Benefits Of Running With Music
There’s nothing quite like popping in your headphones and taking on a long distance run with the support of your favorite playlist. Research actually shows that tunes can make a workout easier. As you know, we’re on hand to make life easier for you, which is why in our latest post, we’re exploring the benefits of running with music and breaking down how you can take full of advantage.
Human beings are hardwired to respond to rhythm, hence why a decent playlist compiling a load of upbeat tracks can help you find your stride as you rack up those miles. So, what are the benefits?
1. Music Can Help You Get Pumped Up
No matter how often you run and how much you love it, every runner experiences those days when putting on your running shoes and going for a run is simply the last thing you want to do. For the days when you’re lacking that drive, a little extra motivation in the form of your favorite playlist might just be the answer to your prayers.
Sports psychologist, Costas Karageorghis, Ph.D. carried out a study on the positive influencer of music on athletes. Following her study, she agreed that a compelling playlist can play a part in getting runners into the right mindset to take on a dreaded run. During a Running With Music debate, Karageorghis said: “music elevates positive aspects of mood such as excitement and happiness, and reduces negative aspects such as tension, fatigue, and confusion.
Further research carried out by The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research supports this as they found that listening to music before a run can help to get you fired up and better prepared for the physical challenge ahead.
2. It Can Help You Keep A Consistent Pace
Although some runners will prefer to run without any music to allow them to focus on cues such as foot strikes or breathing in order to control their pace, music can actually have the same effect.
When carefully selected, music can most definitely help runners set the pace during training or races. The same study from Karagerghis suggests that choosing music with a tempo exceeding 120 beats per minute can help when taking on high-intensity workouts. For slower-paced runs that require less effort, music with less than 120 beats per minute can work just as well. It’s all about tailoring your playlist for the occasion.
Beyond the beats per minute, it’s worth noting that choosing tunes with positive affirmations or lyrics can also have an effect. No one wants to listen to a sad song as they reach mile 13, do they?
3. It Can Distract You From The Task At Hand
If there’s a way to make your runs feel that little bit easier, it’s got to be worth a try at least, right? According to a study completed by Kelle University, listening to your favorite tunes as you run can contribute to reducing exertion levels and increase the feeling of ‘being in the zone’.
Without getting too technical, music can block your internal stimuli such as fatigue which would usually inform your brain how tired you’re feeling as you run. As a runner’s perception of how hard they’re actually working is reduced, it can help them to feel like they can run for longer.
Research would definitely suggest that listening to music can help you run faster, easier and for longer. If you find the correct playlist that will allow you to match your stride to a beat as you smash through your goals, it can quickly become your favorite new companion. With that said, for the best results, you should also ensure that your playlist isn’t distracting you. It’s essential that you don’t get carried away and run too much.
Here are a couple of top tips that will help you get the most out of music as you run:
- Choose motivating lyrics.
- Press pause when you’re not running: if you stop to stretch or take a quick break, pause your music before you start running again.
- Keep the volume at a safe level: this is particularly important if you’re running on the road, the last thing you want is to have music so loud that it distracts you and puts you in potential danger.
- Choose some slower songs for recovery
- Put your phone on flight mode: if you want to enjoy the benefits of music minus any distractions of daily life, pop your phone on flight mode and enjoy your outlet.
- How Does Music Aid 5 km of Running? – The Journals Of Strength And Conditioning Research
- Listening to your favorite music boosts performance – Science Daily