10 Songs To Add To Your Exercise Playlist

If your New Year’s resolution was to start going to the gym more, I’m here to help you stick with it. Nothing bothers me more than seeing the gym packed like sardines in the first week and a half of school only to find it empty in week two. You’re not going to achieve your fitness goals if you give up that fast!

Half of the struggle of getting through your weekly workout is trying to find the perfect playlist to get you through your sweaty struggles, I know. I can’t even do one sit-up without music supporting me the entire way. Luckily for you, I tested many songs in the past week during my personal workouts to find the best ones to compile into a playlist for you. Whether you’re lifting weights or running on the elliptical or treadmill, you’re about to have a workout that’s going to push you past your limits.

I mean, what’s the point of working out if you’re not actually going to work?

“O Sangeeta” by Daniel Hart, off of his album, The Orientalist.

My apprehensions towards Daniel Hart’s album title aside, “O Sangeeta” is a real charmer. You may be wondering why anyone would start an exercise playlist with sliding violins and slow tempos, but I ask you this: when you get on the elliptical for the first time, do you run at full-speed immediately? The answer is no.

“O Sangeeta” is a song full of longing and wonder. Hart sings about the mysterious Sangeeta with the “long black hair” and who, like him, is “not much for alcohol.” As you begin your workout, move in time with the sliding violins and swing your hair in time with the short, jerky guitar chords. You’ll thank me later when you’re not winded in the first 30 seconds of your workout session.

“Have Love Will Travel” by The Sonics, off of their record, Here Are The Sonics.

Forget The Beatles – The Sonics is the band from the 60s that you should be paying attention to.

I hope you weren’t too mesmerized by “O Sangeeta” by Daniel Hart because “Have Love Will Travel” is going to be a rude awakening. Shut up with your complaining and push yourself harder to this track. The Sonics are holding onto intangible love and they’re ready to travel across the country for it. They’re so ready – they even wrote a saxophone solo for it.

Wipe the sweat from your forehead and keep going.

“Making Eyes” by Saltwater Sun, off of their Wild EP.

All right, you might be tired. I get it. “Making Eyes” by Saltwater Sun is a great song to help you temporarily forget that you’re working out. It’s expected that with a name like “Saltwater Sun” that their music is going to be wonderfully sun-stained, but they’ve got enough London-cool to balance out the two (we don’t need another Best Coast on our hands, do we?).

“Making Eyes” is full of energy and makes you want to scream at people who might have wronged you in the past. Avoid the social embarrassment and use that energy to lift more weights or run faster.

“Falling And Laughing” by Orange Juice, off of their album, You Can’t Hide Your Love Forever.

There’s always room for Scottish post-punk in your playlist. Now that I’ve officially written the most pretentious sentence ever, we can continue.

“Falling And Laughing” is a smooth, bright sounding song with a groovy bassline. Edwyn Collins croons throughout the song about “falling and laughing” and “taking the pleasure with the pain.” Use the lyrics to motivate yourself while you keep up with the quick, short drum beats. Sure, you’ll be tired today and sore tomorrow, but think of the gains, my friend! It’ll be worth it in the end.

“The Boy With The Arab Strap” by Belle & Sebastian, off of their record, The Boy With The Arab Strap.

I’ll be nice to you and your body for five minutes and 14 seconds – but five minutes and 14 seconds only. Catch your breath and let Stuart Murdoch sweetly sing you out of your breathlessness.

“The Boy With The Arab Strap” is essentially the musical equivalent of a brisk spring day. The piano is upbeat and mellow while the guitars are warm to the ear when you can hear them over the strong claps and drums.

Deep breath and a swig of cold water. You’re almost done.

“Blue Monday” by New Order, off of their album, Power, Corruption & Lies.


You had five minutes and 14 seconds to rest – now you have seven minutes and 29 seconds of work ahead of you. Keep up with that bouncing synthesizer and bass. I want to see you all staring straight ahead, forcing your body beyond humane limits.

“Blue Monday” by New Order is a song that has never heard of the concept of "stopping." It’s certainly a behavior you should emulate in your regular workout.

“Ready For The Floor” by Hot Chip, off of their record, Made In The Dark.

If you haven’t passed out from exhaustion after “Blue Monday,” congratulations. You’ve earned the glory of moving easily to the moderately-paced electro-track, “Ready For The Floor” by Hot Chip.

Alexis Taylor’s falsetto is something to die for. It’s wonderful sweet and gentle on the ear. The bouncy synthesizer and guitar work entice you to keep your work out in time with them.

Look, put it this way: you’re approaching the end of your work out. You might be feeling “ready for the floor” as in dropping to the gym floor and not moving until next semester.

Don’t do that. That’s how people get ringworm.

“Your Body Is A Weapon” by The Wombats, off of their album, Glitterbug.

This song is particularly fitting for the title alone. It’s anthemic “oh, oh, oh, ohs” aside, suggesting the mere idea that your body could be a weapon is all the more reason to work out harder. Think about the abs you’ll have! The perfectly sculpted calves!

“Your Body Is A Weapon” is a great indie-pop song through and though. Its fast-tempo beckons you to jump around your gym, your room, wherever, and move your arms frenetically. You’ll be singing along in no time, crying at the top of your lungs, “Your body is a weapon, love! / And it makes me want to cry!”

“Gorgeous” by X Ambassadors, off of their record, VHS.

You bet your damn ass that you’re going to feel gorgeous at the end of your workout – even while all drenched in sweat.

X Ambassadors have crafted a testimony to your physical beauty in “Gorgeous.” While the repetition of “you’re so gorgeous / ‘cause you make me feel gorgeous” might get on your nerves, the band is just ensuring that you know. It’s a passion-infused pop song that sounds similar to Nick Jonas’ “Jealous,” but significantly better in message.

Headbang, wail with Sam Harris – do whatever you got to in order to fuel that workout adrenaline.

“Taffy Come Home” by Telegram.

I have very little idea what the leader singer of Telegram is singing about, but regardless, his voice wails in all the best ways.

“Taffy Come Home” features a rich, energetic guitar-driven melody that grows in intensity as the song continues. Luckily for you, it doesn’t increase in tempo. The song itself is steady and perfect to end your workout to. It’s wonderfully fuzzy in sound - perhaps mirroring how your head feels after your workout.

Drink some water and head home.

You can listen to this week’s playlist via Spotify below.