Using music as a motive

By Cecily Arambula

There are very few things I can do without listening to music.

Working out is no exception.

Now is the time to work off those extra pounds I put on by sitting in front of a computer day after day, writing and editing stories all quarter.

Finally, all of those production weekends have caught up with me.

And it’s time to face the consequences of all those late-night taco runs and trips to The Yardhouse and El Torito to reward myself.

As beach season approaches, the gyms are packed and everyone is scrambling to lose what their winter coats were hiding.

Whether it be at the gym, on a hiking trail or almost any other form of exercise, people are plugged into their iPods, using music as motivation.

Or possibly a distraction from a grueling work out.

For the majority of us, listening to certain songs while working out can push us to run a little faster and lift a little heavier.

Some of us even have workout playlists, myself included.

Depending on how long you are at the gym, playing a sport, hiking a hill or whatever exercise you are doing, a playlist can make a work out more enjoyable.

Who wouldn’t want to block out the sound of your own heavy breathing?

That’s why music is playing at those aerobics and spinning classes we know so well.

Not necessarily good music, but music all the same.

Some music can give you that extra push you need to get through your workout.

Take the Rocky Balboa theme for example. Never in my life have I wanted to run up a massive flight of stairs and throw my arms up in the air at the top of it.

Some songs put us in a good mood, happy to be hitting the gym. And some, well, they help us relieve that stress we’ve been holding in since the last time we got some exercise.

For instance, there’s nothing like a good break up song to make you run that extra mile and do those other 30 squats.

Getting in shape to Kelly Clarkson’s “Since You’ve Been Gone” will really show your ex you’re over them.

Warning: This doesn’t mean a break up playlist is a workout playlist. Never confuse the two.

You don’t want to risk the chance of bursting into tears on the elliptical in front of Keith, the body builder.

I like to have my own playlist during a workout with a balanced mix of happy “Go get ’em” songs and angry “How do you like me now?” songs.

And, of course, this rids myself the trouble of having to skip every song that doesn’t fit my workout for that day.

I would have to say the “Monster” collaboration between Kanye West, Nicki Minaj and Jay-Z is my favorite workout song.

By the time the track hits Minaj’s verse, I’m pumped enough to run another mile on a 10 incline. I’ll even repeat the song for an extra boost.

If you’re not up to putting your own workout playlist together, but still appreciate the extra boost music gives to a good workout, the iHeart Radio app for smartphones has a few playlists of their own.

“Work Out Beats,” “Cardio Radio” and “Rockin’ Workout” are some of the stations, just to name a few.

New music stations are always nice during a work out, but remember you risk the chance of a Justin Bieber song being considered good work out music.

So if you’re hitting the gym, trying to prepare for summer, don’t forget your workout music.

If you’re not one to exercise, do others a favor and refer to’s “15 Things to do Before you Die.”

The last item, proving music can make for a workout states: “Follow joggers around in a car blasting ‘Eye of the Tiger’ for encouragement.”

Cecily Arambula

Cecily Arambula

Cecily Arambula

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