august workout playlist!



workout playlist for summer

This summer has been sweet, hasn't it? Endless sunshine has made for countless ways to sweat once a day - from the beach to the trails, the opportunities to spend time outdoors are endless. That being said, on the days when it gets TOO hot I always head to the gym for a dose of air-conditioned coolness.

This brings me to my next point. You know how a song can instantly transport you back into a specific place or time in your life? Well lemme tell you, all these early morning gym seshs have had me reminiscing about high school, and more specifically, hip hop. I forgot how fun it is to sweat to - the beats are sure to keep you moving on even the slowest mornings! With no further ado, may I present my all-time favourite hip hop workout playlist. *Note: Be careful playing these at work - Colt 45 consumption is considered unacceptable in most office environments.

SHUTTERBUGG - BIG BOI & CUTTY

Big Boi, one half of the magical tandem known as Outkast, released another solo project a month ago and it might be the coolest album of the year. I take back what I said last month about Drake having the song of the summer - Shutterbugg is hotter (sorry, Drake - it isn't personal... I just hadn't heard THIS yet). And don't worry, he and Andre 3000 are still cool - Dre produced half the tracks on this album. Play this for the haters who say all new hip hop sucks.

TIPSY - J-KWON

Is this song mature? No. Is the beat sick? Absolutely. Just let it happen!

1970 SOMETHIN' - NOTORIOUS B.I.G. FEATURING THE GAME AND FAITH EVANS

A lot of the time, posthumous duets are contrived and unnatural feeling. This track, however, feels like all three ducked into a studio one night and cut something awesome... and as per usual with Biggie, the lyrics are an 11 out of 10.

BABY DON'T GO - FABOLOUS FEATURING T-PAIN

T-Pain raps about something other than being on a boat. Miracles ensue.

STILL NOT A PLAYER - BIG PUN FEATURING JOE

Still a banger in the clubs 10 years later, Joe's dedication to wearing the freshest mock necks in the history of crooners is simply the cherry on top.

CHERCHEZ LA GHOST - GHOSTFACE KILLAH

Wu-Tang Clan's eight main members all made fantastic side albums while still recording with the samurai-loving supergroup. This is my favourite, mostly because of Madame Majestic's weirdly edgy yet Edith Piaf-y voice.

SENSUAL SEDUCTION - SNOOP DOGG

Louis XIV style hat, including feather? Check. Electro beats & auto-tune? Check. Hookah pipe with gold fillagree handle? Check. Snoop Dogg getting away with all of it and making it awesome because he is Snoop Dogg? Check, check, check!

ME MYSELF AND I - DE LA SOUL

Hip hop's feel good pioneers will have you whistling while you work... out all day long. And yes, I know my jokes are especially bad today.

VIVRANT THING - Q-TIP

A member of legendary group A Tribe Called Quest, Q-Tip left the group in the late 90s to make an album that was both profound AND danceable - this right here is the best cut.

WORKOUT PLAN - KANYE WEST

Sir Caps Lock inspires you to work out by talking about, you guessed it, working out. Mister West recorded this track before discovering his newest favourite way to sweat - exercising his Twitter finger.

A MILLI - LIL WAYNE

You'd think someone repeating "A Milli" like, a milli times (I warned you about the bad jokes!) would be annoying - but magically, it's turbo awesome instead. Let's hope they've given him at least a key-tar in prison.

GONE TIL' NOVEMBER REMIX - WYCLEF JEAN FEATURING R. KELLY

It's hard to pick one Wyclef song that gets the party started (the whole Carnival album is rippin', for example) - but this jam gets the nod for one very important reason: my top dog KELS. You can trash R. Kelly all you want, but you can't deny that if he invited you to a white-themed boat cruise with a champagne shot luge you'd be there faster than Carl Lewis to a finish line (for reference, check the video for "Step In The Name Of Love"). Braid. My. Hair.

APACHE - SUGARHILL GANG

While Rapper's Delight gets all the love, Sugarhill Gang's "Apache" is my favorite. The harmony sounds like a leftover disco hook that was discarded when punk tookover - and while that doesn't explain their jheri curls, it does explain the sweet funk beat.

HERE I AM - RICK ROSS FEATURING AVERY STORM AND NELLY

It's a good thing we don't use records anymore - because this track is so addictive that it would have worn a groove in the disc in no time. It also provides a neat solution for those of us who front that we don't like Nelly but secretly put "Batter Up" on repeat. Don't judge me!

ALLURE - JAY-Z

It's hard to pick one Jay-Z song and put it on a list - this is simply my personal fave. With what is arguably the deepest discography in hip hop, composed of club anthems, quirky b-sides and collaborations with artists from all genres of music, Jay-Z has successfully traversed the gangster rap/underground-intelligencia hip hop scenes without succumbing to any stereotypes. Proof of his coolness: Little Orphan Annie was sung sans irony by gang-bangers when "Hard-Knock Life" came out. Amazeballs.

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14 Comments »


this playlist is like an instant elevation from somewhat cool gym experience to awesomely RAD workout.

Comment by kellie — August 5, 2010 @ 9:24 pm


This is perfect. I have been training for a half marathon and am in desperate need for some new tunes in my running mix. So excited to check these out.

Comment by Katie — August 6, 2010 @ 9:30 am


Here’s the playlist via grooveshark: http://bit.ly/augluluworkout

Comment by Chris — August 6, 2010 @ 2:46 pm


This playlist is outta control!!!!!!
How revitalizing a little bit of hip hop can be to a tired workout routine! Much appreciated Lex!

Comment by Annie — August 6, 2010 @ 4:06 pm


Okay, so I know this is really backward but I am not a techno person at all! Can this playlist be directly downloaded to my ipod nano or do I have to go and buy the songs from itunes? See, not techno at all!!!

Comment by Verity — August 6, 2010 @ 4:42 pm


Oops – just checked out the posts on facebook and saw kind of the answer to my question above!

Comment by Verity — August 6, 2010 @ 4:59 pm


this so an awesome playlist! Is there anyway I could export this to my ipod? Anyone could help me please?

Comment by elysa — August 6, 2010 @ 5:13 pm


How can I listen to it?

Comment by Andrea — August 6, 2010 @ 5:45 pm


I couldn’t work out to Apache–I would have to stop and do the dance.

Comment by Alana — August 6, 2010 @ 10:25 pm


this playlist is bananas! i cannot wait to download this to my ipod. alexis, you RULE!

Comment by lesia d. — August 6, 2010 @ 11:34 pm


Hey everyone,
The playlist is just an awesome suggetion list of great songs to workout if your current playlist needs a bit of a refresh. To download them you will need to go to your usual downloader like the iTunes store.

Comment by Jenna — August 7, 2010 @ 12:58 pm


check out Magic – B.O.B. with Rivers Cuomo. Can’t get it out of my head.

Comment by Molly — August 8, 2010 @ 10:33 am


your playlists are great source of workout songs! thanks a lot!

here are some of my favourite running tunes:
-Beggin by Madcon
-Bleed It Out by Linkin Park
-Created a Monster by B.o.B

ready, steady, sweat!

Comment by Oelc — August 25, 2010 @ 4:12 pm


Thank you for this great post. This is what I was looking for. I’m a beat maker.

Comment by Dubturbo — January 10, 2012 @ 2:23 pm


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