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Tricks of the Tread: Treadmill Interval Workouts

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Feel as if you're on a conveyor belt to nowhere? Love your indoor run again with these get-in-the-zone strategies from trainer Jay Blahnik, the creator of the popular Tread & Shred class at Equinox Fitness Club in Newport Beach, California.
Treadmill Tips

Replicate the road.
"To mimic flat ground, move the treadmill's incline to 1 percent instead of 0," Blahnik says. "This makes up for the fact that there's no forward motion when you run in place." Ramp up the incline to 4 percent or more for hills.

Find your sweet spot.
"Running too close to the console changes your arm swing, and being too far from it makes you take smaller steps so you won't feel as if you're falling off the back," Blahnik says. Inch back from the console toward the center until your swing feels natural.

Clock out.
Instead of watching the minutes crawl by, "pick a speed and incline that are challenging but doable and then focus on something other than the console for the duration of a motivating song on your playlist," Blahnik says. When the song is over, check your distance and aim to beat it the next time around by punching up the pace.

Boredom-Proof Treadmill Plan

Steal Blahnik's boredom-busting treadmill session and you'll burn about 300 calories in 30 minutes.*

Untitled Document
Minutes Incline (%) Speed (mph) Activity
0:00 to 1:00 15 2.5 to 3.5 Holding the front rail, walk at an easy pace, performing butt kicks.
1:00 to 2:00 15 2.5 to 3.5 Holding the front rail, walk, rolling onto your toes to perform a calf raise with each step.
2:00 to 3:00 15 2.5 to 3.5 Walk sideways for 30 seconds, switch sides and repeat.
3:00 to 5:00 1 2.5 to 5.5 Break into a speed walk or an easy run.
5:00 to 11:00 1 4.5 to 8.5 Alternate between a one-minute sprint and a one-minute easy run/walk for three sets.
11:00 to 11:30 6 2.5 to 6.5

Keep the intensity at a steady run/walk as you adjust the incline.

11:30 to 12:00 0 2.5 to 6.5

Keep the intensity at a steady run/walk as you adjust the incline.

12:00 to 12:30 8 2.5 to 6.5

Keep the intensity at a steady run/walk as you adjust the incline.

12:30 to 13:00

0 2.5 to 6.5 Keep the intensity at a steady run/walk as you adjust the incline.
13:00 to 13:30 10 2.5 to 6.5 Keep the intensity at a steady run/walk as you adjust the incline.
13:30 to 16:00 0 2.5 to 6.5 Keep the intensity at a steady run/walk as you adjust the incline.
16:00 to 22:00 1 4.5 to 8.5 Alternate between a one-minute sprint and a one-minute easy run/walk for three sets.
22:00 to 26:00 1 2.5 to 6.5 Run at an easy-to-moderate pace.
26:00 to 30:00 0 2.5 to 3.5 Cool down.
Treadmill Intervals and Strength Training

This 30-minute run/walk plan from Julie Bobek, an instructor of the Shedtread class for Equinox Rockefeller Center in New York City, includes bursts of strength training to rev up more calorie burn.

Untitled Document
Minutes Incline (%) Speed (mph) Activity
0 to 3:00 1 3.5 to 4.5 Brisk walk
3:00 to 5:00 1 4.5 to 5.5 Easy jog
5:00 to 8:00 1 5.5 to 7.5 Running at natural speed
8:00 to 10:00 3 5.5 to 7.5 Running at natural speed
10:00 to 12:00 5 5.5 to 6.5 Reduce speed by 10%
12:00 to 14:00 7 to 10 3.5 to 4.5 Brisk walk
14:00 to 15:00 3 4.5 to 5.5 Easy jog
15:00 to 17:00 1.5 5.5 to 7.5 Running at natural speed
17:00 to 18:00 1.5 3.5 to 4.5 Brisk walk
18:00 to 19:00 1.5 6.5 to 8.5 Sprint
19:00 to 20:00 1.5 3.5 to 4.5 Brisk walk
20:00 to 21:00 -- -- Hop off treadmill to do squat jumps (25 seconds), then burpees (25 seconds). Return to treadmill.
21:00 to 22:00 5 3.5 to 4.5 Brisk walk
22:00 to 23:00 -- -- Hop off treadmill (to side or back, wherever there is enough room) and do a squat-and-row move: Wrap a resistance band around one arm of treadmill and hold ends of band in each hand; squat as you drive elbows behind you so that you feel tension in band. Repeat for 1 minute, then return to treadmill.
23:00 to 24:00 5 3.5 to 5.5 Brisk walk/easy jog
24:00 to 25:00 -- -- Hop off treadmill and do side-steps: Standing on center of a resistance band, cross band and grip ends so that it forms an X (wrap band around fists to pick up slack). Keeping hands on hips, step to the right for 15 to 20 reps, then repeat to left. Return to treadmill.
25:00 to 27:00 1 3.0 to 3.5 Easy walk
27:00 to 30:00 -- -- Hop off treadmill and do 15 push-ups, then a plank for 1 minute. Repeat.
Stretch and cool down.
The Run/Walk Interval Plan

Grayson Fertig's Tread class at the Sports Center at Chelsea Piers in New York City is a fast-paced interval training session that alternates between walking and running.

Untitled Document
Minutes Incline (%) Speed (mph) Activity
0:00 to 5:00 0 to 15 (vary as often as you like) 1.3 Walk
5:00 to 13:00 15 2.5 Walk
13:00 to 21:00 0 5.1 Brisk walk
21:00 to 34:00 0 4.5 to 6.0 Easy jog (Recover from previous brisk walk then alternate easy jog and brisk walk.)
34:00 to 39:00 0 1.3 Walk
39:00 to 60:00 0 4.5 to 6.0 Run one mile at one minute slower than your mile time pace then recover with 5 minute walk at 1.3 mph.

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, September 2012.

 

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12/13/2013 04:19:36 PM Report Abuse
olderdandrt wrote:

Can't see a gym allowing some of these as a safety issue! They sure don't want law suits for treadmill injuries. Simple adjusting of incline or speed, fine and they work well!! Done it! Great workout! But getting off then back on, not so much. If you have your own treadmill, knock yourself out!

7/24/2013 02:06:23 PM Report Abuse
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1/9/2013 06:12:00 PM Report Abuse
anonymous wrote:

This is great! Treadmills are boring, but it's hard to beat the efficiency. Thanks much!!

10/30/2012 10:47:18 AM Report Abuse
helenes4 wrote:

I like it. I've been looking for ways to "up" my treadmill time etc. Thank you.

10/8/2012 02:55:41 PM Report Abuse

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