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How to do Interval Running for Beginners on the Treadmill

An interval running for beginners on a treadmill can be intimidating for you as a beginner, but trust me, it’s where the biggest calorie burn is for the least amount of time.

Are you a new treadmill owner?  If you said yes, you are probably searching endlessly for the best treadmill workouts for beginners so you know where to begin.

Many people who are new to working out often focus on things like “how long should a beginner run on a treadmill” when they should be looking for workouts that burn the most calories in the least amount of time. Because, let’s be honest, we are busy and don’t have hours a day to spend working out!

woman on traedmill doing beginner interval workout

Anyone, at any fitness level can do interval running or walking because you can easily adjust the treadmill to your cardio fitness and endurance level.

For those of you who are just getting started into fitness, a treadmill can be an awesome workout tool that allows you to workout whenever you want!  Maybe you have kids and you can’t leave the house, or maybe your area is known for bad weather.

The point is, it is not always feasible to go outside and hit the road running. For this reason and others, treadmills are a great cardio tool, especially if you know how to use it in the correct way.

Interval running for beginners on the treadmill is a fantastic way to break into HIIT treadmill workouts for beginners.  For those that aren’t familiar with it, HIIT stands for High-Intensity Interval Training and HIIT is a great way to get fit!

These types of workouts are especially good for those that do not like the monotony of the typical steady-paced walking or running on a treadmill.  If you have used a treadmill before and you didn’t love it, give interval running on the treadmill a shot, it may change your mind.

What I love about doing interval workouts is the way the workout can be much shorter in duration. A shorter workout is great for days when you are in a hurry!

Why is an interval treadmill workout beneficial?

There are so many fitness programs out there that it can be overwhelming to learn.  That being said, there are several reasons why interval running on the treadmill is a good choice for beginners.

One reason that interval running for beginners on the treadmill is such a good fitness program is that it helps you to burn more calories than a steady paced walking workout.  This is because a HIIT type of program like this produces the afterburn effect wherein your metabolism may actually stay higher for longer than just during the period of time you are working out.

Another benefit of interval running on the treadmill is that it allows you to save time with your workout.  You work harder and increase the intensity of your workout, therefore you don’t have to work out as long. A good HIIT Treadmill workout for beginners rarely takes longer than 30 minutes.

How do I start interval running for beginners on the treadmill?

There are rules that you should follow when doing a program for interval running for beginners on the treadmill in order to get the best results and to keep yourself injury-free.

ladies walking on treadmill beginner workout

Interval Runner’s or Walking Beginner Treadmill Workout

Begin with a warm-up.
Each workout should begin with a warm-up of a slow walk for 5-10 min.

Increase your speed and increase the incline on your treadmill that challenges your walking or jogging limits (you want to be able to go no longer than 60 seconds) for your high-intensity time. This is the period when you should have your heart rate up to 70%-80% of its maximum.

At the one minute mark of your brisk walk or light jog, you will then start your recovery period where you will slow down your speed and intensity for a minute recovery.

These two sessions of speed and incline together complete one cycle.

Complete this cycle 6-10 times for a complete interval running for beginners on the treadmill program.

Create an easy pace for your cool down.

After you complete your 6-10 cycles of these intervals, it is time for your cool down cycle.

Go back to your warm-up pace of a slow, steady state walk for 5-8 minutes.

I realize that the idea of interval running for beginners on the treadmill may sound intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be.

Interval running on treadmills can be done at different levels. This isn’t just for those with experience, you can make it work to your abilities.

Rate of Perceived Exertion

A great way to measure your personal treadmill workout is called rate of perceived exertion. For interval workouts, your rate of perceived exertion should be a notable difference between the high-intensity sessions and the recovery intervals.

The Rated Perceived Exertion or RPE scale can be a great way to remind yourself your workout is yours. Meaning, your 100% effort is as good as an olympian’s 100% effort. Compare your effort with yourself, and no one else. You will build strength when you keep this in mind.

When doing intervals on the treadmill, your easy pace should be at about a level 2-3 and the high-intensity minute at about a level 4-5. Remember to scale back if feeling pain or extreme shortness of breath. Listen to your body and be safe. A good workout should feel hard, not painful. You have time to increase your fitness level and endurance, it doesn’t need to happen overnight.

Change up the workout to what you need for your current fitness level and you can change the program and the intensity of workouts as your fitness levels increase.

What type of treadmill workouts have you been doing? Comment below and let me know!

Here are some other treadmill articles you may find helpful.

All about treadmill workouts

Treadmill Workouts for Overweight Beginners

What is a HIIT Treadmill Workout? 

Make Treadmill Workouts More Effective With Help From NordicTrack And Running Experts

Beginner Treadmill Workout + Mediterranean Turkey Burgers

HIIT Treadmill Workout for Beginners to Start Losing Weight

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