On days I don’t have a running buddy or group to train with or running just seems a little more daunting than usual, I treat myself to bringing along my trusty headphones with my pre-made playlists and jam whichever one goes with my workout for that day. It puts a massive smile on my face as I zoom, or trot, down the road, singing away and having a grand old time.
What better way to get you through that challenging speed workout, 3-hour-long run, or hill sprint session (the local runners reading this know what we mean #HillsdaleRepeats or headed to St. Fran) than an awesome pump-you-up playlist of the best running songs out there?
True, we all have different tastes in music, and not everyone is going to love every song on these lists. Still, I hope to help get you through some of those workouts by singing along to these fun tunes!
In this article, we break up our running songs into a few different categories depending on the type of workouts, such as speedwork or hills, or drills to improve form or cadence. We also have included some recovery run songs as well.
Note: Remember to always have your headphones turned down low enough, or only running with one in to be able to hear the traffic and noise around you. #SafteyFirst
THE BENEFITS OF RUNNING WITH MUSIC:
For most of us, we know that listening to music while running pumps us up and makes us feel good, right? But why is that? What can music actually do for us?
Music can help improve running performance: According to studies, music can help regulate mood and enhance a runner’s motivation and inspiration while running, resulting in a better workout outcome.
Music improves mood by boosting the brain’s dopamine production: Haven’t you ever listened to a song that just puts a smile on your face immediately? A song can turn your mood around and cheer you up on a dime.
- Music can reduce stress and distract you: Distraction sounds like a pretty significant benefit when you are trying to push through those last few 400-meter repetitions at top speed or suffering through the last few kilometers of a peak-week long run. Get lost in the lyrics and finish up those final laps.
- Music can help reduce pain: This statement will vary depending on the study you read, but some state that by reducing stress and anxiety, you can also feel a reduction in pain. Therefore, music helps reduce our stress levels, which will result in less pain.
- Music can change up the routine: I know I like to run to the sound of silence or my own thoughts 80% of the time, but on those days when getting out the door seems more daunting than usual, a quick playlist can make all the difference on your perspective.
Just be sure and take precautions when listening to music on busy roads and ensure you are always aware of your surroundings. We want to use music as a distraction as an advantage to training, but not completely zone out to the point where the workout can become a risk.
GOOD SONGS FOR YOUR NEXT LONG RUN:
- Shivers – Ed Sheeran
- There’s Nothing Holdin’ Me Back – Shawn Mendes
- Take You Dancing – Jason Derulo
- Moves Like Jagger – Maroon 5 & Cristina Aguilera
- Shake It Off – Taylor Swift
- Bang Bang – Ariana Grande & Nicki Minaj
- Locked Out Of Heaven – Bruno Mars
- Time Of Our Lives – Pitbull & Ne-Yo
- Raise Your Glass – Pink
- Don’t Stop The Music – Rhianna
- SexyBack – Justin Timberlake & Timbaland
- Kiss You- One Direction
- Stronger – Kelly Clarkson
- Boom Boom Pow – Black Eyed Peas
- Like Sugar – Chaka Khan
- On Top Of The World – Imagine Dragons
- Cake By The Ocean – DNCE
- Can’t Stop The Feeling – Justin Timberlake
- High Hopes – Panic! At The Disco
- Good As Hell – Lizzo
GOOD SONGS FOR HILL WORK:
- The Phoenix – Fall Out Boy
- Sabotage – Beastie Boys
- Bulls On Parade – Rage Against the Machine
- Somebody Told Me – The Killers
- Come Out and Play – Offspring
- Welcome To The Jungle – Guns N’ Roses
- Eye Of The Tiger – Survivor
- Survivor – Destiny’s Child
- Reptilia – The Strokes
- Misery Business – Paramore
- ‘Till I Collapse – Eminem
- Numb – Jay-Z & Linkin Park
- Last One Standing – Bon Jovi
- Music Make You Lose Control – Missy Elliot
- Pump It – Black Eyed Peas
SONGS FOR RECOVERY RUNS:
- Trumpets – Jason Derulo
- Drops Of Jupiter – Train
- Lucky – Jason Mraz
- Demons – Imagine Dragons
- Sultans Of Swing – Dire Straits
- Sweet Home Alabama – Lynyrd Skynyrd
- Wake Me Up – Avicii
- Budapest – George Ezra
- Lego House – Ed Sheeran
- Sunday Morning – Maroon 5
- Life Is A Highway – Rascal Flats
- Breakfast At Tiffany’s – Deep Blue Something
- Sitting, Waiting, Wishing – Jack Johnson
- 3 AM – Matchbox Twenty
- It’s A Great Day To Be Alive – Travis Tritt
BEST SONGS TO IMPROVE CANDENCE:
- Hawái – Maluma
- Despacito – Luis Fonsi
- La Bicicleta – Carlos Vives & Shakira
- Burn – Ellie Goulding
- No Diggity – Blackstreet
- Give It Away – Red Hot Chili Peppers
- Demons – Imagine Dragons
- Roar – Katy Perry
- Jumpin’ Jumpin’ – Destiny’s Child
- Cheap Thrills – Sia
- Bailando – Enrique Iglesias
- Thrift Shop – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
- Get Right – Jennifer Lopez
- Beautiful Liar – Beyoncé & Shakira
- Con Calma – Daddy Yankee & Snow
- Hey DJ – CNCO
- Drive – Incubus
- Renegades – X Ambassadors
- Say Something – Justin Timberlake
- Súbame La Radio – Enrique Iglesias
There you have it! Take a good listen to my best running songs and see if they are right up your alley or if you need to make some changes. The important thing is that the songs you choose to run motivate you, inspire you, and put a smile on your face. If you start jamming out the lyrics during your run, even better!