Welcome to the first iBurn. Before we get started, I’d like to explain my thought process behind this series. I’ll be frank: I’ve always perceived myself as the fat kid. I still suffer from a bit of low self esteem because of it. My family and friends have always been smaller than me and I’ve tried different ways of losing weight to no avail. I’ve started jogging and running and I will truthfully admit that I haven’t lost any weight, but I think positive and realize that I haven’t gained any either. A lot of friends have just gotten bigger and I’ve stayed the same.
I thought of iBurn as a way to reach out to readers. To me music is a driving force in my life. It has always been in the background and has often been my shoulder to cry on. I love the concept of playlists because they help focus an idea or an emotion. For exercising, like anything, there should be a mentality. If you are not motivated, then you’re not going to get up.
iBurn will display different types of running mixes, from genres to emotions. I decided to start off with disco; a fun-loving, high energy genre. The playlists I make aren’t going to tell you what to eat or how to correctly exercise. I’m not a doctor or even a marathon runner. What it will give you is a stepping stone to venturing into music while hopefully burning a few calories.
This first post will cover an energetic genre: disco. Since I wasn’t born when the disco-era occurred, I have a little bit of a grandiose version in my head created from movies where everyone was good looking, although back in the day it was probably done with the help of drugs. That's something I'm not even considering. Hard work is okay with me, thank you very much. I have compiled a list of heart-racing disco songs to exercise to. Almost all disco songs, even the ones not mentioned, are fast paced and positive thinking. Just sitting around and listening to disco makes me want to bounce my head around, so I thought it would be a great starting point for running.
Warm-up – "No More Tears" by Donna Summer & Barbra Streisand (4:47) – About 1:40 is the actual warm up time. If you must stretch longer than that and you have a few extra minutes, I suggest one of Andy Gibb’s hits, possibly, “Shadow Dancing”. I toyed around with the idea of having this song close to the end, since it talks about how you’ve had enough, but I decided to use this as a motivational point. My mindset is that I’m just depressed and last night at the discotheque was disappointing. Donna Summer and Barbara Streisand capture the idea of working hard and not wasting any time with this song.
"If I Can't Have You" by Yvonne Elliman (3:00) – It’s hard to pick a song from the Saturday Night Fever Soundtrack without picking all the songs. I’ve decided for both time’s sake and the spirit of the song to pick Yvonne Elliman’s contribution. It’s the slowest song on this list, but it’s always good to have a variation in your pace. There's a lot of Bee Gees songs out there, so this is a welcome change.
"It Only Takes a Minute Girl" by Tavares (4:03) – The lightheartedness of the disco sound covers up the disparity of this song. It talks about unemployment and being unsuccessful, but the inclusion of this song points the idea of working out with just a few minutes can create a difference to one's self image.
"Funkytown" by Lipps, Inc. (3:59) – I don’t know a single person that hasn’t heard this song. It is horrendously catchy and lighthearted. For runners and joggers this song emphasizes the idea of moving. Songs that use the words “move” and “run” actually motivate me to actually move and run. I guess I’m a sucker for subliminal messages.
"Knock on Wood" by Amii Stewart (5:39) – If you interpret this song for weight loss instead of a relationship, it is a little eerie. Though it does seem concurrent to think that love making is better when healthier, health is always going to be a concern.
For the next two songs, pick which one fits your running situation better.
For The Guys: "Macho Man" by The Village People (3:30) – I just imagine the Olivia-Newton John video for “Physical” when I hear this song. Men working hard on their bodies to impress the ladies (or if you’re like the Village People, the guys). This song just motivates me to pump my fists and look like an ass. It also makes me want to run up stairs.
For The Ladies: "Ladies Night (Single Version) Kool & The Gang (3:28) – Have you ever tried to “model walk” more than a few feet? Cross one leg in front of the other while having a slight sway in the arm for a mile. It hurts almost as much as running that same mile. The models have long struts so it also can help teach the normal person a correct leg distance when walking. Granted most people don’t walk with one foot in front of the other, but the model walk is a great alternative.
“Let’s Groove” by Earth, Wind, & Fire (5:35) – This song has some personal boosters built in since it tells you that you are looking “out of sight.” This song helps you keep in touch with your body; let the music connect with your body. It’s all about you.
"More, More, More" by Andrea True Connection (3:42) – You’re at that hump. But this song has a little bit of everything, horns, strings, a possible cow bell-type sound. You can keep running, get the action going. Funny fact? This song is sung by a porn star.
"Hot Stuff" by Donna Summer (3:47) – Ah, you can feel the sweat coming down now. The beating of your heart is really kicking in now. You can feel the sexy coming back. Donna Summer is amazing for creating a mood isn’t she?
"Heart of Glass" by Blondie (4:35) – Debbie Harry’s airy voice in this song just keeps me going. At this point, with all these disco songs, I’ve just hit that zone; that high. I didn’t need drugs either.
"Heaven Must Have Sent You (Single Version)" (3:29) – My personal favorite disco song, it’s one of the most excitable songs you can use for writing. This song always makes me look foolish running because I have the biggest grin; it’s just so cheery.
"Young Hearts Run Free" by Candi Staton (4:02) – To me there is always a plus for songs that tell me to run. This song gives a good moderate pace. If you can’t find the original song, there is also a very similar version sung by Kym Mazelle, except that is has a little bit of a 90s dance feel to it.
"Come to me" by France Joli (4:11) – One of the many disco songs that start off a little slow and pick up quite quickly. This song was a number one on the Billboard Dance Charts back in 1979. The song has a good motivational undercurrent; use landmarks and go to it. I like using landmarks to run to and then switch to jogging for a little and find another landmark to run to.
"This Is It" by Melba Moore (3:30) – It is the final stretch; the last three-plus minutes for running. As the song mentions, I'd probably be in a daze from running with disco music. This song signals the end of the running and transition into cool down.
Cool down – "Fire" by The Ohio Players (3:31) – After this running mix, you’d definitely feel the burn. “Fire” is a good slower song for stretching all the muscles out. I was reminded of this funky song from Hell’s Kitchen. This song was a number one on the Billboard Hot Soul Singles back in 1975.
Total Time: 61:20 – If you're a little OCD like me and think that being a minute too late, is too late, I suggest replacing "Let's Groove" with Donna Summer's "Heaven Knows" (3:38) for a total time of 59:23. You can also check your MP3 player and see if it has a cross fade option.That will shave a few seconds off of each song and create a more seamless run.
30 Minute Version:
"No More Tears" by Donna Summer & Barbra Streisand (4:47)
"It only takes a minute girl" by Tavares (4:03)
"Funkytown" by Lipps, Inc. (3:59)
"Macho Man" by The Village People (3:30) / "Ladies Night (Single Version) Kool & The Gang (3:28)
"Hot Stuff" by Donna Summer (3:47)
"Heaven Must Have Sent You (12" Version)" (7:12)
Cooldown – "Fire" by The Ohio Players (3:31)
Total Time: 30:49
Having the hour (or half) of running is a great thing to clear up the mind. One of the best things for me about running, jogging, or walking is that running is great for someone who is horrendously uncoordinated. According to my Wii Fit, my balance has actually gotten better. Remember to always keep hydrated.