How often do you sit down and watch a motivational film? Do you put on songs that will uplift you when you run?

Before a big race day, carb loading and resting should be top of the list… but we also suggest watching something motivational and uplifting to get you in that ‘take on the world’, ‘I can do anything’ mindset.  

Films to watch…

The best motivational films are those that are true or biopic.  Knowing that someone conquered their fears, overcame obstacles and achieved their goals, will set you up nicely for race day. If they can do it – so can you! Take a look at our list of motivational films and uplifting tunes to get you in the mood for running.

Running/Sports related motivational films

Without Limits (1998)

American biographical sports film. Written and directed by Robert Towne, the film follows the relationship between record-breaking distance runner Steve Prefontaine and his coach Bill Bowerman, who later co-founded Nike, Inc.

Brittany Runs a Marathon (2019)

A hard-partying woman receives a startling wake-up call when a visit to the doctor reveals how unhealthy she is. Motivated to lose weight, she soon takes up running to help her prepare for her ultimate goal of competing in the New York City Marathon.

Dragons Back Race (2013)

The Dragon’s Back Race became legendary for its 300km of relentless, brutal mountain running. This film takes you into the heart of an inspiring adventure as the race once again weaves a precipitous path down the mountain spine of Wales. The film follows 84 competitors as they battle fatigue, blisters and more.

Invictus (2009)

Following the fall of apartheid, newly elected President Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) faces a South Africa that is racially and economically divided. Believing that he can unite his countrymen through the universal language of sport, Mandela joins forces with Francois Pienaar (Matt Damon), captain of the rugby team, to rally South Africans behind a bid for the 1995 World Cup Championship.

A League of Their Own (1992)

This is a fictional story based on the real women’s baseball league that was started to keep the game alive during the Second World War, when many of the male players were enlisted to fight. 

You tell her Tom!!!


Stronger is a 2017 American biographical drama film directed by David Gordon Green and written by John Pollono, based on the memoir of the same name by Jeff Bauman and Bret Witter. It follows Bauman, who loses his legs in the Boston Marathon bombings and must adjust to his new life.

Rudy (1993)

Rudy has always been told that he was too small to play college football. Undeterred, he resolves to overcome all odds to fulfil his dream to play for Notre Dame.

Run Fatboy Run (2007)

Dennis, a slightly overweight guy, wants to win back his girlfriend, who he ditched at the altar. Apologetic and remorseful, he decides to run a marathon to impress her. Will she forgive him?

Not such a fat boy now!

The Barkley Marathons: The Race that Eats Its Young (2014)

A famous prison escape sparks the idea for a cult-like race that has seen only 10 finishers in its first 25 years. This award-winning, oddly inspiring, and wildly funny documentary reveals the sports world’s most guarded secret.

Fast Girls (2012)

A talented runner (Lenora Crichlow) from a rough part of London joins the British track team and races for glory at the World Championships.

Skid Row Marathon (2012)

A criminal court judge starts a running club on LA’s Skid Row. He trains a motley, but motivated group of homeless, addicted, and criminal men and women to run international marathons.

Other motivational films that are true stories…

Men of Honour (2000)

Inspired by the true story of Master Chief Petty Officer Carl Brashear, the first African American master diver in the United States Navy.

In Pursuit of Happiness (2009)

Real-Life Rags to Riches Story of Successful Businessman Chris Gardner. This is an uplifting drama based on the true story of a single father who went from homeless to successful businessman.

Wild (2014)

Author Cheryl Strayed hikes the Pacific Crest Trail in hopes of finding ways to cope her mother’s death, her experimentation with heroin and her divorce.

Hacksaw Ridge (2016)

The true story of Pfc. Desmond T. Doss. Doss won the Congressional Medal of Honor, despite refusing to bear arms during WWII on religious grounds. Drafted and ostracized by fellow soldiers for his pacifist stance he went on to earn respect and adoration for his bravery, selflessness and compassion after he risked his life, without firing a shot, to save 75 men in the Battle of Okinawa.

Catch Me If You Can (2002)

The film is based on the life of Frank Abagnale. Before his 19th birthday, Frank successfully conned millions of dollars by posing as a Pan American World Airways pilot, a Georgia doctor and a Louisiana parish prosecutor. Will he get caught by the FBI?

Motivational Running Songs

What’s your motivational song?

If films aren’t your thing,  why not listen to some kick-ass music on the morning of the race? Or, if like to run with music, add some of these tunes into your playlist!   There’s something for everyone here.  Some tracks were chosen for their lyrics, some for the beat… and some have both!!


  1. Don’t Stop Me Now – Queen
  2. Dakota – Stereophonics
  3. Run to You – Bryan Adams
  4. Where’s Your Head At – Basement Jaxx
  5. Gonna Fly Now – Rocky Soundtrack
  6. Don’t Stop Believin’ – Journey
  7. Wake Me Up – Avicii
  8. Lose Yourself – Eminem
  9. Pump It – Black Eyed Peas
  10. Thunderstruck – AC/DC
  11. Titanium – David Guetta ft Sia
  12. What a Feeling – Irene Cara
  13. Katy Perry – Firework
  14. Edge of Glory – Lady Gaga
  15. Best of You – Foo Fighters
  16. Shake it Out – Florence and the Machine
  17. Go Your Own Way – Fleetwood Mac
  18. Harder to Breathe – Maroon 5
  19. Stronger – Kanye West
  20. Fighter – Christina Aguila
  21. Confident – Demi Lovato
  22. Roar – Katy Perry
  23. Born This Way – Lady Gaga
  24. Dog Days are Over – Florence and the Machine
  25. Start Me Up – Rolling Stones
  26. Beautiful Day – U2
  27. Take Me Out – Franz Ferdinand
  28. Uprising – Muse
  29. Times Like These – Foo Fighters
  30. Eye of the Tiger – Rocky Soundtrack
The obvious motivational running song –
Eye Of The Tiger!

Got some motivational films or kick-ass running tunes of your own?  Drop your suggestions in the comments below.

Looking for some more motivation? Check out our blog… How to Stay Motivated to Run

Looking for a supportive community to help you stay motivated? Or perhaps an entire coaching team to help you with all aspects of running? How about a running programme designed for your needs complete with nutrition goals? Throw in there strength, stretch and mobility workouts to support your joints and muscles. A weekly yoga, stretch or Pilates live workout along with a weekly Q&A with one of our coaches. We even have a monthly ‘Mindset Movement’ webinar to help you stay focussed. All this for the price of a weekly take-out coffee. Find out more right here… The Inside Track – VIP Membership. We’re also on all the socials… Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!