Melody and rhythm can trigger feelings from sadness to serenity to joy to awe; they can bring memories from childhood vividly back to life.

Michael Lemonick of Time Magazine put into words what so many of us feel when we crank up a song with the windows rolled down on a great fall afternoon.

Luckily that same emotion can be used to our advantage on the run.

For the first half of long runs, I prefer to tune in to my favorite podcasts, audiobooks or nature. This allows provides time to focus on running form, breathing and technique for the first portion of the run and of course take a moment to actually enjoy the run!

Then like a jolt of caffeine, I can turn on the music to push me through those final miles when my legs are beginning to feel run down.

Since my iPod is more talking than dancing, I reached out to the RunToTheFinish community for recommendations on great power songs!

Save these for speed workouts and the final push on your long run:
— Fatboy Slim: Right Here Right Now
— Florence and the Machine: Dog Days are Over
— Eminem: Lose Yourself
— Katy Perry: Roar
— Meghan Trainor: All About that Bass
— Ellie Goulding: Burn
— Luke Bryan: Play it Again
— Pitbull: Timber
— Aloe Blacc: The Man
— Pharell Williams: Happy
— Robyn: Dancing on my own
— Fallout Boy: My Songs Know what You did in the Dark

My training cadet, Jodi Tivey, also had this fabulous idea for race day music if you hate coming up with your own playlist: “Get friends and family to pick songs; then I can think of them as their songs play randomly.”

For more on the Saucony 26 Strong program, which pairs up 13 coaches with 13 marathon rookies, visit