Sometimes, it can be hard not to dread the treadmill, especially if all you are using it for is to run in the same place for 30 minutes. While that sucks, a treadmill workout does not need to be synonymous with a boring workout. Instead, you could be using the treadmill for interval workouts – ones where short bursts of exercise are followed by recovery periods. These treadmill workouts are guaranteed to make exercise more exciting and may even pass time quicker.
Plus, there are a whole lot of benefits for your body when performing these treadmill workouts. By just doing simple interval work you are not only improving your running efficiency, but you are also increasing your anaerobic endurance and helping your body build fast-twitch muscle fibers. In simpler terms, treadmill workouts help you go faster for longer, which is especially true for runners.
However, even if you are not a runner, interval treadmill workouts are still a fantastic way of introducing mileage in small chunks using a low-impact surface. Thus, your body is adapting and preventing injuries, all while burning calories and fat in relatively short amounts of time.
A treadmill is an extremely easy-to-use piece of home gym equipment. They provide gymers with as much customization as they want and ultimately get the job done fuss-free. However, before your workouts start to get a little boring, making you despise stationary runs, here are ten of the most interesting treadmill workouts to up your gym game.
10 Interesting Treadmill Workouts You Should Try
1. Interval Treadmill Workout for Speed
The key to running faster is to run faster during treadmill fitness workouts:
Three-minute drills that include leg swings, butt kicks, and high knees, followed by a five-minute run that is slightly faster than a jog, at an incline of 1%.
1. Four rounds of two-minute fast-pace running, which is then followed by a recovery jog or walk for one minute after each round.
2. After the fourth round, take a three-minute recovery jog or walk.
3. Four rounds of two-minute fast-pace running that is followed by a 30-second recovery walk or jog.
4. Again, after the fourth round, take a recovery jog or walk for three minutes.
5. Lastly, four rounds of 40 seconds sprint pace running, followed by a 40-second recovery jog or walk.
To cool down, jog for three minutes.
2. Descending Ladder Interval Treadmill Workout
The trick to a descending ladder treadmill workout is to increase your effort while simultaneously decreasing the interval length.
An easy jog for 10 to 20 minutes.
1. Three minutes at 75% of your maximum effort
2. One-minute recovery walk or jog
3. Two minutes at 80% to 85% of your maximum effort
4. One-minute recovery walk or jog
5. 60 seconds at 90% of your maximum effort
6. One-minute recovery walk or jog
An easy jog for 10 to 20 minutes.
3. Interval Treadmill Workout for Endurance
The speed required for an interval treadmill workout for endurance is not a slow one; however, the build is.
Start your warmup with a five-minute walk at a moderate pace. Next, facing one side of the room, perform side shuffles on the treadmill for about 15 to 30 seconds. Do this for each side. Afterward, perform quick steps, high knees, and butt kicks for 30 seconds each. Lastly, jog at an easy pace for five minutes.
Before you begin this workout, find the fastest pace you are able to hold for a minute sprint at an incline of 0%. You will start your workout at a speed that is half of this.
1. Run for five minutes; increase your speed by 0.5 mph every minute.
2. Then, have a two-minute recovery jog.
3. Repeat these steps six more times and increase each set’s starting speed by 0.5 mph more than your original starting pace.
To cool down, it is recommended that you jog for a few minutes afterward.
4. The Pyramid Treadmill Interval Workout
Surprisingly, hills are able to provide the same benefits as speedwork, such as improved stride and running economy, stronger muscles, and a higher calorie burn. Therefore, the incline used with the walking pad treadmill is essentially resistance training for your run. This is because you have to lift your knees and increase your power output, which, in turn, translates to a workout on a hill.
Three minutes of dynamic drills including butt kicks, leg swings, and high knees, which is then followed by a four-minute run at a pace that is faster than a jog at an incline of 1%.
1. 90 seconds of fast pace running at a 1% incline.
2. A 45-second recovery jog or walk.
3. At a 2% incline, 90 seconds of fast pace running.
4. 45-second recovery walk or jog.
5. 90 seconds of fast pace running at a 3% incline.
6. A 45-second recovery jog or walk.
7. Now, set the incline at 5% and run for two minutes, three minutes, and four minutes, following a 45-second jog or walk after each interval.
8. Set the incline at 4% and run for two minutes, three minutes, and four minutes, following a 45-second jog or walk after each interval.
9. Repeat the set above at an incline of 3%.
10. Lastly, a three 60-second run at a 5% incline, which is then followed by a 45-second recovery jog or walk.
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Cool down with a three-minute jog.
5. Alternating Float Interval Treadmill Workout
This is known as a classic speed play workout where the on intervals will feel nice and challenging, using around 80 to 90% of your maximum effort, while the float intervals will only use around 60 to 65% of your maximum effort.
Start with an easy jog for 10 to 20 minutes.
1. Two two-minute on intervals and two-minute float intervals.
2. Four one-minute on intervals, and one-minute float intervals.
3. Four 30-second on interval, and a 30-second float interval.
4. Then, four 15-second intervals followed by a 15-second float interval.
5. Have a three-minute recovery jog or walk.
6. Repeat steps one through four.
Have an easy jog for 10 to 20 minutes.
6. Uphill Interval Treadmill Workout
The uphill interval treadmill workout helps you to explore speed in short bursts at an incline. Then, in round two, it helps you to show off the strength you have built by adding more speed when you run on a flat surface.
First, a five-minute walk at a moderate pace. Then, face one side of the room and do side shuffles for 15 to 30 seconds. Face the other side of the room and repeat. Next, do 30 seconds each of butt kicks, high knees, and quick steps. Jog for the remainder of the time.
Like in the interval treadmill workout for endurance, before you begin, find the fastest pace you are able to hold for a one-minute sprint at an incline of 0%. Start your workout at a speed that is half of that.
1. Six one-minute runs that are followed by a one-minute recovery jog or walk. Increase the incline by 1% in each interval – from 0% to 5%.
2. Four 30-second runs followed by a 60-second recovery walk or jog. With each interval, increase the speed by 0.5 mph.
3. Six 30-second runs which are then followed by a one-minute recovery walk or jog. Start at your fastest pace, and after each interval, increase your speed by 0.2.
Jog for a few minutes to cool down.
7. Race Pace Interval Treadmill Workout
This workout is especially useful for half-marathon or marathon treadmill fitness training.
Perform an easy jog for 10 to 20 minutes.
1. One mile of running at a marathon or a conversational pace.
2. Four 90-second runs at 80% of your maximum effort or 10K pace.
3. A one-mile run at a marathon pace.
4. Again, four 90-second runs at 90% of your maximum effort or 5K pace.
5. Lastly, one mile runs at a marathon pace.
Perform an easy jog for 10 to 20 minutes.
8. HIIT Treadmill Workout
If you happen to be fine with HIIT-style treadmill workouts, then you will love applying this concept to your treadmill fitness regime.
Start with a five to 10-minute jog at a slow pace.
1. Six 30-second sprints that are 1.5 to 3.0 mph faster than the comfortable jog pace in your warmup, followed by a 90-second recovery jog between each sprint.
9. Treadmill Incline Workout
Another workout with a foldable walking treadmill that is similar to running hills is the treadmill incline workout, and this is how you do it:
Have a five to 10-minute warmup at a slow jog pace.
1. At a 0.5% incline, run for one minute.
2. Run for one minute at a 2% incline.
3. At a 0.5% incline, run for a minute.
4. Run for one minute at a 3% incline.
5. At a 0.5% incline, run for another minute.
6. Run for one minute at a 4% incline.
7. Again, at a 0.5% incline, run for a minute.
8. Then, run for one minute at a 5% incline.
9. Lastly, repeat the above steps in reverse.
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Cool down for five to 10 minutes.
10. Treadmill Ladder Workout
One of the last workouts to spice things up is a treadmill sprint workout. It is another type of interval workout where you will go up the ladder and then come back down.
Warm up for five to 10 minutes at a slow jog pace.
Perform the following sprints by having a one-minute recovery walk or jog between each:
1. A 10-second, 20-second, and 30-second sprint at your fastest pace.
2. A 45-second, 60-second, and 45-second sprint at 0.5 mph slower than the fast sprints above.
3. Another 30-second, 20-second, and 10-second sprint at your fastest pace.
Treadmill Mistakes to Avoid
These 10 treadmill workouts are a great way to get your cardio exercise in; however, in order for you to get the most out of the time you spend exercising on a running pad treadmill, in need to avoid the following mistakes:
- Not following the safety rules of a treadmill
- Holding onto the handrails of the treadmill
- Looking down instead of ahead
- Leaning forward on the treadmill
- Wearing the wrong type of shoes
- Not using your arms
- Not knowing about the different features each treadmill offers
- Going too fast or not challenging yourself at all
Do You Want Your Own Treadmill?
The only thing better than 10 interesting treadmill workouts is doing 10 interesting treadmill workouts from the comfort of your own home. Autonomous is a supplier of treadmills and takes pride in dedicating articles to inform their customers with useful information, such as how to buy a treadmill and the difference between a curved treadmill vs. flat treadmill.
Listed below are links to the different types of treadmills Autonomous sells:
- WalkingPad X21
- WalkingPad A1 Pro
- WalkingPad C2
- Walkingpad R2
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How Long Is a Good Workout on a Treadmill?
A moderate-intensity workout should be 30 minutes, but low-intensity walking on a treadmill should be around 40 minutes. A good treadmill workout consists of 30 to 60 minutes of exercise most days. If you are at work and want to workout during your work, let's try a standing desk with a treadmill.
Is a Treadmill Good for Belly Fat?
Not only does the use of a treadmill burn your belly fat, but it also has a long-term effect that will help remove visceral fat for good when you perform regular treadmill workout sessions.
Is It Ok to Treadmill Every Day?
Once you have become familiar with treadmill workouts, you can use your treadmill every day of the week if you wish to do so.
Is a Treadmill Harmful to Your Knees?
Unfortunately, running on a treadmill does put more stress on your joints and bones, and this can lead to injuries such as knee injuries, shin splints, and stress fractures.
Is a Treadmill Good for Your Heart?
Luckily, treadmill workouts provide fantastic cardiovascular exercise that can significantly improve your heart health. Treadmill workouts help you to maintain a steady heart rate throughout.
The Bottom Line
Now that you know the basics of treadmill workouts and what mistakes to avoid, you should put them to good use. In order to receive all of the fitness and health benefits a treadmill can offer, you will need to set goals for yourself and ensure that you are getting into the habit of using the treadmill regularly.
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