1. 90s-2000s pop music
You are a 20-something who identifies with the identify badge “20-something,” if only ironically and begrudgingly. You either had the Best Years of Your Life!™ in high school, or were a tragically late bloomer that still wishes deep down that maybe high school could have been the Best Years of Your Life!™ You’re emotional and nostalgic but you don’t let people see it.
You also live for any and all jokes about Justin Timberlake’s ramen hair.
2. Current Top 40 hits
You have a car, and therefore a radio with which you keep up on current musical trends. Alternatively, your friends or your parents have a car, or you are mooching off of the Spotify playlist of a friend who has a car. Some part of you, however well hidden or not, wants to be cool and sleek and with the times. You were almost-but-not-quite-cool in school, and you’re still reliving these days, one Katy single at a time.
3. Hip Hop
A. You are someone whose main motivation to keep it tight is so that you can shake your booty in the club. B. ‘In Da Club’-era 50 Cent is your peak fitspiration physique. C. You understand that sometimes you just really need people getting abrasive in your ears to fully channel their rage. They sneezed on the beat, and the beat helped you pick up the weight. Or, you know, however it works.
In any case, you do you, homie. May the beat be ever in your favor.
You believe in the one-stop shop kind of lifestyle, and are the kind of person who frequents Amazon or Target for absolutely everything you could ever want or need. You probably also think this efficient system to be slightly superior to any friend who doesn’t operate on such a streamlined level, and are therefore asserting your — wait for it — godliness in your smug opinion that your way is the right way.
5. Classical music
90% of the people who listen to classical music while working out either do tranquil, even-spaced laps in their Infinity pool in the early morning, or consider gardening a workout. 10% of the people who listen to classical music while working out harbor strange fantasies wherein they one day attain the kind of self-care routine of which Patrick Bateman would approve (which might or might not also include having an Infinity pool in which to do tranquil, even-spaced laps).
Do you ever wish there was a way to put an Xzibit joke in an Xzibit joke so you could make a cheesy pop culture reference while you make a cheesy pop culture reference? I’m sure you do. You multitask hard in every single one of the same hours you and Beyonce have in a day. You have your life together in ways the rest of the world cannot even fathom, and are therefore even more terrifying than the Patrick Bateman workout aficionados of the world.
7. Guilty pleasure songs
This is, truth be told, the only reason why you work out. When else could you rock out to Taylor Swift without judgment, bro? Really, as long as you remember to put your profile on “private session,” you can listen to all the One Direction your heart desires. Midnight Memories is a catchy-ass album, and don’t let anyone ever tell you differently. Live your truth.
8. Literal power anthems
If you live for ‘Stronger’ (of both the Kelly Clarkson and Kanye West varieties), ‘Workout Plan,’ ‘Fighter,’ and ‘Work Bitch,’ you are all about The Secret and manifesting that which you want in the universe and the power of positive thinking. I mean, it’s pretty hard to stop running when Gwen Stefani is telling you that you’re looking so hot. Just make sure nobody finds your secret Pinterest board filled with all of those motivational quotes, k?
You are the most mild-mannered, sweetest person in your office, and people often don’t ever expect you to suddenly drop all put-together pretenses and rock out like the Kingdom has finally come. Chances are good you either have completely adopted the hard rock look into your everyday wardrobe, or cover your full-sleeve tattoos with super crisp’n’classy button downs from Brooks Brothers.
10. Techno or EDM
You drink protein shakes after every lifting session, cut your own muscle tees, and live by the mantra, “Not now, chief. I’m in the fuckin’ zone.”
11. Alt-rock that’s at least 5 years old
You harbor a sweet spot for the “I’ve got soul but I’m not a soldier” riff in The Killers’ ‘All These Things That I’ve Done’ and would live forever in Franz Ferdinand’s ‘Take Me Out’ if you could. You’re not good with your favorite bands trying on new sounds, and refer to your favorite music as “the good old days.” You’re also probably a dad who’s staying in shape so you can keep up with your young children.
12. Bon Iver
Whenever anyone asks you what you’ve been doing to stay in shape lately, you’re inclined to say hiking or yoga, with a knowing smile that you will Instagram this hike later with the Earlybird filter — perfectly curated, Pinterest-worthy workout attire and all. Just don’t forget the #namaste hashtag.