Best Break-up Songs to Run To

Here's another unexpected perk of living in the country: New hours of free time. Early early new hours of time, never before experienced. Time that you have when you get up at the dawn of crack.

Because each day we rise "in the night" (as Harry says) to drive into town for his early kindergarten start. Oh yes we do. And then, there I am, in the sevens of a.m….up, dressed, and far away from home…ready to do something. Anything. Anything I want.

For the first few weeks, I just sat around and ate tacos and read Twitter. That got boring.

Then someone talked me into training for a 5K. So that's what I'm doing now. Which means now, during hours I used to be asleep and/or in morning meetings, I find myself running around Austin's Town Lake, headphones in, music up LOUD!, in an effort to distract and deaden the pain. The pain of running.

And here's the thing about the music that helps me run: It's. It's shiny happy get-your-endorphins-going music that typically has some sort of auditory memory trigger to some past good time. Or so I thought… But the more that I'm actually listening to the words of the past songs (on 11, in my headphones in my brain) I'm finding that they're total and complete F*** YOU tunes. Which is fun.

Here is the other thing about running: It really ticks me off. This is partially due to the aforementioned pain. And partially because physical activity activates unprocessed emotions and brings them to the surface. If you know me at all, you know that I'm pretty low key, even keel, etc. James says I missed my calling as the middle child of a divorced family. (I am not. He is.) In related news, I tend to get distracted and stop any grief processing around stage 2 of the 7 stages…shame and guilt…and I never really move on to 3, anger. I've done yoga forever and not experienced this, but running sorta chemically brings it up…perhaps to push through the pain of running. (This kick of kick-*** is actually the only fun part about running that I've found. So far.)

I ran on the treadmill a lot the week of the non-stop 9/11 decade tributes. I watched them as I ran, and I basically wanted to punch someone in the face. A lot. Luckily, there was an actual punching bag just a few feet away.

But now I'm outside, running next to the beautiful lake, listening to shiny happy break-up songs, and I want to break up with people all over again. In clever kick-*** harmonies of hate.

So if you too would like to add a little F*** YOU to your running regimen, I recommend these five tunes. They mighty seem annoyingly and innocently cheesy, but they have a delicious punch in the face. Hooray for the punching! And enjoy.

1. Somebody More Like You. Nickel Creek. "We're very different people, so dear, I hope you find somebody more like you." (Who knew bluegrass could be so angry? This song is brilliantly cheery and cutting at the same time. I love it.)

2. Happier. Guster. "So go on, if it will make you happier. It got you this far. Do what you have to do. You've left me alone. Did it make you happier?" (This one reminds me of my dear friend who found herself unexpectedly and delightedly pregnant…but it was complicated…and her boyfriend was too self-absorbed and chickens*** to rise to the occasion. Nice. I scream this one for her.)

3. You Stole the Sun from My Heart. Manic Street Preachers. "There's no real truce with my fury. You stole the sun from my heart." (Okay this one is obvious. But the music is just so happy!)

4. Somebody that I Used to Know. Elliot Smith. "I had tender feelings that you made hard. But it's your heart, not mine, that's scarred." (Also obvious. I saw him perform in a small room in 2000, and he sang this song with such a 'I-could-not-care-less-about-you' smile on his face. The apathy is fantastic.)

5. Song for the Dumped. Ben Folds Five. "Give me my money back, you b****." (Is there anything else left to say, really?)

So. Yeah. With a punch!

Do you have a favorite, upbeat, I-hate-you song? Do share.

- By Laura Mayes

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Laura Mayes is an Emmy-winning writer, a co-founder of the Mom 2.0 Summit, Camp Mighty, Mighty Summit, and Kirtsy.com.