[Before we get to the matter at hand, a little local loving. Today is the last day to help remedy the sponsor-default snafu that hit the Menlo Park Grand Prix this year. The total bill Velo Girls were stuck with was $4000 to the City of Menlo Park. So far 75% of the bill has been raised, but there’s still $1000 to go. If we all forgo our lattes today and pitch that $5 toward a fantastic, well-run local race then I bet we could make a dent in that remaining $1000. Click to donate.]
It’s been a while since we’ve had a post about training and tactics, hasn’t it? Well, I’m here to help everybody out with what is quite possibly THE most important part of your race: the warm-up. Specifically, we’re going to discuss the most important part of any warm-up.
That’s right. Today, we will focus on the warm-up soundtrack.
Now, some people argue that the warm-up soundtrack is a highly personal thing, comprised of songs (perhaps even the odd spoken word piece or Gregorian chant) that have the utmost emotional significance to the individual listener. These people scour their oversized music collections for an hour’s worth of songs that have enough meaning to earn a spot on the all important warm-up playlist, which inherently represents the very life force of the listener and must be approached with the reverence and awe due an idol of its spiritual magnificence.
These are the same people who refuse to write race reports because it gives their competitors too much insight into their tactics and their infinitely complex psyche. In other words, they are the emo wankers. Don’t pay any attention to them.
A truly effective warm-up playlist does two things: A) gets your body moving and loose; and B) keeps your mind occupied with fluff so that you don’t overthink your race before it starts.
Many genres of music can provide the fuel for mindless booty-shaking, but few are as effective as horrendous pop music. Think about it — when Kelly Clarkson or Christina Aguilara sings, you shake your ass and you sing along with the chorus (don’t try to deny it, we’ve all seen you singing in your car on the way to races). That level of embarrassment is exactly what we want to harness in an effective warm-up. So close your eyes, take a deep breath, and sack up. Winning requires sacrifice. We’re going there.
The best thing you can do to improve your own warm-up is to figure out what one-hit wonders float your boat. What are your guilty pleasures? Now is not the time to pretend you have sophisticated, cutting-edge taste in music – you don’t. Now is the time to embrace whatever shameful secrets you have been trying to cover up. Bust out your Christina, your Kelly, your Britney. Play every album in your InSync collection. Blast the Backstreet Boys, take those Spice Girls down off the shelf, and break it down. They’ve been waiting patiently and this is their time to shine.
With all of this in mind, I’m going to let you in on my own secret weapon:
seabiscuit’s warm-up playlist
- Under Pressure – David Bowie and Queen
- Oh L’Amour – Erasure
- Big Time Sensuality – Björk
- Dangerous – Roxette
- Groove Is In The Heart – Deee-Lite
- Girls Just Want to Have Fun – Cyndi Lauper
- Like A Prayer – Madonna
- Boys Don’t Cry – The Cure
- Pour Some Sugar On Me – Def Leppard
- Eye of the Tiger – Survivor (don’t judge me, you’ve got it somewhere, too)
- Train in Vain – The Clash
- Rock You (Like A Hurricane) – Scorpions
- Runnin’ With The Devil – Van Halen
- Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey
- Livin’ On A Prayer – Bon Jovi
Now that I’m standing here in my virtual underwear, I want to know: what crappy music do you warm up to?
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