Wii Fit Jams: Music to sweat by…

OK, let me start by saying that the one and only complaint I have about our beloved Wii Fit so far is that several of the workout “games” don’t have any musical accompaniment. Sure, the hula hoop workout has some music and the yoga has some dreamy sounds floating by in the background, but the jogging is totally devoid of music.

Now, the visuals on the island jog are gorgeous and the sound effects are awesome, but I like me some music when I jog…so rather than dash off an angry letter to Nintendo, I made an iPod playlist especially for my Wii Fit workout!

These aren’t the best songs on my iPod — and lord knows they aren’t the worst! — but if they get me moving and get the old blood pumping, then, good, bad or totally cheesy, they made the list. That said, I’m warning you ahead of time that this is definitely not the kind of music I recommend blasting from your car stereo as you cruise Hollywood Blvd. with your homies.

But if you’re working out in the comfort of your own home in the middle of the night, then have at it, amigos. This Wii Fit playlist is for you!

Before I list the songs, I should also add that this list is by no means permanent. I dumped about 5.5 hours worth of Wii Fit worthy music into the playlist and really only use the first 42-45 minutes worth of tunes, so, needless to say, I change the list up a lot. But as of right now…this is my list…

Since I usually start with about ten minutes of hard core hula hoop-ing — don’t laugh, that shit is harder than it looks and man, does it make you sweat! — I begin my workout with Van McCoy’s roller rink classic “The Hustle” (3:47). I know what you’re thinking, but trust me, disco and hula hoops are kind of like peas and carrots…they just work.

Next up is another glittery, disco-era jam, Sister Sledge’s “He’s the Greatest Dancer” (3:25). I know it’s lame, but when I’m mid hula, it’s fun to imagine that the Sister’s Sledge are singing about me. That’s right, for a little over three minutes…I am the greatest dancer! Or, you know, hula hooper…

From here, I transition to classic, mid-60’s Elvis Presley for 2.07 minutes of “Bossa Nova Baby”. Dying for the hula hooping to end, I finish up the session with 2.38 minutes of Neil Diamond’s jangly, and, dare I say, “cracklin” good, “Cracklin’ Rosie”.

This next song was tricky as I needed something to bridge the hula hoop workout and the jogging program…music to put your jogging shoes on to. So, what better transitional tune than The Doors’ “Break on Through” (2:27). It doesn’t really take me that long to tie my shoes, but since pressing all the buttons and stuff does burn up some time, I figured, why not have some music to do it by? Right?

Now, the first song in the jogging program is the one I have changed the most. It’s hard to get the right balance of a great song and one that offers a nice, slow-build to the workout. So, as of right now, that song is Barbra Streisand’s “This is One of Those Moments” (4:04) from “Yentl”. I know it’s a pretty gay-ass jam, but hey, it does build up momentum and that’s all I was looking for.

Following “Yentl” is Mama Cass’ rocking “Make Your Own Kind of Music”. I have had that song on CD for years but only started really enjoying it since it was used on “Lost” a couple seasons back. If you haven’t heard this song yet, you’re missing out, amigos. Mama Cass rocked as a solo artist! Too bad they didn’t have Wii Fit in her day…know what I’m saying?

Next up, I am loathe to admit, is another embarrassing song: Alanis Morissette’s “Front Row” (4:13). Yes, it’s true…deep down I am a sulky twenty-year-old Liberal Arts chick with a Lilith Fair fixation. But seriously, despite the cold, disapproving glares from my wife and friends over the years, I have always dug Alanis. So…suck it, haters.

By this time, my heart is pumping and it’s time to turn up the volume, and since nobody does that better than Courtney Love, the next song on the playlist is Hole’s “Violet” (3:23). This song is like smelling salts to me…seriously, I could be out cold, hear those opening chords and be totally revived in seconds. It’s that good! And speaking of good, next up is Ben Fold’s equally-jamming “Zac and Sara” (3:10). What can I say? Nothing keeps fatty jogging more than some sweet, smoking, Southern piano! Go, Ben!

The next spot on the playlist is another one that has been changed several times. I think I started out with some Nick Cave and Avril Lavigne but have somehow ended up with Geri “Ginger Spice” Halliwell’s one solo hit “Look at Me” (2:44). I know, cheese-tastic. But I’ll tell you what, that zippy, UK trash-pop ditty keeps me moving, baby. So, rock on, “girl power”!

By this point, my little Mii has already made several laps around the Wii Fit island and is desperately in need of some inspiration to carry him to the 30 minute mark. This time, that inspiration comes from The Killers’ lush, almost insanely beautiful “Read My Mind” (4:06). Wow…this song shimmers almost as much as that virtual surf in the distance of Wii Fit island…amazing!

With the Wii FIt finish line in site, I segue back to The King for Elvis Presley’s kick-ass cover of Chuck Berry’s jaunty “Memphis Tennessee” (2:10). Wow…nothing like an ice cool song to counteract the sweat rolling down my shiny forehead! Yee-haw!

And then, as the clock ticks down the minutes in the upper right hand side of the screen, Neil Diamond returns to play me on home with “America” (4:17). When I have timed everything just right, I actually sweep across the finish line just as Neil belts out that “My country tis of thee…TODAY!” action. Man…what better way to end a workout? Thanks, Neil.

And just like that, it’s time to tally up my 42 Wii Fit fitness points — you get one point for every minute you work out — and hit the showers. Like I said, my playlist is a strange and ever-evolving beast right now, so if you have any cool tunes to add or, more likely, subtract, please, feel free to leave me a comment…

In the meantime, que viva los Wii Fit jams!

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9 Comments

Filed under Do, Hear

9 responses to “Wii Fit Jams: Music to sweat by…

  1. LOL! We are truly separated at birth. With the glaring exception of Nick Cave, I love almost everything you mentioned.

    Imagining you hula-hoopin’ to The Hustle is hilarious! For that segment, the only contributions I would add are Leo Sayer’s You Make Me Feel Like Dancin’ and Leif Garrett’s I Was Made for Dancin’, two tracks that make me want to jump up and dance wherever I am.

    OMG, I can’t believe you publicly admitted to working out to Barbra Streisand’s This Is One of Those Moments. I mean, I LOVE that song, but I’m gay, so at least I have an excuse! 🙂

    Love the Mama Cass number too. I remember as a kid, the lady that lived next door to my Aunt Nicky in San Jose gave me some records that once belonged to her then-estranged twenty-something son (not realizing that what he liked 10-15 years before was not at all what I liked then). Most of it I didn’t care for except for one 45 single of Make Your Own Kind of Music which I loved.

    And as for Geri Halliwell’s infectious Look at Me, I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been looking for another artist on my iPod only to see Ms. Halliwell’s name and get sidetracked by wanting to hear Look at Me one more time. (Same with Hanson’s MMMBop and Katrina and the Waves’ Walking on Sunshine).

    And what better way to wrap things up than with Neil Diamond’s America. Other Neil Diamond favorites you may want to add are Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show, and at least the first half of Done Too Soon (the only bummer is the 2nd half of the song is really slow).

    There were a couple of others on there I didn’t know (or maybe I do and just don’t recognize it by title), but I’ll check those out on iTunes today.

    P.S. Ten points for at least getting a photo of Vikki Carr in your blog!

  2. Wan

    Yay! Good for you — my personal guilty exercising pleasures were “What a Feeling” by Irene Cara (who am I kidding — I don’t exercise anymore, but I’ll still jam to that song) and (blush) “Faint” by Linkin Park. The latter was the EXACT PACE of my marathon training, no joke. It does irritate me when bands purposefully misspell their names, but I can’t fight the feeling.

  3. yeti9000

    James: Oh, dude…I am so adding Katrina and the Waves and MMMBop to my playlist tonight!

    And as for Vicki Carr, I had her kick-ass “Sunday Morning Sidewalks” song in the Barbra Streisand position for most of the week, but moved her down a few notches last night. Not that Vicki Carr is any less gay, but I’m just saying…

    Wan: OMG, Irene Cara is also totally making the list…I might have to dig to find that song, but I’m pretty sure I have it somewhere.

    Now if I could just get Christine to knit me some cool J. Beals legwarmers and help me artfully tear my sweatshirt, I’d be all set! 🙂

  4. yeti9000

    Wow, Wan! I just sampled “Faint” on iTunes and it rocks. I didn’t realize that song was by Linkin Park…but wow, it’s kind of superhero cool! I am so buying it now!

    Thanks for the suggestion.

  5. Seriously… How cool is this? I can listen to jams that rock out like “Faint” and get exercise while doing it? Nintendo is GENIUS! How entertaining…. Loved the article.

  6. Melissa

    James–I never see or hear about Mama Cass without thinking of you with that sandwich around your neck that Halloween in SF, lo so many years ago. As Marci would say: Funky ass!

  7. Melissa

    So, really? No Judy? I just read this interesting book about Chicago at the turn of the century (Sin in the Second City by Karen Abbott) and had Judy singing Chicago in my head the whole time. Of course, having Judy on endless loop is better than Barbra singing that crazy Jingle Bell Jingle Bell Jing Jangle song, right? Okay, I’m rambling now. Anyway, I totally approve of the random songlist for exercise…gotta keep from getting bored and checking out!

  8. yeti9000

    Hmmm…hadn’t thought about Judy. But what song?

  9. Geri Lover

    Geri Halliwell had more than one hit. But good for you for listening to her :] She has some other great songs you could run to also.

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