We all know exercise is good for our health, but motivating yourself to work out can often feel like an uphill battle. Everyone has one of those days sometimes, even the biggest fitness fanatics — the kind of day when you can't imagine putting on workout clothes, let alone doing the actual workout.
When exercise is the last thing you want to do, sometimes you need a little extra push to get moving. Music may be the push you need. The right song can get you hyped up and motivated to push through your workout. That's why fitness instructors have been using music to get people excited about exercise for decades.
The benefits of music for fitness is backed by science, too. One 2006 study showed that music may distract from fatigue and make exercising more comfortable. A 2021 review found that music is an accessible, cost-effective means to improve acute exercise performance. So yes, music can get you motivated and make your workout more bearable — and who doesn't want that?
We asked some fitness experts to give us their top workout hits that can get people in the zone. Here are the 50 best workout songs they came up with — plus a few extra for added fun!
Stephanie Mansour, Personal Trainer and TODAY Fitness Contributor
- “Good as Hell” by Lizzo
- “Crazy in Love” by Beyoncé
- “Jumpin’ Jumpin’” by Destiny’s Child
- “Stronger” by Britney Spears
- “That’s What I Like” by Bruno Mars
- “Once in a Lifetime” by Flo Rida
- “Where’s the Love” by Hanson
- “Dear Future Husband” by Meghan Trainor
- “Cold Heart” by Elton John
- “A Whole New World” by Brad Kane and Lea Salonga
“I view my workout music as my own personal pump up time,” Mansour tells TODAY.com. “It makes me feel more confident about myself, about my body. I like really listen to the words and like the energy of the singer.”
Rebecca Kennedy, Peloton Instructor
- “Alive” by Gorgon City & Pax
- “Make it Happen” by Rufus du Sol
- “A Deeper Love (Sam Halabi remix)” by Aretha Franklin
- “Dreams and Nightmares” by Meek Mill
- “Gypsy Woman (Gianni Coletti KeeJay Freak Remix)” by Crystal Waters
- “Stop this Flame (MK REMIX)” by Celeste
- “Dancing on My Own” by Robyn
- “Awa Ni (JAMES HYPE REMIX)” by The Knocks featuring Kah-Lo
- “People Aint Dancing” by Billen Ted featuring Kah-Lo
- “My High” by Disclosure featuring Slowthai
- “San Frandisco” by Dom Dolla
“I need a beat! Songs that make you feel something, I love a deep house track that gets my heart rate up, makes me want to dance, and while I love lyrics, I genuinely crave the way these songs make me feel,” Kennedy tells TODAY.com via email.
Denis Morton, Peloton Instructor
- “The Pot” by TOOL
- “Digital Love” by Daft Punk
- “Thunderstruck” by AC/DC
- “Open Your Eyes” by Snow Patrol
- “Clubbed to Death (Kurayamino Variation)” by Rob Dougan
- “Pumpin’ Blood (Chainsmokers Remix)” by NONONO
- “Pennywise Tribute” by Bassnectar
- “Ruff Ryders Anthem” by DMX
- “‘Till I Collapse” by Eminem
- “Legend” by The Score
“The beat, the build, the lyrics — whatever musical element speaks to us, it can create an arc for us to follow into the movement and the moment and inspire us to move beyond our expectations,” Morton tells TODAY.com via email.
Jess Sims, Peloton Instructor
- “Friday (Dopamine Re-edit)” by Friday featuring Mufasa & Hypeman
- “Texts Go Green” by Drake
- “Blessed” by Shenseea featuring Tyga
- “KEEP GOING” by DJ Khaled
- “He wasn’t Man Enough” by Toni Braxton
- “Grrrls” by Lizzo
- “Fantasy” by Mariah Carey
- “B*tch Better Have my Money” by Rihanna
- “Show Me Love” by Robin S.
- “Break my Soul” by Beyoncé
“In the moments of self-doubt, I pray for my girl Rihanna to come remind me who I am,” Sims tells TODAY.com in an email. And “KEEP GOING” helps her do just that. “I literally sing the words out loud to ‘keep going’ through the toughest moments of my workout,” Sims says.
Ash Pryor, Peloton Instructor
- “Remember This” by NF
- “I Am Here” by P!NK
- “Don’t Let Me Let Go” by Dillion Francis &ILLENIUM featuring Evan Gia
- “Bikini Bottom” by Ice Spice
- “Pick up the Pace” by BIG K.R.I.T.
- “Dancin” by Kash Doll
- “Better in Color” by Lizzo
- “Gladiator” by Zayde Wolf
- “Got to Be Real” by Cheryl Lynn
- “Red Eye” by Justin Bieber and Troy Boi
“Taking your mood and what you need into consideration are both important factors when choosing workout music because the playlist can impact how effective you will be,” Pryor tells TODAY via email.
Rad Lopez, Peloton Instructor
- “Cold Hearted II” by Meek Mill
- “Spectrum (Say My Name) Calvin Harris Remix” by Florence + The Machine
- “Hasta Que Dios Diga” by Anuel AA, Bad Bunny
- “Mr. Carter” by Lil Wayne and JAY-Z
- “Mayback Curtains” by Meek Mill, featuring Nas, John Legend, Rick Ross
- “Midnight City” by M83
- “Efecto” by Bad Bunny
- “Quevedo” by Bizzarrap & Quevedo
- “Nazareno” by Farruko
- “Frozen” by Lil Baby
“There is absolutely no doubt that music can drive a workout, the mood of the workout and the overall enjoyment of it, too,” Lopez tells TODAY.com in an email.
Don’t feel like picking and choosing? Don’t worry. Check out this this playlist of all the songs.