Which Rapper Makes the Best Workout Music?

Up until two weeks ago I’ve never stepped foot in a gym. Well, other than picking up my college ex who worked at a New York Sports Club. I’ve just never been the physical type and being around a bunch of sweaty grunting dudes just wasn’t my thing. It still isn’t but sitting behind a desk for hours on end cranking out content for XXLMag.com and my own personal blog doesn’t do much for the heart rate so I decided to do something about it.

While I’ve been taking swim classes for the past two years, it wasn’t really giving me the workout I was looking for. I’m not into free weights and all that jazz, so just joining a gym wouldn’t do it. I needed a class of some kind and after asking around I settled in on kickboxing. Not only is it supposed to get you super fit, it also adds a few knock-a-nucka-out moves to the arsenal.

Anyway, my first class tore me up last week and it felt like the longest hour of my life. However, this past weekend it wasn’t a breeze by any means but it definitely wasn’t as bad. Part of it is because I knew what to expect this time, but another could be the soundtrack. With a different instructor came a different play list, while last week’s trainer played Jersey Shore anthems, my man Frank kept it funky with some good ol’ fashion hip-hop.

He may have been a your typical White guy from Long Island, but to quote the lovely Keri Washington in Chris Rock’s I Think I Love My Wife he sure had some “ni**a ears.” Throughout the hour everything from Black Sheep’s “The Choice is Yours” and LL Cool J’s “Mama Said Knock You Out” to OutKast’s “B.O.B” and House of Pain’s “Jump Around” got some burn while we burned calories.

In between reps, though, I did notice that one artist in particular kept popping up—50 Cent. “Get Up,” “I Get Money,” “Ok, You’re Right,” “Hustler’s Ambition” and “What Up Gangsta” were just some of the songs that came blaring through the speakers.

An old co-worker once told me that she only listened to 50 when she exercised and now it all made sense. Aside from his saccharine pop concoctions, Curtis has a knack for picking high-octane productions that not only get booties on the dance floor but also make the perfect soundtrack for a good workout.

Since I’ll be hitting the gym more regularly now, I figured I better get my own hip-hop play list together for my next workout. I figure more “aggressive content” like some Onyx, M.O.P., and Busta Rhymes will make the cut, but I was just curious about who y’all listen to when working out. —Anslem Samuel

  • Anonymous

    DMX

  • p

    DMX so obvious…not a good look having forgotten him

    • Anslem

      True, good one. Just starting to workout so never thought about artists in terms of who makes for good workout music till trainer played those tracks. I’ll tell him to add some X next time. lol

  • Ali

    ima go with Tip or Bun-B

  • http://www.twitter.com/Pierzy Pierzy

    As one of the last few proud Onyx fans (Shut ‘Em Down ’98 was a hot album!), I’ll go with those dudes.

    I’m not a DMX fan but he should’ve been on the list too.

  • Dal

    D-M-X!!

    Sheesh…… good list but it looks like someone forgot to check it twice for leaving him off.

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  • Mpho

    Mystikal – Unpredictable album.. from Born 2 be a soldier u gettin hype

  • That dickhead Dave

    Eminem….’Til I Collapse being one of many.Fix your list fucknaught!

  • Sneed

    Till i collapsae 2pac ambitionz of a ridah

  • El Tico Loco

    M.O.P. and Jeezy belong there no doubt but where’s Three 6, P Troy, DMX or any Cam/Dipset related music?

  • 6 100

    XXL staff is a funny group.

    Last week you wanted to end the Jewish stereotyping in hip hop.

    This week a guy named Anselm Samuel(Jewish name) makes at least 2 N-word references? Hypocrite much?

    • Anslem

      Sorry, homes, Anslem Samuel is Black/African-American. Never heard that my name sounded Jewish, it’s 100% Caribbean since I’m a Jr. But actually, Anslem is a biblical name, rather Anselm, who was a philosopher and a saint. Went to Catholic school for 12 years and all I heard from the nuns was Saint Anselm etc.

      As for the Jewish post from last week, that was from Adam Fleishman (an actual Jew).

      Just had to hip you to the name game. Ha! Me Jewish. lol

      • http://www.twitter.com/Pierzy Pierzy

        …aaaaaaand 6 100 loses badly.

        • 6 100

          Still a weak post, fam

        • Anslem

          But i bet you would have thought it less-weak if I were Jewish. lol

        • 6 100

          not really, son. weak = weak

          I wish ya’ll cats would write about some shit and stick to an arguement. This article really doesnt count since it’s primarily a fluff piece. But you hiphop journalists, or whatever the “XXL staff” considers themselves (mail room/interns/cleaning people) stay trying to tell stories. While I’m not against using a narrative to opine, in hip hop literature it comes off as trite.

          XXL doesnt really have any opinions, and it really doesnt report news. So i see you bloggers as being like contributors to some shit like the New Yorker. The only difference is the New Yorker has some pretige in the literary circles. This isnt a knock to you personally. It’s just that if you want to be taken seriously asa writer, you need to come with more dangerous content than the story of you making the switch to cardio kick boxing from swimming.

  • jonny bizness

    When i’m boxing it has 2 be early mobb deep the infamous,hell on earth and my fav murda musik.When i go out jogging 4 some reason Ricky Rozay gets a lot of burn the albert ep mixed in with makaveli 2 get me thru the last couple of miles.

  • newyawka631

    Onyx all fucking day. You need to get pumped, you call Onyx……

  • ri067953

    Some Lil’ Jon is always good to work out to.

    • The Mighty Spade

      Big fucking cosign, Rick Ross, Kanye, and 50? WTF kinda workouts niggas doin nowadays. See I’m a military vet so we used to callin cadence so Lil Jon just goes tooo fuckin hard not to workout to, its straight chant music. (I.E. Put Yo Hood Up, Rep Yo City, Throw It Up)

  • No Name

    It depends on my mood really. On a really good day even a Chili Peppers song can get me amped, lol.

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  • OMG

    OMG FIRST, JEWBOY DON’T SAY NIGGA LMAO LOL

    SECOND, NIGGA U FUCKING FORGOT ABOUT DMX. FUCKING DISSAPOINTED, OH WELL, NOT TO EXPECT MUCH FROM A JEW, LMAO

    CAPS = COOL

    • Anslem

      SMH

      I’m not Jewish. get ya facts straight instead of listening to ol’ boy up top. LOL

      And like I told some earlier, the list is based off what I heard in the gym this weekend. I opened the floor up to y’all to chime in some suggestions for a brother to get his work out on, so it ain’t about someone got “forgotten”.

      Sheesh.

      Anslem the Catholic Caribbean LOL

    • Jerm

      lol @ telling him not to say nigga then calling him nigga in the sentence after.

  • Jonjo

    MY WORKOUT PLAYLIST
    FOREVER: DRAKE
    LIL WAYNE :RIGHT ABOVE IT
    JONJO : DROP THE WORLD (JONJO PROJECT 1 DATPIFF.COM)
    POWER :KANYE WEST
    T.I.: YEAH YOU KNOW
    DRAKE OVER
    ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD : RICK ROSS
    TRIUMPHANT SOUNFING SONGS I FIND ARE VERY MOTIVATIONAL

  • Jonjo

    MY WORKOUT PLAYLIST
    FOREVER: DRAKE
    LIL WAYNE :RIGHT ABOVE IT
    JONJO : DROP THE WORLD (JONJO PROJECT 1 DATPIFF.COM)
    POWER :KANYE WEST
    T.I.: YEAH YOU KNOW
    DRAKE OVER
    ALL THE MONEY IN THE WORLD : RICK ROSS
    TRIUMPHANT SOUNFING SONGS I FIND ARE VERY MOTIVATIONAL

  • three2six3

    I’ll go with some Triple-6 Mafia, DMX, 50 Cent, Brotha Lynch, Fiend, Mystical, and Busta Rhymes

  • three2six3

    Damn I left out 2Pac!! That whole Makaveli album is a good workout!!

  • Anon

    B. Pumper Lmfao

  • Tiiz

    All jokes aside, Waka Flocka could be on this list.

  • http://www.bboycult.com $yk

    50

    MOP

    DMX

    PUBLIC ENEMY (all of that pro-black music be making me wanna hurt something)

    ONYX

  • Freddy Gunnar

    cmon guys DmX of course been hitting the gym since i was 18 the man just gives u chill. Pastor troy, rick ross new BMF gets u ready as well. ohh yeah young jeezy, but when u wanna go psycho u get that rock shit, man breaking benjamin and korn will get u ready for any war. Music is Power, power to the peoples.

  • LEEK

    D-Block

  • BULLETS

    DMX AND ANYONE OF THEM SOUTHERN NIGAS ALL THEY BEATS SOUND THE SAME ……….

  • antibody

    what the fuck is workout music? hip hop is so fucking misdirected these days

  • Anonymous

    As someone who works out a lot and listens to rap a lot (no Ross and Kanye)
    -M.O.P. hands down

  • http://www.myspace.com/slotchmusic ms_spittuh

    Two songs come to mind –

    1. Release Yo Delf – Method Man
    2. Time 4 Sum Aksion – Redman

    …but that Method Man song? When I used to practice at home for basketball…oh yeah :)

  • Lurigancho

    You know what you want to crank at the gym – Splack Pack

  • Escobar9300

    No DMX? No 2pac? No Eminem? Those are my top 3 artists to bump on the ipod at 24 hour fitness. XXL Fails again.

  • P. Harris

    I start every work out with Gangstarr..

    “Code of the Streets”

  • Steezy E

    I can’t work out without some Slim Shady. Til I collapse, soldier, go to sleep, say what you say, just a few of the best right there.

  • Simple like ABC, 123

    Rick Ross??? HAHAHA DMX or M.O.P.

  • Nuttyboy

    Victory- BIG and Puffy
    Lose yourself-Eminem
    Patiently waiting-50
    Pop the Trunk- Yelawolf
    Ruff ryders anthem-DMX
    Still on it-Young Jeezy
    BM Jr-Wayne
    On to the next one-Jay
    Hard on the paint-Wacka flocka

    These are my faves and that BMF and Mc Hammer by Rozay also go hard.

  • dave

    as much as roy jones jr. isnt really a rapper but still he has the best work out song of all time
    cant be touched comon now!

    • King

      Thats shadow boxing music!

  • Dave

    also Go hard or go home gets me going so roy jones jr should be added to any workout playlist, i know hes no outkast but if u wanna get intense listen to his beats

  • Notorious AGC

    rick ross ????????????????
    THIS BLOG IS A FAIL !

  • Reckless

    first of all your only gunna workout to wut u like cuz thts wutts gunna get u hype and motivated to get dem reps in …. but on da other hand if i was goin into gym i would not wanna hear ross cuz wutts he really sayin tht will get u in da mode where u get in the zone to go full tillt and really push urself till ucant lift anymore??….nothing…….but a nigga like 50 will do tht he paints a way better picture in his rap so does sum others like ll cool j and guru aka gangstarr the only thing ross will say is he thinks hes sumbody hes not so for instance in this case he’ll think hes brian pumper and melly mel lololol

  • Dat Dude

    Personally when I’m hittin the weights, I like some 50, DMX and LL. They’re shit will get you goin. I was at the gym though once and their was this pasty mothafucka workin out to Drake’s mixtape So Far Gone, like honestly, I jst thot it was clownin.

  • King

    I dont lift weights anymore since I box but I use to lift all the time because football(College and after) so when I did lower body workouts it was Jeezy(started out with Who Dat…thats my shit)and mainly Lil Jon (Throw it up ft. Pastor Troy) that would get me through those heavy ass squats.

  • http://www.twitter.com/vindiISere Vindi

    ANYONE ELSE NOTICE THE WAY THIS BLOG WAS WRITTEN? BLOGGER MENTIONS 50 CENT AND SEVERAL OF HIS SONGS WHICH KIND OF SWAYS THE AVERAGE PERSON TO AGREE AND VOTE 50 CENT HAS THE BEST WORK OUT MUSIC – I SAY HIM & BUSTA RHYMES BUT IF I HAD TO PICK ONE ITS BUSTA – TOO MANY HYPE SONGS

  • sb

    james brown makes the best workout music. puts me in a zone

  • DownSouth

    Good post. I’ll tell another good al to workout to that’ll have you amped up…Tear Da Club Up Thugs CD CrazyNDaLastDayz. It’s also a good CD to listen to if you about to fight or do a driveby, lol!

    DOWN SOUTH!!!

  • Lurigancho

    Luke – Scarred

    Dare the hardest mf here to play that and not get up and start acting the fool.