When I'm healthy--unlike now, when I'm 5 weeks into a bout with bronchitis--I hop on my elliptical trainer each morning for 20 minutes before leaving for work. I have to do something so I can say I exercise.
One of the difficulties, though, is that it's boring. So I started listening to the radio. But since my exercise time includes 6 o'clock, much time on the radio is spent in commercials and new show change-over. Boring.
I tried reading. Smithsonian Magazine has large enough print that it's not all that difficult to read while moving, but it is difficult to focus on the reading. I was talking about this at work one day a couple years ago and a colleague asked if I'd considered audiobooks. I had not, at least not until that moment.
I now love Audible.com, the Amazon site that sells audiobooks. The program I'm on costs me $15/month, and for that $15 I get one "point". I can buy a book for that point, even if the book costs more than $15. Not bad.
I started with math and science books, but listening to such texts without having handy access to charts, pictures, and graphs (they're available, but certainly not handy) makes the experience less than ideal. The plan came together when I switched to narrative books--in my case, history, social science, and now even fiction.
To give you the smallest peek into my mind, here are the audiobooks I've bought from Audible:
John Adams, by David McCullough
Longitude, by Dava Sobel
Augustus, by Anthony Everitt
The Plantagenets, by Dan Jones
A History of the World in 6 Glasses, by Tom Standage
Civilization, by Niall Ferguson
The Golden Ratio, by Mario Livio (I made it most of the way through this)
Moment of Battle, by Williamson Murray and James Lacey
Our Magnificent Bastard Tongue, by John McWhorter
After America, by Mark Steyn
Catch22, by Joseph Heller (I only made it half-way through this one)
Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand
The Big Three In Economics, by Mark Skousen
The Ugly Renaissance, by Alexander Lee
The Ghost Map, by Steven Johnson
The Martian, by Andy Weir
The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion, by Jonathan Haidt
Popular Economics, by John Tamny
Armada, by Ernest Cline
(I have no idea in what order my Kindle Fire organized these for me!)
Based on what's worked best for me, I've decided that my running time should be more "entertainment time" than "learning time" when it comes to books. I'm not up to hitting the elliptical right now but tonight I finished The Righteous Mind and just started The Armada (narrated by Wil Wheaton). Perhaps I can convert some driving time to "learning time".