Value in listening to audio that is too difficult for you?

I apologize if this has been discussed before.

I am trying to add more language immersion outside of actual lessons. However, I am not sure if what I am doing is optimal or even helpful as what I am listening is too difficult for me.

I have 1-2 hours of weekly lesson audio loaded on my iphone but when I get really sick of the repetition I throw on Russian News Talk Radio (station Vesti). The problem is that it is probably 20% too fast for me and my vocab is still not entirely ready for such listening. I can pick up common phrases and simple sentences. But often, it starts to sound like a weird vocab recital as if my mind can hear words I know but can’t string them together fast enough, if that makes any sense. Usually, I just get the main gist of a story, eg, there was a fire at the market, 5 people died, and the police are investigating.

Is there any real value in this kind of listening? My other option seems to be to simply play a ton of old lessons I have. There are probably 100s on my phone. The problem is that I have them pretty much memorized so I am not so sure that it is much help either as I am not forced to understand on the fly.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

Of course, you have to go ahead and to add some new lessons and new podcasts.
But to listen only to the texts where you can understand less than 70% is also the wrong way.
At least, you can listen to some more difficult texts and to some easier texts where you can understand almost all.
Otherwise you can lose the interest to the new language.

It is possible to find lessons with not too much unknown words here on LingQ. I prefer to immerse into the lessons which fit to my understanding. It helped me very much in some languages which were absolutely new for me an year ago…
It’s the same as with musical instruments. It’s impossible to play a difficult piece without playing many easy songs.

Thanks for the advice. I will try to load up some easier stuff for lingq but it diffcult to find enough material that meets my learning level while providing enough hours of unique listening (I dislike repeating too many times). I loved Evgueny’s, “РАЗГОВОРЫ С ЕВГЕНИЕМ“, as the topics are interesting, long, and generally very easy for me to understand. However, I have listened to all of them already. To test my level, I just listened to the only one I hadn’t listened to yet, “КУДА ПУТЕШЕСТВУЮТ РУССКИЕ“, which is 15 minutes long, and I understood it all easily. I want to find like 100+ of these at this level or a bit harder.

I am going to see if I can find some longer podcasts in the 30-60 minute range that are my level+1. I will also listen to the countless Russian romance movies on youtube without the video. I watch them when I have a TV available and they are a bit above the level I am at – some fairly easy, some hard. The news on the other hand just goes too fast for me to really understand as it is usually just a guy reading a script quickly. I started wondering if I get much out of it as it doesn’t feel like I am training my ear well even as I enjoy listening to it.

lol. I am an idiot. As soon as I made this post I searched google for intermediate level podcasts and the first link in the search results pointed me back to a linq russian forum post, which linked me to Radio Voice of Russia at It was exactly what I was looking for. The podcasts are my level+1 and way easier than the news on Vesti Radio.