The Best Music For Burning The Most Fat
Adding music to any routine can not only keep you motivated, it can lift your spirits and help keep
you focused on the activity at hand. But can it really improve your workout?
Fast music, especially, provides us more information to process, which may distract someone
from the physical sensations of fatigue and block signals to stop exercising.
But not all fast songs do that.
If the music is too fast, it isn't likely to enhance performance or endurance, says Costas
Karageorghis, PhD, deputy head of sports psychology at Brunel University. He has studied
the effects of music on exercise for more than 20 years.
Studies show there is a sweet spot, in terms of tempo, between 120 and 140 beats per minute.
Beyond that, it doesn't improve enjoyment or any other psychological variable while
That's also true if you're working out at a very intense level, or about 70%-80% of your
aerobic capacity. In fact, for most elite athletes, music only has a small effect on
performance. That's because most athletes already have excellent focus when it comes to
regulating their movements and reaching a particular goal. Music may be too distracting and
even hinder performance for some professional athletes.
But for the average person who exercises at a moderate level a few days a week, music can
and does enhance working out. Unlike athletes who train for a living, most people actively
seek distractions while working out. Listening to music may ease the boredom they associate
Music can help you to tolerate exercise, and may even motivate you to work out more often.
Choosing Your Exercise Playlist
Sure, you have your personal preferences. But whatever musical style you favor, you might
want to check the beats per minute (bpm). You can look for apps that can help you determine
the bpm. Choose songs that mirror your heart rate, depending on the level of exercise.
As you pick up the pace to a moderately intense level, songs within the 120-140 bpm range
are ideal. Songs over 140 bpm are unlikely to improve workouts.
Don't Rely on Music
You run the risk of being too dependent on using music as fuel for motivation. From a
psychological point of view it's all about conditioning -- you are conditioning yourself to
exercise with music and expect it to be present, so when it is suddenly removed you can
expect a poor performance.
That's why you should cast MP3s aside once in a while to get used to performing without
music. For every two workouts with music, do one workout without music.
Watch the Volume
Crank up the volume on a hard workout, and your hearing may suffer.
High-intensity music coupled with high-intensity exercise can cause temporary hearing loss.
During exercise, blood from the inner ear rushes toward the working muscles, making you
more susceptible to hearing damage.
Because hearing loss is gradual and may take several years to appear, it's important to take
proper precautions before it's too late. If you use headphones, follow the "80 for 90 rule."
This means that it is safe to listen to music on a portable device, such as an iPod, at 80% of
the maximum level for no more than 90 minutes a day. Any more than that and you risk
overworking the ear.