From Simon Clarke
Simon Clarke

Learn how to make your treadmill workout as effective as possible

There are many reasons to workout on a treadmill exercise – it is a good exercise for your heart, it can make you fit and proud of your body, it can help you decreasing your bad cholesterol level, or tone your muscles… Many people decide to start exercising on a treadmill because they want to lose the body fat, and eventually to lose some weight and look fitter.

VIDEO no 1:

Here are some tips found on a youtube video with title treadmill workout for women – treadmill exercises to lose weight, and with the subtitle: GET SLIM IN THE GYM. The tricks were given by Robert Pennino, a triathlon coach in New York:


“Pounding the pavement can be 10 to 15 percent more challenging than jogs in the gym because outside you battle hills, wind resistance, and uneven terrain. Compensate indoors by setting your treadmill at a 1 percent incline.”

Crank the incline and you will succeed in toning your muscles! This will surely save your precious time and burn more calories. Also, it will strengthen the lower part of your body: the hips and legs, so you will feel much more balanced in the gym AND outside of the gym too. The incline is the first and the most important trick for losing weight and body fat on the treadmill.


“Position your steps to land in the middle of the treadmill band for safe sprints. Running too close to the control panel causes most joggers to raise their arms higher than necessary, which stresses the neck and shoulders and wastes energy.”

It is important that the whole body be in its natural position. If you stand too far from the control panel you will stretch your hands too much trying to hold onto the handles, and If you try to run too close to the control panel you’ll realize very soon that your neck and back hurt.


“Heel striking (leading with and landing on your heel) can be tough on knees. Make the motion more efficient and smooth by landing on the middle of each foot and then rolling onto the balls of your feet.”

In this way, your feet won’t hurt, and it will activate more muscles of your legs.


“…to get seriously speedy, fast-track footwork by shortening your stride. Count the number of times your right foot makes contact: Aim for 46 to 48 strikes in 30 seconds.”

Don’t let them tell you that it isn’t all about numbers. Of course, that is much more important that you feel good while exercising, but at the beginning, you really have to rely on numbers.


“Moving arms forward and back (not across your chest) in a fluid motion improves balance and coordination, which makes increasing pace easier. Hold your arms at a 90-degree angle, hands right around hip level.”

In some of our previous articles is already mentioned that moving your hands naturally – just like you are running in a natural environment – is the most effective way of exercising for many reasons. If you holding onto handles, it can give you a false impression of accomplishment – because there’s no holding onto anything while running through a park or beside a river: in the real world your whole body relies on your legs. It can also give you a false sense of safety – until you feel some consequences later, like the pain in shoulders, back, neck, knees, and hips. And at least, the most important thing for moving your hands naturally:    20 to 50 percent fewer calories are burned while you are holding a treadmill because it makes your workout less intense and less effective! So, if you’re using your treadmill because you want to lose weight, let go of those handles!


“Stand tall as you run, but deliberately lean your whole body slightly forward from the ankles. This slant in your stance allows gravity to propel you ahead with each step.”

Also, this position will become natural for you once you get used to the incline.


“Keep your gaze on the horizon to maintain a neutral head position. Staring up at the gym ceiling TV will move your torso back, taking your weight behind your hips,  and make it harder to go forward.”

It is pretty understandable that if your workout takes time, you will find everything around you more interesting than looking right in front of your – to the horizon or to the control panel of your treadmill. But, what you need to have on your mind is that the treadmill can frequently cause dizziness because when you run on the moving belt your can have a sensation that the ground is moving below your feet. So, maybe the safest solution is to really maintain a neutral head position. Also, that exactly is the most natural position – not looking at right or left, or up or down – but forward, and doing your workout as effective as possible.

VIDEO no 2:

This video has title: Workouts for Women: How to Lose Body Fat and Weight while Jogging, and it’s a short video where you can learn the most efficient way for losing weight on the treadmill. In this youtube video, Sylvia Ferrero, a professional personal trainer, explained with the help of a demonstrator how to get into the form using the benefits of the good old jogging.


“Make sure you warmed up before you do this, guys! “

It is a MUST! Your muscles must loosen up, your breathing must be prepared and your heart too. The right way of warming up (and also of cooling down) is what helps you not getting injured, saves your energy and it gives you more strength than rushing up into exercises. According to the American Council on Exercise, warming up is needed to prepareyour body for the “stimulus phase of the exercise session”.


“Now EVERY 30 SECONDS you gonna go ahead and increase the pace”

Once you start this training you will realize that the 30 seconds is a lot shorter than it sounds. Never increase the speed to the maximum all at once – it can bring you more harm than good, but gradually increase the intensity.


“Make sure your breathing is nice and relaxed and controlled. Try not to tense up while you increase the speed.”

Here’s one general tip funded on RunnersConnect: “You should always breathe in and out primarily through your mouth when running! If your nose wants to join the party and help get air in and out, that’s great.”

Your muscles need the oxygen while you are physically active – your heart and your brain too. The more – the better. But be careful not to use only your chest for breathing because in that way your body will not get the amount of oxygen it needs. If you are not sure how to breathe properly while you’re running, you can do some breath exercises while you are in the state of  calm, so you can remember them and use them later when you need them.


“She’s gonna go about 75 to 80% of her top speed. And she’s gonna sustain this for about 30 seconds.”

In this interval, your body is getting ready for the hardest part of this training.

TOP SPEED (Last 30 seconds)

After the minute and a half mark, you have to increase the speed to the maximum. So, starting from one minute and a half until two minutes – you will run at the top speed. Once this session is finished, you need to decrease the speed and to get back to the walking pace.

While you running at the top speed, keep your breathing regular. The easiest solution for this is to count. Per example – three contacts of your feet with the belt for the inhale, and three for exhaling.


“And that’s when you’re gonna recover, guys.
You can recover at the slow walking pace if you really need to, or at the light jog.
And I suggest you recover from one minute to two minutes”

This session is needed for you heart to decrease its rate and for your muscles to relax.


“Repeat that whole interval set from three to five times.”

Why is this training so effective? A treadmill running training for losing weight should be split in short and strong sessions because it will shock your body in a good way, your heart will become stronger with time and you will need less energy for your workout. Also, in this way, your training won’t be boring.

“Doing steady stay cardio does help burn a little bit of fat, but increasing the intensity is definitely the way to go… Plus, it’s a lot funnier doing it that way”, as the instructor Sylvia Ferrero said.