Stay in the Groove!

Playlists to Keep Your Legs Moving

By Jessica Herrington

Whether you’re a seasoned runner or an eager beginner, you might need a little boost here and there when it comes to giving it your all in a run. Winter is a time I find it especially hard to get moving. Thankfully, music can be a powerful motivator and performance enhancer; the right tune can be just what I need to push myself hard for those last 60 seconds. I’ve included two playlists—one for those who are partial to pop, dance, or hip-hop (provided by fellow runner Stephanie Chow), and one for those (like me) who like metal, rock and alternative. These are our go-to songs for a powerful run.

Photo by 666 is Money

The ordering of songs is crucial. I put those with a slightly slower tempo at the beginning for warm-up, those that are faster make up the bulk of the list for higher-intensity running, and I again put a couple of slower ones at the end to cool down. Use one of these playlists to get your blood pumping and kick your run into high gear.

Playlist 1: Pop, Dance, Hip-hop

  1. Mika – “Love Today”
  2. Beyoncé – “Run the World (Girls)”
  3. Jennifer Lopez ft. Pitbull – “On the Floor”
  4. Ke$ha – “Take It Off”
  5. Lady Gaga – “Marry the Night”
  6. Rihanna – “We Found Love”
  7. David Guetta ft. Nicki Minaj & Flo Rida – “Where Them Girls At”
  8. Bruno Mars – “Runaway Baby”
  9. Die Atzen – “Disco Pogo”
  10. Girlicious – “Maniac”
  11. La Roux ft. Hyper Crush – “Bulletproof (Hyper Crush Remix)”
  12. Martin Solveig ft. Dragonette – “Hello”
  13. Miley Cyrus ft. Lil Jon – “Can’t Be Tamed (Rockangeles Remix)”
  14. Pitbull ft. Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer – “Give Me Everything”
  15. Rihanna – “Where Have You Been”
  16. Usher ft. Pitbull – “DJ Got Us Falling Love Again”
  17. Calvin Harris – “Feel So Close”
  18. DJ Earworm – “United States of Pop 2010 (Don’t Stop the Pop)”

Playlist 2: Metal, Rock, Alternative

  1.  Aerosmith – “Same Old Song and Dance”
  2.  Velvet Revolver – “Get Out the Door”
  3.  Stone Temple Pilots – “Down”
  4.  Hinder – “2 Sides of Me”
  5.  Hot Action Cop – “Goin Down On It”
  6.  Saliva – “Ladies and Gentlemen”
  7.  Three Days Grace – “Riot”
  8.  Papa Roach – “Getting Away With Murder”
  9.  Mötley Crüe – “Kick Start My Heart”
  10.  Rage Against the Machine – “Guerilla Radio”
  11.  Seether – “Remedy”
  12.  Shinedown – “Devour”
  13.  Volbeat – “A Warrior’s Call”
  14.  Sixx:A.M. – “Lies of the Beautiful People”
  15.  Brantley Gilbert – “Kick It In the Sticks”
  16.  Hinder – “See You In Hell”
  17.  Bush – “Machinehead”
  18.  Nirvana – “In Bloom”

While these songs are tried-and-true, I sometimes find that the predictability of my entire playlist dampens my performance. I find it helpful to hit “shuffle” or add new songs and mix it up every now and then to keep my motivation up.

So, I encourage you to share your favourite running songs with me (no matter what genre) in the comments below, because they’ll be needed for another playlist post in a few weeks time! You can also reach me at


  • Daniel Polowin

    LCD Soundsystem’s “All My Friends.” 7 and a half minutes of thumping, repetitive piano beat that comes to an awesome climax. Always the last song I listen to on runs.

  • Christina

    Any of The Hood Internet’s remix compilations. Kinda similar to Girl Talk (mashups, etc). Each song flows together for uninterrupted workout motivation.
    They have all their mix tapes available for free on their website (

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