A recent study done at the Research Institute for Sport and Exercise had 12 subjects ride a stationary bicycle at a pace that they could sustain for 30 minutes while listening to a song of the subject's choice. In successive trials, they rode the bikes again, with the tempo of the music variously increased or decreased by 10%, without the subject's knowledge. The researchers found that the riders heart rate and mileage decreased when the tempo was slowed, while they rode a greater distance, increased their heart rate and enjoyed the music more at the faster tempo. (Hudson, 2010).
However, A 2004 found that runners performing at a pace where they were at 90% of their peak oxygen uptake enjoyed listening to music, but that the music had no effect on their heart rate or running pace, regardless of the music's tempo. (Tennebaum, 2010).
Here is a video that I found on the effects of music on athletes from BBC News
Dr. Karageorghis is a professor at Brunel Univeristy who organized a series of tests to study the effects of different kinds of music on athletes and runners. According to Dr. Karageorghis there are 4 different factors of music that effects athletic performance. These four things are:
- Rythmic Response: Your bodies response to the beat of a song
- Musicality: combinations of cords and instruments that effect our moods while listening to a certain song.
- Cultural Impact: Your personal response to a certain song based on social upbringing.
- Association Factor: How we relate to a certain song based on past experiences and life associations.
Some runners find that listening to music motivates them to get up and go, while others value quiet while running so that they are more in tune with their bodies.
Really when it comes down to it, staying "plugged in" while running is a personal choice. I personally think that it is best to experiment with both "natural" running, and running with devices such as watches, ipods, etc.
There is definitely something to be said for just getting out there and having nothing else between you and the road. But something a little upbeat music can get you out the door and going, and there is nothing wrong with that!
Now that you have heard all the boring scincetific facts, I am going to bless you with some of my favorite songs to run to. Please don't judge :) And remember, according to good ol Dr. Karageorghis every song has different effects on different people!
Some of my ALL TIME FAVORITE SONGS include:
- The Blackeyed Peas - Just Can't Get Enough
- Pussycat Dolls - Don't Cha
- Nicki Minaj - Super Bass
- Jennifer Lopez - I'm Into You
- Shakira - Did it Again
- Wiz Khalifa - Mezmorized
- Kayne West - Im Your Pusha
- Destiny's Child - Solider
- Glee Soundtrack - Open Your Heart/Boderline
- Paramore - Feeling Sorry
- Eminem and Lil Wayne - No Love
- The whole Girl Talk Album
- Maria Carey - Side Effects and Cruise Control
- Outkast - The Way You Move
So what do you think, music or no music?
What are some of your go-to "pump up" songs?