Project Body Smart | Music for Workouts Has Come a Long Way in 40 Years
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Music for Workouts Has Come a Long Way in 40 Years

Baby Boomers remember the birth of the Walkman 40 years ago. Introduced in the summer of 1979, the personal cassette player changed the way we listened to music, interacted in public – and worked out, just as aerobics and running were taking off in popularity. From 1987-97, the number of people who walked for exercise shot up 30 percent.

Nowadays, of course, we don’t think twice about cheaper, lighter and better ways to take our music with us while we exercise. We can listen to virtually any song, anywhere, any time. And who doesn’t love working out along with favorite tunes?

Playlists from Apple Music, Spotify or other services provide endless options to listen to the genre of music you prefer, while exposing you to new songs or forgotten gems. Either way, they’re fun to try. Here are some on Apple Music to get you started.

Motown Workout: The legacy began in the 1960s, and this sampler starts there with the Four Tops, then moves on to “Love Machine” by The Miracles, “Brick House” by the Commodores and “Behind the Groove” by Teena Marie.

Classic Rock Workout: Get your heart rate up with 1970s favorites like “We’re an American Band” by Grand Funk Railroad; “Takin’ Care of Business” by Bachman-Turner Overdrive; and “Gimme Three Steps” by Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Disco Workout: Or maybe you spent the ‘70s dancing. The 4/4 beat is great for cardio inspiration. “Funkytown,” “Boogie Oogie Oogie” and, of course, “I Will Survive” will power you through a workout.

‘80s Workout: You listened to these on your Walkman back in the day. They’re just as good on your Air Pods. Cyndi Lauper, Madonna, Kenny Loggins and “Su-Su-Sudio” by Phil Collins, among others.

Just leave the leg warmers in storage.

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