A Christmas song doesn't have to be up-tempo to boost your heart rate by ten or fifteen beats per minute.  Even if it's slow, we might be able to count it as a workout! 

The right Christmas song at the right time can make us feel like we're standing in the middle of a Hallmark movie, wearing a scarf that's tied just the right way, drinking hot chocolate that's the perfect temperature, falling in love with a big city lawyer who came home to dance with us in postcard-worthy snow.  But it turns out, Christmas songs aren't just cozy.  They really are heartfelt, and they boost our beats per minute whether we realize it or not.

Christmas songs and holiday baking go together like peppermint and chocolate, or like yellow cake and rum.  It's the perfect mix.  Wren Kitchens decided to learn more about the effect of Christmas songs on our heart rates, and they used tracking equipment on listeners while they played some festive hits.  Some songs had a bigger impact on bpms than others.

RankingSongHeart rate BPM (beats per minute) when listening to the songAverage increase/decrease in BPM (beats per minute) when compared to the average resting BPM
1Sleigh ride - Johnny Mathis75.88.4
2It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas- Michael Bublé75.48.0
3Santa baby - Eartha Kitt73.15.6
4All I want for Christmas is you - Mariah Carey72.24.7
5Underneath the tree - Kelly Clarkson72.24.7
6A Holly jolly Christmas - Michael Bublé72.14.6
7Frosty the snowman - Gene Autry71.74.3
8It's the most wonderful time of the year - Andy Williams71.13.6
9Rockin around the Christmas tree - Brenda Lee71.13.6
10Do they know it's Christmas 1984 - Band Aid71.03.5

It's hard to say exactly why these songs reach out and grab us, but it seems fair to say that whether it's hopeful, sentimental, or makes you want to get out the mistletoe and hop in the sleigh with your Santa, your heart rate is goin' up when you hear it.

It may not burn as many calories as running a marathon, but if we listen all day, it's somethin'!  It's slow cardio.  Which could easily be canceled out with egg nog, but we'll worry about that later.

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