Songs You Didn’t Realize Were About Triathlons

As triathletes we realize that the world revolves around triathlons, even if the world doesn’t know it yet. The music industry, somewhat subliminally, got the message decades ago and has been cranking out songs that at first (or fiftieth) listen may not appear to be about triathlons, but the titles are often a dead giveaway. Here are a few examples of songs which speak directly to the triathlon experience:

  • You Don’t Treat Me No Good No More – Sonia Dada
    This song is very sly, because it may, at any given time, be referring to any number of things that don’t treat triathletes no good no more. At various times, it could be our shoes, our bike, our wetsuit, our feet, our legs, our helmet strap, even at times our entire body.
  • Twisted – Joni Mitchell
    This song is dedicated to race directors who put a brutal hill right near the end of a bike or run segment. You know they’re laughing at us!
  • Roadrunner – Jonathan Richman and the Modern Lovers
    Yes we are!
  • Kiss Me I’m Shitfaced – Dropkick Murphys
    At the end of a long race, it often takes just one beer to get there.
  • Walking on Sunshine – Katrina and the Waves
    It always seems that way at the beginning of the race.
  • I Want to Take You Higher – Sly & the Family Stone
    This song is sung from the point of view of your bike gears as you make your way up the toughest hill on the course.
  • Dimming of the Day – Richard and Linda Thompson
    That eternal race to get in a bike ride in after work while there is still a glimmer of light.
  • Keep on Smilin’ – Wet Willie
    This song is all about what we tell ourselves out on the course when we see a race photographer in the distance. We can go back to grimacing once we’ve passed them.
  • On the Road Again – Willie Nelson
    Need I say more?
  • Lay My Body Down – Sonia Dada
    Who hasn’t had this compelling thought at the end of a workout or a race?
  • Say It Ain’t So – Weezer
    This is a song about feeling like the race is going really well until you see the mile marker that reminds you that you’re only at mile two in the 10k.
  • Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door – Bob Dylan
    This song sums up that last stretch of road right before we turn down the finish chute!
  • Poor Poor Pitiful Me
    A song that captures that special feeling we get as we try to unfasten our bike helmet after we have lost all feeling in our hands.
  • I Don’t Like Mondays – Boomtown Rats
    You know that feeling the day after a hard race when you just want to lie in bed all day? With so many races on Sundays, Mondays are often not our favorite days of the week.
  • Breakdown – Tom Petty & the Heatbreakers
    Flat tires, dropped chains and rim-bending potholes all the way.
  • I Wanna Be Sedated – The Ramones
    This is a song I often sing to myself immediately after a triathlon.
  • 2000 MIles – Pretenders
    Maybe the ride only seems that long!
  • Don’t Pass Me By – The Beatles
    This is a song about the guy you thought you left in the dust at mile four who is gaining on you really quickly at mile six.
  • It Hurts So Bad – Susan Tedeschi
    This is about trying to convince your spouse, partner, friend or a complete stranger to give you a post-race massage.
  • April, Come She Will – Simon & Garfunkel
    This is a song all about longing for the beginning of the next race season.
  • Holiday in the Sun – Sex Pistols
    The Pistols understood the value of a destination triathlon.
  • Let’s Talk About Sex – Salt-N-Pepa
    The original title was “Let’s Think About Sex”, which is what has gotten many a triathlete through a brutal weekend long ride.
  • San Francisco Bay Blues – Various Artists
    This was written specifically for the swim portion of the Escape From Alcatraz Triathlon
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Categories: Triathlon Songs | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Songs You Didn’t Realize Were About Triathlons

  1. Bob

    I’m new to this, but my understanding is that we will soon be singing to Diane. The song: John Mellencamp’s “Hurts So Good”. Here’s the chorus:
    Hurt so good
    Come on baby, make it hurt so good
    Sometimes love don’t feel like it should
    You make it hurt so good

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