The right music can simulate your brain to produce “feel good” chemicals. Your workout loves that!
Ever walked into a gym and then walked straight back out again – because you had forgotten your headphones?
Or completely ditched the idea of going for a run after work because your phone battery had died?
No good music = no good movement.
We’re all hooked on great music to get us going when it comes to health and fitness. An awesome playlist can be the difference between a struggler session and setting new world records.
Here’s why: the brain releases the ‘feel-good’ neurochemical dopamine when desires for food, sex and sleep are met. This same chemical is also produced when we play music we like, according to this 2011 study published in the journal Nature Neuroscience.
So with this direct chemical link between music and emotion we know that good tunes make us feel good. And the better we feel the more motivated we are and the better we perform.
With that in mind, those Britney Spears and Justin Bieber albums just had to go on my iPhone.
Time to make way for some energetic, stompin’, blood-rushing tracks that will turn any man into a machine.
Here are my top 10:
#1 Robert Tepper – No Easy Way Out
Taking you right back to the 80’s with this number from the Rocky IV movie soundtrack. It got Rocky fired up to knock out a Russian dude about two feet taller and two feet wider than him. In that case, it can definitely get you going too.
#2 Metallica – Enter Sandman
Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson shared his favourite gym playlist in an interview with Muscle and Fitness magazine back in 2010. This was one of his top tunes. The Rock’s a man mountain. Enough said.
#3 In Da Club – 50 Cent
This was the tune that introduced 50 Cent to the world in 2003. Exercising in the music video with his ridiculously ripped physique, ‘Fiddy’ made most guys watching think that we better start hitting the gym soon…
#4 Foo Fighters – The Pretender
The band picked up ‘best hard rock performance’ with this storming track at the 2007 Grammys. If this fast-paced tune doesn’t fire some life into your bones, nothing will.
#5 2pac – Ambitionz As A Ridah
We promised this playlist can turn men into machines. Well, this was one of Mike Tyson’s entrance tunes before his big fights. And Mike’s made of iron.
#6 Daft Punk – Touch It/Technologic (live)
The pick of a brilliant bunch of tracks from the ‘Alive 2007’ live concert album. This stomping tune will easily have you energised during a tough gym session. Best electronic/dance album at the 2009 Grammy Awards.
#7 Hans Zimmer – Time
So we’ve had rock, heavy metal, rap, dance…time for some classical music. It doesn’t get better than this haunting track that will have your blood pumping and hairs standing on end.
#8 Heart’s On Fire – John Cafferty
Remember that scene in Rocky IV where Sly Stallone is training in an old Russian barn? Shadow boxing. Lifting rocks. Lifting his family in an old wooden cart thing. Fire blazing in the background. THIS is the song playing during that scene that makes you want to be right in there training with him. (Or maybe that’s just me being a Rocky movie obsessed weirdo?)
#9 Rolling Stones – Paint It Black
Mick Jagger and his bandmates might struggle to work out these days because they are the combined age of 573, but they have plenty of upbeat energetic tracks to get you going during a workout. This track, as featured in the hit military movie Full Metal Jacket, is one of the best.
#10 New Order – Blue Monday
Rewind 33 years for this classic tune. Awesome beats and synth sounds that never get boring. Turn it up and blast through your training session.
What are your top tunes that get you fired up during a workout?