40 Upbeat Songs to Make Your Workout Fly By

By , SparkPeople Blogger
I think most exercisers agree that listening to some great music goes a long way when you're working out. It helps increase your energy and motivates you to work harder. In many ways, it even distracts you from the discomfort of exercise so that you'll keep going even when it's tough.

However, not just any music will do. We all have our own tastes and preferences for what we like to listen to when we exercise: pop, dance, techno, rock, metal, hip hop (Coach Jen's favorite), or all of the above. Sometimes, it's not the genre that matters; it's the pace (or beat). Others like inspirational lyrics. Personally, I think the beat matters. It has to match the pace of my workout—something I can't listen to and sit still. At the very least, I want to know (or be familiar with) the song that's playing. When I go to Spinning class, for example, and I encounter music that's too slow for the tempo of the workout, or too obscure for me to "escape" by singing along with the song in my head, I am not a happy exerciser.

Recently, I've been thinking about song length. Most radio hits are around 3 minutes long—you'd have to listen to 10 songs to get through a 30-minute workout—make that 20 for a full hour! I don't know about you, but my mind perceives that as a long time. So I've started to incorporate some longer songs into my playlists. Think of it this way: Would you rather know you have to exercise through 20 songs or 12? I pick 12. So I've gathered some of my favorite 4- to 6-minute workout songs to share with you! By selecting any 6-12 of them, you'll have a 30-60 minute workout playlist that's upbeat and motivating. As each song passes, you'll know you've hit a milestone in your workout. Stop watching the clock and start working out with these songs! 

Click on each link to listen to a preview (or purchase the mp3) at Amazon or iTunes.

Aerosmith, Sweet Emotion (5:10) –  Amazon  iTunes 
Angels & Airwaves, The Adventure (5:12)  – Amazon  iTunes 
Audio Bullys, Shot You Down (6:33) – Amazon  iTunes 
Beastie Boys, Body Movin' (Fatboy Slim Remix) (4:08) – Amazon  iTunes 
Benassi Bros, Feel Alive (4:48) – Amazon  iTunes 
Coldplay, Clocks (5:07) – Amazon  iTunes 
Dave Matthews Band, Drive In Drive Out (5:54) – Amazon  iTunes 
Dave Matthews Band, Tripping Billies (5:00) – Amazon  iTunes
DJ Sammy, Boys of Summer (4:55) – Amazon  iTunes
Fatboy Slim, Praise You (5:23) – Amazon  iTunes
Fatboy Slim, Wonderful Night, (4:46) – Amazon  iTunes
Faze Action, Samba (5:58) – Amazon  iTunes
Flock of Seagulls, I Ran (5:08) – Amazon  iTunes
Global Deejays, What a Feeling (Progressive Follow Up Mix) (5:31) – Amazon  iTunes
Jefferson Starship, We Built This City (4:54) – Amazon  iTunes
John Mayer, 3x5 (4:50), – Amazon  iTunes
Kanye West, Stronger (5:11) – Amazon  iTunes
Lauryn Hill,  Doo Wop (5:20) – Amazon  iTunes
Lo Fidelity Allstars, Battleflag (5:40) – Amazon  iTunes
Lynard Skynard, Sweet Home Alabama (4:43) – Amazon  iTunes
Madonna, Get Together (5:14) – Amazon  iTunes
Madonna, Ray of Light (5:20) – Amazon  iTunes
Michael Jackson, Thriller (5:57) – Amazon  iTunes
Miranda, Vamos a la Playa (6:09) – Amazon  iTunes
My Chemical Romance, Welcome to the Black Parade (5:11) – Amazon  iTunes
New Radicals, You Get What You Give (5:00) – Amazon  iTunes
New Radicals, Mother We Just Can't Get Enough (5:48) – Amazon  iTunes
Oasis, The Shock of the Lightening (5:09) – Amazon  iTunes
Outkast, Bombs Over Baghdad (5:04) – Amazon  iTunes
Red Hot Chili Peppers, Dani California (4:42) – Amazon  iTunes
Rusted Root, Ecstacy (5:02) – Amazon  iTunes
Silversun Pickups, Lazy Eye (5:54) – Amazon  iTunes
Sonique, Feels So Good (4:44) – Amazon  iTunes
The All-American Rejects, The Last Song (5:00) – Amazon  iTunes
The Jacksons, Shake Your Body Down to the Ground (3:44) – Amazon  iTunes
The Killers, All These Things That I've Done (5:01) – Amazon  iTunes
The Music, Take the Long Road and Walk It (4:53) – Amazon  iTunes
The Verve, Bitter Sweet Symphony (5:58) – Amazon  iTunes
U2, Walk On (4:56) – Amazon  iTunes
Vinylshakerz, One Night in Bangkok XXL Mix (5:22) – Amazon  iTunes

Do you prefer exercising to short songs or long ones? Which songs above would you add to your own playlist?

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BONNIE1552 6/24/2021
BTS is my new favorite. Report
BIKE4HEALTH 2/12/2021
Music has been a big part of my workouts. I do like a little more rock however. I listen to several Led Zeppelin songs also. Their hard driving rock keeps me pushing harder than I normally would Report
ARNETTELEE 1/23/2021
thanks Report
SCHILT57 9/30/2020
Thanks Report
Thanks Report
Thank you Report
I like some of these and they would be great to exercise to! Report
All great suggestions. Report
Thanks for sharing. Report
Good Mix Report
thankd Report
Thanks for sharing Report
Great list. Report
Only know a few. Report
great list Report
Thanks. Report
great. Report
A few I had, others I thought I had (and NOW do). And a few that are new to me.
I agree that the longer song length is normally better except when I am using it for walk/jog. :) Thank you!!!! Report
Love it! Report
I like fast pace songs from the 60 and 80s but I do like Pitbull and Bruno Mars too Report
YouTube Music includes a feature that creates playlists to your taste, so I'll just bring that up on my phone. Easier than uploading all sorts of stuff. If I'm the recumbent bike for 45 minutes, some variation in pace is a good thing. Report
Thanks! Report
great list Report
a lot of nice songs thanks Report
Good song list. Report
Great Lilst Report
I've found that I workout longer with music! Report
Love listening to music while working out! Report
I like Clocks by Coldplay Report
I love Meatloaf, a lot of their songs are 6-10 minutes. And Staying Alive by the BeeGees is good but I'm not sure how long it is... Report
Mozart and lots of other classical music. Report
I like several of the songs listed, but most are too slow for my workouts, I like energy. I have a couple different playlists I use depending on the workout, usually a mix of short and long songs. Have one that's pop/techno/a capella (love Zedd, David Guetta, and Pentatonix), one that's classic rock/80's/metal(Thunderstruck, Paint it Black, and anything from Slipknot are my top picks), one that's hip-hop/rap/crunkcore (Macklemore, 3OH3!, Ludacris), and one that's oldies (50's&60's)/indie/instrumental stuff for yoga. Needless to say, my iPod has a ton of music. I also try to include some non-English music like reggaeton and European everything (Basshunter and Stromae are both good choices) and some eastern music as well. Report
Some of the songs I like, some I didn't. My play list has to keep me moving so it's mostly rock and roll, 70s, 80s, and 60s music. I like some country but not a whole lot especially if I'm out walking. Report
Doesn't matter if short or long I can rest. But I am over 70 and the list is just not something that appeals. I do like Taylor Swifts, faster song tho. Report
If you search Spark for "work out songs" you will find a whole list of articles with different genres and paces of music lists. Report
I need things from The Doors, Cream, Deep Purple, Metallica, Rammstein, and other head banging music just to keep me running... Report
Pink - So What and Funhouse. Britney Spears - I Wanna Go. Adam Ant - Friend Or Foe and Dog Eat Dog. The Smashing Pumpkins - Bullet With Butterfly Wings. Report
How about some ZZ Top? Aretha Franklin, War, Grand Funk Railroad, and Queen also get me feet moving. Report
I have this playlist on Spotify for those who are interested in hearing these songs. Some I was not familiar with, or didn't think lyrics were particularly great (but they did have a workout beat to them.). Two songs on this playlist were not available on Spotify: Jefferson SpaceShip - We built this city on rock and roll; and Lynryd Skynryd - Sweet Home Alabama. Can search for other SparkPeople Workout lists I've created on Spotify by user name: msdrpepper
Qg4Ra Report
I would add some more classic rock. Running to Paint It Black (Rolling Stones) or maybe some Led Zeppelin makes me super happy. Also, most Elvis Presley songs have a really good running beat. Otherwise, I may be adding a few of these to my playlist to keep me going! Thanks! Report
Awesome songs! Report
What do you listen to your music on? I want to listen to music but dont know how to download it to my phone. Then I think hmm maybe I need to get an mp3 player. I would appreciate any and all suggestions!! Report
I like the idea of a playlist. I have 3 to 4 different playlist for myself depending on what I am doing. But I am more old school music so there weren't any songs on this playlist I would add to my own, but it's truly a great idea to keep the workout fresh and motivating. Report
I like songs but some how the list of songs here like 2 to 3 songs I like and that's about it. I have a song list on my phone which have mostly all my favorites on it. Report
Awesome Report
love a good collaboration to keep me going Report
I am always looking for new workout songs but most of these don't quite get me going. Party rock, electronica or upbeat mixes are a go to for me. Report
How about "I'm so excited", or Party Rock Anthem? Report