Spice Up Your Next Treadmill Run With These 5 Tips
By Lauren Williams
I used to go to the gym without a clue of what to do. So running on the treadmill became my go-to move. Then boredom set in. I began to dread that god-awful machine with the broken cup holder, scrambled TV monitor, and outdated iPhone charger.
However, thanks to tons seasonal motivation—rain, snow, extreme heat—plus sheer convenience, I have crawled back to the treadmill as an alternative when I am unable to do my preferred outdoor running. Consider these tips next time you find yourself on the “dreadmill”.
1. It’s all in your head.
Sure, it's cliche, but it really is true. Despite my grievances, sometimes I just have to pause and appreciating the privilege of having access to a treadmill and being healthy enough to run. Also, remember that this is just a few minutes out of your day. Turn on your favorite playlist (hello, RUNGRL Sound Series) and power through the negative thoughts.
2. Use the treadmill as a warm-up.
Use your treadmill time to warm-up for another activity. Whether you walk or run, giving yourself a time frame of just ten minutes makes the jumping on the treadmill super manageable, especially before another workout like HIIT, cycling or weight lifting. It also gives you time to map out what you want to achieve during the rest of your workout.
3. Try speed intervals on the treadmill.
Work on your pace by quickly alternating between fast and slow paces for a set time. Running with alternating high/low intervals at set times breaks the workout into smaller chunks and really makes the workout fly by. Before you know it, you’ll be done!
4. Add visuals while you run.
Catch up on a TV show (note this is probably not the best for speed runs) or, if you are near a window, appreciate the view. Read a book if you can, or consider using the track screen display setting (if your machine has one) to visualize your progress. While "at the track," sprint the curves and walk or jog the straight-aways. Of course with any of these options, you’ll still need to pay attention, so please be safe.
5. Create a circuit with the treadmill and another exercise.
Create a cardio circuit where you can alternate between the treadmill and a bike, rower or any other cardio equipment. Or, set a timer and run on the treadmill for a set time and then switch to calisthenics like pushups or sit-ups before hopping back on. This new challenge will break up the long stretch on the treadmill and give you something on which to concentrate besides the clock.
While treadmill running may not always be ideal, switching up your regular routine can ease the monotony and make it fun.