How to make the most of your home treadmill: ultimate cardio guide

Look forward to your home cardio sessions with our ultimate guide to home treadmill use.

Home treadmill

by Jack Barrell |
Updated on

The convenience of working out from home has been highlighted more and more in recent years. In 2020, we were forced indoors, and many had to somehow conjure up new ways to keep in shape and, in most cases, keep sane. Since then, working from home has become a staple in many industries and households alike. So, exercising from home has never made more sense. Here comes the home treadmill.

There are plenty of routes to take when it comes to exercising from the comfort of your home. There are those who go all in and outfit entire rooms or even garages with Smith machines and other kit to emulate an actual gym. Then there are those who keep things simple, fitting the workouts into the home rather than creating a home fitness studio. Ultimately, whatever degree of home fitness you want to achieve, it can be done today.

Home treamdill

The treadmill is a fitness staple. It can be found wall-to-wall in any gym, and it’s one of the first pieces of equipment you should consider when looking to vamp up your home fitness selection. There are all kinds of treadmills available today and there are even more ways you can use them to reap the rewards. A treadmill can be far more mentally stimulating, and physically engaging than simply just walking or running, you just need to know how.

The 12-3-30 approach

The 12-3-30 approach is a training method that’s gained some traction recently courtesy of good old social media. It’s a tactic for incline walking on the treadmill. It stands for 12-incline, 3-speed, and 30-minutes. This is essentially a framework for how to incline walk for the most effect.

Incline walking is a brilliant alternative to running on the treadmill. You can burn just as much energy, you recruit the muscles in your legs far more, and it’s just a much more sustainable form of cardio.

It’s a totally malleable framework, too. There are no rules saying you have to stick to 12-3-30. If you’re a total beginner, you can start with something a bit shorter, less steep, or slower. Ultimately, an incline treadmill is a brilliant form of cardio, and it’s perfect for those with a treadmill at home. Implementing an approach like this can greatly benefit your home treadmill experience, making things more challenging and more interesting simultaneously.

Utilising your treadmill’s programmes

Depending on the treadmill that's found its way into your home, you might find that it has a selection of workout programs pre-installed. The purpose of these programmes is to make your workouts more engaging, physically and mentally. If your treadmill has incline capabilities and can support various speeds, you’ll find programmes that take full advantage of these features. This can really up the ante when you need to keep things fresh.

Essentially, many treadmill programmes will attempt to mimic everyday running or walking, whether that be on the road, or up the trail. The great treadmills emulate the unpredictability and the challenge of running or walking outdoors, except you get to do it in your own front room.

It’s extremely important to pick your home treadmill carefully, especially if you want plenty of workout programs. Modern treadmills offer thousands of programs, so it’s unlikely you’ll get bored.

Multitask with an under-the-desk treadmill

Under-the-desk treadmill
©JTX Fitness

If you recently bought a treadmill for your home or are in the market for one, you’re probably doing it for convenience. Working from home is the new normal these days, so why not exercise while you do it?

Under-the-desk treadmills could be the answer. These space-conscious treadmills are designed to either slot nicely underneath your work desk, or they actually come with a desk already. Walking pads can do this job, too and are often referred to as under-the-desk treadmills anyway. They’re space-conscious and portable, and they don’t cost a short fortune either.

The only downside is that the under-the-desk treadmills and walking pads don’t typically allow you to run or walk at much of an incline (if any). Now, this’ll be bad news for those seeking an intense and advanced cardio session. But for those just seeking to get their steps in while they work, this is a dream come true. It’s multi-tasking at its finest, and it’s about as productive as you can get.

Keep your mind busy by watching something

One of the most common complaints about using the treadmill, and most cardio equipment in general, is that it’s just plain boring. What can stop a lot of people getting the most out of their home treadmill is that feeling of just going through the motions. There isn’t that stimulation you’d get from a HIIT workout, or a weightlifting session. There’re ways around this though.

Putting on your favourite movie, TV show, or watching something completely brand new can be a brilliant way of passing the time whilst you’re on your home treadmill. Whether you’re watching through the TV, or you plug in your headphones and watch something through your phone, this is a great way to get more out of your home cardio session. It passes the time quicker, and you’re actively engaged in something. Picking out a portable cardio machine like a folding treadmill means you can set up in almost any room in your house too, granted you have the space. Some people even put a towel over the treadmill display while they’re watching something, just to eliminate that urge to keep checking how long they have left, whether that target be the time spent, calories burnt, or distance travelled.

Jack Barrell is a Tech and Fitness Writer for What’s the Best. He is invested in all things entertainment and keeps well up to date with the latest sports and exercise trends too. On his off days Jack can usually be found doing one of two things; lifting heavy weights – or watching his favourite Star Wars for the thousandth time.

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