6:30 pm EDT, May 6, 2012

Movie soundtracks: Top 10 albums to get your blood pumping

One of the best ways to get through exercising is to listen to upbeat music that’ll keep your adrenaline going. While not commonly listened to during workouts, movie soundtracks can provide unique music to keep you motivated. Whether you’re running, lifting, going for a bike ride, or dancing, Hypable now has a top 10 list of the best film soundtracks to keep your blood pumping!


10) Mulan (suggested by Hypable writer Sarah Maloy): Let’s get down to business. One of the more popular Disney movies, Mulan provides catchy, upbeat, and fun music to listen to.  Since the entire setting of the movie is Chinese soldiers going to war to defeat the Huns, there aren’t many more fun soundtracks that have more motivating of a premise than that.   Many of the Hypable writers highly recommend this soundtrack, and our favorite song is “I’ll Make a Man Out of You.” Additionally, this soundtrack was nominated for best musical or comedy score at the 1998 Oscars.

9) 8 Mile: I know not everyone is a fan of rap music, but the 8 Mile soundtrack does have angsty and exciting music and lyrics that gives a good beat for high-cardio activities. The fifth best-selling album of 2002, the wide range of artists and rhythmic bass lines gives one a variety of intense music to keep their motivation and heart rate up.

8) Tron: Legacy (suggested by Hypable writer Anna Roberts): The Tron: Legacy soundtrack is something a bit different – the tracks might be short; but the marriage between the orchestral and the electronic is perfectly done. “Derezzed,” “Rinzler,” “Arena,” and “The Game Has Changed” are epic even if you haven’t seen the film. If anything can make a tedious workout feel like an exciting adventure, then it’s Daft Punk’s Tron: Legacy soundtrack.

7) Star Trek: The 2009 movie directed by JJ Abrams was a fresh new look at the classic TV series, and also gave some fresh new music. Michael Giacchino’s scoring features big brass and large chorus sounds, which is always is energizing and gives one excitement while pumping iron. And remember, it’s scientifically proven that staying fit and healthy will allow you to live long and prosper.

6) The Incredibles: Another Michael Giacchino scoring, The Incredibles is a complete 180 from Star Trek and provides jazzy music to keep you going through a workout. The saxophone rifts and sexy trumpet solos will make you want to jump over endless hurdles, while you feel like you’re saving the world. The music will make you feel, well, incredible.

5) Slumdog Millionaire: The film takes place in Mumbai, India, and the music reflects the setting perfectly. From the music, one can perfectly visualize dozens of people running in and out of the city slums. The fast-paced and very unique music by A.R. Rahman with also a few pieces by M.I.A. would surely get one’s blood pumping, whether it be from dancing or running sprints down a track. A.R. Rahman won the 2009 Academy Award for best original score, as well as best original song, “Jai Ho,” which was shared with lyricist Gulzar.

4) Dirty Dancing: The 1987 movie is still a popular movie today, 25 years later. The album went platinum 11 times and sat at #1 for 18 weeks straight at Billboard’s top 200 album sale chart. The memorable ending song “Time of Your Life” won the Academy Award for best original song in 1987. With “dancing” in the title, the classic film’s soundtrack will surely keep you on your toes, regardless what your workout is.

3) Rocky: Not much needs to be said about Rocky. As one of the greatest athletic films ever made, the Rocky soundtrack will instantly motivate anyone just by hearing the theme song, “Gonna Fly Now,” which was nominated at the Oscars for best original song. Because there are six movies in the entire series, I recommend the Rocky Balboa: The Best of Rocky album, which compiles the top songs from each of the movies.

2) Inception: While he was already well known before Inception, Hans Zimmer’s work on Christopher Nolan’s 2010 blockbuster gained him even more international fame for his careful crafting in the heroic score.  This soundtrack also earned him an Academy Award nomination. The rhythmic consistencies in the higher strings overlapped by the thick and stretched low brass chords almost gives more excitement than the screenplay already does. Interestingly, the main theme of Inception is arguably Edith Piaf’s “Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien” (which is the music the characters use for the musical countdown in the movie) to a slower beat. The momentum Zimmer crafted in his original score would also give one much excitement and intensity while at the gym.

1) Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black PearlThis is my all-time favorite and go-to soundtrack to listen to while running. Klaus Badelt dictated this driven score so perfectly, that every time I’m running outside I feel as if I’m being chased by pirates. The unique and memorable melodies will keep your blood pumping as your sweat drips everywhere. There aren’t many slow pieces in the album, which makes it perfect for a workout. This album all around is great to keep your legs moving and your heart rate up (also: I dare you to listen to this album while driving. It’s just as adventurous).

Will you listen to any of the above soundtracks during your next workout? Are there any soundtracks you wish you’d seen listed?

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