Pumped up: the must-listen-to albums for your next workout

Summer, after all, is not far away…

With January and, more importantly here, your new-year resolutions firmly in the rear-view mirror, it’s likely that your promise to hit up the gym more frequently has wavered over the past few weeks. However, it would be remiss to start neglecting the Technogym stations altogether, given the mountain of cash you’ve likely pumped into your new gear and membership – therefore, to help keep you enthused about your fitness regime, we’ve profiled a trio of albums for you to add to your Spotify queue, each of which is perfectly suited to a specific type of workout.

So, all you need to do is plug in – or perhaps invest in a new set of speakers if flexing your muscles in your home gym – and pick up those kettlebells. Summer, after all, is not far away.

For shifting metal: The Blueprint 3 by Jay-Z

‘What We Talkin’ About’, the opener on Jay-Z’s tour de force album The Blueprint 3, is a statement of intent, a thumper of a track layered with spiky hi-hat rasps and deep, synthy hits that ride on Jay’s punchy lyrics – it’s a fast beat that’s simultaneously steadily paced, and it sets a great tone when doing those initial explosive reps on the bench press. It then leads to the sauve ‘Thank you’, ideal for when you really get into the groove, and big hits ‘Run This Town’, ‘Empire State of Mind’ and the jumpy ‘On to the Next One’ will keep motivation up when churning through your circuit. During your final few minutes, ‘Young Forever’ will give everything that cinematic feel.

For calm, focused movement: Valtari by Sigur Rós

For exactly three decades, Icelandic band Sigur Rós has been celebrated for its calming, almost cosmic tracks, mixing electronics with rock and orchestral hallmarks, all of which is tied together by lead singer Jónsi’s etherial voice. The group’s 2012 album is considered one of the best in its accomplished oeuvre, a slow-buildup work that dovetails choirs, piano keys, strings and distorted guitars; the listener, as a result, is brought to a place of pure stillness, a perfect thing when undertaking slow movements on the mat, whether that’s for Pilates or yoga. There’s a particularly good crescendo in ‘Rembihnútur’, so take note so that you can time it alongside your more expressive, exaggerated movements.

For the treadmill: Rocky IV, Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

It’s a fitness cliché to plug in and listen to ‘Gonna Fly Now’, the smash-hit Rocky theme song that joggers and wannabe Kipchoges listen to when pounding the pavement. To circumvent the iconic trumpets, but still stay close to the Stallone spirit, fast forward a few films and dive into the Rocky IV soundtrack, a glorious 80s-thick arrangement from the likes of Kenny Loggins and Survivor. ‘Living in America’ is a great pick-me-up when the legs are feeling heavy; ‘Heart’s on Fire’ is good for when things begin to speed up; but, it’s with ‘Training Montage’ when one can really run the distance, a song that’ll transport you to the colds and pain of working out in a snow-buried cabin in the Soviet woodlands. IYKYK.

Need a workout space? These are the 7 London gyms that are perfect for every type of fitness tribe…

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