Design by Lindsay Farb

In 2021, like in years before, Daily Arts writers are stretching out their hammies to participate in a grueling challenge of mental fortitude and physical fitness: the Probility Ann Arbor Marathon. A little pretentious, a little weird, The Michigan Daily team is a mix of seasoned athletes and … less seasoned athletes. For the sake of journalism and prestige, TMD’s tenacious review-writing gremlins are closing their laptops, tying up their Brooks and hitting the AA pavement. Read our content & join the race happening Oct. 24th. Interested University of Michigan students can join the marathon with the discount code “Goblue25.” 

While it’s good for your health and fitness, running can be a very mundane sport. Cruising down sidewalks and logging mile after mile with no form of entertainment other than the environment around you and the burning in your legs can make running a daunting experience. To combat boredom during our training, the Daily Arts marathon team pulled together their favorite running songs and podcasts. 

“Syrup by Tkay Maidza
Whether you are stomping on pavement or trails, this song is versatile. The consistent beat sets a steady pace for running, and it’s fun to share on wireless earbuds. Whenever I go running with my sisters or friends, we split earbuds so we can both listen to the same song or playlist. On one of my most recent runs, “Syrup” was my addition to my friend’s usually exclusive Lady Gaga Spotify queue.

-Elizabeth Yoon, Managing Arts Editor

“Screen Shot” by Swans

I don’t usually have specific songs I go to when I’m running. Typically I’ll spend about five minutes fumbling to find an album with a particular mood, get restless and end up resorting to something that catches my eye. That being said, the track “Screen Shot” and the accompanying album To Be Kind by Swans undoubtedly find themselves in the rotation frequently. No song is more capable of injecting adrenaline directly into my limbs. It starts out imperceptibly small, with only the deep grumblings of bass guitar puncturing the silence, then arrives the metallic sharpness of hi-hat, followed by the encompassing boom of a kick drum. For over eight minutes, this series of instrumental progressions continues to build, like an exercise in long-form crescendo. Meanwhile, frontman Michael Gira takes on the role of a shaman, guiding the listener along with this wave while also crafting a spellbinding aura that completely engulfs. Even on days when I would rather do anything but run, this music hypnotizes my feet into motion.

-Drew Gadbois, Senior Arts Editor

“New Romantics” by Taylor Swift

Nothing fuels a great run like a song about heartbreak. With its lively lyrics and infectious energy, “New Romantics” by Taylor Swift is my go-to track when I’m lacking the motivation for my morning run. Especially on days when I’m running to clear my head, hearing Swift’s anthemic choruses about the hope that can be found in the wake of heartbreak and disappointment keeps my feet moving forward and my eyes set on accomplishing the task set before me: finishing a good workout. 

-Kaitlyn Fox, Music Beat Editor

LoveSick” by Mura Masa

I will confess, more often than not, I run with nothing — no music, no headphones — just me and nature. However, on days when my thoughts are too loud to even hear the birds, strong beats are a necessity. I mostly listen to songs that don’t divert me too much from where I am, both spatially and mentally, because there’s nothing I dread more than having to skip songs every minute. Yes, I am one of those people who hardly ever listens to a song from start to finish. I got into dance/electronic music early on in my life, but it became my go-to workout genre a few years ago. The Blaze, Jungle, Jamie XX … and of course, Mura Masa. “Love$ick”, which features A$AP Rocky, is a song I have never gotten bored of. Ever since I discovered it, about five years ago now, it has been in every workout playlist I have made. Though my taste in workout music has shifted over the years, this one has remained my go-to hype-up song. Not only that, but it gives me just what I need: a steady beat to keep my legs running and a melody to keep my head on track. 

-Cecilia Duran, Daily Arts Writer

“Run for Cover” by The Killers

I’ll be frank: I love running to angsty music. Something about strong drums and heavy guitar fills me with the kind of rage that keeps me pushing through another mile. Additionally, one of my favorite kinds of running songs is the ones that tell me to run. When the chorus of Declan McKenna’s “Isombard” tells me, “If you can’t walk then run,” then, well, don’t mind if I do. If Coin starts singing that “maybe we can run,” it feels fitting to run alongside them. The song that exemplifies all of this is “Run for Cover” by The Killers. When I first tried making a running playlist in 2019, “Run for Cover” was the first song I added, still buzzing from my obsession with The Killers’s 2017 album Wonderful Wonderful. As Brandon Flowers sings about fear and strength and fake news, I find myself pushing, running towards “cover,” whatever that means — away from whatever problems were plaguing me at the time, away from the politics that were blowing up the news, away from the complex mess that is the world today. It feels great to have a song that keeps you moving and taps into that part of you that just wants to leave the world behind — not to mention that it’s a perfect 160-ish stride per minute.

-Kari Anderson, Senior Arts Editor

“HISTORY This Week” podcast

I don’t like running to music. Trust me, I’ve tried, but I can’t regulate my breathing properly when there’s another beat running through my head, and my legs always want to move too fast or too slow to keep tempo with the song. But running in silence is boring, so I’ve started listening to podcasts — quiet enough that I can hear my breaths and footsteps, but engaging enough to distract me from the monotony. “HISTORY This Week” has become a favorite. Every Monday, the host (accompanied by relevant experts) tells the story of a major historical event that happened that week. Sometimes the event occurred only a couple of decades ago; sometimes millennia. Sometimes it’s a deep dive into a story we’ve all heard; sometimes it introduces listeners to something totally new. As an aspiring history buff and lover of stories, this podcast keeps me thoroughly entertained.

-Brenna Goss, Daily Arts Writer

Listen to the Daily Arts Marathon Team’s running playlist on Spotify.