Fitness Playlist: Strike Force Orion

Music powers my running workouts. I’ll listen to podcasts or audio books when rowing or using the elliptical at the gym, but when it comes to running it’s all about the music.

I’ve constructed several playlists over the last two years to complement my runs. The first one is Starforce Orion, a militant Halo-inspired creation that is my primary outdoor running playlist. It opens with “Halo Theme Mjolnir Mix” from the Halo 2 soundtrack. This is the updated version of “Rock Anthem for Saving the World” from the original Halo soundtrack and it’s the first song I ever ran to. When I started running, I was shocked to find I couldn’t make it to the end of the “Mjolnir Mix”; I’d give up, gasping for air, about two minutes in. Nowadays it’s just the opening overture … and a reminder of how far I’ve come.

Building on the foundation of “Mjolnir Mix”, the rest of the songs on the playlist share a certain driving insistence. This playlist is about charging at hills, not stopping on the flats, and pushing throw walls — basically, if there’s a running metaphor, this playlist looks to do battle with it. I’m still tweaking it — I think there’s a place for a few songs from the Wonder Woman soundtrack — but it’s been pretty stable for the last year or so.

Here’s the full list:

  • “Halo Theme Mjolnir Mix”, Halo 2 Soundtrack, Vol. 1
  • “Radioactive”, Night Visions, Imagine Dragons
  • “In Amber Clad”, Halo 2 Soundtrack, Vol. 1
  • “All My Life”, One By One, Foofighters
  • “Uprising”, The Resistance, Muse
  • “Unyielding”, Halo 2 Soundtrack, Vol. 2
  • “Learn to Fly”, There Is Nothing Left to Lose, Foofighters
  • “Lemurian Star”, Captain America: Winter Soldier Soundtrack
  • “Trouble Man”, Captain America: Winter Soldier Soundtrack

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Master Chief from Halo 2. Credit: Bungie.

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