Music…and a New Adventure

For the past month or so, I’ve been slightly freaking out. Going about the daily routines; taking care of minions, grocery shopping, laundry, etc., but just underneath the surface: freak out central.

Not life or death freak out, but first-job-in-six-years kind of freak out. I accepted the spin instructor position at a local gym and my first class is tomorrow.

Gulp.

I’ve seriously changed my playlist of 14 songs 87 times. I hear music differently now. I mentally decide if the song I hear on the radio would make a good spin song.  While in the car driving, I cue pretend spinners in my imagination. Out loud. My kids have decided that I’m nuts. I’m sure that opinion will stick when they hit 12. Whatever.

A recent WordPress weekly prompt was to write about music. A favorite song, why certain lyrics speak to us, what our life’s theme song would be – all viable topics. My question is how the heck could you narrow any of those down to one song? Like most people, music is more than just noise in the background in my world. Our iTunes library is filled with “please don’t judge me” songs as well as Top 40. Every genre, multiple decades, with both the hubs’ and my tastes thrown in for good musical fun. He’s more of a beat and instrument guy. He loves the intros and the guitar solos. As a writer, it’s not surprising that the lyrics are what speak to me.

Now for the first time, I’m really hearing beats per minute, phrasing, and how that translates to a good spin class. As I crafted (and re-crafted, and crafted again) this playlist for my first class I listened to my favorites, had help from friends, and had to weed them down. As I look over this list now, it’s not surprising how this list speaks to me.

1. It’s Time – Imagine Dragons

Not only a great song for a warm up, great lyrics. I love that it’s (finally) time for me to put this certification and the studying to good use! And to quote another instructor friend who told me “it’s about damn time!”

2. Ali in The Jungle – The Hours

The lyrics in this track are superb for working out. Introduced to me by my neighbor on Oahu, this song reminds me of her and her determination to get healthy despite being in the middle of a long deployment with 4 kiddos. It isn’t easy, but as the lyrics say, “Everybody gets knocked down, but how quick are you gonna get up?” Love.

3. Sail – Awolnation

This one reminds me of my favorite trainer. Not only did she help me in so many ways, but she introduced me to all kinds of music that I never would have considered otherwise.  And every time I hear this song, I can almost feel the Hawaiian breeze blow across my sweat soaked-skin as I panted in relief that I had survived another one of her killer workouts.

4. Crabbuckit – K-Os

When I first heard this peppy little tune, Eric was deployed and I heard it come on the radio. Done with sappy sad songs, I was ready for this one and immediately thought it would be good for some jumps on a spin bike!

5. Dynamite – Taio Cruz

The perfect party song, but also a great running song. This one is always on my running playlist, and I had to include it in my first class. Perfect for a 5:30 a.m. class to get us all up and at ’em!

6. Everybody Talks – Neon Trees

Not a great thinker in terms of lyrics, but I like it and it works good for spin. It just sounds “happy”.

7. Money Make Her Smile – Bruno Mars

I love Bruno. Every single song. LOVE. That is all.

8. Let Me Love You (Until You Learn to Love Yourself) – Ne-Yo

When you’ve been believed in by someone who sees your potential before you do – that’s magic. That’s what I take from this song.

9. Give In To Me – Michael Jackson

For all of us growing up 80’s, Michael Jackson typifies the decade, among other things. Not only was this my favorite song when I first started going to spin, but I remember much of my struggling in that first spin class. Pushing beyond what I thought I was capable of. It was time to “give in” to the process and trust that I was going in exactly the right direction!

10. China Grove – Doobie Brothers

The first time I heard this song in a spin class, you could just feel everyone smile with recognition. I love a song that EVERYONE knows.

11. Livin’ On A Prayer – Bon Jovi

Oh Bon Jovi. I remember watching him on MTV, rockin’ out with my hairbrush microphone and my mile-high bangs. Good times. And it works for spin – bonus!

12. Shake it Out – Florence and the Machine

This song made me cry when my friend Katy sent me her spin playlist. At the time she had just started teaching, Eric was deployed and I remember it was a rough week. I had put the kids to bed, plugged in her playlist and imagined myself halfway around the world in her spin class. When this song came on it was a sort of release of knowing the end of the deployment was in sight, I was shaking it all off, all the tired, all the stress, and just trying to get back to myself. Tomorrow I will imagine her smiling at me in the back of my first class.

13. Red Hands – Walk Off the Earth

This song reminds me of endings. Ends of relationships. Ends of struggles and sad goodbyes. Goodbyes are hard, but out of them can come tremendous growth.  A tad melancholy, but makes for a great cool-down!

14. Home – Phillip Phillips

I love the beat of this song. I love the lyrics about making this place your home. As a military family – wherever we go is home. “Pay no mind to those demons they fill you with fear” speaks right to the whole Brene Brown and Daring Greatly thing. I have a feeling that spin may be my home away from home.

So there it is. Tomorrow morning me and a few friends will be spinning our hearts out. May I not puke, faint, or fall off a stationary bike as I did so gracefully in my dream nightmare last night.

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