Five treadmill tips and one holy grail… to speed up your walking workout

Treadmill running tips and treadmill walking tricks

Do you like walking and running on a treadmill? Or do you prefer to be outside?

I enjoy both but for consistency, I really love my treadmill and have not only five tips for you today, but I’m going to tell you about the holy grail of treadmill time and the zones where the magic happens 😍

I can exercise whether it’s cold, dark or rainy – it makes no difference! And I can set the pace to make sure I’m on track. I find I sometimes slow down to a dawdle when I’m outside (ooh, look a butterfly 😂) and don’t always keep up a powerwalking speed!

When treadmill time gets boring

Some people find treadmill running (and working workouts) monotonous and boring which I totally get, and do experience this feeling myself sometimes. Sometimes the numbers just aren’t ticking over fast enough.

There is a secret holy grail to avoid treadmill boredom, but like most holy grails it takes a bit of work to get there and can’t always be found.

But don’t worry, for days when it proves elusive, I’ve got five treadmill tips to get you powering through the numbers without falling down a boredom rabbit hole.

The holy grail of treadmill running and walking workouts

So what is this holy grail that makes running or walking on the treadmill pass by like a dream? Well, the secret (if you can do it) is to get into the secret, magical, “zone”.

I find there are actually two types of zones that both work for beating treadmill boredom.

Zone 1 – The wise wizard

The first, is a very focused, almost meditative state. Your mind is clear, you’re in tune with your body and you’re so present in the moment that there is no room for impatience or the desire to be somewhere else. Time becomes non-existent and you’re truly in the “zone”.

So how do you get there? First, take deep breaths and try to empty your mind of all thoughts.

If I’m struggling to do this, I sometimes focus on my breath, and imagine my breath coming in and filling my whole head – all my thought power is focused on breathing in and out, and I feel the breaths filling every space, so there is no room for any thoughts. Sometimes making a throaty sound on your in and out breaths helps.

Over time you get better at it and can stay in this zone for longer. You can also practice it while stretching after a workout as well.

Some days though, it’s not really happening… I just kinda don’t feel like putting in that effort. Lazy, I know. So the second “zone” that you can try for is about harnessing your imagination and creativity. If the first zone was a wise wizard of meditation and clarity, this second zone would perhaps be a rainbow unicorn.

Zone 2 – The rainbow unicorn

This one is about letting your thoughts run wild, but not in a list-building, stressed out, “I got so much to do” kind of way. It’s about harnessing feelings of joy, humour and curiosity. Imagine cultivating these feelings to create a rich soil for your best thoughts to grow, and see where it takes you.

You might be surprised at what insights or new ideas you have, and the treadmill time will fly by as you indulge in your most creative, abundant, productive thoughts. If you are struggling with this, try starting with gratitude – what are you grateful for in your life? Turn these thoughts into feelings and see where it takes you.

Some days though, your mind just doesn’t want to play and that holy grail of light and ease is just not happening. The numbers seem to be clicking over in slow motion and you’re struggling with motivation to keep exercising.

Five treadmill tips for when wizards and unicorns aren’t coming to the party

I’ve got five treadmill tips to help you get your workout done! I also find these useful tricks for if I’m running hard and getting tired.

1 – Bite size chunks

Break up your treadmill run/walk into five minute goals. 60 minutes can seem like a long way away but if you focus on five minutes at a time it can seem much more manageable. Sometimes I like to change the speed or incline slightly every five minutes.

I also do things like watch the time for a minute, look straight ahead for a minute, watch the distance for a minute etc (depending on what your treadmill displays).

2 – Get your groove on

Listen to music or podcasts while you’re running or walking on the treadmill! It’s great for distraction and taking your mind off the time. Don’t look at the time display until a song is finished or until there’s a break in the podcast 😊

3 – That’s crazy walking

Try some mini knees up or butt kicks for a minute to break up your walk. Do your normal powerwalking for a few minutes and then do a minute of high knees, then back to powerwalking.

Try the same thing again, this time lifting your heels right up behind you so you’re kind of kicking your butt.

Changing the movements uses different muscles and breaks up your treadmill walk or run, making the time feel like it’s going a bit faster.

4 – Counting and comparing

Count your steps for a minute. Do this every five minutes and see if it’s consistent. Try counting while walking/running at slightly different speeds and see if the count changes much.

5 – Don’t let the numbers get too high!

I find the time seems to go slower as the numbers get higher – whether it’s a long distance and a long time.

When I was doing Rachael Attard’s Lean Legs Program, some days there was a run and a walk. I would usually stop the treadmill after the run (and have a quick stretch) before re-starting it at zero for the walk.

Maybe try re-starting your treadmill counter after 20 or 30 minutes and see if this trick helps make your treadmill time go faster – just make sure you get back on again!

Have you tried some of these tips and tricks? What do you think about when you are walking and running?

The Zen Zones guide and treadmill tips are available as cute mini posters in my itty-bitty shop! Available as digital download, or printed on card and mailed from me to you with love 😘

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3 thoughts on “Five treadmill tips and one holy grail… to speed up your walking workout”

  1. I’m trying a lean legs program too which has a lot of walking and running. I do not enjoy running or walking. I have to say, the only time I try the treadmill is warming up before a workout. I think I’ll try listening to music or a podcast because that will remove the focus off the treadmill. Thank you!

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