Helpful article from Kim Komando www.komando.com
To access the links within go to the url below: www.usatoday.com/tech/columnist/kimkomando
Maybe you're just starting a workout regimen. Or, maybe you're training for the marathon. No matter, one thing will help you get more from your workouts: music.
Music can encourage you to exercise longer. It can also lessen fatigue and other distractions. That's why runners and other athletes talk about their ideal playlists.
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Of course, not just any music will improve your workouts. But, I can help you find the perfect music. You'll find links to sites and software mentioned at www.komando.com/news.
It's all about beats per minute
Certain types of music are better than others for working out. You want a steady beat. That way, you can synchronize your movements with the beat.
Music with a changing tempo or time signature is not recommended. Avoid music that doesn't have a strong rhythmic force. Ditto for music that varies in intensity.
The key to choosing a working out song is beats per minute, or BPM. Unless you're a DJ, you probably don't think too much about BPM. This is basically the song's tempo.
Dance music has the most consistently high BPM. Rock music also often falls into the correct BPM range.
The songs' BPM should match your heart rate during your workout. Choose slower songs for warming up and for cooling down. Save the faster songs for when you've hit your stride.
The ideal tempo will vary from person to person. To find the ideal tempo, take your heart rate during a workout.
If you're walking, look for songs between 115 and 118 BPM. Power walkers should aim for 137 to 139 BPM. Runners will want tracks between 147 and 160.
You can download optimized playlists
Fitness magazines often publish workout playlists. But you'll also find sites and services that offer them.
For example, iTunes offers Nike Sport Music playlists. There are a few different series. You'll find mixes created for Nike by various bands.
You'll also find mixes hosted by professional athletes. The athletes offer encouragement and motivation.
You'll want to listen to samples before purchasing. The music might not suit your taste. You can download the songs individually in most cases. However, you won't get the motivating content from athletes.
You'll also find workout mixes created by other iTunes users.
Many of the mixes you'll find are specifically designed for runners. However, you'll also find mixes for other workouts, primarily cardio-based ones. However, music can also motivate those doing weight training.
Hella Sound offers original running music ranging from 140 to 185 BPM. You can download 30 minutes of music for $5.
Analyze the BPM for music you already own
Of course, you don't need to buy music. You probably have perfect music in your collection. You may also prefer to listen to music you already know.
BPM Analyzer is a free program for Windows and Mac. Drag and drop your music collection into the program. It analyzes the individual tracks. You'll find the BPM for each song.
BPM Analyzer will automatically update your files' music tags with the BPM. This will help you create the ideal workout playlist. Just create and arrange your playlists based on BPM.
Stay safe while working out
If you're starting a new workout regime, talk to your doctor first. Make sure you're healthy enough.
Also, you should be careful when listening to headphones when working out. Be especially cautious when running on public streets or at nighttime. You may not be able to hear cars or other hazards.
Edited by: DDOORN at: 7/20/2009 (09:12)
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