I just spent the weekend working the food tent at the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon. Every year I see people who run this thing that make me think “If they can do it, I can do it” but then I go outside, run a block and decide “no, I really don’t like doing this,” and I forget about running for another year. My preferred form of cardio is cycling, either inside or out but I do try to get on the treadmill once in awhile for some cross training. So…can you get a decent workout inside vs outside? Luckily, the answer is yes!
- Use your treadmill at 1 percent incline to get the same workout as running or walking outside on a flat surface.
- Ignore all the “fat burning” and “cardio training” charts on the treadmill equipment. The key to burning calories is distance, not intensity. The longer or farther you go during your treadmill workout, the more calories you burn.
- Adding time and intensity at the same time can increase your risk for injury. When you are starting your treadmill program, gradually add time to your workout first. You can increase intensity later by adding speed or increasing the incline of your treadmill.
- Maintain good posture Head up, shoulders back swinging your arms up to chest level with your hands in a loose fist.
- Watch where you are on the treadmill, don’t drift some side to side and don’t fall off the back!
My favorite treadmill workout is 30 minutes. Start at 0 incline and increase it 1% every minute up to 15 minutes and then down 1% for 15 minutes. WHEW! You will be working hard and burning some calories.
I usually start with a faster walking speed (4.5-4.8) and then slow to 4.0 after the 6 minute mark, then I speed up again when I get back down to 6 on the second half. This is not a beginner workout so ease into it.
The great news? A treadmill can help you lose weight, make your bones and muscles stronger, relieve depression and stress and lower your risk for diabetes, arthritis, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and colon cancer.