running roadPlaying music when running is a very personal thing. For me, I can’t imagine running any distance without booting up my playlist first. Music increases my concentration, provides stimulus, engenders positive vibes and passes the time on a long run.

I always random-play the tunes, otherwise the mix would be too predictable, even tedious. Random play often throws out some strange sequences, with power tunes coming too early in a run, but that is more than compensated for by the boost I get when exactly the right tune is thrown in at exactly the right time.

I have 4 playlists at the moment, plus one best-of playlist I use for races (or more accurately, race, as in the singular), and I’m always on the hunt for new running music.

psytrancePlaylist #1 combines classic Ibiza-trance with nu-metal and some made-for-running-music like The Crystal Method – Drive. There’s also some Chemical Brothers in there to break it up.

Playlist #2 is all about progressive rock from the 70’s to today. I use this infrequently. There are too many dramatic pauses and I keep meaning to tune them out.

Playlist #3 is psytrance, or as wikipedia likes to think of it, “a form of electronic music characterized by hypnotic arrangements of synthetic rhythms and complex layered melodies created by high tempo riffs”. Psytrance tempo is around 140-150 beats per minute which seems to resonate with my natural running frequency.

This dude makes you run faster

This dude makes you run faster

Playlist #4 is work-in-progress based on industrial / electronic body music / aggrotech. Dark, frightening and growly. I put this one on when I am angry and want to burn some calories on a hard run. I have yet to decide whether this is energy-generating or energy-sapping. It works really well over 10K but I have a feeling I may kill somebody after a half marathon. If someone was catching me while playing this I’d get the %^&* out of there fast.

Here’s the track list thrown up at the Edinburgh Rock’n’Roll Marathon. I’ll be playing around with the source list before the next half marathon, currently planned to be Dundee in July. The Prodigy came up a little more than I would like, the psytrance stuff didn’t kick in until too late, and I need more growls.

    Linkin Park – Numb
    The Prodigy – Take Me To The Hospital
    Energy 52 – Cafe Del Mar ’98
    The Prodigy – World’s On Fire
    Katatonia – Forsaker
    Cygnus X – The Orange Theme
    ATB – 9pm Till I Come
    Saiko Pod – Groove Moderator
    Paul van Dyk – For An Angel
    Jam & Spoon – Stella ’99
    The Prodigy – Breathe
    Nightwish – Ghost River
    The Prodigy – Piranha
    Saiko Pod – Options
    The Crystal Method – It Hertz
    DJ Sakin & Friends – Protect Your Mind (Braveheart)
    Infected Mushroom – Going Insane
    The Age Of Love – Age Of Love (Paul Van Dyk Mix)
    Moonman – Don’t Be Afraid
    The Prodigy – Omen
    Porcupine Tree – The Start Of Something Beautiful
    Plastic Boy – Twixt
    The Prodigy – Firestarter
    Bioluminescense – Cherokee
    Vibrasphere – Dewdrops
  1. […] do I listen to music when running in a race? As I said on a post back in May, music increases my concentration, provides stimulus, engenders positive vibes and passes the time […]