I pulled almost every song in this mix from the iTunes charts in the last couple of weeks – now that’s fresh.  It’s also a workout with a number of challenging elements.  It starts with a 7.5 minute out of the saddle climb.  The rest of the workout is at a higher tension than many riders may be used to.  It’s important to get them working at higher tensions rather than bouncing around.  Remind participants that it’s their ride – you’re there to offer the challenge; it’s up to them to decide how hard they want to go today.

All Summer Long – The Rock Heroes (4:56): Okay, really it’s Kid Rock’s tune, but where is his version on iTunes, I ask?  It’s a little bit Werewolves of London, a little bit Sweet Home Alabama, and makes you forget how crisp the air is these days.  Warm up your legs and do some dynamic stretches.

Pop Culture (GYR8 Remix) – Creature (3:38):  This is a fast standing climb.  Start with your tension at 5/10, then move it to 6/10 and finish the last minute at 7/10, keeping the beat the whole time.  I first heard this song on 101.3 the Bounce last week and thought, now THAT’S a climbing song.  It’s pure dance floor fun with a definite disco feel.  Creature is a brand new Canadian band out of Montreal and this is their first single.  Dance with me, sister!  Kid Rock would hate, hate, hate it.

I’m Ready – Wyclef Jean (3:55): This new song from Wyclef is an utterly charming fan-letter to tennis star Venus Williams (“her serve is like lightning…”)  Best part: where the backup singers croon “don’t stop!” at the bridge.  Don’t sit, just dial back the tension to 5 or 6 if you need to.

Hot ‘n Cold – Katy Perry (3:40): Word has it, Perry’s Mom (an evangelical Christian preacher) is very, very, very unhappy with the fact that her daughter kissed a girl and liked it.  But in a totally supportive way.  Three sprints here: 30/30/45 at 0:32 – 1:02, 1:38 – 2:08, and 2:46 – 3:31.  Usually, we sprint with the tension around 4/10, but today we’re experimenting with more tension – so try 5/10 or even 6/10 – at least one level higher than usual.

Let It Rock (Radio Edit) – Kevin Rudolf and L’il Wayne (3:56): High.  Tension.  Lifts.  Crank it to 7/10 and give me 8/4/2 beats.  Download the clean version.

Bad Girlfriend – Theory of a Deadman (3:26): Those who know me know that I’ve yet to meet a guitar riff I didn’t like.  This catchy tune is full of them – it’s pure rock ‘n roll.  Download the clean version to avoid f-bombs.  Even the clean version isn’t really PG rated.  This Canadian band signed to Nickelback singer Chad Kroeger’s label and you can definitely hear Nickelback’s influence on this track.  We’re going to do a second set of sprints: 20/15/60 seconds at 0:57 – 1:17, 1:39 –  1:54, and 2:18 – 3:18.  Do the first two at higher tension: 6/10 (standing sprints optional).  The last sprint is a full 60 seconds at a sustained race day pace.

Girl With the Pretty Name – Sketch Williams (3:17): Single-leg training, two sets of 45 seconds each.  Keep the tension high enough to count – 7/10 or more.  As always, you should be very happy when the time comes to switch legs.  Remind riders not to take the resting foot off the pedals for safety reasons.

Angel – Flipsyde (4:27): My favourite cool down song right now for its laid-back reggae beat.  Two other cool down songs that would go with this mix are Theory of a Deadman’s Santa Monica (4:09) or Shaggy’s It Wasn’t Me (3:48).

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