21 Fast-Paced Workout Songs You'll Love


By: , SparkPeople Blogger
  :  248 comments   :  1,255,923 Views

It's been far too long since I've shared some new music ideas for you to update your workout playlists, but reading the New York Times Well blog recently reminded me just how important music is during exercise. Recapping several studies about music's affects on exercise intensity and perceived exertion, one in particular caught my eye. In a small study, male college students pedaled stationary bicycles while listening to popular music that the researchers secretly either slowed down or sped up at random, without the knowledge of the participants. When the music was faster, they pedaled faster, liked the music better, and elevated their heart rates more, yet perceived their workouts as less intense than they actually were. When the music slowed down, exactly the opposite happened.

We all know that some good booty-shaking tunes can make our workouts more fun, which is why I prefer to go for beat and music tempo over "motivation" factor, like how the song makes me feel or whether the actual lyrics are particularly inspiring.

If you want to boost the intensity of your workouts and make them feel easier at the same time, try update your workout playlist with one of these upbeat workout songs.

Black Eyed Peas – Rock That Body

Matchbox Twenty – How Far We've Come

Junior Senior – Move Your Feet

Michael Jackson – Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough

The Sounds – Dance with Me

Madonna – Sorry

KT Tunstall – Suddenly I See

Journey – Any Way You Want It

Jimmy Eat World – Pain

Gnarls Barkley – Smiley Faces

Erasure – A Little Respect

Sean Paul – Temperature

Jennifer Lopez – Let's Get Loud

Alien Ant Farm – Smooth Criminal

Johnny Cash – I've Been Everywhere

OK Go – Here It Goes Again

Beyonce – Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It)

Rihanna – Please Don't Stop the Music

The Offspring – You're Gonna Go Far, Kid

Rancid – Time Bomb

Outkast – Hey Ya

What are your favorite upbeat workout songs? Do you agree that great music can make your workouts feel easier?

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  • 198
    Not too bad of a list, but I think a person's playlist is personal and has to speak to them. Never been a fan of someone giving me songs to motivate me. But I will use a couple of these songs =) - 5/1/2013   9:21:07 AM
    Love Beyonce. Just can't dance like her but I try to get with it. Lol - 5/1/2013   8:43:23 AM
  • 196
    Thanks! Have several of these, but there are some I don't. Gonna get a few more of these. - 5/1/2013   7:41:45 AM
    Swedish eurodisco singer E-Type har several tunes which make you move, for example Russian lullaby, Back in the loop, Angels crying, Borschtjii, Hold your horses, Campione or Life. All of them super for jogging or just getting in a good mood! - 4/1/2013   11:21:49 AM
  • 194
    I have most of the songs on this list but not in one playlist. I think I'm going to make it now. - 2/20/2013   2:07:16 PM
  • 193
    Great list. I love the black eyed peas, that's not my name, by the ting tings. anything with a fast beat helps when I run. - 1/22/2011   8:55:25 PM
  • 192
    I'm a HUGE Beyonce fan and I love her live performance of Crazy in Love from her B*day Experience tour. I always listen to it at the start and end of my treadmill workout. It gets my blood going and by the end of my workout...I think I'm here and it gives the extra edge to push hard towards the end. THANK YOU B! - 12/21/2010   4:24:15 PM
    Frankie Goes to Hollywood ... RELAX - 10/28/2010   4:37:31 PM
  • 190
    Daniel Bedingfield - I Gotta Get Thru This...it's the perfect motivation to go a little bit harder during a workout. - 10/18/2010   5:07:21 PM
  • 189
    This may be a weird one, but I find myself almost singing it out loud and pedaling faster when on the elliptical machine at the gym ... Marvin Gaye's version of "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" ... - 10/9/2010   8:28:10 PM
  • 188
    Music is an important part of my workouts. Katy Perry and Blake Lewis are 2 favorites of my workouts. I also like WhiteCross. - 10/7/2010   10:21:40 PM
    I like prodigy's album music for a jilted generation - 10/4/2010   11:08:41 PM
  • 186
    So glad Rancid made the list! - 10/3/2010   10:03:24 AM
  • 185
    Relient K is great for upbeat short songs - 10/2/2010   6:18:29 PM
    Is there a way to share a zip file with all the musics together? - 9/30/2010   3:39:08 PM
    I exercise to Biggest Loser CD 80's music - 9/29/2010   7:08:01 AM
  • 182
    I actually like listening to the soundtrack of Mamma Mia-it has some really fast paced songs and it is over an hour long so you get a good workout. I use it even when I'm doing Walk it Out and it seems to work fine. - 9/24/2010   5:16:28 PM
  • 181
    I love listening to Gwen Stefani when I work out. I also love Rancid (so happy that they were on your list!), Michale Jackson, motley Crue, Rise Against, Black eyed Peas, Lady GaGa, and lots of punk rock! Its so loud and fast that you just can't help but get your butt movin'! - 9/24/2010   1:29:17 PM
    I need upbeat lyrics in addition to upbeat tempo - and How Far We've Come just doesn't cut it. - 9/24/2010   12:50:46 PM
  • 179
    I'm a big fan of running to Beyonce (or is it from her Destiny's Child days?) Crazy in Love - 9/24/2010   12:01:10 PM
    Opening up iTunes right now, so I can add these to my Couch to 5K routine. Thanks!! - 9/24/2010   3:56:12 AM
    Lasgo ! Inna , Madonna,
    Dj encore- i see right through you. - 9/23/2010   6:54:44 PM
  • PEPE865
    When I'm walking, the song 500 Miles by the Proclaimers will start playing in my head at some point. I don't need to carry an iPod :) - 9/23/2010   3:32:56 PM
  • 175
    Thanks for all the awesome suggestions! For me, music changes exercise to playtime!
    *hugs* - 9/23/2010   3:05:39 PM
  • 174
    Nice lists here...
    I'd also like to add:
    "Party in the USA" by Miley Cyrus (don't judge me).
    "Born to Run" by Bruce Springsteen.
    "Can't hold us down" by Lil Kim and Christina A.
    "Let me blow your mind" by Eve feat Gwen Stefani.
    "Imma Be" Black Eyed Peas.
    - 9/23/2010   10:44:31 AM
  • 173
    Great list - Definitely took a few of your suggestions - comes just in time for my 1/2 marathon this weekend and was definitely looking to spice the play list up.

    Some of my favorites:

    Gotta Feeling - Black Eyed Peas
    Lay All your love on me - Abba
    Promises in the Dark - Pat Benatar
    Lose Yourself - Eminem
    I'm Not Afraid - Eminem
    Unwritten - Natasha Bedingfield
    Alive & Kicking - Simple Minds
    Relight my Fire (old disco song)
    Beautiful Day - U2
    Pretty Vegas - INXS
    Paradise City - Guns n Roses
    It Goes Around the World - ATC
    I'm Every Woman - Chaka Kahn
    I Get Knocked Down - Chumbawumba
    Telephone - Lady Gaga - 9/23/2010   9:29:39 AM
    HOw about the Classics, as in Bach, Mozart? - 9/23/2010   7:08:43 AM
    Is it sad to admit that I bought a CD of music I heard at the gym (a compilation of euphoric house tunes such as Spiller's Groovejet)? Seriously, though, when I listen to it now, it reminds me of being there!

    Apart from euphoric house, anything by the Chemical Brothers - they've NEVER recorded a bad track - with the Beth Orton tracks good for cool down. Though I like it, Drum and Bass is too fast! - 9/23/2010   6:43:54 AM
  • 170
    I find when I listen to music my feet have to move. To me the best to listen to is show tunes When I listen to Chorus Line I see myself dancing ..so I dance.. - 9/22/2010   11:48:56 PM
  • 169
    BLACKHUNTER, I listen to a lot of country. Check out Anthony Smith's "If That Ain't Country" album. Tons of upbeat stuff there. I also like Garth Brooks, he has quite a few songs that get you moving, like "Longneck Bottle", "Two Pina Coladas", "Wrapped Up In You", "Do What You Gotta Do". George Strait, " Carrying Your Love With Me", "All My Ex's Live in Texas", Hank Williams, "Hey, Good Lookin'", Jeannie C. Riley "Harper Valley P.T.A.", Jo Dee Messina, "Bring on the Rain", Johnny & June Carter Cash "Jackson", Johnny Paycheck "Take this Job and Shove It", LeAnn Rimes, "One Way Ticket", Mindy McCready, "A Girl's Gotta Do" and "Guys Do It All the Time" Roger Miller, "Dang Me" and "King of the Road" Tennessee Ernie Ford "Sixteen Tons" (great for weights, lol) Toby Keith "How Do You Like Me Now", "I Wanna Talk About Me", and "I Love This Bar" Bobby Bare and the Old Dogs "Still Gonna Die" Dave Dudley "Six Days on the Road" (also recorded by Sawyer Brown), Dixie Chicks "Ready to Run" and "Goodbye Earl" Eddie Rabbit "Every Which Way but Loose" and "I Love a Rainy Night"
    Hope this helps the country fans! - 9/22/2010   10:09:51 PM
  • 168
    Thanks, I just bought a new ipod and wanted some new music! Great article! - 9/22/2010   5:26:54 PM
  • CYCLONE564
    #1 workout song:

    Don't stop moving
    by S Club 7 - 9/22/2010   4:29:53 PM
    Thanks for suggesting the new tunes! - 9/22/2010   2:38:29 PM
    Great Great choices everyone! Im gonna have to add these songs to my playlist...May I reccomend this site:

    http://www.inthegym.net /

    they have many playlists and I love it becuase its by genre! - 9/22/2010   2:22:00 PM
  • 164
    Hey guys! I absolutely LOVE working out to music because it makes you forget that you're working out and makes you feel energized. Here is some of the music that I love to listen to for Warm Up, Work out, Cool down, and Stretching:

    Warm Up:
    Chariots of Fire (don't know artist), New Morning (by Alpha Rev), The Adventure (by Angels and Airwaves), A New Day (by Celine Dion), Viva La Vida (by Coldplay), Happy (Natasha Bedingfield), Freckles (Natasha Bedingfield), Feels Like Today (Rascal Flatts), Kings and Queens (30 Seconds to mars),

    Work out:
    Take a Chance (by ABBA), About a Girl (by The Academy Is...), Assorted All-American Rejects songs, Weight of the world (by Chantal Kreviazuk), Hollywood (by Collective Soul), Lose My Breath (Destiny's Child), Rock & Roll (by Eric Hutchinson), The First of Me (Hoobastank), Swing With Me (Jessica Simpson), Wavin' Flag (Coca-cola Celebration Mix by K'naan), Jeans On (Keith Urban), Elevation (from Tomb Raider by Knights Bridge), Say Hey (Michael Franti & Spearhead), Supermassive Black Hole (Muse), Uprising (Muse), Pirate Bones (Natasha Bedingfield), Unwritten (Natasha Bedingfield), Trouble (Pink), When I Grow Up (The Pussycat Dolls), Funny Little Feeling (Rock 'N' Roll Soldiers), Hey, Soul Sister (Train), The Kill (30 Seconds to Mars), If We Ever Meet Again (Timbaland)

    Cool Down:
    So Small (by Carrie Underwood), Home Sweet Home (by Carrie Underwood. Great to listen to when you are heading home from an outdoor workout), Hard Times (by Eastmountainsouth), Oceano (Josh Groban), Sunday Morning (Maroon 5), Fireflies (Owl City), In My Arms (Plumb),

    Lakme Flower Duet (from Tomb Raider), Caribbean Blue (by Enya), Storms in Africa (by Enya), Now We Are Free (Hans Zimmer and Lisa Gerrard), Remember When It Rained (Josh Groban. Gives me chills), You Raise Me Up (Josh Groban), 503 (Joshua Bell and Hans Zimmerman), Exogenesis: Symphony, Parts 1, 2, and 3 (Muse), Little Stranger (Peter Bradley Adams & Renee Stahl), A Good Day (Priscilla Ahn), - 9/22/2010   1:09:01 PM
    Usually anything by Linkin Park will do it for me. They have songs to get you moving and slower songs for cooling down. The perfect workout band. - 9/22/2010   9:24:12 AM
    Bob Segar - Old time Rock & Roll - always does it for me.
    Elton John - Philadelphia Freedom
    Donna Summer - Heaven Knows - 9/22/2010   8:01:04 AM
  • SDORITY905
    How about Abba?? The Whole "Mamma Mia" soundtrack can be used for warm up and cool down too. "Dancing Queen" and "Waterloo" are my favorites.

    Some others on my list:
    Garbage- "Push It"
    Ace of Base- "Beautiful Life"
    Mika- "Lollipop"
    Switchfoot- "More Than Fine", "Dare You To Move"
    Snow Patrol- "Chocolate" - 9/22/2010   5:25:32 AM
  • 160
    I love We Be Clubbin by Ice Cube, now that makes me want to kick butt on the machines. - 9/21/2010   10:27:36 PM
  • 159
    Panama-by Van Halen is THE best pump up song out there, everytime it comes on my playlist I push myself that much harder, I wish it was an hour long song.
    Some others on my playlist: Ke$ha, Eminem, Passion Pit, Motley Crue (Kickstart My Heart really gets you moving too), Little Lion Man- by Mumford & Sons, Heads Will Roll- Yeah Yeah Yeahs - 9/21/2010   8:45:02 PM
    These songs always get me going

    Get Up - Mary Mary
    God in Me - Mary Mary
    Shackles (Praise You) - Mary Mary
    Love Him Like I Do- Deitrick Haddon with Mary Mary
    Fragile - Chrisette Michele
    Be Ok - Chrisette Michele
    Epiphany - Chrisette Michele
    Check on it - Beyonce
    Pon De Replay - Rihanna
    Cupid Shuffle - Cupid

    For cool down
    Any Maxwell song
    Vivian Green - Beautiful
    Maroon 5 - She Will Be Loved
    Angie Stone - So Happy Being Me

    - 9/21/2010   7:45:32 PM
  • 157
    most of these are not my cup-o-tea- I like Christian music and some 'older' stuff...
    my list has AC-DC, ZZ TOP, CCR, Motley Crew, techno, Chris Tomlin, etc.
    and this could make me unpopular but I don't like anything by 'unladylike gag-me' er, I mean, lady gaga - 9/21/2010   5:56:59 PM
    Whatever makes you want to get up and move. I'm a big Broadway fan, so it's showtunes all the way for me. I lost 85 pounds listening to Barbara belt out I'm the greatest star. It was inspiring and kept me moving. - 9/21/2010   4:58:02 PM
  • 155
    Funny, the stuff I listen to when I work out isn't stuff I would listen to normally. I have alot of Ke$ha, Lady Gaga, Black-Eyed Peas, and stuff like that. And a little Limp Bizkit. I've noticed that my jog pace picks up according to the music pace. I normally listen to classic rock or country when I'm not exercising..haahhaa!!! What a switch! - 9/21/2010   4:20:43 PM
  • 154
    thanks for the ideas, it gave me inspiration to revamp my jogging music.
    For jogging i mainly listen to dance music because it pushes me forward:
    david guetta
    dj tiesto
    calvin harris
    la roux both original and mixes
    freemasons mixes

    enjoy your music guys! lifes not so colourful without it xx - 9/21/2010   3:18:35 PM
  • 153
    Thanks for the tip, in comment 110 (motiontraxx.com podcast free on itunes). Workoutmusic.com also has a free podcast, but not as many posts as motiontraxx. - 9/21/2010   2:44:35 PM
    Really? I mean...really? Only two of three songs did it for me (Sean Paul, Beyonce and Blackeye Peas). Try some Akon, Kanye West or Nelly Furtado, those will really get you moving! - 9/21/2010   2:36:22 PM
  • LISALOU2010
    I love Goldfrapp. Love their song "Alive." Instantly puts me in a I wanna move mood. Another favorite is Metro's "Shake It." I've enjoyed reading people's favorites. - 9/21/2010   2:18:02 PM
  • 150
    Thanks, Pepperjunkie, for pointing me to Albannach! I love the new "hard" Celtic music. Amazon and iTunes don't have them. You have to go to the web site albannachmusic.com, but you can listen to full songs, not just clips. - 9/21/2010   1:29:00 PM
  • 149
    We use a lot of those songs you mentioned in Jazzercise - makes sense! :-) Thanks!! - 9/21/2010   1:10:32 PM

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