You’ve probably heard that exercising outdoors makes us happier and relieves anxiety, but most of us can’t exercises outside all year round because of the weather. (Trust me, I feel your pain … I live in Canada!)
Anyone who has spent at least 10 minutes on the treadmill knows that running in place can be a total drag. But, it turns out you can turn that drag into a drug (yeah, the natural high kind!) and really have fun with the following treadmill workouts.
1. The “What’s Next?” Card Game Workout
It’s the simplest workout that can bring variety to your treadmill session. In fact, it’ll be different every single workout (unless you’re a thimblerig champion, of course).
Here are the basics …
- Take four index cards and write the words (1) walk, (2) jog, (3) run and (4) sprint on each of them.
- Shuffle them up.
- Jog for 5 minutes to warm up. (There is a chance of pulling the ‘sprint’ card right off the bat … you need a warm-up first).
- Now, take the four cards, draw one card and do whatever it says for 2 minutes. Remove that card from the deck.
- Repeat the previous step until you run out of the cards. That will give you a great 13-minute workout.
Spicing it up …
Add a second round using the same cards or add new cards with specific treadmill speeds, inclines or get even more creative by adding extra credit cards.
For example, you could get extra credit with the following cards:
- Do 20 lunges on the treadmill (at a low belt speed)
- Jump off the treadmill and do 20 push-ups
- Smile at that guy (girl) next to you (awkward but hilarious!)
Make it fun!
2. The Game of Thrones Workout
Ever heard of the Game of Thrones Drinking Game? Well, forget about the drinks and try treadmill-ized sweating version:
While you’re watching GOT, keep an eye out for any events listed below. When one happens (which it will!), sprint for 2 minutes. If multiple events happen at once (which they will!), keep your sprint going as long as you can, reducing your speed slightly as needed.
Imagine the shape you’ll be in if you watch Game of Thrones from the beginning! Binge-watch. I dare you!
3. Playlist-Based Interval Workout
But instead of following a standard HIIT routine, try a more fun version by running to your music.
4. Rock, Paper, Scissors, Run! (With a Workout Buddy)
Who doesn’t love rock paper scissors? Well, have you ever thought that this childish game could get you into great shape?
You could also get even more creative by adding other activities. For example, every 5 rounds, you could play a bonus round where the loser does 10 push-ups, squats or lunges. This actually gives a nice recovery period from all the sprinting.
Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?
Tell us in the comment section below which of these treadmill workouts you’re willing to test out. Or, do you have another one we can try? —Dave Smith
Dave Smith is a professional fitness and weight-loss coach who was chosen as “Canada’s Top Fitness Professional” in 2013. He shares awesome health and weight-loss tips through his blog and podcast that you can find at makeyourbodywork.com.
More workouts to try: