You can’t beat a good run in the fresh air on a nice day, but with winter on its way, there are going to be times when running outside simply isn’t practical. The treadmill is a good piece of kit but it can get boring if you’re on there for long periods of time. To keep things interesting (and keep our fitness up), we need a ‘beat the boredom’ action plan!
A good interval training session on the treadmill is a great workout. You can either use the programmes on the treadmill or set the speeds and times manually. Interval training will burn the max amount of calories and, if done regularly, will turn you into a running machine. Another bonus of interval training is you will spend less overall time on the treadmill with more satisfaction from completing a gruelling workout.
If slow steady state is your thing, why not invest in a tablet or iPad? You could catch up on some TV or get in the zone with your favourite playlist. Studies show music and television are excellent distraction techniques, so if you have them at your disposal, use them. This is a technique I utilised myself recently during contest preparation. I spent endless hours doing cardio watching YouTube on my phone. Just beware of data charges if you’re not connected to Wi-Fi!
Hit some hills
Why not stick a backpack on and make your treadmill session feel like you’re outside on the trails? You can also make this as challenging as you want, as you have control over the incline function. Mix this up with interval training – once you’ve warmed up, do a mixture of incline walking and fast-paced running with rest periods in between. This will result in a very productive workout.
Lunges, skips, high knees, butt kicks … these are just some examples of exercises you can do on the move. Plan a circuit or a selection of moves then choose either reps or time just like circuit training and do them whilst on the move on the treadmill. To make it more challenging, you can also play with the incline or speed – just be careful not to go too fast!
Out of sight …
Take a towel and cover the monitor on the treadmill. It sounds simple, but it does work! Switch your iPod on, get in the zone and the time will fly.