How To Find Good Workout Music By Using This One Simple, Science-Backed Trick

Ad failed to load

Whenever I exercise, a rather weird habit of mine is that I really like to listen to super sad, very emotional music, even if I'm doing a high-intensity workout. While many people seem to enjoy heart-pumpin' pop music, or something with a dance-worthy beat, the closest I get to that is like, a power ballad. Seriously, nothing gets me moving and sweating quite like the tunes most people use to cope with a broken heart or the death of a beloved pet. But apparently, the trick for figuring out how to find good workout music actually does have something to do with your emotional connection to those jams. In my case, all those tunes that make me want to bawl my eyes out just really get to my heart, and get me powering through those last few painful minutes on the treadmill.

It's certainly no secret that working out while listening to music makes the whole thing significantly easier for both your body and your mind. It does your brain some serious favors, as the tunes often act as a distraction, and they help you feel a little less susceptible to being taken down by feelings of pain and fatigue.

In fact, researchers say music can almost act like a drug.

Ad failed to load

Music encourages people to keep on going, despite how the movement is starting to tax the body. Pretty powerful, no?

But research also shows that when you identify with the emotions that an artist is conveying through a song, it makes you feel more motivated, no matter what the actual emotions happen to be. Costas Karageorghis, a leading expert on the psychology of exercise music at Brunel University in London, told Scientific American that our bodies are basically trained to respond viscerally and emotionally to music.

"We are almost hardwired to appreciate music aesthetically," Karageorghis said.

Ad failed to load

We identify with the emotions and ideas that are interwoven with the song, and the deeper we identify with or feel inspired by it, the more it might push us to keep going and keep on feeling right along with the song.

Music can be such a powerful tool that you'll want to consider what it is exactly that you associate with the song. For example, you might find yourself a little more motivated when you're pumping some iron to that one Kate Bush song that reminds you of the first time you made out with your high school crush, rather than the Sade album you and your dad listened to the summer you had mono. For some, identifying with the emotional state of the singer helps to motivate the workout, while others enjoy a good workout flow because of the cadence of the lyrics, the tempo, or even the bass of a song.

Interestingly enough, it's true that most people seem to prefer jams with a good beat and a higher tempo. A 2012 survey of college students' favorite workout music showed the following breakdown: Roughly 27 percent like to exercise to hip hop music, 24 percent prefer rock, about 20 percent like to sweat it out to pop music, and last but perhaps not necessarily least, a little less than 13 percent of those surveyed like to listen to country music when they work out.

Ad failed to load

While most people probably don't move exactly in time with the music during a workout, it turns out that doing so is actually pretty darn good for your body.

Studies have shown that exercise can be more effective when you move to the beat of the music.

Ad failed to load

Not only does your endurance improve, but your body actually uses less oxygen, too.

But again, my friends, it's really all about finding what works best for you, and it's possible that your playlist might change as often as your moods do. I say, no matter what, just go with it. If you're feelin' one of Taylor Swift's new songs, then jam the hell out to it. If you're vibin' with a Sam Smith ballad that makes you tear up all through your ab circuit, who cares? Whatever makes you feel motivated to move, just enjoy it.

As for me, I'll be over here doing a few burpees with Morrissey blasting in my ears.

Ad failed to load

Must Reads

The Travel Accessory You Need This Summer, According To Your Zodiac Sign

Leaving behind your hometown and exploring the great beyond is one of the most important things you'll ever do in your lifetime. It breaks the monotony of your daily routine, pushes you out of your comfort zone, and forces you to appreciate a world c…
By Roya Backlund

6 Commitment-Free Ways To Change Up Your Look After A Breakup, If You Feel Like It

I'm married and not breaking up (I just had to clarify before I get a call from my husband wondering what's going on). However, if for some reason we ever did separate (again, not happening!), I've imagined I'd have this Eat, Pray, Love moment where …
By Stephanie Montes

Here's Everything That's Leaving Netflix In June

Summer is here, and with it comes plenty of opportunity to binge watch more movies and TV shows that we never knew we needed in our lives. May has passed by in a blink of an eye, so I definitely need to catch up on what Netflix is getting rid of afte…
By Kristen Perrone

Cherry Print Is One Of Summer's Biggest Fashion Trends & It's So Much Sweeter Than Florals

If there's one thing that I've had my eye on this summer it's a cool, flirty cherry-print dress. Along with versatile black tops and blue denim, the color red has become a staple in my wardrobe this year and anytime I can infuse it into my daily look…
By Ariana Marsh

13 Must-Have Experiences You Should Buy In Your 20s, Instead Of A New Couch

Life is one big experience. When you hit your 20s, though, you start getting pulled in the direction of your responsibilities. It isn't totally a bad thing, but you don't want to get so wrapped into adulting that you forget life's zest. Amazing exper…
By Jasmine Vaughn-Hall

I Tried Kim Kardashian's Weird Beauty Obsession & I Can't Stop Taking Selfies

You've been there before: You're scrolling through your Instagram feed when you see your favorite celeb post about their favorite new product — a face serum, vitamins that will make your skin brighter, or a specialty food service. You can't help but …
By Stephanie Montes

Where You Should Vacation This Summer, According To Your Zodiac Sign

Summer is so much more than just sweating in 90 degree weather and enjoying a long, lazy break from school (if you're lucky enough to still be in school). It's a time for making exciting new plans, falling madly and hopelessly in love, opening your m…
By Roya Backlund

Wander or Bust: The Amalfi Coast May Just Be The Most Beautiful Thing You'll Ever See

Wander or Bust is an Elite Daily travel series that follows young women all over the globe to record their journeys as they experience the thrill of the far-flung and unknown. They'll track their budgets, where they stay, where they eat and drink, a…
By Kaylin Pound

6 Brutally Honest Phases Of Life After A Breakup, Because You Will Survive 

If you've ever been through a bad breakup, you know that the struggle is real. For the weeks (or possibly months, if it was a really bad one) that follow, life can be rough, but there is always light at the end of the tunnel. Don't believe me? Just l…
By Rachel Shatto

Here's How You Can Find Out What Your Aura Color Is

Do you remember that movie Almost Famous? More specifically, the scene where William is trying to have a phone call with his mom, but a clairvoyant Band-Aid keeps shouting "Your aura is purple!" in his face? Well, that was the first time I had ever h…
By Roya Backlund

9 Women In Their 20s Reflect On The Advice They Wish They Had At Graduation

Graduating college can feel seriously scary. You've spent your entire life in school, working and preparing for the moment you enter the real world, but what happens when you get there? What if things don't go totally according to plan? You may have …
By Brittney Morgan

3 Early Signs You Are Going To Have Undeniable Chemistry With Your Crush

I don't know if there's anything better than the excitement of having a new crush — especially when that feeling's reciprocated. The butterflies that rush through your stomach as soon as they enter a room. The electricity that zips through your veins…
By Genevieve Wheeler

Emoji Pool Floats Are Here To Match Every Mood You’re In This Summer

Searching for the perfect poolside accessory to lounge around in this summer? This year’s hottest warm weather water trend isn’t a big floppy hat or designer sunglasses — it’s an emoji pool float. That’s right: Your favorite little digital expression…
By Rachel Murphy

Here's How Your Mood & Your Favorite Music Are Secretly Connected, According To Science

If you're someone who's likely to be found with ear buds in her ears at all times, you might not realize just how often you listen to music, or the ways in which it's really affecting you. From your morning commute to the tunes you blast while you co…
By Caroline Burke

This Is How Long It Takes For A Partner To Really Trust You, According To Experts

Trust is easily one of the most important parts of a healthy relationship, but typically, it's not something that's fully there from the start because it takes some time to build. How long it takes for a partner to trust you is a question that doesn'…
By Tayi Sanusi

7 Things You Forgot To Thank Your High School Friends For & Should ASAP

Friends are a dime a dozen, but a solid, genuine group of girlfriends can be difficult to come by. When you find your tribe, you need to stick with them until the end. For some lucky people, your high school friends have been your besties since day o…
By Rachel Chapman

These 3 Zodiac Signs Will Have The Best Week, So Bask In The Glory

It's officially the second week of May, and the warmth of spring has finally arrived. The birds are chirping, the sun is shining, and the bright weather is allowing everyone to finally break out their favorite pair of shorts. If you think the gorgeou…
By Roya Backlund

7 Men Reveal What Attracted Them To Their Last Crush & They'll Make You Swoon

He reminded me of Nate Archibald from Gossip Girl. That's legitimately what I found appealing about my most recent crush. Sorry, but it doesn't get any deeper than that. In other instances though, when I'm not trying to live out my lustful, adolescen…
By Sydnee Lyons

A Relationship Expert Reveals His Long-Distance Relationship Survival Guide

"Long-distance relationships are extremely relaxing and easy to navigate," said no one in a long-distance relationship ever. Whether you are bicoastal babes or a quick two-hour train ride apart, distance makes the heart grow fonder, but it also makes…
By Kimmy Foskett