Four Ways to Find Free Music at Your Running or Walking Tempo
If you've seen our video on finding your BPM when walking and running, you'll now know how to find the speed of the music for your runs or walks. The next challenge is to find and make a collection of music at the right BPM, in a way you can use it on your run.
There are differences in the options you have available if you are an inside or an outside runner for example, or if you run in a town or the depths of the countryside (lack of signal for streaming music) or if you use a smartphone or dedicated MP3 player. Therefore, not all the suggestions below may be available to you.
The suggestions below are not in any particular order of merit either nor are they a definitive list, just some I've used.
Using the App on your smartphone and a basic account, you can find many playlists in different genre’s and at different BPM. Just search for the BPM you are looking for and a playlist should be available. Unlike iTunes, Spotify makes use of the BPM information that’s present with a song, so you can use this to make your own playlists from artists you want to listen to. Its not straight forward though so to get you started we’ve put together a short video on how to make a fixed BPM playlist on Spotify. You’ll need to go to http://static.echonest.com/SortYourMusic/to sort by BPM.
www.podrunner.com is run by a DJ called Steve Boyet and he blends rights free music into hour long mixes at set BPM’s (though he also now does HiiT mixes and ramping up/down mixes where the BPM changes). If you like to run to House/Techno/Funk/Disco type music these are well worth checking out. Steve has been doing this for many years and there is a good catalogue of mixes to choose from. The mixes are downloaded to your device as Podcasts and so network connectivity is not an issue (good for outside runners and walkers).
YouTube may seem a strange place to look for free music at a fixed BPM, but if you search on “workout BPM” you’ll be presented with loads and loads of videos with music mixes at differing BPM’s. You will need to be connected to the internet and able to get YouTube where you run (unless you use one of the many services that will download a video for you, in which case you can save mixes to your device of choice) so this may be limiting for some.
Although not really a free music tip since you have already acquired the music in your iTunes library, but you would have thought that iTunes would be ideal for sorting your music by BPM, sadly that is not the case, whilst BPM information is usually in a songs data, it’s not used in iTunes. You can of course put the data in manually or use paid software like www.beatunes.com (there are some others too) to go through your music collection and do it for you. You can then sort by BPM and build a playlist as normal but from your own music.