Adding a Treadmill to Your Exercise Routine

Treadmills have constantly been one of the most popular forms of exercise around. They’re great for everyone, from senior citizens to teenagers. Treadmills can be set to train for a variety of different reasons. If you’re trying to get a moderate amount of exercise, simply set the treadmill to a walking pace for approximately 30 minutes. If you’re a runner, or are looking for some fairly serious physical activity, the speed of the treadmill can be increased, usually all the way up to a sprint. If you want, the incline of the treadmill can also be changed, from completely flat, up to a 10 to 15 degree angle. This will simulate running or walking uphill. If you’re planning on doing some cross-country running, or are going to do a lot of walking up and down hills on your next vacation, this incline feature can be a great help to you in your preparation.

If you’re just beginning on an exercise program and need a little motivation, some of today’s more advanced treadmills can give you just the motivation you’ve been looking for. There are features on some treadmills which allow you to track each day’s progress, so you can monitor how much you’ve been exercising each day and track your improvement. You can also set your treadmill for a pre-programmed exercise course, either set by you or by the treadmill itself. These courses will feature a warm-up and cool-down period, including changes in speed and incline. This is perfect for someone training for long distance running, where the terrain will change from minute to minute.

The only drawback to treadmills is, if you’ve had knee problems, or are prone to joint pain, treadmills can make these problems worse, just as can any long-distance walking. For people faced with this dilemma, a good alternative exercise method is to use elliptical trainers or exercise bikes.

Elliptical trainers are sort of a combination Stairmaster and stationary bicycle. While you do move in a circular motion, you stand upright, your hands grasping handlebars that move in a circular motion with your feet. These machines offer all of the benefits of treadmills, without the associated joint pain. Exercise bicycles are also a wonderful alternative to treadmills; they offer all of the aerobic benefits of treadmills, while allowing you to enjoy a circular, low-impact motion that’s completely free of pain.

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