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Building The Best Workout Music Playlist for Exercising

Music has long been used to direct human movement marking back to ancient Romans including the use of drums to synchronize the strokes of their rowers on ships. The human body naturally wants to find rhythm with music and this strategy can be used during exercise as a powerful tactic to drive increased tempo and efficiency in your workouts.

The American Council on Fitness, Costas Karageorghis, Ph.D., a leading authority on music and exercise, says that β€œMusic is like a legal drug for athletes.” He went on to explain that well-selected music can not only reduce the perception of effort during a workout, but it can also measurably improve endurance.

Musical preferences are as specific to a person as exercise capacity; workout tempo, duration, strength.

We asked our amazing writer, Joli Guenther, to put together her favorite cardiovascular workout playlist to provide an example for how to categorize your songs to provide tempo in your workout.

How-to Build Your 1 Hour Cardio Exercise Playlist with Recommended Song Categories

  • Warm Up
  • 3 Sprints (Peaks)
  • 2 Target Pace Blocks
  • Periods of Tempo Up
  • Periods of Tempo Down
  • Cool Down

Amazing Cardio Playlist

by Joli Guenther!

Want to get a cardio workout in and listen to the Running Playlist on Spotify?

Running July 2017 Playlist on Spotify

πŸ“Ά Warm Up | Seven Bridges Road

πŸ“ˆ Increase Tempo 1 | Sugar (Feat. Francesco Yates) – Extended Mix

πŸ”₯ Sprint 1 | The Roof is on Fire (Krunk! Remix)

🎯 Target Pace Phase 1 | Calabria – Firebeatz Remix
🎯 Target Pace Phase 1 | Faith

πŸ“‰ Slow Tempo Recovery 1 | Let the Day Begin

πŸ“ˆ Increase Tempo 2 | Babe I’m Gonna Leave You

πŸ”₯ Sprint 2 | Can’t Hold Us – Feat. Ray Dalton

🎯 Target Pace Phase 2 | If I Lose Myself
🎯 Target Pace Phase 2 | Back in Black
🎯 Target Pace Phase 2 | Valerie – Version Revisited

πŸ”₯ Sprint 3 | Can’t Stop

πŸ“‰ Slow Tempo Recovery 2 | Home

🌬 Cool Down | Swim Good

♨ Warm Up
πŸ”₯ Sprint
πŸ“ˆ Increase Tempo
🎯 Target Pace
πŸ“‰ Decrease Tempo
🌬 Cool Down

About the writer: Joli Guenther is a certified personal trainer, yoga instructor and clinical social worker practicing in and around Madison, Wisconsin. Learn more about Joli.




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