Running Songs By Christine Luff | Reviewed by Richard N. Fogoros, MD Updated August 15, 2016 Print Listening to your favorite running songs can give you a boost of energy or motivation to power through to the end. But is it a good idea to always listen to music on the run? Consider the benefits and drawbacks of running with music, and then get some inspiration for your running song playlists.Pros of Listening to Songs As You RunMany runners find that listening to music is an excellent strategy for battling boredom during runs. And if you think you get a little extra pep in your step when you're listening to high-energy music, you're not imagining things. Studies have shown that listening to music can boost athletes' speed. One study found that listening to fast-paced music especially improved performance in the beginning and end of a workout.However, it's worth keeping in mind that research looking at music and performance has been done in labs with inexperienced athletes, not under real racing conditions. Article Music to Match Your Stride: Running Songs at 180 BPM List Great Hip-Hop Songs to Add to Your Running Playlist (It may be easier for music to invigorate a subject under low-excitement conditions such as doing a time trial in a lab.) Runners in a real race are likely to already have their adrenaline pumping, thanks to the excitement of a race, so they may not necessarily need the extra stimulation of music.Cons of Listening to Music When RunningOf course, running with music does have its disadvantages. One downside is that your cadence may be off, as you'll likely speed up and slow down based on the tempo of the music. That's fine if you're doing a run when you don't care too much about your pace, but it can be a disadvantage when you're trying to pace for a specific workout or race. Some races may not allow headphones for safety reasons. Even if the race doesn't ban them, it still may be a good idea to not wear them because you may not be able to hear instructions from race officials and other runners on the course.Another warning about wearing headphones during a race is that you'll miss out on a lot of the race fun and excitement. You won't be able to listen to bands, hear people cheering, or talk to other race participants.There's also a chance that your music listening device (say, your cell phone) could stop working during your race, so it's important that you don't get totally dependent on it. If you rely on your tunes to keep you moving, but your phone gets wet and dies during a race, will you still be able to hit your goal time?Most importantly, when running outside, your music may block noise from oncoming cars, cyclists, other runners—even unfriendly dogs. One of the basic etiquette rules of running is that you can hear others, so you can move out of the way or stop, when necessary. Article The Best (And Cheesiest) Songs You Can Run To Article Marathon Running Playlist Songs So, if you do choose to listen to music when running outdoors, make sure you keep the volume very low or keep one earbud out. Or, save your running songs for the treadmill, where you may need the extra distraction to avoid getting bored.Benefits of Warm-Up Music Are RetainedFortunately, some research shows that you can still get some of the benefits of listening to high-energy music even after you’ve listened to it.One study found that listening to high-tempo music during a 10-minute warm-up led to better performance in high-intensity exercise, even when there’s no music playing during the exercise itself.So, if you're worried about safety or you don't want to wear (or aren't permitted to use) headphones during a race, you can imitate those Olympic athletes who listen to some high-energy, motivating songs during their pre-race warm-ups. You'll get most of the same benefits as you would if you listened to it during the race.If your running music needs a refresh, browse through these song playlists to get some new ideas. Running Music Playlists: Top 40 Running SongsTop 40 hits and pop music and are popular categories for running songs. Get suggestions for some top 40 running songs you can to add to your running music playlists.Best Running Songs from 2016Best Running Songs from 2015Best Running Songs from 2014Best Running Songs from 2013Best Running Songs from 2012 Best Running Songs from 2011 Best Running Songs from 2009Best Running Songs from 2007Hip-Hop/Rap Running SongsThe hip-hop/rap genre is another very popular category of running music. Hip-hop and rap songs usually have a great beat and are very versatile, so they can be used for hard workouts as well as slow, easy runs.Hip-Hop Running Music More Running SongsHere are more running songs playlists, from '80s tunes to oldies.Running Songs From MoviesCheesy Running SongsRunning Songs From TV ShowsRunning Song Playlists From RunnersRunning Songs at 180 BPMMarathon Running Playlist'80s Running Songs Songs With "Run" in Their Title Power Running Songs Article Popular Songs for Running in 2016 Article Broadway Show Running Songs Broadway Show Running SongsUsers' Favorite Running Songs Sources:Brooks, K.; Brooks, K., Enhancing sports performance through the use of music. Journal of Exercise Physiology 2010, 13 (2), 52-57.Edworthy, J.; Waring, H., The effects of music tempo and loudness level on treadmill exercise. Ergonomics 2006, 49 (15), 1597-1610.Jarraya, M.; et, al. The Effects of Music on High-intensity Short-term Exercise in Well Trained Athletes. Asian Journal of Sports Medicine 2012, 3.Mohammadzadeh, H.; et. al., The effects of music on the percieved exertion rate and performance of trained and untrained individuals during progressive exercise. Physical Education and Sport 2008, 6 (1), 67-74.