So you just bought a treadmill, and before you start, you are wondering about the right way to use it? Discover the benefits of this cardio training machine and follow our recommendations to begin training.
Why use a treadmill?
The treadmill is an effective exercise for burning calories. You can exercise at home, all year round, without depending on the weather! The treadmill is:
A sizeable advantage: being able to run at home and at your own pace!
A durable, long-term investment
A solid piece of equipment, accessible and safe for anyone to use, and also recommended for physical therapy
Better cushioning than outdoor paved surfaces
The Right Adjustment
A treadmill does not require special settings other than speed and incline.
Holding the right position
To start out right, concentrate on keeping a straight back or slightly leaning forward, while keeping tight core muscles. A strong core and abs limit strain on the lower back.
The Right Exercise
The treadmill offers a multitude of exercises: possible workouts for walking, running at a moderate pace (jogging) or at a faster one. The use of the incline also allows you to change the difficulty of the workout and to work more on certain muscles, particularly the glutes and thighs. Walking at a steep incline provides greater comfort for the joints and back, all while burning up to 4x more calories.
The Type of Session
Julie, Domyos Club athletic coach, suggests this type of workout session for beginning to exercise on the treadmill.
To warm up, do some leg bends and stretches (quadriceps, hamstrings, calves).
For the first session, begin by walking at a comfortable pace (between 4 and 6 km/h) in order to familiarise yourself with the treadmill, then progressively increase the speed. If you want to run, consider lengthening your stride towards the front of the treadmill, and especially to calibrate the treadmill's speed to your own pace and not the other way around.
During the first few weeks, start with a 40-60 minute session:
10-15 min: warm up with a fast walk or a light jog
25-35 min: training session at a regular pace (roughly 70% of maximum heart rate)
5-10 min: cool down with a fast walk or a light jog
Over time, you will find a comfortable pace and enough endurance.
Over the following weeks, chose the variation(s) that suit you:
Progressively prolong the length of the main training session to increase the total time
Shorten the warm-up phase to 5-10 min
Increase your running speed
Use the interval method during the training session: alternate 6-12 blocks of 30 to 60 sec by varying the running speed (walk or light / moderate or rapid = greater than your usual running speed)
Progressively increase the number of blocks
Do two to three sessions per week with a day of rest between sessions.