(CARLSBAD, CA) – Working out can sometimes get a little monotonous. It’s hard enough to get the motivation to don your workout gear and head-off to the gym or your favorite jogging track. Add to that the constant repetition of the same steps, the same machines, the same scenery, and you may find your motivation for your daily calorie burn starting to wane.
Unless you plan to change gyms or scout out new cycling spots each month, you may be at a loss for how to add variety to your workout. That’s where music comes in. Music can tune-up your workout in a way that makes it new, fresh, motivational, and even exciting each time you lace-up your tennies.
Music isn’t just something that keeps your mind distracted as your muscles are feeling the burn. According to recent research conducted by Columbia University, music actually affects your brainwave patterns. It has the capacity to put you in a more positive mood. Meditative music has been shown to decrease levels of cortisol and adrenalin, the stress hormones produced in your adrenal gland. Meanwhile, fast-paced tunes increase the release of endorphins, your body’s “feel good” hormones.
Judi Sheppard Missett, founder and CEO of Jazzercise, Inc, adds new tunes to her workout routines, taught by instructors around the globe, on a regular basis. She gives these suggestions for including music in your workout:
Vary your workout music. Don’t get stuck in a rut of listening to the same songs for every activity. What you listen to for cycling can be entirely different than the music you play for yoga stretches.
Choose the right tempo. The beat of the song should match your exercise. If the beats per minute in the song are too fast, then you may injure yourself in an attempt to keep up with the music. If the song’s pace is too slow, then you may find it more difficult to raise your heart rate to an appropriate level for cardiovascular conditioning. Look for songs with 125-150 beats per minute for your cardio workout. You can even create a playlist on your iPod that starts at the lower end of the tempo spectrum, rises to the upper end, and then returns to the lower end.
Plan ahead. Put together a playlist on your iPod or pull-out your favorite CD before you begin your workout. If you simply turn-on the radio, then traffic reports and advertisements will cause a break in the momentum of your workout.
Intersperse your favorites. Decide how long you want to workout. The, set a playlist or CD plan-of-action for that length of time, interspersing your favorites throughout the workout. You’ll be less likely to throw in the towel early if you know that you can sing along with your favorite tune in three more minutes.
Turn down the volume. If the volume is too loud, you may not hear what (or who) is approaching you. Try wearing just one of your iPod earpieces. If you’re exercising in an isolated area, avoid headphones altogether.
Jazzercise, created by Judi Sheppard Missett, is the world's leading dance-fitness program with more than 7,500 instructors teaching 32,000 classes weekly in the U.S. and around the globe. Since 1969, millions of people of all ages and fitness levels have reaped the benefits of this comprehensive program, designed to enhance cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.