some great books on tape for car trips which included To Kill a Mockingbird, Wind in the Willows and the Hound of the Baskervilles.

  3. I absolutely love the library!! Especially now that I have a toddler. I had never considered using the library for music or workout DVDs!! Great ideas!!

  4. I love taking my girls to our local library! I never even thought to consider workout DVDS or audio books but I am going to scope out the selection the next time I go! Local library's are also a great place to build your public speaking audience by starting small! I love giving local running talks at the one near us:)

  5. I love the library!! Hoopla is pretty awesome! I have gotten some good books about running from the library!

  6. Oh ya, that is where I grab all my tunes from! Since they are legally free to download and keep, lets just say with my 5 a week limit and having done it for years, I have a fabulous playlist and update it weekly with any new songs I find! Definitely give it a try, it's awesome!

  7. That is awesome! Gotta love the classics!

  8. I love that you use the library with your toddler, I bet they will grow up having a love of reading:) Oh, ya definitely they have a HUGE selection and can order things in, it's my favorite way to try new things and not have to pay a penny for them:) Well that is if I remember to return them in time before the fines, LOL

  9. Love that you take your kids to the library too, I love when I see kids come to the library their love to learn to read, and discover stories always makes me smile:)
    You know it is so funny you mention this. Just today I was approached and offered a speaking opportunity to to come and teach a blogging class, I literally saw your comment right after:) I think talking about running would even be more awesome, I never thought of doing that I may consider looking into setting something like that up, I love that you do that!

  10. Hoopla is definitely pretty awesome! Oh ya, anytime I see a blogger mention a book about running inpiration that sounds interesting I will pick it up to thumb through it the next time I am in, and most the time I was glad I was looking through it free, and the ones that I find that are really good at least I can decide if it's really worth it before buying it:)

  11. I definitely never ever go to the library anymore. When my kids were younger we always did. Thanks for the reminder :)

  12. You should definitely think about giving it a visit, it's probably changed a lot since then!

  13. This is a great post! I did not know about the music thing although I did try to download an audio book once but apparently it expired while it was on my ipod. I thought once I downloaded it, it would be there forever. I guess I misunderstood how that works!

  14. Love this! I need to hit up my library more often. I used to go all the time, but I fell out of the habit!

  15. Oh how fun!! Best of luck:)

  16. I actually do use my library! I've always gone for the internet, but now that I have my own wifi and laptop I just go to print for free sometimes. I also like to get my niece and nephew DVDs to watch when they come visit, and just started renting personal development books for myself. I had no idea that you could get items like music and books digitally. I am definitely going to start trying audio books. I've been wanting to learn Spanish and feel that would be a great way to do so! Listening while I drive or run!

  17. Love this! :D I haven't had a chance to go to a library in a while, but when I used to read tons of books all the time! *-* I'd completely forgotten that they offered music + DVDs, but...will definitely have to do that again once I'm settled into a place!

  18. LOL, ya a lot of people think that. Actually it will, if you don't hook it up to the internet:) But ya, they are coded to expire and auto delete over wifi connections. But if you don't get finished with a book in time, you can just stay offline with the device and it won't delete until you hook it up next time:)
    But ya, try the music, mine uses Feegal, and its awesome! 5 free songs a week to keep for life, legally:)

  19. Truth be told, until I started working there I didn't visit all that often either, but now that I know all that is available, even when I leave working there I will be back probably at least once weekly:)

  20. That is awesome yours does free printing, we still charge a small fee for printing! Oh, ya I do the same thing, if I am going to be watching kids, I check out a bunch of DVD's for them. And truth, I even check out the new releases when they come out, because free is cheaper than redbox, LOL
    I actually did try learning a language when I ran once, it worked great for a while and then I stopped I wish I hadn't quit, I really should give it a try again!

  21. Oh ya, and you don't even have to go in to get them. You can go online and watch movies and download music from anywhere! I remember a few years back traveling for a race and it ended up being a very rainy evening so I stayed in doors and just streamed one of the libraries online movies since there wasn't anything good on the TV that night:)

  22. Allyson C BrandtMarch 8, 2017 at 5:54 PM

    I love listening to audio books on my runs! I "read" the best books that way!

  23. That is awesome! I have listened to a few great ones that way myself too:)


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