Treadmill Tips + 30 Minute Workout

I got a nice little makeover this weekend. Just a heads up, there might still be some kinks but I’m working through them. Thanks a million to the fabulous Jenny.  

January is one of those months that I’m extra happy to live in Florida. I braved the Northeastern winters for 10 years so I know how bad it can get. Not only is it frigid, but it’s icy and dangerous to be outside. As a result, the treadmill gets extra use during the winter months. In Florida, our summer is the rest of the country’s winter. I’m sure you’re rolling your eyes but if you’ve ever been here in August you would know that, like winter, it can be dangerous to be outside. I become a (mostly) treadmill runner from the months of May to September.

All of that to say, I know the pain of resorting to the treadmill. In fact, I do it often throughout the year for inclement weather and all that “safety” stuff (you’re welcome, mom). While sometimes I call it the “dreadmill” I have learned to appreciate it for what it is and what it can do. It will never replace running outdoors for me but it serves it purpose.

I know it’s hard to get motivated and press the ‘start’ button so I’ve put together some of my favorite tactics for treadmill success.

treadmill tips

1. Go in with a plan. Do you want to work on speed intervals? Endurance? Hill repeats? Figure it out beforehand and write in down on paper or in your phone. I like to snapshot treadmill workouts on my phone and keep them open for reference.

2. Zone out with T.V. I like watching the Today show in the morning and ESPN later in the day. Sometimes I pull up Netflix on my iPad and watch some of my favorite Grey’s episodes or now Friends (!!). This is the one time that I advise multi-tasking. Run while catching up on shows you don’t typically have time to watch. Two birds with one stone.

3. Make a killer playlist. I think music, television, or a podcast is necessary on the treadmill. Fill your playlist with “pump-up” music. I like sprinting during the chorus and recovering in between. Include songs that you like to sing or dance to, whether they’re popular or not, and let the beat move your feet (just laugh for me). I definitely have playlists with Hannah Montana songs and tons of Britney Spears. Do what ya gotta do.

4. In a time crunch? Look at the clock (see #5 for opposite advice). Increase your speed every minute for 10 minutes and then work your way back down the ladder. For example, I’ll start at my “base pace” of 7.0 (8:34 min mile) and bump the speed .1 every minute.

5. Cover the clock with a towel. I’m torn as to what’s longer, a microwave minute or a treadmill minute. All I know is that both can feel like an eternity. If you plan to go for a steady paced or easy run, I suggest covering the clock with a towel. If you’re concerned about time, most treadmills let you set a time or distance goal at the beginning of your run. So set it for 30 minutes, cover the clock and zone out with a movie.

Now, one of my go-to workouts for when I’m in a “I-don’t-want-to-run-but-I-do-want-to-run” moods.

30 min treadmill workout


How often do you run on the treadmill?

What’s longer for you: a microwave minute or a treadmill minute?


  1. Brie @ Lean, Clean, & Brie says

    I am just like you, and as much as I complain about the “dreadmill,” I have learned to appreciate it. I have focused on doing speed work on the treadmill since, for me, it makes the time go a lot quicker than just running on the treadmill, and I have noticed that since I started doing that I have gotten a lot faster in all of my runs. Sometimes the treadmill isn’t so bad ;)

    P.S.- LOVE your new design!!!
    Brie @ Lean, Clean, & Brie recently posted…Inside My Apartment “Gym”My Profile

  2. Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine says

    AH! I am loving the new look! XOXO What a surprise!
    No….I don’t think I can ever do the treadmill. It just HURTS too much. My ankles kill me and I can’t keep the same pace like that and it is to difficult to keep changing it and I need changing scenery! Hahahahaha! And I like to complain and be a boss and run in the freezing cold, ice, and rain!
    But I do know that when I’m doing my HIIT workouts on the bike, I HAVE to cover the minutes on the clock (but keep the seconds uncovered so I can follow my plan). Otherwise I would not be able to handle it!
    Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine recently posted…Black Garlic Shishito Verde ChickenMy Profile

  3. Liv @ Healthy Liv says

    I love the new design! And great tip about covering the screen with a towel- that definitely helps to not watch the seconds tick by slowly
    Liv @ Healthy Liv recently posted…MLK Weekend HighlightsMy Profile

  4. Jamie King says

    I have to watch the screen to keep pushing myself faster and faster…I always see people covering the screen and I’m like, how can you do that?! HAH!
    Jamie King recently posted…Butter beans & kale saladMy Profile

  5. Linda @ The Fitty says

    Covering the clock with a towel is a good one. It drives me insane if I check the time every two minutes.
    Linda @ The Fitty recently posted…10 “Oopsie!” Confessions {#LIPlinkup #15}My Profile

  6. Emily says

    These are some great tips! I always have a hard time with treadmills: they make me feel like I run super loud (if that makes any sense at all) but I definitely need to work out my issues at some point.
    Emily recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday: Quotes from People who Changed the WorldMy Profile

    • Emily says

      Thanks, Emily! That makes perfect sense to me. I feel that running on the treadmill can alter your natural form so maybe take the speed down until you find your rhythm.

  7. Montana @ Pretty Lil Mudder says

    I’m torn between the microwave and treadmill as well- I don’t know which is longer! I do love the cover with towel advice- I’ve done this a few times and always have run longer than I knew I was running!

    I also live in Florida, but I tend to suck it up in the summer and just go out early instead of using the treadmill because I hate it that much. I’m totally loving these mini “cold fronts” we’ve been having- it’s giving me perfect running weather!
    Montana @ Pretty Lil Mudder recently posted…Race Recap: St. Pete Beach Classic 10kMy Profile

    • Emily says

      In the morning when I’m waiting for breakfast I think the microwave minute is longer. Oh I know what you mean…this weather has been fantastic! Our “cold” is perfect running weather.

  8. Rebecca @ MyEagerFeet says

    I love your new design! I can’t remember the last time I ran on the treadmill, but I use the indoor track all the time. I finding breaking the run down into sets of three laps (1/4 miles) helps it go by faster.
    Rebecca @ MyEagerFeet recently posted…Scrumpy Skedaddle 10K RecapMy Profile

    • Emily says

      Thanks, Rebecca! I would definitely use an indoor track for speed if I had access to one. That’s a good trick for making a workout fly by!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge