I’ve learned the hard way that you can’t simply exercise your way to weight loss. Indeed, calories consumed (or not consumed) are much more important than calories burned. For example, if I reward a 40-minute run (475 calories burned) with a cheeseburger, fries and pint of beer (1,150 calories consumed), I have a net gain of 675 calories. Gulp!
But there are obvious reasons for exercising. It leads to better fitness for strenuous activities I enjoy like hiking, mountaineering and backcountry skiing. And from a weight-loss perspective, exercise makes me feel better and less likely to a) eat bad things and b) excessively snack, primarily out of boredom. So in a roundabout way, exercise does help me eat better and keep the pounds at bay.
The problem is that in the dead of winter, I’m not inclined (too lazy) to run outside. The trick, then, is finding sufficient motivation to run around a gym track, hamster style, for dozens of laps. The solution, for me, is listening to tunes, on an iPod and headphones, sufficiently upbeat to keep my legs churning for 40 minutes.
So here’s a favourite workout soundtrack, all based on songs released in 2015. No tedious classic rock for this aging boomer.
1. Grimes: Kill V Maim
This is pure fun from my favourite 2015 album. Wakes me from the dead.
2. Kurt Vile: Pretty Pimpin
A great song for propelling me around the track.
3. Sharon Van Etten: I Don’t Want to Let You Down
4. Mates of State: Staring Contest
I love a good harmony. When it’s a couple performing, so much the better.
5. Modest Mouse: Lampshades on Fire
The longtime band came out with this catchy new song.
6. Yacht: I Thought the Future Would be Cooler
Yacht is consistently cool, in my books.
7. Palehound: Molly
The latest female guitar god, following in Courtney Barnett’s footsteps? It was a tossup between this song and Cushioned Caging.
8. Kurt Vile: I’m an Outlaw
A more laid-back Kurt track, good for four-plus minutes of cruising.
9. Torres: Sprinter
Any song with the words “sprinter” and “Baptist” has me hooked.
10. Grimes: Flesh Without Blood
Don’t falter now. This infectious beat will push you to the finish line.