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Exercise Song Playlist - Great Songs To Get You Moving

Updated on January 29, 2012

I find that I get my best workouts when I listen to music. It helps me regulate my breathing and makes the time fly by. Listening to music also helps me forget how tired I'm getting during my long runs. I have tried watching TV, I've tried to read, but music has been the most effective way to help me keep up a good pace.

Check out some of my favorite exercise songs that get me moving.

Just click on the title of the song to hear it!

32 Great Running Songs

1. Runaround Sue by Dion -

"Here's my story, it's sad but true

It's about a girl that I once knew

She took my love then ran around

With every single guy in town"

It's got a fantastic, fast-paced beat that you can pretty much match your steps to. It's a fun and upbeat little song that you can draw lots of energy from that never gets old.

2. Go The Distance by Roger Bart from Disney's Hercules

"I'll be there some day

I can go the distance

I will find my way

If I can be strong

I know every mile

Will be worth my while

I will go most anywhere

To feel like I belong."

What better way to begin a run with a song title like this? It starts slow (good for a walking warm up) and picks up as the song goes on, gradually encouraging you to increase your speed as you work into your pace. And... it's Disney, a big plus for me, at least.

3. Love You Want by Wailing Souls -

"Don't get upset if you ain't got nobody

Don't get upset if you have no one

Don't get upset when you wake up in the morning

Cause every new day life just begun."

The first time I heard this song was in the movie, Cool Runnings. In the scene, the main character is running, training for a big race. It has an excellent beat to keep you moving.

4. The River by Good Charlotte featuring M. Shadows & Synyster Gates -

"As I walk through the valley

of the shadow of LA

The footsteps that were next to me

have gone their separate ways..."

This song is definitely heavier and more intense, but equally as great to run to. The electric guitars and constant drum beat make it easy to run even faster than you were before. Crank it up and get get moving!

5. Hands Down by Dashboard Confessional -

"Breathe in for luck,

Breathe in so deep,

This air is blessed,

You share with me. "

This is one of my favorite songs to run to because it essentially tells a story, so I don't focus so much on how tired I am, or how much farther I have to go. I get wrapped up in the song and keep moving.

6. Ole by The Bouncing Souls -

"Bouncing souls no one can beat us

we drink beer and wear adidas..."

If you've ever been to any soccer game anywhere, you have probably heard this song. Its fun, silly, upbeat and repetitive beat keep your spirits up so you can keep running. It would be extremely hard to slow your pace while you're listening to this song.

7. The Dejo Madrid by Shakira -

So... I don't exactly speak fluent spanish... However, that doesn't stop me from loving to run to this song! I think that I get even more wrapped up in it because I don't know what the lyrics mean. I did look it up once, just to make sure I wasn't rockin' out to something ridicules. So, it's legit. And fantastic to run to!

8. Supermassive Black Hole by Muse -

"Oh baby dont you know I suffer?

Oh baby can you hear me moan?

You caught me under false pretenses

How long before you let me go?

You set my soul alight..."

This song takes me to another place. It's haunting, pulsating beat is great to walk, jog, run, or even sprint to, if you feel so inclined.

9. Carry You by Jimmy Eat World -

"I could never be the one that you want

Don't ask

Well, here's to living in the moment

'Cause it passed..."

I think I might be hearing a tambourine in the background... You can't listen to a song with a tambourine in it and not move around. Therefore, I highly recommend this one. It's got a great upbeat sound paired with solid lyrics.

10. Human by the Killers -

"Are we human or are we dancers?

My sign is vital, my hands are cold

And I'm on my knees looking for the answer

Are we human or are we dancers?"

This great running song lets you match your steps with the techno, pulsating beat and repetitive (but in a good way) lyrics. Turn it up and off you go!

11. Spotlight by Mutemath -

"You got a whole lot left to say now

You knocked all your wind out

You just tried too hard and you froze

I know, I know"

The beginning of this song starts out like the soundtrack to an old time horror movie (but only for the first few seconds). It's a bit like listening to any average song, but on fast forward. It's a frenzy of drums, great guitar, and loud vocals. That makes it a perfect running song.

12. Paralyzed by The Used -

"Paralyzed by the same old antics

Back and forth like some walking spastic

How could a fistfight be romantic?

Thinking back now, will you ever feel the same"

Super intense and angry vocals and instruments. You might catch yourself singing/yelling out this one as you run around, be advised. Just no fist pumping... I will have none of that...

13. Steady As She Goes by The Raconteurs -

"Steady as she goes (steady as she goes)

So steady as she goes (steady as she goes)

Well here we go again, you've found yourself a friend that knows you well

But no matter what you do, it always feels as though you tripped and fell

So steady as she goes."

I think the title describes the song better than I ever could. It as a... "steady" beat, great for any pace you feel like going. Plus, hearing "steady as she goes" over and over, all you can do is, well... that.

14. Just Push Play by Aerosmith -

"Just push play

Were comin at you anyway."

This song will just make you smile as you run, and, yes... you will probably want to sing along with this one too. That may be what makes a great running song, ones you can sing along to.

15. The Diary of Jane by Breaking Benjamin -

"Something's getting in the way

Something's just about to break

I will try to find my place

In the diary of Jane

So tell me how it should be!"

Also a heavy, angrier song, good towards the end of the run and you need a little something extra to keep you going. Put all your frustration and anger into pounding out those last few miles with this song. Rawr!

16. Absolute by the Fray -

"Is this all we get to be absolute

Quiet but I’m sure there is something here

Tell me everything cause I want to hear."

This song kind of, soars I suppose, for lack of a better word. It has a sort of yearning sound to it coupled with a fast-pased beat.

17. Here It Goes by Jimmy Eat World -

"Waiting for attention

I'm not

Cut it to the left

And I rock

Need an invitation

I don't

Slide it to the right

And I roll."

You can't help but smile as this song starts up. This could be another fairly cheery addition to your running playlist repertoire.

18. So Not Sorry by The Casanova Playboys -

"Your so crazy

I'm not for you

I'm not waiting

I'm so tired

Your not listening

So not waiting."

This song screams determination and backbone. It could come in handy towards the end of your run when you need a little extra of both.

19. Heart of a Champion by Nelly featuring Lincoln University Vocal Ensemble -

"Ain't no way they can stop me now Nelly

Cause I'm on my way, I can feel my ring coming

It's the blood of a champion, pumping

Deep inside my veins, too much pride to be running

I'ma get what I can and more, even if

My blood, my sweat, and my tears don't mean nothing

It's the heart of a champion (it's the heart of me)

(It's the heart of a..) in me..."

Again, this song has shown up at every major sporting event, anywhere. Why you ask? It's dang fearless. A must for any workout/running/exercise playlist.

20. Love and Memories by O.A.R. -

"Love me faster than the devil

Run me straight into the ground

Drowning deep inside your water

Drowning deep inside your sound."

A consistent, steady drum beat lets you get caught up in the sound and lyrics of the song. Blaze on.

21. Live Your Life by T.I. featuring Rihanna -

"You're gonna be a shining star, with fancy clothes, fancy car-ars.

And then you'll see, you're gonna go far.

Cause everyone knows, who you are-are.

So live your life, ay ay ay."

This is great to listen to when you need some encouragement and fun.

22. Farewell by Apocalyptica -

This instrumental song as a fairly dark, haunting tone to it. However, it begins with slow string instruments, and increases the tempo as the song progresses, drawing you into it. I saw it performed at a concert once (not by Apocalyptica sorry to say), and it captured the entire audience.

23. Poker Face by Lady Gaga -

"Can't read my,

Can't read my

No he can't read my poker face

(she's got to love nobody)

Can't read my

Can't read my

No he can't read my poker face

(she's got to love nobody)."

Good beat. Need I say more?

24. I Saw by Matt Nathanson -

"And I saw

Pictures in my head

And I swear I saw you opening up again

I would be heavenly if

Baby you'd just rescue me now."

I've got this song towards the end of my running playlist because it's good to cool down to, but still has a fast enough tempo if you aren't quite done with the run yet.

25. Into the Night by Santana featuring Chad Kroeger -

"Like a gift from the heavens, it was easy to tell,

It was love from above, that could save me from hell,

She had fire in her soul it was easy to see,

how the devil himself could be pulled out of me,

There were drums in the air as she started to dance,

Every soul in the room keeping time with there hands."

This song will make you want to dance if you're not already running. It's entrancing, fun, and fast. Plus, Santana's on the guitar. Nuff said.

26. Chase This Light by Jimmy Eat World -

"Because tonight the world turned on me

Because right now I don't dare breath

Oh babe I know

It's alive

And somewhere for us to find tonight

Chase this light with me."

Good for the beginning of a running playlist, start moving faster into a good job as the song picks up.

27. Suerte (Whenever, Wherever) by Shakira -

Maybe it's just me, but Latin beats make me want to dance... or in this case, run faster.

28. I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For by U2 -

"I have run

I have crawled

I have scaled these city walls

These city walls

Only to be with you."

But I still haven't found what I'm looking for

This song demands that you get moving, so get to it.

29. Smooth Criminal by Michael Jackson -

"So, Annie Are You OK?

Are You OK Annie?

You've Been Hit By

You've Been Hit By

A Smooth Criminal."

This is my all-time favorite Michael Jackson song, so maybe it's just me, but I love running to it. I figured there might be some other fans out there that love rocking out to it as much as I do.

30. This Is For Real by Motion City Soundtrack -

"This is for real, this time I mean it

I'm coming clean, please don't let go

I said from the start, that you could take it or leave it

I'd prefer that you keep it

Don't let go."

This song is a hoot and a half. It's a crazy little addition to any running playlist.

31. Jai Ho by A R Rahman featuring Sukhvinder Singh, Tanvi Shah & Mahalaxmi Iyer -

This is a Hindi song from the movie Slumdog Millionaire. I completely fell in love with it and had to add it. It has an excellent beat, and with a song title that means "Victory be yours" you can't not get moving.

32. More by Usher -

"If you really want more, scream it out louder,

if you on the floor, bring out the fire,

And light it up, take it up higher,

Gonna push it to the limit, give it more."

Cue this song whenever you know you will be getting tired and want to stop, because there is no way you will be able to stop running if you are listening to this one.

On The Run Movie Soundtracks

1. Avatar Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

2. Sherlock Holmes Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

3. Anything from Cirque Du Soleil

How do you get pumped up during a work out?

See results

I'm always adding to the list, so if you have any suggestions, shoot them my way!


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    • Apryl Schwarz profile image

      Apryl Schwarz 6 years ago from Nebraska

      Always looking for good running songs, great hub!

    • misternatcarter profile image

      misternatcarter 6 years ago from Somewhere between the gutter and the stars

      The National Anthem by Radiohead is a good song to workout to. Great beat. And if you can handle 10 minute songs, Achilles Last Stand by Led Zeppelin

    • cjcarter profile image

      cjcarter 6 years ago

      DimitriLive - Glad you liked them! Playlists make workouts go by SO much faster! Good luck!

    • DimitriLive profile image

      DimitriLive 6 years ago from Dallas, Texas

      Thank you so much! Very useful. I was thinking about making my own playlist.

    • cjcarter profile image

      cjcarter 6 years ago

      Hannah - guilty... :)

    • cjcarter profile image

      cjcarter 8 years ago

      I'm glad you liked the playlist! It's in constant transformation, so if you have any awesome workout songs, let me know!

    • profile image

      lee 8 years ago

      i run around 15 miles so i tried your play list and surprising i was a lot more focused on the view and not my feet(: nice job

    • cjcarter profile image

      cjcarter 8 years ago

      Drat, you caught's one of my weaknesses. : )

    • profile image

      hannah 8 years ago

      i see a lot of these songs come from a certain twilight soundtrack. =]


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