How To Make Treadmill Running Not as Boring

Thursday, January 20, 2011
By Jason Colenzo


Its the winter time, and for most people who do any form of running, this means its time to hop on the good ol treadmill. Barring any breaks in the weather where the cold is tolerable, for most people its more convenient and easier to stay indoors. The treadmill isn’t all that bad if you use some variety and mix things up.

Ladies, gentlemen, and those in between, I give you INTERVAL workouts.

I’ve been incorporating interval cardio work into my routine and I must say its been very effective. Not only is it time efficient, but it can also effectively burn more fat. Here is an example of an interval workout:

Walk 3 mph: 2 minutes

Sprint 12mph: 30-45 seconds

Jog 5-6mph: 1 minute

Walk 3mph: 2 mintues

Wash, rinse repeat. It’s really that simple and it gives your body a variety to work with. When you’re in the sprint stage, you’re effectively using your anaerobic energy storages like your ATP-CP system. You get your heart rate up and your speed, and you bring it back down to a jog, which helps you to recover from the sprint. You further bring it back down to the walk, which is like active recovery from both the sprint and the jog.

The great thing about using a treadmill to do interval work is you can control the speed in which the belt moves. You also have a timer in which you can monitor how long your particular intervals are. This makes it easier to control and to plan out accordingly each interval of a run you may be doing.

Another wonderful thing about interval work is there’s no one way to do it. The above example is just one of a myriad of ways you can do it. If you feel like your cardio is feeling good, make your walk period 1 minute, your sprint interval 1 minute, and your jog 2 minutes. Or you can do 3 minutes of walking, 1 minute of sprinting, and 2 minutes of jogging. You can switch up the numbers according to your training goals and/or fitness levels.

It helps to break the monotomy of steady state cardio, where you jog until you can’t take watching the news on the TV’s that are inevitably going to be suspended above the treadmills. If you’re crunched for time and only have 20 minutes to get a run in, crank up the treadmill and get those intervals going up and down!


Running cartoon courtesy of

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