If you’ve been watching my social media – you may have seen the fitness fact stating that you tend to lift more weight when listening to music.
What’s Going On Here? ….
Basically – when listening to music, you’re distracted.
You aren’t focused on the fact that you’re sweating or breathing hard or that your muscles are starting to burn.
Either way, while all of this is going on, your body is working & can end up generating more force & therefore completing more reps than you would have if there were no music.
According to The National Center for Biotechnology Information these are actually relatively new findings. Prior to 2012 the effects of music had been studied to determine the effects of those performing aerobic exercise.
The Studies Show…
Below are some highly interesting results from this study.
According to the Effects of self-selected music on strength, explosiveness, & mood:
The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of self-selected music (SSM) vs. those of no music (NM) on the mood & performance of the athletes performing bench press & squat jump. Twenty resistance trained collegiate men completed 2 experimental conditions, one while listening to SSM & the other with NM. The subjects reported their profile of mood states (POMS) & rating of perceived exertion (RPE) before & after performing 3 sets to failure of the bench press at 75% 1 repetition maximum (1RM) & 3 reps of the squat jump at 30% 1RM. Statistical analyses revealed no differences in squat jump height or relative ground reaction force, but the takeoff velocity (SSM-2.06 ± 0.17 m·s(-1); NM-1.99 ± 0.18 m·s(-1)), rate of velocity development (SSM-5.92 ± 1.46 m·s(-2); NM-5.63 ± 1.70 m·s(-2)), & rate of force development (SSM-3175.61 ± 1792.37 N·s(-1); NM-2519.12 ± 1470.32 N·s(-1)) were greater with SSM, whereas RPE (SSM-5.71 ± 1.37; NM-6.36 ± 1.61) was greater with NM.
So according to this study – athletes were not actually exerting more energy when they were not listening to music, & yet they felt like they were.
Their “perceived” exertion seemed to be greater when they were not listening to music. It only stands to reason that when you perceive yourself working harder you are quicker to draw your workout to a close – thinking you’ve maximised your efforts versus if you feel like you are exerting less effort – you’re likely to continue the workout even longer.
The Bottom Line…
The next time you head out for a workout make sure to first: grab your iPod, create a great playlist & crank up those tunes!
This is a good alternative from time to time. The aim of this article is to give you an altered experience while you exercise.
You need laser focus while you train. This is what I teach most of the time. However, every so often you must change up the whole routine.
The environment, the style, the intensity & even the focus of your mind.
Distract yourself for a session or two – ‘Without losing form’ – & see if you can stimulate a new level of fitness from your body.
To Your Best Health
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