I don't know about you, but the right music can absolutely make or break my workout. Give me some aggressive rap over a heavy bassline and I'm guaranteed to burn more calories. Given that music is the pulse of so many workouts—and particularly cycling, where RPMs guide both a song and your feet and instructors double as resident DJs—we asked the pros: What's on your workout playlist?
Four local SoulCycle instructors offered a sampling of their favorite motivating beats, which we compiled into the ultimate summer workout playlist. Hear all their picks on the Spotify playlist below, and read on for their reasoning behind each song. Happy sweating!
Instructor: Cat G. Moran
1. Beyoncé, "Diva"
2. KB, "I Believe"
3. Whitney Houston, "I'm Every Woman"
4. Crime Mob ft. Lil Scrappy, "Knuck If You Buck"
5. Eminem ft. Nate Dogg, "Till I Collapse"
Cat says: All of these songs make me feel powerful, ready, and excited to take on whatever is in front of me. The beats are heavy, the lyrics are catchy, and each song reminds you that you've got this!
Instructor: Cole Ryden
1. John Martin, "Anywhere for You (Extended Mix)"
Cole says: I love this song to ride home to. Its words are so uplifting and inspiring that it really lifts the class up with hope and encouragement to achieve their goals and finish strong, just like they started.
2. DJ Snake ft. Selena Gomez, Ozuna & Cardi B, "Taki Taki"
Cole says: This song is such a party-starter in class, and it never gets old. I love incorporating other styles of music into class.
3. Jonas Brothers, "Sucker"
Cole says: This song is fun to use at the beginning of class to ease them into the rhythm of the class before kicking their butts later!
4. P!nk, "A Million Dreams"
Cole says: I use this song in our "Soulful" moments after weights. It's such an inspiring song, and when I hear P!nk's voice sing it, she brings the modern sound to a musical theater, which is really incredible.
Instructor: Pinij NaLampoon
1. Taylor Swift, "Style"
Pinij says: I'm the BIGGEST Taylor Swift fan, and "Style" is my No. 1 fav song of hers. I do tons of Taylor-themed rides, and "Style" always makes an appearance in the playlist.
2. Ariana Grande, "Forever Boy (Sagi Kariv Remix)"
Pinij says: The original song is one of my favorites by Ariana, but this remix specifically. is. EVERYTHING. It's so hot, and every time I hear it I feel like I'm sweaty and shirtless on a dance floor! (Editor's note: Spotify only has the original version, but you can find this remix here.)
3. Zedd, "Beautiful Now"
Pinij says: Okay, so it should be known that Zedd is my No. 1 favorite DJ of all time, and this is my No. 1 favorite song by him. It always hypes me up and puts me in the mood to get sh*t done!
4. Borgeous ft. Lights, "Zero Gravity"
Pinij says: EDM is the cheese to my macaroni. It's my happy place—that and pop music. It makes up the bulk of most of my playlists. Give me a hot remix track and I'm here for it! Borgeous is one of my all-time favorite DJs, and this is by far one of my favorite tracks by him. Not to mention the track features Lights, whom I've been a huge fan of—even way before she became more well-known.
5. Years & Years, "Gold"
Pinij says: I've been following this band for, well, years—back when they dropped their very first song on Soundcloud. I'v been the biggest fan ever since. Their album Communion is incredible and one of my all-time favorites. I actually have many favorites on the album, and it's hard to say that I love one more than the others, but this song really does it for me.
Instructor: Bertha Rials
1. Hillsong, "Clean"
Bertha says: Simple yet beautifully transparent and powerful.
2. Steve Aoki ft. Waka Flacka Flame, "Rage the Night Away"
Bertha says: Play it and see if you can keep from smiling—I dare you!
3. Beyoncé, "Before I Let Go (Homecoming Live Bonus Track)"
Bertha says: A sprinkle of Beyoncé, a dollop of an old-school song with a side of Houston, and life in the South is complete.