Are those six-mile treadmill runs putting you to sleep? Are you hungry for a change? You're not getting the most from your time at the gym if you get too comfortable with your routine.
Try the following four programs the next time you find yourself more focused the TV screen than your workout. And don't be surprised if the runners next to you get inspired! All you need here is a treadmill, sneakers and a positive attitude!
1. Treadmill Tabata
Warm up for five minutes at a pace you feel comfortable at (distance doesn't matter yet).
Run 1.5 miles at 6MPH or what you would consider your base pace. This is a conversational pace that should not feel like you're working very hard.
When the 1.5 miles is up, it's time to start the Tabata workout (Tabata training is a High Intensity Interval Training workout that lasts four minutes). Hop off your treadmill (be sure to turn it off!) and complete the following: 20 seconds of burpees off the back of the treadmill, rest for 10 seconds, repeat seven more times for a total of eight reps.
We're not done yet! Get your feet back on that rubber and run another easy 1.5 miles for a total of three butt-kicking miles!
2. Hill Climb
This one is going to get the glutes and hamstrings fired up!
Start with a five-minute easy jog. Pick up the pace by .5 to 1.0MPH at the five minute mark. Then increase the incline by 2% every two minutes until you've been running for 10 minutes total.
Hop off! Behind the treadmill, perform 25 body weight squats: Stand with feel slightly wider than shoulder width, back straight, feet pointed forward, hips back. Engage your core and squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Press back up to start through the heels of your feet. Rest. Perform 25 more body weight squats for a total of 50.
Hop back on the treadmill and repeat the 10-minute hill sequence above. This time, increase your pace by .5MPH if you can.
3. Three Mile Melt
Let's add a layer of core training into the mix.
Warm up for five minutes. Then run a mile at your base pace.
Step off the treadmill and execute 15 push-ups off the back of the machine. Rest for 30 to 60 seconds. Place your hands in the same place on the treadmill and perform 30 seconds of mountain climbers (arms are straight in a plank position, drive the knees into the chest one at a time continuously for 30 seconds). Rest.
Get ready for mile two! Advanced runners can push the pace on round two, but everyone else can hang back in their comfort zone. Continue with the push-ups and mountain climbers after each mile for a total of three miles. And if one set per round isn't enough, double up!
4. Six Mile Sprint
I know most runners can only dream of running a sub-six-minute mile, but the rest of us can certainly try!
Start with an easy five minute jog. Run miles two, four and six as fast as you possibly can. This is ALL OUT MAX training. Walk through the recovery miles if you need to.
You will feel amazing when you hit that six-mile mark. And who knows, maybe you'll go below six minutes without even trying.
Happy running. Nice work!