Music in the gym

Good morning, %FIRSTNAME%.

I’ve been a long-time advocate of music in the gym, particularly when training alone.

But this year, I’ve ditched the headphones and have exposed my training session to more variety than Swedish house music.

To my surprise, and mild disappointment, it turns out that no one in the gym was commenting on my training intensity, strength, or how well I can style my hair with sweat. 

In fact, no one seems to care… at all! The narrative in my head appears to have been slightly different to reality, not for the first time.

Aside from the initial disappointment of the lack of fanfare around my training, I have actually enjoyed the more perceptive.

A big difference I notice is the ability to focus during the set, and then switch off during rest periods. Instead of listening to the song and getting thinking about the next lift, I just stare in space (or sometimes the mirror) and zone out.

Then the stopwatch vibrates, and it’s time to go again.

I have also enjoyed this during cardio.

I learned the hard way to iPhones and beats studio headphones aren’t waterproof, which provided quick exposure to cardio without music (kidding - I didn’t actually swim with a phone and headphones).

But where it’s most noticeable, and surprising, is running. Having no input is strangely relaxing, now that I’ve pushed part the mental conversation of “I want to go home. I want to go home. I want to go home” and semi-enjoy running.

While the performance benefits of music are often touted, there could be a case for switching back every now and then.

If you’ve been listening to music, or the same playlist for a while, would you think about mixing it up next session?

If you do, let me know how it goes.

Tom Fitzgerald