Tread ahead

Maximize your cardio time with these three super efficient (and boredom busting!) treadmill workouts

DO YOU HAVE A LOVE-HATE RELATIONSHIP with the treadmill? Sure it’s always there when you need it, but frankly it can be a little dull to keep doing the same old slog, and often even those high intensity intervals can get a little repetitive after a while. Enter the “Balanced Interval Training Experience,” or what trainer David Siik neatly terms “BITE” in his Precision Running program at Equinox Fitness. Siik’s popular classes combine a series of intervals that mix both speed and incline changes. Result: fat-scorching workouts that both challenge and engage your mind and your muscles. Here, three of our favorite workouts from Siik’s new book, The Ultimate Treadmill Workout, which guarantee to ratchet up your metabolism and boost your calorie burn, no matter your fitness level.

Personalize Your Run Intensity

SPEED: Siik bases all of his BITE workouts off a top speed known as PB, for your personal best. “It’s the fastest you think you can go for one minute at the end of a workout without stepping off,” says Siik. Knowing your PB allows you to individualize the workout so it’s unique to your needs and abilities. As a guide, novice to occasional runners are in the 6 to 8 mph range; more experienced runners, 8 to 10 mph; and highly conditioned runners, 10-plus mph. Begin to increase speed 10 seconds before you start each interval. INCLINE: Not only does running on an incline burn more calories while boosting lower-body strength, it also helps to reduce the impact on your joints. Keep in mind that incline equals more output, so every 1% change is worth a plus or minus 0.2 mph change in speed. RECOVERY: Your recovery should be at least 50% of your starting interval. If your first interval is 8 mph, the slowest your recovery speed should be is 4 mph.

Stuck
This is a great foundational run that works on the pyramid principle—  climb up the pyramid to make the intervals shorter, then back down with longer intervals. Once you reach the speed at the top of the pyramid, you’re stuck with it all the way back down.

TIME SPEED  INCLINE  RECOVERY
3–5 MIN. WARMUP 0%
60 SEC. -1 MPH FROM PB (EX. 7.0 MPH) 5% 1 MIN., 0%
50 SEC. +0.5 MPH (EX. 7.5 MPH) 3% 1 MIN., 0%
40 SEC. +0.5 MPH (EX. 8.0 MPH) 1% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. +0.5 MPH (EX. 8.5 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC.  SAME SPEED 3% 1 MIN., 0%
40 SEC.  SAME SPEED 3% 1 MIN., 0%
50 SEC. SAME SPEED 3% 1 MIN., 0%
50 SEC. SAME SPEED 3% COOLDOWN

 

Evil Twin
This is a slightly longer run that plays around with intervals and speed. You’ll do the first part on a 0% incline (“nice twin”), then the exact same interval on an incline (“evil twin”). Start 1.5 mph under your PB. Each set gets a little shorter and faster.

TIME SPEED  INCLINE RECOVERY
3–5 MIN. WARMUP 0%
60 SEC. -1.5 MPH FROM PB (EX. 6.5 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 4% 1 MIN., 0%
45 SEC. +0.5 MPH (EX. 7.0 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
45 SEC. SAME SPEED 4% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. +0.5 MPH (EX. 7.5 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. SAME SPEED 4% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 0% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 3% 1 MIN., 0%
45 SEC. +0.5 MPH (EX. 8.0 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
45 SEC. SAME SPEED 3% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. +0.5 MPH (EX. 8.5 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. SAME SPEED 3% COOLDOWN

 

Build-a-Burn
The intervals here get a little longer (up to 90 seconds), and the workout is a little more dynamic—including more incline and speed changes, so you’ll get an even bigger burn.

TIME SPEED INCLINE RECOVERY
3–5 MIN. WARMUP 0%
60 SEC. -1 MPH FROM PB (EX. 7.0 MPH) 1% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 2% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 3% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 4% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 5% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. SAME SPEED 6% 2 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. SAME SPEED 6% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. +0.3 MPH (EX. 7.3 MPH) 5% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. +0.3 MPH (EX. 7.6 MPH) 4% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. +0.3 MPH (EX. 7.9 MPH) 3% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. +0.3 MPH (EX. 8.2 MPH) 2% 1 MIN., 0%
30 SEC. 0.3 MPH (EX. 8.5 MPH) 1% 2 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. -1 MPH FROM PB (EX. 7.0 MPH) 0% NONE
30 SEC. +0.3 MPH (EX 7.3 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. -1 MPH FROM PB (EX. 7.0 MPH) 0% NONE
30 SEC. +0.6 MPH (EX. 7.6 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. -1 MPH FROM PB (EX. 7.0 MPH) 0% NONE
30 SEC. +0.9 MPH (EX. 7.9 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. -1 MPH FROM PB (EX. 7.0 MPH) 0% NONE
30 SEC. +1.2 MPH (EX. 8.2 MPH) 0% 1 MIN., 0%
60 SEC. -1 MPH FROM PB (EX. 7.0 MPH) 0% NONE
30 SEC. +1.5 MPH (EX. 8.5 MPH) 0% COOLDOWN
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