I skipped out on my workout tonight. Mainly because my legs are still a little sore from last night, and my left knee is making a weird sound... but I digress.
These are the reasons I think the cast recording of Matilda the Musical is my new fave workout music for cardio only days:
(Please pause and turn it on if you want to follow along.)
6. FAKE IT 'TIL YOU MAKE IT!
Now, it's not like the beginning of "Miracle" is extremely fast, but it's not extremely slow either. It's a perfect pace setter. I'm usually on the bike or elliptical when I first start my cardio workout. I tend to change my resistance every 1-2 minutes and the changes in tempo, the dialogue breaks, etc. all help feed that. Dialogue breaks are the best time to do peak resistance. I don't know about you, but I can't pedal as fast on 15 or 20 as I can on 5. It also helps that "Miracle" is over 10 minutes long. that means by the end of the song I have completely 1/3 of my time on the bike... and I've enjoyed an awesome story while doing it!
We go straight from "Miracle" into "Naughty." Now, "Naughty" is one of my favorite songs. It's the song I heard and decided that Matilda will be to this new generation what Annie was for mine. "Naughty" reminds you that you have to make the change you want to see. (Remember when I talked about effort last night.) Well, if your up and down time during "Miracle" made you want to quit after your first 10 minutes, "Naughty" will put you right back on track. My favorite lyric is "Everyday start with the tick of a clock. All escapes start with the click on a lock. If your stuck in your story, and want to get out, you don't have to cry, you don't have to shout." If that doesn't motivate you... I don't know what will!
Next comes "School Song" with DRIVE for days! It might start out slow, but that's just to prepare you. You've wrapped your head around completing this... so HERE WE GO! This militarian song works wonders for me, especially when we get to the speedy section. Plus, when they sing "Just you wait for Phys. Ed." I get super pumped. I mean, I need to get in shape so I can run away from Trunchbull. Am I right? Oh... and let's not forget that ENERGY and MOTIVATION are also found here. I mean, "I have suffered in this jail. I've been trapped inside this cage for ages. This living hell." Whether your trying to lose weight, just got out of a bad relationship, hate your job, or are just carrying around too much stress... just about anyone can relate to that. Let off some steam and pedal faster!
"Pathetic" --Ok, now... just wait. After "School Song" I'm usually winded and want to stop. Then this song comes on, I look at my reflection in the cardio theatre TV that I NEVER use, and hear "Don't be pathetic." This is more of a rest song... like most of Miss Honey's songs, but after over 17 minutes of straight energy, motivation (still semi found here), and drive... REST is important. The thing to do is to just not stop. Slow down... but don't stop.
"The Hammer" -- "Pathetic" is short, but that's good considering Trunchbull is about to brag to us all. She's awesome. We're not. We get our first lesson on DISCIPLINE here. "Always keep your feet inside the line." is equivalent to "JUST KEEP GOING." More on DISCIPLINE later.
"Loud" usually finishes up my time in the bike/elliptical. THANKFULLY! I don't think I could pedal much more after that. The latin inspired feel of it all just gets my feet moving. High or Low resistance it doesn't matter... I usually pedal faster during this song. Why? Because we learn FAKE IT 'TIL YOU MAKE IT here, silly! I'm not in great shape. I'm overweight, but that doesn't matter. I'm faking it right now... but I'll make it to my goal. You just watch me! That's how this song makes me feel.
"This Little Girl" usually gets skipped. Nothing against Miss Honey, but her songs are mostly ballads. Ballads just aren't doing it for me at the gym (most of the time). This is the song to fill up my water bottle, stretch out the first round, etc. It's a short rest. Can't stop for too long.
I'm usually on the treadmill for the start of "Bruce." Did you drink a soda today? Did you eat a candy bar or, I don't know, a piece of cake? You'll regret that soon. Now, you're at the gym working off those extra calories you knew you shouldn't have, but you did it anyway. Luckily for you, Bruce, you've got a gaggle of friends who SUPPORT you! No matter what you are trying to acheive, you should surround yourself with people who support you. I usually just glance over at my workout buddy and think, "She believes I can do this. She is supporting me just by being here with me. I can't give up the fight when some believes in me."
You didn't think I'd forgotten about FUN. You did? Shame on you. By this time, my heart rate is up. I'm feeling good, but I'm tired. Then, "Telly" comes on, and I just think "Oh boy!" This character song is ridiculous. I love the song, but his love of the telly makes me giggle. Let's not forget that kick line ending. I'd probably do it on the treadmill if I wouldn't fall on my face attempting it.
"Entr'acte" is just a reminder of Miracle to me. It reminds me of what those 10 minutes felt like in less than 2. It helps me REFOCUS for the next round.
"When I Grow Up" is my cool down period on the treadmill. It is also in the REFOCUS category. Why am I doing this? What are my goals? Do I believe I will get there? It's a great "thinking" song.
"I'm Here" is a magical song to me when I'm on the treadmill. It works like "Miracle" feeding me ENERGY. However, it reminds me to LOVE. Love working out. Love making healthy choices. Most importantly, it reminds me to love myself. Who I was. Who I am. Who I am working to be. Just LOVE!
"The Smell of Rebellion" Ahhhh, yes... Remember when I said there would be more on DISCIPLINE later. Here it is! My legs will be burning. I'll be sweating like crazy, but I must not quit. I must keep going. Even when I hear the kids sing "I won't take it anymore," I equate that to the unhealthy lifestyle I've been living for so long. Then, the double time happens, and I reach down and increase the speed by at least 0.5, usually more. I just can't help it. I want to keep up. I bet you will want to keep up too. It doesn't last long before we slip into Trunchbull's "imagination," but it's enough to get the heart rate up a little bit more than it was.
"Quiet" is another one of my faves from the show. It is another DRIVE song. I just have to keep going during the beginning. I feel crazed often in life. We all get stressed and overwhelmed. The best thing "Quiet" gives me is QUIET. That sounds crazy but it's true. "Just the sound of your heart in your head." I have nothing to worry about during this song, but just to continue walking/jogging/running nowhere. It's a beautiful thing.
I skip "My House" because once again Miss Honey's ballads do nothing for my workout, and I'm usually on the last 2-3 minutes of my treadmill time, meaning I have to get to my favorite moment/song!
The lesson I get from "Revolting Children" is... you guessed it... REVOLT! I know, I just talked about DISCIPLINE twice, and now I'm telling you to REVOLT! Hear me out. "Revolting Children" is the last leg of my workout. I don't listen to "When I Grow Up (Reprise)" at the gym. So, during this 2:33 song... I have to ability to let go. Push myself past my previous highest speed or incline or both. Revolt against the normalcy. Don't do the same thing everyday. Do something different. Whether I power walk/jog/run... as long as it's more than I did during my final 2-3 minutes the previous day, it counts!
So... next time you are at the gym on a cardio only day, try Matilda the Musical! You might be pleasantly surprised like I was.
The Original Cast Recording of Matilda the Musical can be found on iTunes.