It may seem like blasting Kate Bush’s Running Up That Hill next time you’re actually running up a hill, but the science behind music’s ability to improve your workout is sound. Countless studies suggest listening to songs With a medium to fast rhythm, between 170 and 190 beats per minute (beats per minute), Boost motivation to exercise And reduce your perceived effort in the middle of a workout.
one italian study She concluded that the faster the rhythm, the easier the exercise, a huge finding that points to the fact that our physical limits are largely mental. We usually stress because we think we’ve reached the limit when, in fact, our body still has more gas in the tank. Furthermore, if you’re putting in a long effort (think marathon or ultra-distance), it can be helpful to find songs with rhythmic patterns that mimic your movement and create a kind of feedback loop.
Ultimately, music can yield better performance, improve and/or regulate your mood, and divert attention away from those strenuous efforts so that you can endure more for longer. All you have to do is find the music that speaks to you. Maybe it’s Foo Fighters to get you out of the house, Eminem to get you past the grueling midpoint of your workout, and The Strokes to get you home.
We’ve used Peloton trainers to get the trails they turn to when they need a kick in the pants to get (and stay!) motivated, as well as their relationship to fitness and music.
The 50 Best Workout Songs, According to Peloton Coaches
John Hosking tread trainer: “Music is what gets me up in the morning, makes me run, inspires me to draw, and calms me down in the evening. [It’s] What makes me remember moments in my life and makes me feel alive and present. There is always music playing in my house or in my headphones.”