Weight Loss and HIIT Training On Treadmills

runner on Life Fitness Treadmill.  HIIT Treadmill workout.  High Intensity Interval Training blog.

If you are one of the many people who has looked up tips for losing weight or burning calories, odds are you have stumbled across HIIT. HIIT, short for ‘high-intensity interval training’, is one of the most common approaches to weight loss, calorie burning, or exercises to help you get in shape. The name is a pretty powerful one, but do not let yourself be intimidated by it. HIIT is simply the practice of alternating between short, intensified workout routines at your maximum heart rate and periods of rest (or a lighter exercise routine, if that is not too taxing on your body). 

HIIT is something that can easily be done at the gym or at home provided you have the right equipment for those high-intensity intervals. Treadmills are perfect for interval trainers of any skill level because they have so many options for customized workouts in addition to pre-programmed workouts. Treadmill exercise is also great cardio, which is always a plus, and engages your muscles the same way that strength training does. There is no need to invest in a personal trainer or fitness instructor because these routines are so simple and straightforward. 

Underappreciated and Underused

Treadmills have been unfairly maligned over the years. Yes, it can become monotonous and tedious to do the same routine day after day, but the treadmill is not at fault here. It’s actually those cardio exercises that you are doing while using a treadmill that are the real culprit. Treadmills are great for both HIIT training and cardio exercises because they allow you to safely and steadily elevate your heart rate. Most are capable of monitoring your heart rate, such as the Life Fitness T5 Go Treadmill, making them a decent option for people who may struggle with jogging or brisk walking because of health conditions. Not to mention they put less stress on the body than other forms of exercise, including walking or running on a flat surface outdoors.

Why HIIT is the Way to Go

With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that it’s easy to create an HIIT training regimen using nothing more than a treadmill. Not only is it easy, it’s highly recommended, since HIIT training offers many of the same benefits of other types of exercise but in a shorter amount of time. Being more time efficient makes it capable of accommodating just about any lifestyle so you can still experience those benefits no matter how busy a lifestyle you lead. Other reasons for why the HIIT approach is arguably the best include:

  • The benefits continue even when the workout is over. Your body’s oxygen intake rate naturally increases as you exercise. EPOC, short for ‘excess post-exercise oxygen consumption’, refers to the state in which your body continues to consume oxygen at that elevated rate despite having ended your workout. The more intense your workout is, the greater your EPOC will be, and HIIT is intense by design (it’s in the name, after all).
  • Effective for weight loss, no matter your goal. HIIT and more traditional moderate-intensity forms of exercise are about equally efficient in terms of weight loss, though HIIT requires less time to do it. However, HIIT has been found to be a better type of exercise for weight management and loss in people who are either overweight or obese because there is less of a time commitment required.
  • Blood pressure, blood sugar, and heart rate can be reduced. Traditional moderate-intensity exercise is commonly used to help combat these medical concerns. HIIT is about the same as cardiovascular for heart rate but it is superior for blood pressure. This is mostly seen in individuals who are overweight or obese, individuals with health conditions, or individuals at high risk for health conditions.
  • HIIT requires variety. You need never fear the boredom that comes with treadmill use when doing your HIIT training, partly because of the intensity of your workout and partly because you need to mix it up. Your results will start to level off if you continue to do the same routine every single time, and that consistency can be a little discouraging. More importantly, performing repetitive movements without enough recovery time in between for extended periods of time can lead to issues later in life. 

Creating Your HIIT Treadmill Workout Plan

The required or recommended time and intensity are going to vary greatly by factors such as age, weight, and fitness objectives (weight loss, blood pressure management, staying in shape, etc). Though they play a role in HIIT, incline and speed can also be adjusted to comfort level or personal preference. Any routine is going to follow the same basic pattern- warm up, workout, and cool down.
It takes a little time and experimentation to find the right workout for you. The trick is to find a setting that you can only do for roughly a minute. A newcomer might do better jogging at 5mph without an incline, while someone with more experience either running or doing HIIT could find more success at 10 mph with a slight incline. Keep going until you find something that makes you go all-out for a minute and leaves you breathless afterwards.

Ready to get started on your HIIT fitness journey? Contact California Home Fitness to learn more about which treadmill is right for you!