• Amber, thank you for this post. After hearing you talk about the benefits of music with exercise, and the less-beneficial effect of television and exercise, I recently started listening to music while doing my cardio. It has definitely had an impact on my exercise in a number of noticeable ways. First, I find that I am able to increase my speed to match the music resulting in speed that was previously not possible. Second, I’ve purposefully looked for long songs because I find that time passes more quickly when the song last longer (others might find the opposite – that shorter songs work better). Third, I’m able to increase the intensity of the workout (increase incline/resistance on the elliptical) because I will maintain the speed with the music. One key result is that for the same length of time of workout the equipment registers more than 20% more calories burned during the workouts the past 10 days or so against my workouts for the prior several weeks. Although I don’t put much credence in the accuracy of the calorie counts on the machines, I do see that there is a measurable difference. So, in sum, I do think it works!


    From Erik K.
    January 22, 2010

Got Music?

Can music really boost our motivation and stamina? As many of you avid exercisers and H3 blog readers know, ABSOLUTELY! Recent results published in the Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology, reveal that plugging into paced (beats per minute) music increases stamina on a treadmill by 20 per cent.


Listening to music that matches the pace of your individual footfall can also give you a psychological boost at critical points of exhaustion and fatigue. To figure out how many beats per minute (bpm’s) your workout tunes should be, count how many times your feet hit the ground during a one-minute run, or for you “purposeful” walkers out there, take an estimated minute an a half count. 


The rule of thumb is to find music that carries the same bpm; or even a few higher than the number you gathered!


Got music? Get moving!!!


Example Cardio Playlist:

Just Dance Lady Gaga (119 bpm)

Don’t Stop The Music Rihanna (122 bpm)

Low Flo Rida feat. T-Pain (128bpm)

Boom Boom Pow Black Eyed Peas (130 bpm)

I Gotta Feeling Black Eyed Peas (130 bpm)

Down Jay Sean feat. Lil Wayne (132 bpm)

Silence Delerium feat. Sarah McLachlan (Tiesto Mix-140bpm)

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