As a backpacker traveling the world alone, I have a lot of free time.

Some days my only task is to travel. A 3 hour bus ride to the train station for a 12 hour train to the next city followed by a 15 minute taxi to my hostel. That’s 16 hours of nothing. Sounds appealing, until you realize that’s all you do. Nothing.

To stay sane, I watch a lot of movies. Not to fill my time but to fill my mind. To widen my lens. To help me understand. Films are great teachers.


For my fitness people, here are 5 documentaries that recharged my workout routine. I started doing pushups while I was watching. That’s how motivated I was!

I hope these inspire you to take it to the next level.

1. First Position


This documentary will have you questioning your work ethic. In the best way.

“Bess Kargman’s documentary follows six dancers as they prepare for a chance to enter the world of professional ballet, struggling through bloodied feet, near exhaustion and debilitating injuries. A showcase of awe-inspiring talent, tenacity and passion.”

2. Holes in My Shoes


There’s a scene where he (at 94) attempts to tear a phone book  in half. You’ve got to see it.

“This is the profoundly moving story of Jack Beers. At 94-years-old he breaks the age barrier; he is as active and energetic as men more than half his age. His long and diverse list of lifetime achievements is an inspiring tale for all ages.”

3. Run for Your Life


For runners. For visionaries. This is proof that one person can change the world.

“The New York City Marathon wouldn’t exist without one first-generation Jewish immigrant from Transylvania. Ehrlich’s fun, loving, and inspirational tribute to the late Fred Lebow shows how one man’s imagination, determination, and love for running created one of the world’s most popular sporting events.”

4. Ride the Divide


Is giving up a bad thing? It depends on who you are. Only endurance athletes will understand this story.

“A film about the world’s toughest mountain bike race, which traverses over 2700 miles along the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains. The film follows a group of cyclists as they attempt to pedal from Canada to a small, dusty crossing on the Mexican border.”

5. Pelada


For some, playing sports is the only way out. It’s not a game; it’s survival.

“This documentary follows two former college soccer stars who didn’t make it to the pros.  Not ready for it to be over, they play ‘soccer’ in all corners of the world. They meet prisoners in Bolivia, moonshine brewers in Kenya, and women who play in hijab in Iran.”  *I did not like the narration but the stories are fascinating.


Will Smith stokes my fire. He is always running or carrying somebody, or wet. If you need a reason to work out, Will is a good one. Top movie choices for workout motivation: Ali; I Am Legend; I, Robot. 



Lori Welch Brown · 02/04/2016 at 12:06 pm

Angel–you are our window to the world! Love, peace & joy. Namaste, Lori xoxo

Caleen · 01/28/2016 at 11:15 am

I’ll have to check some of those movies out! Glad to see you’re still traveling and enjoying the adventure!

Marie · 01/25/2016 at 4:12 pm

I found you and I am so pleased to read you and to see you are still into sports and travels!

Enjoy girl!!!!

And happy new year!


ween · 01/24/2016 at 10:11 pm

can’t wait to watch these. miss you boo! xx.

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