12 Week Treadmill Workout


12 Week Treadmill Workout

Indoor fat-blasting walking routines for every body
by Marianne McGinnis for Prevention.com

Even avid exercisers find excuses to skip workouts in winter. So we asked Norma Shechtman, the American Council on Exercise's Group Fitness Instructor of the Year for 2003, to develop a lower-body routine that burns fat, builds muscle, is at least a little fun--and can be done indoors.

She surprised us by bringing up an old standby that's probably sitting in your basement: a treadmill. "Many people think of treadmills as monotonous," she says. "I wanted to prove that you can have 3 whole months of workouts with so much variety you'll never get bored." The treadmill is the most popular piece of home exercise equipment, and for many walkers and runners, it's the only way they can stick with their workouts during the cold winter months.

On the following pages you'll find a 12-week program that includes challenging power mixes, hill climbs to keep things interesting, speed intervals to crank up your calorie burn, and unique strength moves to get your legs as ready for shorts season as you probably are.

12-Week Fat-Burning Workout

Weeks 1 to 4 Weeks 5 to 8 Weeks 9 to 12
Monday Cardio Walk
Cardio Walk
Strength Moves
Cardio Walk
Strength Moves
Tuesday Speed Intervals Speed Intervals Speed Intervals
Wednesday Cardio Walk Cardio Walk Cardio Walk
Thursday Incline Intervals Incline Intervals Incline Intervals
Friday Rest Cardio Walk
Strength Moves
Cardio Walk
Strength Moves
Saturday Power Mix Power Mix Power Mix
Sunday Rest Rest Cardio Walk


Warm up (5 minutes)
Walk slowly (1.5 to 2 mph) for 1 minute. Slow your speed (to no more than 1.8 mph), and walk on your toes for 30 seconds, then switch to your heels for 30 seconds. Repeat the toe and heel walking one more time. Raise your incline to 6, and stretch your legs by taking longer strides for 1 minute. Lower the incline to 0, and speed up to 2.5 to 3 mph for 1 minute.

Cool down (5 minutes)
At the end of your walk, reduce your speed to 2.5 to 3.5 mph, and walk for 3 minutes. Then slow down to 1.5 to 2.5 mph, and walk for 2 more minutes.

To avoid tight calves, try this stretch: Standing on the edge of a step, gently lower one heel. Hold for 45 to 60 seconds, then switch legs.

Cardio Walk
After warming up, walk between 3 and 4 mph. Choose a pace that has you breathing harder but still allows you to talk without gasping. Remember to cool down afterward.

Weeks 1 to 4
Walk for 20 minutes. Total workout time: 30 minutes

Weeks 5 to 8
Walk for 30 minutes. Total workout time: 40 minutes

Weeks 9 to 12
Walk for 40 minutes. Total workout time: 50 minutes

Speed Intervals
After warming up, walk at a moderate pace (3 to 3.5 mph) for 5 minutes. Now you'll begin your intervals: Increase to a fast walk (3.5 to 4.5 mph; see below for durations), followed by a 5-minute moderate pace (3 to 3.5 mph). You'll repeat the fast/moderate intervals a total of three times. Finish with the cooldown.

Weeks 1 to 4
Do 1-minute speed intervals. Total workout time: 33 minutes

Weeks 5 to 8
Do 2-minute speed intervals. Total workout time: 36 minutes

Weeks 9 to 12
Do 3-minute speed intervals. Total workout time: 39 minutes

Incline Intervals
After warming up, walk for 5 minutes at 3 to 4 mph with your treadmill at a 0 or 1 incline. Then increase the incline (see below for specifics) for 5 minutes. As you raise the incline, you may need to slow your speed to maintain good form. You'll repeat the flat/incline sequence a total of two times. Then walk for another 5 minutes at 0 or 1 incline before cooling down.

Weeks 1 to 4
Increase your incline to 4 or 5. Total workout time: 35 minutes

Weeks 5 to 8
Increase your incline to 6 or 7. Total workout time: 35 minutes

Weeks 9 to 12
Increase your incline to 8 or 9. Total workout time: 35 minutes

Power Mix
After warming up, try this sequence. Always cool down afterward.

Speed Pyramid
Walk for 30 seconds at 3.5 mph; increase to 4.5 mph for 30 seconds. Walk for 45 seconds at 3.5; increase to 4.5 for 45 seconds. Walk for 1 minute at 3.5; increase to 4.5 mph for 1 minute.

Incline Pyramid
Start at an incline of 4, and walk for 1 minute. Elevate to 5 for another minute. Continue to increase the incline every minute up to an incline of 8, and then decrease the incline every minute, back down to 4. Try to maintain 3 to 4 mph throughout.

Walk at 3 to 4 mph (0 incline) for 5 minutes.

Weeks 1 to 4
Do the workout one time through. Total workout time: 28.5 minutes.

Weeks 5 to 8
Do the following sequence: speed pyramid, incline pyramid, recovery, speed pyramid, recovery. Total workout time: 38 minutes

Weeks 9 to 12
Do the workout two times through. Total workout time: 47 minutes

Strength Moves
Walk at a very slow speed (about 0.5 to 1 mph) for the first two exercises, then stop the treadmill for the third. If you have time, repeat the whole 3-minute sequence. As you get fitter, you can increase the speed, but we recommend staying at or below 2 mph.

Side Stepping
With the treadmill moving slowly and your right hand on the console, turn to the left so your right shoulder is facing forward. As the belt moves your feet to the left, step your right foot to the right, and then step your left foot to the right. Continue side stepping for 30 seconds. Repeat facing the right side for 30 more seconds. (Works inner and outer thighs and hips)

Lunge Stepping
Holding the front rail, let the belt take your feet back until your arms are extended, then take a large step forward with your right leg. Bending your right knee, lower your left knee toward the belt, then press off with your left foot and stand back up. Continue by stepping forward, alternating legs, for 30 seconds. (Works thighs and butt)

Stop the treadmill, and straddle the belt so you're standing on the frame. With your hands lightly resting on the front rail, sit back as if in a chair, but don't extend your knees past your toes. Press into your heels, and stand back up. Repeat 12 times. (Works butt and thighs)

7 Winter Exercise Tips for People on the GO!

7 Winter Exercise Tips for Busy People -- Finding Time in Your Schedule

By Dale Reynolds
Self Improvement Information.com

Many people find summer exercise easy, because there are so many fun activities available when it’s warm outside. But if you live in the North, you might find exercise during the winter much more difficult. I refuse to run outdoors when it’s very cold, the road is icy, or the snow banks have narrowed the road significantly. But I also refuse to hibernate, since exercise helps improve your immune system to help you fight off winter colds and flu, and also gives you energy and a positive outlook. So, here are a few tips to get you thinking about staying active all year long!

Find exercise videos you love, and carve out a space indoors with the equipment you need. I exercise in my basement all year long, and add outdoor activities when weather permits. The great thing about having an exercise video collection, and the right space, is that you have absolutely no excuses! Weather, time of day, long lines for equipment, etc. will not stop you from burning calories! My personal favorites come from The Firm.

The new fall television lineup will be here soon. Use TV commercial breaks! Many people ignore strength training because they feel cardio burns more calories. But adding muscle to your body will raise your metabolism, allowing you to burn more calories all day long. Resistance training also strengthens your bones, and just getting stronger can help you with a multitude of daily activities. So find a book, magazine article, wall chart or other resource showing exercises to work all major muscle groups, and do a set of repetitions during each commercial. You’ll get a 20-minute workout during one 60-minute show!

Join a walking club at a local school, or walk inside a shopping mall. You can window-shop before the stores open so you go right to the store that has the best sales or the styles you love when they are open.

Park farther away from the door and walk. At work, at the grocery store, at the mall; any place where you’re stuck walking outside anyway, just bundle up and get a few extra steps. When indoors, take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator. You’ll burn lots more calories. You can even try using restrooms, copy machines, etc. on a different floor just to get more exercise. Consider wearing a pedometer and challenging yourself to keep increasing your steps per day.

Use your lunch break if you work in an office. If your company has a gym, use it. Walk outside when the weather permits. If it’s raining or snowing, walk laps around the parking garage or laps around each floor perimeter plus the steps between floors.

Be less efficient! If you live in a multi-story house, take as many trips up and down the stairs as you can instead of saving things to go up or down. At the office, take a walk to see your coworkers instead of always using email. Face-to-face conversation is often better anyway, as it avoids misunderstandings and leads to better bonding and teamwork.

Consider winter sports. Skiing (downhill or cross-country), ice skating, and snow-shoeing can all burn lots of calories. Also, just play in the snow! Go sledding or build a snowman, and make some snow angels!

I hope these tips help you to stay active this winter! Remember, the key to weight loss is to burn more calories than you consume (and weight maintenance is balancing the intake and the burn equally over time.) If you don’t burn calories with exercise, you’ll need to cut your food intake, and that will be especially difficult during the holidays. I personally would rather exercise more and enjoy a few holiday cookies! So get in the habit of exercising consistently now!

About The Author

Dale Reynolds lives in upstate New York where she works as a weight loss counselor and has recently published a book, "A Slim Book On Weighty Matters"

Avoid Catching a Cold and the Flu Through Healthy Habits

Stay on Your Feet During Cold and Flue Season

By Dave McGovern for Active.com

Well, it's November again. Time for newsletter editors everywhere to trot out the same tired old cold-weather training tips articles. But it's not just the start of the cold weather training season - it's also the start of cold and flu season. And if you're confined to bed with a cold or down with a nasty bout of the flu, you won't have to worry about what to wear or what kinds of workouts to do. Because you won't be training.
The average adult catches two to four colds per year. And up to 40 percent of the people in a given community may develop a case of the flu during an epidemic.

Most flu epidemics and most colds happen during the winter months - the so-called cold and flu season - when people spend more time confined together indoors, spreading their germs among themselves. We've known for decades that colds and flu are caused by germs. But short of donning a Hot Zone anti-ebola suit and running for the hills at the first sight of a sniffling child or co-worker, infectous diseases can be hard to avoid this time of year.

And that's why I sit here coughing away with a Walter Matthau nose and a scratchy throat and eyes. I don't have co-workers, and avoid kids like the plague, but I do travel a lot and come into contact with a lot of people when I do. So that hand I shook, doorknob I touched or droplet of sneeze I inadvertantly inhaled and lodged in my mucous membranes wound up slamming me with my first cold of the year - right when I need to start upping my mileage to get ready for World Cup trials in March.

Could it have been avoided? Perhaps. I know all the rules and I'm usually very careful, but maybe I let my guard down. It's not possible to rebuff every handshake, and sometimes I actually have to fly - horror of horrors - in coach.

The UPS Guy hasn't dropped off my Boy in the Plastic Bubble quarantine bubble yet. Until he does, I'm going to have to be very careful and stick to the following guidelines. To lower your risk of getting knocked down with a cold or the flu, so should you.


  • If at all possible, avoid close contact with people who have colds or the flu, especially during the first three days when they are most likely to spread the infection.
  • Wash your hands after touching the skin of someone who has a cold, or after touching an object that they have touched.
  • Keep your fingers away from your nose and eyes.
  • Consider getting a flu shot, especially if you come in frequent contact with infected people.

To avoid spreading a cold or flu to others, take these steps:

  • Cover your nose and mouth with disposable tissues when you cough or sneeze.
  • Wash your hands frequently, but especially after coughing or sneezing.
  • If possible, stay away from people when you have a cold, especially during the first three days when you are most contagious.


  • It's important to drink adequate quantities of liquids, especially water or juices. Staying well-hydrated helps prevent the drying of the lining of the nose and throat, which helps keep the mucus moist and flowing out of the body.
  • Avoid caffeinated beverages such as coffee, tea and colas, as caffeine can lead to dehydration.
  • Get plenty of sleep and rest.
  • While there is no cure, many medications can help relieve cold and symptoms. These products will not make the cold go away faster, but they can lessen the discomfort caused by the infection, making the illness more bearable

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