I never thought I would be saying this, but I’m starting to really like the gym. These days, when I run outside in the morning, it’s dark and lonely. (And since there was a recent assault right by my house I’m not venturing out in the dark alone that often). But the gym–ahh, the gym! The land of bright lights and happy familiar faces and shiny equipment begging me to fling sweat upon it. In fact, I can always count on working up a disgusting amount of sweat at the gym since it’s always hovering around 70.
Even better, since I’m not on any official training plan, I get to play at the gym. My main goal is to increase my heart rate and burn some calories, so I let myself goof off a bit and simply enjoy working up a sweat. Some days I meet Kali to pump some iron. Other days I meet a coworker to do some strength work. I usually do a few miles of running each day on the treadmill, and a few times a week climb aboard that ridiculous stair machine and pretend I’m queen of the gym mountain.
Even though I’m only running a few miles, I like to shake things up on the treadmill to prevent boredom. Last week I made up a treadmill workout on the fly, fell in love with it, and have been doing it all this week. I’m sure a lot of you have your own ways to shake things up on the ‘mill, but I wanted to share with you my latest plan. Give it a try and let me know how you like it!
- Run 1 mile at a slightly fast endurance pace
- Run .5 mile at initial pace minus 10 seconds
- Run .5 mile at initial pace minus 30 seconds
- Starting at mile 2, every 1/10 of a mile increase the speed of the treadmill by 0.1 mph. This should drop your pace a few seconds.
- Continue till 3 miles are up, then cooldown.
For example, run 1 mile at an 8:34 pace (7.0 mph). Increase speed to 8:20 (7.2mph) and run for 0.5 miles (1.5 miles total). Increase speed to 8:00 (7.5mph) and run another 0.5 miles (2 miles total). Then, every .10 mile drop the pace/increase the speed: 7.6, 7.7, 7.8, 7.9…etc.
I call this a pseudo speedwork session. It’s not as taxing as my track workouts since the majority of your workout is around your endurance pace, but you kick things up just a bit towards the end to get a little speed in your legs. You can always extend the mileage by adding easy miles at the beginning or end.
Do you have any favorite treadmill workouts? Share them in the comments below!