BootLeg Betty

Playlists For Exercise

Mister D: I must confess, I, Mister D, used to make up playlists and run like the wind, until I learned that I could lay in bed, pretend I ran like the wind, eat awesome pastries, and listen to all the playlists I wanted to without moving a muscle!!!! Hot, huh? 🙂

Athens OnLine
Exercise enthusiasts find music helps keep them going
By BETH JONES | | Story updated at 8:05 pm on 1/12/2009
Exercise enthusiasts find music helps keep them going

Music and exercise: As natural together as peanut butter and jelly or Bert and Ernie.

Justin Timberlake for that session on the elliptical trainer. Beyonce for the run in the park.

Rockin’ tunage is as essential as sneakers for Jerome Biggers, an American Council on Exercise certified personal trainer and owner of Couture Bodies Personal Training on Prince Avenue in Athens. “I have to have that distraction,” he said.

Twice recently, Biggers forgot to bring his MP3 player along when he went out to do cardio. “I only stayed 15 minutes,” he said. “I’ve got to have my music.”

University of Georgia gymnast Courtney McCool considers tunes so important to workouts, she volunteers to create all the playlists for her team.

“I’m in charge of the iPod,” she said. “Music is definitely a big adrenaline boost. It basically puts an oil on the fire.”

Otherwise, she warned “you can hear yourself think way too much.”

A solid playlist is especially important to Valerie Eich, wife of YMCA executive director Kirk Eich, on days when she doesn’t feel like exercising.

“Having good music that keeps me going really helps and gives me that little push I need to just do it and get it done,” she said.

Listening to music during exercise can help to take a workout to the next level, according to Kitty Meyran, executive director of Athens’ Young Women’s Christian Organization. “It motivates us to keep up with the beat,” she said.

Indeed, a study released in October by Brunel University in London revealed a link between music and cardiovascular exercise performance.

Biggers has noticed students in his Boot Camp training classes at Athens Country Club always kick things up a notch when he plays songs with faster beats. “They do respond better to a quick tempo,” he said.

But then, sometimes that’s not the goal. For biceps curls, Biggers doesn’t want his clients to rush so they can concentrate on form. For those exercises, he’ll play slower songs like “Roxanne” by The Police.

Pilates and yoga teachers frequently incorporate New Age tunes to set the tone for their classes. “It just changes the whole atmosphere of the class,” Meyran said.

Workout newcomers trying to stick to their New Year’s resolutions can check out to create a playlist that matches the intensity of their workouts. Chris Lawhorn of Austin, Texas, recently launched the site which logs the tempos of songs on the Top 40 charts. Already, the site attracts between 50 and 100 users a day.

Exercisers who want to keep their workout playlist fresh can sign up to receive e-mails whenever a new song is added.

For his workouts, Biggers has found that variety is the most important thing.

“I think I have 27 playlists,” he said. “I don’t like knowing what’s coming up.”

Whatever music exercisers choose, though, they need to be careful rocking out while running or walking outside, Meyran cautioned.

“Be aware of cars and people,” she said. “Don’t get so lost in music you put yourself in danger.”

Run to this

Here are some sample playlists that keep local residents on their toes.

“Sweet Love,” Anita Baker

“Footloose,” Kenny Loggins

“It’s Raining Men,” The Weather Girls

“Jump (For My Love),” Pointer Sisters

“Gonna Fly Now” (theme from “Rocky”), Bill Conti

“Turn the Beat Around,” Gloria Estefan

“Think,” Aretha Franklin

“Heat Wave,” Linda Ronstadt

“Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy,” Bette Midler

“Power of Love,” Huey Lewis and the News

— Kitty Meyran, executive director of the YWCO

“Green Light,” John Legend

“The Sweetest Love,” Robin Thicke

“Easy Lover,” Phil Collins

“Get Up,” 50 Cent

“Harvest for the World,” The Isley Brothers

“Like I Love You,” Justin Timberlake

“Family Affair,” Mary J. Blige

“Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’,” Michael Jackson

“Maniac” (from the “Flashdance” soundtrack), Michael Sembello

“Don’t Stop the Music,” Rihanna

“Crazy Train,” Ozzy Osbourne

— Jerome Biggers, owner of Couture Bodies and an American Council on Exercise certified personal trainer

“Miss Independent,” Ne-Yo

“Yeah!,” Usher

“Kiss Kiss,” Chris Brown

“Crank That,” Soulja Boy

“Stronger,” Kanye West

“Cyclone,” Baby Bash

“Let’s Get It Started,” Black Eyed Peas

“Low,” Flo Rida

“Hey Ya!,” OutKast

“Supernatural Superserious,” R.E.M.

“Clumsy,” Fergie

“So What,” Pink

“Dani California,” Red Hot Chili Peppers

— Valerie Eich, avid exerciser who lives in Bogart

“Click Click Click,” New Kids on the Block

“Can We Chill,” Ne-Yo

Any song by Justin Timberlake

Any song by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

“Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It),” Beyonce

“It’s Tricky,” Run-D.M.C.

“Bye Bye Bye,” ‘N Sync

“Push It,” Salt-N-Pepa.

— University of Georgia gymnast Courtney McCool McCool
Originally published in the Athens Banner-Herald on Tuesday, January 13, 2009

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