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These tunes will keep you running

Jonna Miller
| Friday, Sept. 15, 2017, 11:18 a.m.
The right music can make a bad run better and a good run great.
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The right music can make a bad run better and a good run great.

Registration is already open for the May 6 Dick's Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon . The Pittsburgh Great Race and the Mario Lemieux Foundation's 6.6K Run and Family Walk are both just around the corner, as well as a multitude of other neighborhood 5Ks, 10Ks, obstacle runs.

Some are uber-competive, some are purely just for fun. Color run, anyone? Hello, Turkey Trots! There are medals to be earned and T-shirts to be had, as part of your registration fee, of course.

In short, there's a race for just about anyone. In this case, it really isn't about winning but the journey to the finish line.

The weather is cooling off, the humidity is gone ... now is the time to get out there and run.

The right tunage pumping through your earbuds can make a long run seem a little less like work. Fitness Magazine tells you to find your beat. Plot the songs on your playlist by their beats per minute (bpm) with this quick rule of thumb: For a warm-up (or jogs between sprints), 130 bpm; for a steady-paced run, 150 bpm and for sprints, 170 bpm.

To get you motivated to hit the pavement, track, trails — whatever you fancy, I asked my fellow Tribune-Review staffers to share the songs that keep them going. A quick Google search will give you the bpm on all of these.

I'm sure you'll find a few new-to-you tracks, as well as some old favorites here. As for me, I'll be burning up my Discover card over on iTunes adding some of these to my playlist.

I aspire to be a great runner, but in reality I just struggle along over the prescribed distance. Thanks to encouragement from my ever-patient husband, we finished the Pittsburgh half marathon this year. I've done the marathon relay a few times, too. Mostly I sign up for races — Greensburg Turkey Trot, Lemieux 6.6, the Jingle Run, Woodruff 5K, the Lance Wentzel Memorial 5K — to spend time with my friends, eat pizza and drink beer. It's mostly about the post-race activities for me. It's all about balance. Here's a selection from my current playlist.

"All or Nothing" by The Clarks

"LaVie Boheme" from the "Rent" soundtrack

"Welcome to the Jungle" by Guns N' Roses

"You Can't Stop the Beat" from the "Hairspray" soundtrack

"No Sleep Till Brooklyn" by the Beastie Boys

"Kickstart My Heart" by Motley Crue

"We're in the Money" by Rosemary Clooney

— Jonna Miller, assistant features editor

You'll never see me run anywhere, but "Lose Yourself" by Eminem has always been my "pump-up" song.

— Gemma Pollice, layout paginator

I ran it back in 1998 and 1999 and was fortunate to finish (the marathon) both times. Ran a 3:42 in 1999 and finished 600 out of a little over 3,000. Had sooo many different songs in my head but two that I remember by The Doobie Brothers "It Keeps You Running" and "Takin' It to the Streets." It was an experience I'll never forget ­— running through 13 different ethic neighborhoods with thousands of people cheering you on. After all, us Pittsburgers don't need too much of a reason to party !!!

— Jim Park, district manager - circulation Greensburg

My list is pretty eclectic. It ranges from classic ("Go Your Own Way," "Start Me Up," "Crazy Train") to modern ("Seven Nation Army," "HandClap") rock, with rap ("Lose Yourself," "Stronger") thrown in for good measure. There are the Rocky songs ("Gonna Fly Now," "Eye of the Tiger"). There are the songs with running right in the title ("Born to Run"). Then there's the random stuff (one year I had "Nod Ya Heads," which is the Will Smith theme song from Men In Black 2). I just pick music I feel a connection to, and each song has to have a fast beat.

I ran the Pittsburgh Marathon each of the past two years, ran the half marathon twice in the past and usually run at least 5 miles daily.

— Doug Gulasy, sports reporter, Valley News Dispatch edition

"Eye of the Tiger," right? C'mon! Macklemore's "Can't Hold Us" ... That's a good one.

— Rob Amen, digital content leader

1. "Walk" (Foo Fighters): Not a Foo Fighters fan but this is the best workout song. It always gives me an extra kick, especially when I'm running up one of Greensburg's considerable hills.

2. "Painkiller" (Freestylers): Driving beat and fast lyrics make for great kick music.

3." I Will Survive" (Cake): Probably the best cover song by any band beside the Grateful Dead. Turns Gloria Gaynor's '70s hit into a searing ode of endurance.

4. "Lean Back" (Terror Squad): I envision myself being cool enough to hang with Fat Joe and company when this song hits my earbuds.

5. "Gypsy Road" (Cinderella): I know, it's '80s glam rock. So what? This is the perfect four-minute rock song.

6. Any long, epic song by the Grateful Dead. I'll go with "Terrapin Station" for an example. These songs make you believe you can accomplish anything when you're training.

I've run for years: half-marathons, marathon relays, 10Ks, 5Ks, adventure/obstacle races. Never seem to finish higher than 4th in my age group. Best half marathon time 1:36.00. As of today, logged 608.7 miles this year.

­ — Mike Kovak, sports copy desk/staff writer

I'm no pro runner by any means, but I do run for exercise. I don't run marathons, just 5Ks. My next one will likely be Pittsburgh's Turkey Trot on Thanksgiving.

I'm sure my music taste differs from our average reader, but I listen to a lot of punk/post-hardcore/ska/etc. when I run because it's usually fast and keeps me moving. Sometimes I'll throw in some pop like Ariana Grande. Here's probably my top 5 right now:

1. Dance Gavin Dance's version of "That's What I Like" (originally a Bruno Mars song)

2. Hail the Sun "Paranoia"

3. The Suicide Machines "Insecurities"

4. Dance Gavin Dance "Philosopher King"

5. Ariana Grande "Into You"

— Kristina Serafini, photojournalist

I ran the Pittsburgh Marathon and Great Race a couple of years ago. I am new to running. I did 3.5 miles on a relay team for the Pittsburgh Marathon and did the Great Race with both races having my personal trainer running with me. I also did the Turkey Trot, with a trainer running with me, helping me along the way. I also ran a race in Greensburg. The songs that get me going:

Anything by Sia, specifically "The Greatest"

Miley Cyrus, "Do My Thang"

Fifth Harmony, "Work, Work,Work"

Lady Gaga, "Edge of Glory" and "Bad Romance"

Demi Lovato, "Confident"

Luis Fonsi, "Despacito"

Journey, "Don't Stop Believin'"

Anything off of the New Kids on the block album out now, called "Thankful."

— Melissa Colosimo, multi-media advertising consultant

I like "Born to Run" and "Born in the USA" by Bruce Springsteen and "Flashdance" by Irene Cara. Depending on my mood, "Sympathy for the Devil" by the Rolling Stones or Amy Grant's "Breath of Heaven."

A couple of Adele songs "Hello" and "Someone Like You" are good for getting your mind off the slog of running. Best songs I heard while running the Great Race in what likely was September 1990, were the chants that ROTC units were singing as I got on the Boulevard of the Allies in Oakland. They were in their uniforms, may have been bearing boots instead of running shoes. This was during the Operation Desert Shield, the prelude to Operation Desert Storm.

During another Great Race, I can recall running through Oakland where the student apartments are along the course and someone was blasting "Born to Run" from speakers mounted in their apartment window.

Same with Rocky.

­ — Joe Napsha, reporter

"Jammin'" by Bob Marley.

I'm very fortunate in the fact I usually win my division when I run a 5K or 10K race that I enter. The only reason I can say this is there aren't that many 55 - 59-year-old barefoot runners.

There really isn't a division for that, but I kind to like to think there's one. In reality, I have just an average running time for someone my age (25 minutes/5K).

Gary Mazzotta, commercial production director

I am not a current runner, but I have a few suggestions:

"We Will Rock You" – Freddie Mercury/Queen

"Eye of the Tiger" – Bill Conti cover

"Rocky" theme - DeEtta West

— Linda Schweitzer, receptionist

No race experience to speak of yet, but that new DJ Khaled song "I'm The One" is the bomb!

­— Jesse Huba, obituary department

I go with the songs from the Rocky movies: "Gonna Fly Now," "Eye of the Tiger" and "Hearts on Fire" to get me motivated.

I have finished six half marathons in Pittsburgh. After taking two years off, I plan to run the full marathon in 2018, as I will be 50 years old.

— Jim Spezialetti, reporter

I tend to like angry songs when I'm exercising, they keep my heart pumping. So my current favorites are "American Idiot" by Green Day and "Song for the Dumped" by Ben Folds Five.

— Sue Jones, features editor

Jonna Miller is the Tribune-Review assistant features editor. Reach her at 724-850-1270, jonnamiller@tribweb.com or via Twitter @JLMiller_Trib.

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