We’ve talked about the benefits that listening to music offers exercisers a lot here on the GBM Music blog – and with good reason! We believe that listening to music when conducting a sustained period of exercise, is an excellent way to improve your motivation and enjoyment levels, and therefore to also boost how beneficial each workout you take part in is, and to improve the chances of you conducting more exercise on a consistent basis.

When it comes to exercising, it’s important to try to enjoy yourself as much as possible. The key lesson is that if it feels like a chore, you simply won’t do it, and you’ll struggle to find the motivation to drag yourself out of the door each day.

What is undoubtedly crucial, however, is choosing the right music to have the best impact. This isn’t as simple as choosing music you enjoy – it needs to have a positive effect on your exercise to be worthwhile. In our opinion, it’s best to use a little trial and error when working out what music is most beneficial to you when exercising.

It does seem like there’s no hard and fast rule when it comes to choosing your music. In fact, some people even say they prefer listening to spoken word, stories or podcasts while they work out.

Choosing good background music for running

I’m in training for my first half marathon, and I quickly realised that I would need to refine my music playlist to get myself through the rigorous training programme.

So I put together a playlist of my favourite songs. This worked out great until I’d suddenly hit by a song that was too slow, or gentle, and my momentum would suddenly be scuppered, leaving me all out of kilter. I like a lot of slower, softer tracks, but when it comes to exercising, for me personally, they simply don’t cut the muster, and can throw me straight out of my rhythm.

So I weeded out these offenders and concentrated on keeping in high energy tracks with a steady rhythm. I’m one of those people who’s naturally inclined to follow the beat of a song, so I then had to focus on removing songs that were either a little too slow or a little too quick.

Once I’d done this, I had a solid playlist of songs that actively helped me to exercise – and I quickly noticed how beneficial this was. I also realised that it’s important to not be worrying about all this while actually trying to exercise.

Having a pre-prepared playlist that you know is tailored to your exercise needs gives you the confidence to go out and simply focus on your run.

This process was part of the inspiration for GBM Music’s epic running track, which is coming soon. This 30 minute song is designed to guide runners through the perfectly paced run.

In the meantime, let us know what music you enjoy exercising to, and any tips you have!