Category: Music

The Top 5 Best Workout Songs for Inspiration

Workout Music

Music and exercise go hand in hand; we’ve talked before about how music improves your workout. It helps you focus on something else besides the physical pain and exertion you feel. It facilitates movement in your muscles, ramping up your efficiency and allowing you to get more out of the workout. It also just generally improves your motivation.

However, it has to be the right kind of music. Depending on what activity you’re doing, you might prefer rap or hip-hop (it has the right beats per minute to correspond to most people’s running speed), pop music (good for warming up and cooling down), or dance music (perfect for weight training because of its upbeat tempo).1 Anything too fast or slow, and you might not get the results you’re looking for.

Fortunately, experts have combed through millions of public Spotify playlists with the word “workout” in the title and have come up with the ultimate list of songs to take your workout to the next level. Here are a few to get you started on the road to powering up your workout.

Get Lucky by Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams

This future-disco anthem from 2013 took airwaves by storm with its infectious guitar licks and repetitive melodies. At 116 beats per minute, it’s hard to argue that this wouldn’t be the perfect jam for any workout playlist.

Applause by Lady Gaga

Another hit from 2013, this club banger from the album Artpop has a high-energy momentum that keeps going from start to finish. It’s 140 beats per minute, so it’s perfect for an intense cardio workout and will definitely get your adrenalin flowing.

Beat It by Michael Jackson

Also 140 beats per minute, this is a staple of any workout playlist. In fact, many of Michael Jackson’s hits are great for working out to: think “Billie Jean,” “Wanna Be Startin’ Something,” or “Shake Your Body Down to the Ground.” “Beat It” has the added bonus of featuring inspired lyrics, such as “No one wants to be defeated.” Positive messages can have a positive effect on your workout, making this the perfect high-energy addition to your playlist.

Push It by Salt-N-Pepa

There’s no other song that checks all the boxes as this one does: Hard-driving rhythms with the perfect tempo to supercharge your workout; inspirational lyrics; and a hint of nostalgia that might remind you of your younger, carefree days. In fact, experts say that positive imaging – such as remembering when you were younger, fitter, and carefree – can be a powerful motivational tool for stepping up your workout.

One More Time by Daft Punk

Heralded as one of the greatest songs of all time, you can’t help but move your body when this comes on. It’s got an uplifting message and a great tempo for working out (123 beats per minute), and it tops many people’s workout playlists.

Once you’ve got your workout playlist in check, make sure you have the right nutrition to revitalize your body and refuel muscle growth. Boost your workout with our protein bars and energy bars, available in our online store.

Sources:

  1. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2538601/The-workout-playlist-thats-PROVEN-work-Scientists-analyse-beats-songs-reveal-perfect-exercise-tracks.html

How Music Affects Your Workouts

Workout Music

Ever get to the gym and realize you forgot your headphones at home? For some, it’s enough to make you turn around and get them, or just splurge on a backup pair. Exercising without your own music might seem unfathomable – and researchers have postulated several reasons for why this might be so.

Distraction – Music can enhance your workout by taking your mind off the physical strain of working out. It’s been shown that distractions take our focus away from the perception of pain – that’s why combat soldiers sometimes don’t know they’ve been shot right away, until the commotion of the fight has died down.

Pain Relief – Listening to music releases mood-enhancing hormones such as dopamine and opioids, making you feel good. These hormones are known to raise the pain threshold, so you’ll endure more in your workout.

Synchronizing with the Beat – At the right tempo, music can help your body move in concert with the beat. Music stimulates the part of your brain that controls movement. It helps your muscles continually move, and it helps them move more efficiently. Thus, you maximize your workout, and this in turn can increase your health and life expectancy.1 Specifically, upbeat music can:

  • Increase your heart rate
  • Reduce your blood pressure
  • Increase metabolism and energy efficiency
  • Reduce physical and mental stress
  • Diminish feelings of fatigue2

However, it has to be a specific kind of music. You could have two songs with the same beats per minute (BPM) – in other words, the same tempo – but they could produce different outcomes in your physical activity. Music that is more associated with “pop-techno” will produce higher physical output than music with a jazz or reggae feel, even if they’re the same tempo.3

Music that’s too fast, however, is not likely to have a positive effect on your workout, either. Experts seem to agree that the ideal range of beats per minute is 120–140; that’s where you’ll get maximum results. Anything above that, and the benefits are not as evident.

Workout Buddies

However, for activities that are a little slower or relaxed, such as yoga, you might want to opt for something a little more down-tempo and which matches the heart rate you wish to achieve during your workout.

Improving Your Mood – It’s well known that music enhances your mood, but studies have borne this out empirically. Social scientists have shown that music helps people think about who they are, who they want to be, and how to follow their own path to get there.4 Music allows you to shed negative habits of thought and get in a positive, cheerful mood – the perfect mindset for getting ready for a workout.

In addition to picking the right music, choosing the right nutrition to accompany your workout is crucial. You’ll want to replenish your body and give yourself the nutrients you need to repair tissue, build muscle, and rebound for the next time. View our large selection of protein bars, gluten-free bars, and other healthy energy bars. Paired with the perfect workout playlist, these will help you achieve optimal results, and you’ll feel great, too.

Sources

  1. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/how-music-affects-workout_us_55d746a3e4b0a40aa3aaa9da
  2. http://www.active.com/fitness/articles/how-music-can-enhance-your-workout
  3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3707869/
  4. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3741536/

Music and Your Workout

Man Stretching in Park

You wake up in the morning and lace up your sneakers. You are envisioning your perfect workout. How far you’ll run. How much you’ll lift. Your sweat dripping down your bicep. The grit of your teeth as you push the extra mile, lift the extra rep.

What kind of music is playing? Chances are you know this.

Why?

Listening to music during a workout isn’t a new phenomenon by any means. The Romans used to listen to music while rowing—they would listen to a drummer beat the drum with each stroke of the oar.

Music creates a rhythm and with a rhythm comes a tempo. Most athletes find a specific kind of music psychologically inspiring. But they also find that it ramps them up physically. Music can affect your body and mind in many ways that will end up improving your workout.

Immunity

 We are constantly testing our bodies and our bodies are constantly testing us. Unfortunately sometimes those tests come in the form of viruses and no one who is seriously training has time to fight illness, am I right? Lucky for us, music boosts immunity with the hormones that it releases within us. Speaking of hormones, it also helps reduce the level of cortisol our body produces, which relieves stress.

 Fatigue Reducing

 Have you ever listened to music with a face-paced tempo early in the morning? Doesn’t it make you feel a bit like you’ve had a cup of coffee? Music is a well known fatigue fighter and so it’s not a bad idea to pair it with a hard workout. You can even build a warm-up playlist that builds in tempo to get yourself excited.

 Heart rate

 Listening to music of a certain tempo when you work out can help to regulate your breathing, which is something we all need when we’re pushing ourselves. Next time you’re working out, plan to pick a song with a high BPM (beats per minute) and see if you can regulate your pace and breathing with the music.

How Should I Arrange my Workout Music?

We advise having a couple different playlists targeted the types of workouts you have. It’s good to have a basic warm up playlist that gets you motivated and a cool down playlist that relaxes you. But what else? We suggest you make a playlist by tempo. If you’re going for a more relaxed workout, like an easy run, do something with a lower BPM, maybe around 120 If however, you’re going for a harder workout, like something that is high-level intensity, try ramping up the BPM of your tracks to activate your heart rate and help push your limits.

How Often Should I Change my Music?

Try to change up your music when you change up your workouts. Just like your body will grow accustomed to certain exercises, your mind will grow accustomed to certain tunes, too.

Where Do I Start?

We’ve compiled a list of 10 tracks to help you get started and included a variety of genres and artists. Try giving these a listen the next time you sweat:

  • “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor
  • “Walk this Way” by Aerosmith
  • “Til I Collapse” by Eminem
  • “Move B**ch” by Ludacris
  • “Welcome to the Jungle” by Guns N’ Roses
  • “Time of Our Lives” by Pitbull and Ne-Yo
  • “Fancy” by Iggy Azalea, Charli XCX
  • “Rather Be” by Clean Bandit, Jess Glynne
  • “Bang Bang” by Jessie J/Ariana Grande/Nicki Minaj
  • “Go Hard of Go Home” by Wiz Khalifa

Now What?

 Now that you know a little more about the benefits of music to your workout, then you can get started putting a playlist of your own together. Visit our Facebook page or Tweet us and tell us about your most motivational jams!