Treadmill Workout of the Week: A Hill Progression to Smash Boredom and Build Strength

Maximize your time spent on 'Satan's sidewalk' with this fiery 45-minute workout.

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The treadmill–it’s no coincidence that it rhymes with ‘dreadmill,’ a term that runners throw around liberally. Some of us might be inclined to consider the treadmill as a last resort to training when the weather is bad, the nights are dark and safety is a worry, or your small child is taking a nap and you have approximately one sleep cycle to hammer out a 40 minute run. However, approached in the right way and with the right mindset, a treadmill workout can be a high-quality addition to your training week and one that delivers results.

There is no doubt that running at a constant pace can be more of a lesson in mental endurance than physical endurance. Add to that, let’s face it, HGTV with dubious subtitles on the screen does not inspire as much as it should. However, if you change your mindset as to what the moving sidewalk represents, it can be a time-efficient and entertaining part of your weekly training routine or off-season goals to build strength.

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Join us for five weeks of invigorating treadmill workouts, created by USA Triathlon coach and Colorado Running Hall of Fame athlete, J’ne Day-Lucore. Each workout will focus on Day-Lucore’s belief that ‘every minute counts.’

Ready, set, treadmill!

Incline Treadmill Workout With Time and Grade Progression

The first installment of these carefully curated treadmill workouts keeps the entertainment high by changing the tempo every three minutes or so, and help to build leg strength by using the incline to simulate hills. As you go through each set of this 45-minute workout you’ll see that as the incline increases, your time intervals decrease. Be sure to run at a pace that can remain consistent and steady as the grade changes.

Start by warming up with a 10 minute easy jog.

Set 1 (10 minutes)

  • 3 minutes at steady pace at 3.0 degree incline
  • 3 minutes at steady pace at 4.0 degree incline
  • 3 minutes at steady pace at 5.0 degree incline
  • 1 minute easy jog

Set 2 (8 minutes)

  • 2 minutes at steady pace at 6.0 degree incline
  • 2 minutes at steady pace at 7.0 degree incline
  • 2 minutes at steady pace at 8.0 degree incline
  • 2 minute easy jog

Set 3 (5 minutes)

  • 1 minute at steady pace at 9.0 degree incline
  • 1 minute at steady pace at 10.0 degree incline
  • 3 minute easy jog

Finish with a 12 minute cool-down to complete this incredibly efficient 45 minute workout.

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