I’ll admit it. I really don’t mind the treadmill. Objectively, it’s a great training tool and lets anyone run year round without excuses. It’s especially good for beginners as you can control the pace, due it from the comfort of your home, and keep water or fuel nearby.
If you’re coming back from an injury or trying to start a new running habit I’m a firm believer in easing into your relationship with running to give your body time to adjust to the physical demands. The best way to stop a budding exercise habit in its tracks is to (over)do one workout and get so sore that you never want to use the treadmill again.
When people ask me the best way to start running or come back from an injury, I’ll often recommend something like this 30 minute treadmill workout. Mixing walking and running is a great way to get your heart rate up while priming your body for future distance and speed.
30 Minute Beginner Treadmill Workout
Here’s a 30 minute beginner treadmill workout that combines walking/running and won’t put too much stress on your body as you start up your treadmill routine. Seasoned runners, or those returning from injury, can also use this beginner treadmill workout for a lighter workout.
Be careful not to run or walk too close to the front of the treadmill. This can often cause changes in your natural running or walking stride. These changes can lead to injuries over time.
As always, if this workout is too hard or too easy, feel free to decrease or increase the speed. I would keep the incline set to 1.0 because this helps prevent shin splints, which can be a common problem for new runners. Try to do this workout three times in one week.
The following week, after warming up for the first 10 minutes, run for three minutes and walk for three minutes, keeping the last two segments at two minutes each, then cool down with walking. Try it. You just might get hooked on running.