6 Tips for a Better Workout Using a Treadmill
The treadmill isn’t a one-trick pony suitable only for indoor running. Here’s how to use your treadmill for a better workout, as well as make it more enjoyable. You may even favor running on your treadmill instead of being out braving the elements.
Get Proper Form
When you have proper form on the treadmill, you’re doing your body a favor. You have reduced risk for injury and you become more efficient. You’re not wasting your energy but you’re making every step count.
Be sure to assess your form on the treadmill first. If possible, you can look at a full-body mirror while walking or running on it. You must mentally check these aspects of proper form:
You may want to check for proper form before turning on the treadmill. You can also choose the easiest setting until you have perfected your form.
Keep in mind, too, that it isn’t just proper form that matters. The proper application of force from your feet to the treadmill’s belt matters, too.
With proper form, you’re making your workout more efficient. Your body can burn more calories in the same time frame.
Drive Your Knees up
Once you’re running on the treadmill, you should focus on two aspects of an efficient workout:
Let’s focus on the second aspect as it has a significant impact on your efficiency. The higher the height of your stride, the greater the force you must exert to push against the belt. The more work you pour into running at speed, the greater your body’s caloric burn.
The takeaway here is to drive your knees upward toward your body’s midline part. Your feet will push harder at the ground for the forward motion. Your body will work harder and, thus, burn more calories.
Pump Your Arms
The arms are important for efficient running form, too. This is because arm movements dictate feet movements. This is also the reason why running coaches instruct their athletes to pump their arms. A few tips before pumping your arms:
eelings of fatigue. As your arms vigorously pump, your legs and feet will follow. You will likely get a renewed sense of enthusiasm, perhaps a second wind.
Go on an Anything Goes Workout
Changing the speed, incline and time on a treadmill is easy. The control console is within easy reach. For this reason, you can try this challenging workout:
You’re basically mimicking the movements of running on hilly terrain. You’re picking up the calorie-burning rate with inclines and declines.
Upgrade Your Warm-up
Warm-up routines are must in a treadmill workout to reduce the risks of injury. Stretching for five minutes and starting at a slow pace are great choices. But for a more efficient use of the treadmill, you must upgrade your warm-up routine. Here’s one example:
You can also use this warm-up routine:
You will soon find yourself more primed for greater speed and inclines.
Go for High-intensity Interval Training
Making significant changes in the effort needed in exercise prevents body plateau. Your brain and body keeps on guessing so your metabolic rate increases. You will enjoy faster weight loss and better cardio endurance in the process.
The best way to keep your body guessing is through high-intensity interval training. Here’s an example for treadmills:
Be sure to keep a 1% to 2% incline when you’re sprinting. You can keep your maximum effort up, too.
The treadmill may seem like a boring cardio machine for hardcore fitness enthusiasts. But look beyond brisk walking and running and you will find a great cardio machine! You can reap excellent fitness rewards from its proper use.
Start with the proper form while walking or running on the treadmill. Experiment with your moves while on it, such as slow and fast shuffling, even dancing. Adopt high-intensity interval training in your workout.
In the end, a treadmill is a tool for a fit and healthy body. What you do and don’t do with it will determine its effectiveness and efficiency as a tool.