Today I finally tossed together a playlist for running. Taking my son’s advice, I mixed in some slower songs. He feels that if every song is motivational, you begin to concentrate on being motivated for running and then think about the running. He thinks that defeats the purpose of listening to music in the first place. My son likes to get lost in songs when he runs. This seems like good advice to me. And since some of my favorite songs are on the slower side, I was all for it. I think this advice does work for people who love music and lyrics, and can really well, get lost in it.
I put my playlist together with two criteria: songs I love and songs that evoke a moment in time. This means, Van Morrison, Counting Crows and The Black Keys share space with Pink and LMFAO. All together I have just over an hour of music, but I plan to grow that list so it doesn’t get boring. I am collecting suggestions from friends on Facebook. So after popping my music onto my phone I took it for a test drive.
The first thing I noticed is that RunKeeper is very chatty. In the beginning there was a constant stream of time check ins, distance and pace updates. I didn’t really hear any Alanis, as RunKeeper talked the entire time. Also, the earbuds that come with your phone are not meant for running. The right one kept popping out of my ear. That was really annoying. Not annoying enough to distract me from the heat. Where had the beautiful breezy day gone? The temperature, although not stifling with no humidity was still uncomfortable. After the first quarter mile, I settled in. Aloe Blacc will probably be removed from the list. Although I like the song, I’m the Man did nothing for me while I was running. But The Middle by Jimmy Eat World, really picked me up and helped me push up the first hill.
On the whole I would have to say that it is tough to judge if the music kept me distracted or made the whole run easier, since I spent so much of the run trying to keep my ear buds in place. It takes me longer to settle into my runs when I go in the afternoon, and today was no different. I think it is partly the heat of the day and partly I am already tired. I was running faster during some songs, at one point I was on pace for a seven minute mile, and yes I slowed down, since that was the issue in the beginning. But I know it helped towards the end of my run.
Around forty three minutes as I was closing in on four miles, I was really getting tired. I could feel myself having to push my legs and I was slowing down. Suddenly The Young Giants came on and when the lyrics, “My body tells me no, but I won’t quit cause I want more,” pulsed through my ears I felt renewed, picked up my pace and pushed forward. The song after that was Party Rock (LMFAO) and I was gleeful because I had passed four miles. I started dance running and goofing around. I considered trying to do four and a half total miles, but decided four and a quarter was pretty stinking good. Walking and sort of singing, I enjoyed the end of my run. And then PInk’s Raise Your Glass was playing and I found myself running again. And singing. However, I couldn’t sustain it and was walking again before the end of the song. I walked into my house with Tom Petty’s I Won’t Back Down and I was feeling like a rock star!