We will be reviewing the best treadmill workouts for weight loss, drop fat, and burn calories. The thought of a treadmill can be grueling, but they can also be your greatest ally for losing weight.
Whether you are using a home gym treadmill or the one at the gym, this type of exercise is low impact, great for building endurance, and gives you cardio strength.
In this treadmill review, we will start out slow and easy, and work our way towards more advanced treadmill workouts. So work up your motivation and join us for some awesome treadmill exercises.
Treadmill Benefits to a Healthier Body
- Burns belly fat and visceral fat
- Good heart health defends against heart disease, diabetes, joint problems
- An intense treadmill workout requires only a short amount of gym time
- The 1% grade setting provides the same advantages as walking on concrete
- Uphill settings quickly increase your endurance levels
- Training on a treadmill will help you to run faster and further during races
- Burns calories faster than walking/running on pavement
- Enjoy watching TV or videos while on a treadmill
- Convenience, not too hot, cold, or wet indoors
- You don’t have to go back to the starting point to finish
- Great machine for doing HIIT workouts (high intensity interval training)
- Quickly increases muscle strength and stamina
Fat Burning Target Heart Rate
It’s extremely important to monitor your heart rate for fat burning workouts. The best treadmills for a home gym will usually contain heart rate monitors in the handles. If not, be sure to get an external monitor.
They are inexpensive and usually strap on around your chest or wrist. Most likely, they will connect with your smart phone through Bluetooth and the app will help you keep track.
To calculate your target heart rate, multiply your age x .67 and then subtract this number by 206.9. An even easier way is to subtract your age from 220 to get your maximum heart rate.
During treadmill exercise, be sure to stay within 60%-70% of your maximum heart rate for low-intensity workouts and between 70%-85% for more high-intensity workouts.
These are your target heart rate for your optimal fat burning zone, so constantly monitor these numbers to keep them in the range of your set goals.
Target Heart Rate Calculation Chart
Beginner Tips to Get Started
Before you get started, here are a few suggestions. You may want to work on your legs with a few key leg stretches, especially if they are generally tight. This is not mandatory with treadmill workouts since you can simply start out with a slow walk to warm up.
When first starting, don’t get into the habit of poor posture. Good posture while using a treadmill will help you to avoid any unnecessary aches and it also makes you more efficient. Once you get comfortable with your pace, try not to use the handles to hold on.
It’s extremely important for fat burning workouts to monitor your heart rate. If your treadmill doesn’t come with a heart rate monitors on the handle, you will need to get an external one. Get an inexpensive one that will connect with your smart phone through Bluetooth. From there, the app will keep track of your cardio.
Some treadmills even keep track of your past workout programs. If yours has this option, be sure to check the records on a regular basis. You will be getting faster and going longer. It’s motivating and encouraging to see how quickly your progress is coming.
Best Treadmill Workouts for Weight Loss
Below, we will be reviewing our fat burning exercise programs for the treadmill. Keep in mind with these methods that consistency and diet are just as important. However, if you are feeling sluggish or tired a particular day, sit out for that workout. But get right back to your schedule the next day.
Long durations on the treadmill at a moderate pace are a proven way to will burn calories. But we will also discuss quicker, more strenuous high intensity workouts. These last for shorter durations but need to be more vigorous to be effective for fat loss.
60 Minute With Moderate Intensity
This is the simplest method to lose weight on a treadmill. The length of time on your treadmill directly impacts the number of calories burned. The average person will burn between 300-400 calories during this amount of time at a moderate speed.
However, most of us don’t have 60 minutes or more just to dedicate to one exercise machine. If you do have time, this can be one of the best options. Simply grab the remote to the TV and start walking, you will soon see the results.
We recommend setting your treadmill on a 1% grade to simulate the same intensity as being outdoors.
30 Minute Workout Flexibility
Another idea is to break up your walk into two 30 minute increments to be done at different times of the day.
This way you can commit to a shorter period of time, and it may also help to ward off boredom. If you choose this method, be sure to exercise at least 30 minutes in one block of time.
Studies have shown that you must workout at least 30 minutes to get the most fat-burning potential. This is because early in your walk, the body first uses alternate forms of energy before it begins to concentrate on fat burn.
Treadmill Incline Workouts
As you may have figured, using the incline mode on a treadmill will burn calories even faster. Many treadmills come with programs that simulate different hill climbing workouts. However, you may want to adjust your incline manually to get the best fat burning results.
Slowly set your incline to a level that is challenging but where you will still be able to maintain a strong pace. Workouts with a higher incline should last closer to 30-45 minutes because of the increased intensity.
During this shorter workout, it is even more important to keep track of your heart rate. You need to concentrate on keeping with a higher target heart rate. Aim for 70-85% of your maximum heart rate.
Incline Treadmill in Increments
This idea worked out really well for my rowing machine workouts for weight loss, so why not try it here. Most inclines are set up to start on level ground and go up in 1-degree increments to about a 15-degree incline.
Get started at a moderate pace with no incline, and every 2 minutes raise it 1 degree. In 20 minutes, you will be pushing yourself pretty hard at 10 degrees while trying to keeping the same pace.
After you have reached this point, slowly go down 1 degree every 2 minutes until you get back to the level starting position. This same incline increment concept can be used for any amount of time increments or incline that suits you.
HIIT Treadmill Training
By now, you have probably heard of HIIT training (high intensity interval training). This is not a fad, but a proven method for not only fat loss, but is also excellent for improving cardio, endurance, and stamina.
Your treadmill may have a program for this type of speed interval workout. If so, play around with this option since it may be easier than manually adjusting speed and incline.
The basic method is to change your speed back and forth (in intervals) for a set time of each. There are hundreds of different ways to do this, but here is just one example to get started.
Start at a modest walking pace for 2 minutes, then speed it up to a fast pace for a 1 minute period. Go back to the 2 minute modest walk again, then 1 minute fast and so on, back and forth. Do this throughout your weight loss workout.
Take a break to slow this process down at any time simply by continuing with the moderate walk for a longer period of time. You don’t have to use this 2 minute/1 minute route. Try any interval time that you can come up with to keep things interesting.
If you would like to be more ambitious, try the same thing with a run/walk program. Try jogging for 30 seconds, and then walk for one minute – then back to jogging and so on.
Interval workouts are incredibly advantageous for your health and also speeds up your calorie burn.
Mixed Treadmill Workout Program
If you want to get even more ambitions with your calorie burn workout, there is an easy way to combine your treadmill with bodyweight exercises.
For this workout, rotate between 2 minutes on your treadmill and 1 minute of pushups. Or a 2 minute treadmill and 1 minute of bodyweight squats. Use any combination of exercises, and any amount of time increments for when to change exercises.
Like the other fat-burning treadmill workouts, it is important to keep your target heart rate up for maximum calorie burn. This will help with that.
Another great treadmill fat burner idea is to use a weighted vest. This type of heavy vest is a great invention and really works for increasing strength, balance and coordination, endurance, and burning more calories.
Be sure to get a quality weight vest that the weight can be adjusted in small increments. This way you can slowly adjust the weight as you get stronger. To learn more about these exercise vests, see my MIR Weight Vest Review.
Change Up Your Treadmill Program
I highly recommend on occasion, taking a break for your indoor treadmill walks. Fresh air and sun are vital to your health and happiness, and also works well for your exercise motivation.
Switch it up once in a while outside by trying some of the interval training that we discussed above.
After practicing your indoor treadmill exercise program for a couple of weeks, you will notice that your outdoor walks are becoming easier. Walking outside is another great time to use a weight vest.
To expand on your lower body exercises, take a look at our article on the best exercises for stronger legs.
Best Workouts for Weight Loss Wrap Up
Here we covered some of the best treadmill workouts for weight loss, but keep your eye out for the many other techniques out there.
On our heart rate discussion, be sure to pay close attention to your target heart rate for the most effective weight loss. Constantly check the heart monitor, keeping your heart within this range to get your maximum fat burn.
Moderate walking for longer distances is a know fat burner, so you may want to begin with this. As your fitness program evolves, start trying more intense workouts like adding other exercises or HIIT training.
If you don’t yet have a treadmill, the best treadmills for weight loss should come with a built-in heart monitor, steep incline options, and workout programs to keep track of progress.
If you have any questions or comments on our best weight loss workouts, please leave a message below.