8 Great Songs to Refresh Your Summer Workouts

By , SparkPeople Blogger
Even though I've been enjoying some music-free workouts lately, I still love an upbeat music playlist—especially if I'm stuck indoors or going out for an extra long run on the weekends. I'm always updating my iPod with new tunes to keep things fresh and prevent boredom, and you've told me that you do the same. Since music is an important part of a solid fitness routine, I thought it was time to share some of the new songs I've been exercising to. Then I want you to tell me what's playing in your earbuds during your latest workouts!

Here are eight of my favorite workout songs of the moment. There's a little bit of everything here, from pop to hip hop to alternative rock.

Click on each link to listen to a preview (or purchase the mp3) at amazon.com.

Jay-Z and Alicia Keys – Empire State of Mind
(I shared this one back in January and I've still running to it—it's that good!)

La Roux – Bulletproof

Lady Gaga – Monster

MGMT – Kids

Phoenix – 1901

The Sounds – Dance with Me

Taio Cruz – Break Your Heart

Temper Trap – Sweet Disposition

What songs are you working out to lately? Share your early summer favorites with us below!

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KATHYJO56 8/31/2020
The only one of these I really like is Lady Gaga Report
I don't keep up with the songs as I should. I listen to a lot of gospel music. Report
I walk on the treadmill and am trying to put together a playlist of songs that match the mph. Some 4.0 mph songs I've discovered on my iPod are Sweet Child O Mine by GnR, Round and Round by Ratt, and You Shook Me All Night Long by AC/DC. Report
I have some moving gospel music that I bought years ago at a Christian Book Store and an old Jenny Craig walking cassette. These work really good and help me track my miles. Report
I have some moving gospel music that I bought years ago at a Christian Book Store and an old Jenny Craig walking cassette. These work really good and help me track my miles. Report
I love the Break Your Heart song ... Report
Gogol Bordello's "Start Wearin' Purple"! And a new one "First Kiss" by 3OH!3..it's pure summertime junk music! Report
I have heard that making a playlist is really good to do. But I find that I get bored to easily. So I actually just shuffle my iPod and go with whatever the song is. If the tempo is a lot faster I might take my jog to a sprint, and if it slows down I stay at a moderate jog. Plus I sort of like the surprise of not knowing what's going to come next.
But my all-time workout song would have to be "Go Hard or Go Home" by E-40. It works to motivate me, especially when I'm not feeling in the mood to actually run. Report
I have the Droid with the Pandora App (strongly recommend to anyone with a smartphone) so I get a wide mix with each workout. I usually come across at least one song/group (today was Gaelic Storm) that I will download if I ever get around to making a set playlist. Although, I'm having such fun Pandora since I never know what's coming up and my preferred station is almost perfect to the songs I like to work out to (started the station with Flogging Molly and it's warped into Irish Fiddle/Rock) so I don't know why I'd pay money to download songs for a set playlist... Report
I was out for a run the other day and when Katy Perry "California Gurls" started up I was absolutely kickin' it. THAT is a great summer tune!!
Everything else on your list is on my current playlist though! Except for that Phoenix song, which I'm definitely going to download now...Great picks!! Report
I love La Roeux Bulletproof I just ran to it this Morning:) I also have Bad Romance on my MP3 and I can't be tamed, Party in the USA. I love anything with a beat and really enjoy Girl Anger it really gets me going when I would rather Lie on the grass and rest. :) Report
Bulletproof by La Roux is SUCH a great warm-up song! On the treadmill at 3.8 mph, I'm walking right to the beat :D

I really like listening to hip-hop and rap when I run. Also great for warm-ups/cool-downs are The B-52's -- one of my favorite bands of all-time! They are just so peppy and fun, and never fail to get me motivated. Report
Oh, Lady Gaga! Love her music for cardio! Asked for a CD for my birthday! Report
I'm ashamed to admit it, but I don't own an IPOD! I'm not sure I could even use one as a blind person.... Anyhow, I still love music for exercise and motivation during exercise. I own the Time Life 80s collection and love it! Each 15 song CD lasts about an hour and I use them for water aerobics and stationary biking and speed up or heighten my intensity to the beat. I also live where we get a "play everything" station and it is great! The other day they played a disco hit that was a medley of classical music set to disco beats.... I don't know the name or the artist, but it was a great workout song! Some of the classical hits included were Flight of the Bumblebee, Beethoven's 5th, The William Tell Overture and a Bit of Night Music. It was great! I also really like Turn The Beat Around by Gloria Estefan or the person who originally did it in the 70s. I also really like I Got The Music In Me (I think by Kiki Dee) and Buffalo Stance (not sure of the artist). Thanks for this list and the suggestions by others. One day I will own an IPOD! Maybe I'll eventually win one here on SP! LOL! PS We need another Bootcamp Contest! Report
I love the songs... I never knew that amazon had mp3 downloads, I have been searching for mp3 downloads (besides itunes, i don't have a ipod) so I was very excited to learn this! Thanks! Songs I will definitely be downloading... OMG by usher ( so catchy), TikTok by Kesha, and many more!

OK, amazon doesn't offer mp3 downloads to canadian residents :( Does anyone have any safe sites to download mp3s from? Report
The Sounds are awesome! Their songs are so energetic. Report
I do not know the singer's name but he appeared on Oprah and sang, "keep on believing." I love Motown, the seventies and eighties.
"Don't top til you get enough" Michael Jackson

Lady Gaga, Black Eyed Peas ( Hey Mama is my fav) and Paramore are my top three! Report
I listen to anything 70's, Motown, Disco Report
Creedance Clearwater Revival Report
KSANSON6: Christian songs that motivate me to move are I Got the Joy by Carman (oldie but goodie) and Get Down by Audio Adrenaline. I'll look through my ipod to see if I have any other good ones :) Report
Radioheads "in rainbows" album. I know it's about 3 years old but I only truly realized what an amazing album it is after I began to jog to it. It has the perfect sequence of warmup, warp, pullback a little before taking off again. In particular, I love the second song "bodysnatchers" to really take off and for cooling off, "jigsaw falling into place" at the end. All of the songs have good interesting beats and lyrics and work well on the headphones. Also most of the songs "evolve" into something else in a really good way! Report
I listen to a lot of heavy metal. It pushes me!! Report
I just downloaded "The Best of Wanda Jackson." Back in the 50s, Wanda toured with Elvis Presley and was known as the Queen of Rockabilly. Great retro music! Report
I love some of this music, esp. Lady Gaga. But I really love the 60s music -- even though I was only a preteen then. I also love Beyonce, Jennifer Lopez, Janet Jackson, Black Eyed Peas too.

Laugh Your Shorts Off, new book now available on Amazon.com Report
I'm far too old to be interested in those songs. We work out to music, but from the 50's and 60's. I love the 70's, but after that, I only like some of the stuff. I HATE rap. my age talking. lol. Report
A double generation gap. Minus 50% for first generation, minus another 30% for 2nd generation. 20% is pretty good considering my 'oldies are from the 1950's & 60's. Report
I have just started walking. I needed this list! Thanks for all the suggestions! Looks like I might be busy tonight. Report
Jason Mraz! Report
Lady Gaga, Black Eyed Peas, Pitbull, Snap, Rihanna, Beyonce all get me moving!!! Report
One of my favorites is "Move Along" by All-American rejects. If I play it towards the end of my run I get a little burst of energy cause "all you gotta keep is strong" Report
My favorite is Giddy On Up by Laura Bell Bundy, this song just makes me want to move, oh and it is country. Report
My favorite workout song is from the '80's. "Break My Stride." By Matthew Wilder. Report
some of those I already know I love listening to! Although others I wouldn't really use for a workout lol Report
I listen to music from www.mywalkingmusic.com and www.workoutmusic.com . Both have music for walking and working out at various intensity levels. Report
I downloaded only TWO of these. The rest are awful for me...but then it is age. My favorites are much older....Sugar Sugar, by the Archies; Loves me like a Rock, by Paul Simon; Twist and shout, by the Beatles; Break my stride, by Matthew Wilder; and Hungry eyes, by Eric Carmen. And on. I keep adding to this as I hear more. But I enjoy these more than the more modern stuff, where there is rap, and yelling ! Report
I confess - I have never heard of any of these songs! I also don't own an iPod, but thanks for the recommendations! Report
I have a few songs that I would like to add to that list:
Shark in the Water by VV Brown
OMG by Usher (Love this song)
Airplanes by BoB
California Gurls by Katie Perry
Rock that Body by Black Eyed Peas
If we ever meet again by Timbaland
Icky Thump by White Stripes (always gets me pumped to run)
Seven Nation Army by White Stripes
Say Hey by Michael Franti
Not Afraid by Eminem
Halo by Beyonce is a great cool down, stretch song Report
Thanks for the suggestions, Nicole! I listened to all of them and added a few to my wish list. I absolutely love making workout playlists on my iPod, and I'm proud to say I need to make new ones because I'm working out longer than when I started and my playlists are now too short!

If you're into podcasts, there's one called Cadence Revolution that makes workout playlists of different lengths, and I believe they have warm up and cool down songs. I've downloaded a few of them but haven't listened to them yet.

Thanks for the suggestions! Report
A vote for the Black Eyed Peas from Spark's mighty geezer contingent! Report
I am a newbie, and looking for some Christian workout music. Any ideas? Report
I listen to 60s and 70s music, as well as upbeat Christian music. I also have some of Enya's music. Report
I listen to music from the 60's to today.. country and rock. I choose songs that have a good beat, and are inspirational
Gloria Esteffani- Reach
Carrie underwood- almost all her songs
motown music
Miranda Lambert
Martina Mcbride
David bowie
Billy Idol
Twilight soundtracks
Cheap Trick
Kid Rock
Cheryl Crowe
Rascal Flatts
The list goes on. I enjoy music all day. While on the treadmill, I turn on the music channels on my satelite to listen and see if there are new songs to add to my list. I found a couple I forgot about on here. thanks.... Report
I LOVE "Break Your Heart" by Taio Cruz and Ludacris. It's not a song I would listen to normally, but whenever it comes on my ipod while I'm running, it psychs me up and pushes me to go a little faster. Glad you included it on this list!

I also finish every race with "The Pretender" by the Foo Fighters. Helps me kick it right to the end. Report
Whenever I'm jogging, especially at the gym, I love to listen to Mika -- he's an amazing British pop star. His songs are so full of energy, so it really pushes me.

I love Lady Gaga for cardio too, and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. For weight training, I love Sleater-Kinney, who have a much harder edge to their sound. Great for pumpin' me up when I'm pumpin' iron! Report
Thanks for the list. I listened to these songs and love them! Report
Beyonce, PCD, Gaga, are Good for Cardio. For cool down or extended walks
I like Josh Groban or some good ole classic R&B. Report
Nope, none of the songs on the 8 song list, don't like pop music. Metal, Rock - those are the ones that get me moving. Report
music is very imporatant for me during workouts... Report
I'm 63 and I love listening to the oldies rock and rock (not hard rock) from the 1960, 70, and 80's while I walk or cycle. Usually listening to TV while I do my PT exercises. Report