Your Weight Loss Workout Playlist
How the right songs can motivate you for exercise and weight loss.
Among the biggest obstacles facing you while trying to lose weight is your own motivation. Though right now you may feel deeply compelled to stick with the healthy habits that promote successful weight loss, there will inevitably be times when your dedication falters. In times like those, it helps to have tools around that give you a little motivational boost.
When it comes to exercise, few things will help you stay motivated and ready for more quite like music. Step foot in any dancehall, disco or Zumba class in the country and you’re certain to find evidence of one thing: music has an incredible ability to get us moving.
If you need an extra push to get out the door for exercise, or need a little boost to make it to the end of your workout, the right songs can be a big help. By crafting a motivational playlist that gets your blood pumping and keeps your eyes on the prize, you can make it easier to stick to your workout plans and get more out of every minute of exercise.
Music has both physiological and psychological impacts on the body during exercise, and both have been researched extensively. Studies show that working out with music can:
- Reduce feelings of fatigue and tension
- Reduce the amount of effort you perceive
- Boost endurance and energy
- Boost your enjoyment of physical activity
Of course, certain songs make more effective motivators than others. Rather than putting your iPod on shuffle, create the perfect workout playlist by including songs that are:
Energetic. When it comes to the tempo of workout songs, the sweet spot is between 120 and 140 beats per minute (BPM). Synchronizing your exercise to songs with strong beats that fall in this range will help you improve your endurance and efficiency, and you can vary the speed of the songs on your playlist to accommodate for changing intensity levels during exercise. As a frame of reference, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” is about 120 BPM, while “Beat It” is nearly 140.
Meaningful. We tend to get the biggest push from songs that have special significance to us, or those that we enjoy the most. This means that some of your favorite songs may be perfect to include on your playlist, especially if they have a positive message. Lyrics can play a big role in a song’s motivational influence—words that suggest success can help you make it through a mid-workout slump or get pumped up for the exercise ahead.
Music is useful for far more than just entertainment—with the right playlist on your side, you can stay motivated and efficient in every workout.