A Sampling of Songs from my Marathon Playlist

El Condor Pasa (If I Could) – Simon and Garfunkel
I decided a couple weeks ago that I wanted to add this song into my section of “chill but runnable” songs at the end of my marathon playlist. I love the way this song builds, I like the lyrics, and I’ve been listening to it over and over while getting ready in the morning since I re-watched Wild a few weeks ago.

Sweet Thing – Hozier (cover)
This song came on one day during a tempo/hill run when I had my iPod shuffle on “all songs,” and I had an amazing time coasting up and down some rolling hills listening to this song. I added it to the chill section of my marathon playlist because I’m hoping it’ll help me channel that run and bring a smile to my face when I start to get tired.

Lean On – Major Lazer
This is a go-to speedwork song for me since last summer/fall when I first heard it. When my running group was still considering doing a Ragnar, I listened to this a lot and visualized that race. We ended up not doing it, but this song guided me to enough fast finishes through the end of summer and early fall that it’s on frequent rotation during speed sessions. It’s like a Pavlovian response: I hear this song and I start to push the pace!

Get Your Freak On – Missy Elliott
This one is got on my playlist last summer thanks to this commercial, and it’s been a pump up jam ever since:

My Shot
– Hamilton OST

This song gets me so pumped. I often sing/rap along while I’m running or at least mouth the words if I’m running hard. I listened to this song over and over in the final miles of my PR half marathon this spring, and I have a feeling I’ll be skipping a lot of songs to get back to this one in the last mile or two of my marathon Sunday. I’ve got a bunch of my favorite songs from Hamilton on my playlist for approximately mile 16-19; hopefully I can channel some badass Founding Fathers and avoid the dreaded Wall!

Work B*tch – Britney Spears
I’ve run some really speedy miles listening to this song during this training cycle. I reserve it for circumstances when I need a serious push. I’ve put this one strategically in the last half hour or so of my playlist when I’ll really need the boost and the reminder to “Work, bitch.”

Just A Girl – No Doubt
This has been my jam since I was about 4 years old and it never fails to get me pumped up on the run. I have this song placed in the mix right around when I should be hitting mile 8 when I plan to drop the pace to really-really race pace. Gwen Stefani will get me down to those 7:40s and keep me there!

All These Things That I’ve Done – The Killers
Ever since this song was featured in a Nike commercial, it’s been a really good song for “inspirational running hard.” Every time I run to this song, I feel like I’m an elite athlete in a cool commercial. This one is also toward the end of the playlist when I’ll need the boost both emotionally and physically.


Now I will admit that my marathon playlist is currently 4 hours and 1 minute long… and I only intend to be running for 3 hours and 32 minutes (or less!)… but that just gives me the freedom to skip a few here and there!

Do you listen to music when you run/race? What are your pump up jams?


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