I’m sure we’ve all been in this position before at some point during our workouts:
It was ten minutes until the end of class and I felt like I was starting to reach my limit. My legs were like jelly and I was feeling physically drained. I’m still quite new to this phenomenon known as spinning (this was only my third class – you can also read about my first experience) and I thought there was no way I’d make it to the end of our forty-five minute session.
But then the song changed, the tempo increased, and I felt a huge change in myself – it was what some might call a ‘second wind’.
I don’t know what causes this ‘second wind’ in other people, but for me, it’s always the start of a new song on my playlist. As long as it’s one I really like, it helps me push through whether I’m running, lifting, and now spinning.
There have been plenty of studies about the benefits of listening to music while exercising. One reports an increase in endurance of 15% compared to those who ran without audio accompaniment. Another showed that cyclists on stationary bikes cycled faster and pushed themselves harder if they listened to an upbeat song (here’s the paper written about the study) versus one 10% slower in tempo.
These conclusions definitely back up what I know about my own exercise habits. Personally, I am far more energized listening to music than if my iPhone is dead and I have to workout without it.
This is the song that got me going again yesterday (Sexy and I Know It by LMFAO). It’s not a band I particularly like or make a point of listening to, but the track itself is one of my favourites for working out at the moment.
There’s some great examples of differences in tempo for a music n00b like me in this Healthy & Fit Magazine article, including suggestions for creating your own workout playlist.
Do you find listening to music gives you a ‘second wind’ or makes you work harder?
Check out this list of the 52 best workout songs to make you ‘bigger, faster, and stronger’ if you’re a man (apparently). Are any of your favourites on there?