Music may be the most important part of a workout. A truly great playlist can take the rider away from the bike and to a place where they can work hard without realizing it. In the four years I've been coordinating music for my spinning classes, I've made close to 200 playlists. But I still stress about what music to use until the moment I press play. There is a lot of pressure on my music (and of course, my energy and enthusiasm as an instructor); with the same playlist, I can give one person the best workout of their year while another person may be bored to tears.
It's that personal. Though I would be able to spin all day to Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson on repeat, I realize that everybody has different tastes and I really try to mix it up in my classes. I use music from different genres, eras, artists and, of course, tempos. I've done theme rides ("Valentine's Day," "Pre-1990," "Pride Ride"), challenge rides ("The 30-Minute Spin Cycle") and I throw in timely music as well (like a recent homage to Whitney Houston).
All that being said, ultimately I go with whatever makes my participants the most energized and enables them to be as successful as possible. The playlist I'm sharing here has been one of the most popular at my classes in New York this year. It's lead people to sweat, work hard and ask me after class if I had a personal vendetta against them. I take that as a compliment.
Dena's Big City Bike Ride
Caveat: Recommended for indoor biking (please do not bike outdoors with headphones!)
- Move a Little Faster by Dionne Bromfield -- warmup
- Let It Rock by Kevin Rudolf ft. Lil Wayne -- seated flat
- The Way I Are (remix) by Timbaland -- seated/standing hill
- Tik Tok by Keha -- standing sprints
- You Make the Rain Fall (remix) by Kevin Rudolf -- seated/standing hill
- Hey Baby by Pitbull -- standing hill
- What A Feeling by The Global Deejays -- active recovery
- No Hands (Top 40 Remix) by Waka Flocka Flame -- seated flat
- Commander by Kelly Rowland ft. David Guetta -- jumps
- Everything Tonight (remix) by Pitbull ft. Ne-Yo, Afrojack & Nayer -- standing hill
- Somebody Told Me by The Killers -- seated sprints
- Family Affairs by Mary J. Blige -- cooldown
For more music, check out the rest of the HuffPost Workouts series here.