Here’s the thing about ‘Eye of the Tiger.’ If you get into running, you’ll probably think about signing up for a race. Maybe a Thanksgiving Turkey Trot or a neighborhood fun run to start, then a 5K or a 10K, or even a half or full marathon. This is where a runner’s intimate relationship with this song begins. It is basically impossible to run a race without hearing it, whether you’re going 3.1 miles or 26.2. We’re not here to claim this song as a modern musical masterpiece, but it’s going to motivate you to keep going whether you like it or not.
Survivor wrote the track in 1982 specifically for Sylvester Stallone's theme song in Rocky III, so its association with athleticism and ass-kicking is a given. And once you start associating those iconic power chords with race-day adrenaline, it’ll have a permanent spot on your run playlist—what better motivation to pick up the pace than chasing a personal record? Wherever it lands on your playlist—whether it’s in the beginning to help you warm up or towards the end when you’re fighting fatigue—‘Eye of the Tiger’ is a runner’s best friend and everyone knows it. The next race you run, just watch what happens to the athletes around you when the opening chords of the song blast from the speakers. You’ll see air punches. And kung-fu kicks. Probably some dance moves. Let’s just say that no one stops to re-tie a shoe when ‘Eye of the Tiger’ is playing. Whatever mile you’re on when it happens, it’ll be a memorable and motivational moment. Bonus points if it’s playing as you cross that finish line.