When what’s pulsing out of my earbuds has some pep, running becomes a lot more enjoyable.
Or, in the parlance of my friend A, wogging. I’m working my way up to longer distance running, but it’s no easy feat.
And this mix, with 16 songs clocking in at 1 hour and 1 minute, ramps up perfectly with my walk/jog style. A four song warm up, followed by nine faster paced ditties, and a three number cool down.
Most importantly, it’s blissfully free of the “hottest hits” that I tend to like at first, until radio DJs everywhere play them to the point that my initial like turns to loathing.
Lace up your favorite street sneaks and hit the pavement, y’all. The tease of this early fall weather won’t last!
Long Cool Woman – The Hollies
That opening guitar and drum sequence sets the perfect warm up pace. This isn’t gonna be any kind of stop and smell the roses neighborhood stroll.
Flashdance (What a Feelin’) – Irene Cara
Thank you Owen Wilson and Vince Vaughn for breathing new life into this song. Not that the Jennifer Beals movie isn’t all that, but this song absolutely makes my favorite scene from The Internship. Good riddance to the Graham’s of this world. And to finding our inner Googliness!
Stacy’s Mom – Fountains of Wayne
Ever since I saw these guys at City Stages, I’ve been a fan. The lyrics are hilarious, and the tempo perfect for a faster wogging pace. If this one isn’t your jam, try Bowling for Soup. “1985” and “Girl All the Bad Guys Want” are equally awesome ramp up songs.
The Whip – Locksley
Time to break out into a full jog. And more love for The Internship soundtrack! One of those contagiously fun songs that makes you want to jump on top of the bar, singing loud and proud with your mom squad.
Good to Be Alive (Hallelujah) – Andy Grammer
Moving to this beat in the fresh air turned out to be the perfect antidote for the four day week from hell. Whatever aspect of adulting ails you, work it out to this song. You’re welcome.
Faith (feat. Ariana Grande) – Stevie Wonder
Courtesy of my third grader, who found it on the bonus features of our Sing DVD. A Grande Wonder this song! (Becca humor. #sorrynotsorry). Long may these two collaborate.
Thunderstruck – AC/DC
All the endorphins kicking in. Instead of sitting on my arse, this one kicks me into a runner’s pace of which I’m pretty damn proud. Thank you, Angus Young.
It’s Not Right (But It’s Okay) – Whitney Houston
My friend T co-wrote this and also sings backup vocals. I loved the song long before we met, but the combination of these lyrics and T’s girl power (effusive without being obnoxious) makes the song a must on any fitness playlist of mine.
Walk of Shame – P!nk
No one else can lay down a get you off your rump track like P!nk. And maybe one of the best artists I’ve ever seen in concert (Truth About Love tour). The energy! The acro! The quirky mime who worked the crowd pre-show!
Good Vibrations – Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch (feat. Loleatta Holloway) – First I loved his brother. NKOTB forever! Then this one figured out he could do more than model underwear, and I sat by the boom box ready to simultaneously hit “Play” and “Record” when it aired. Um yeah, if you’re too cool to get down to Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch, we can’t be friends.
Jump Around – House of Pain
How can you not hustle to House of Pain? At this point, I’m picking up my pace and thinking of the late Robin Williams, ball cap sideways rapping to this tune from atop the Baby Grand in Mrs. Doubtfire. I came to get down.
Get It On (Bang a Gong) – The Power Station
Robert Palmer at his best, in my humble opinion. And the beat is exactly what I need for the home stretch.
Henrietta – The Fratellis
From the Made of Honor soundtrack (Patrick Dempsey – swoon!) and a perfect beat to push through those last few blocks of the neighborhood. Can’t slow down to Scottish Rock.
Good Thing – Fine Young Cannibals
When I’m out of breath and wanting to quit the run altogether, this cheerful ditty helps me dig a little deeper. Plus there’s that “Birmingham” bond (only an ocean of difference!)
Young & Stupid – T. Mills (feat. T.I.)
Slowing it down a bit with this funky track that echoes what I firmly believe, even on the days that are off the charts crazy. Life just keeps gettin’ better!
Love Shack – The B-52s.
Somewhere in South Carolina and too early on a Saturday morning, I woke up to this song blaring from the speakers of my host family. New Life Singers Choir Tour, circa 1992. A newlywed couple with a wacky sense of humor, they had my friend M and I in stitches the entire stay. Including bus drop off, which had us arriving atop the convertible backseat and waving like the pageant girls we so weren’t.
These are just a few of the songs that move me.