According to the World Health Organization, adults 18 to 64 should be getting 150 minutes (2.5 hours) of moderate physical activity in a week, 75 minutes (1.25 hours) of intense activity, or some combination of the two.
The truth is, though, many of us sit in our cars on the drive to work, sit behind a desk while working, then get back in the car for our trips home. With brains fried and emotional energy depleted, we walk in the door and plop ourselves in front of the television for the night.
If that is what five of our seven days look like, we can safely say most people are not fitting enough physical activity into their day. While this situation sounds bleak, luckily, there is an easy fix — the treadmill.
Is Using a Treadmill Good for You?
Treadmills provide a way to fit in the physical activity suggested to stay healthy. While personal trainers, Zumba classes, and at-home exercise videos are great, many times these options just aren’t realistic for a daily routine.
Walking or running is great for those seeking to improve heart health, lose weight, and lower stress levels. Plus, treadmills are easy to use, and most come with pre-designed workouts to help you reach your goals!
Improve Heart Health
One reason the treadmill effect is good for you is that walking and running can improve a person’s heart health. Aerobic exercise encourages blood flow, or in other words, gets your heart pumping!
Aerobic exercise, like a good brisk walk or jog, can lower cholesterol and strengthen your heart muscle, so working some time on the treadmill into your daily routine can greatly improve one’s cardiovascular health.
Of course, it is important to make an appointment with your doctor before engaging in any physical activity out of your usual routine, but once you get the green light from a professional, those minutes on the treadmill will have you feeling stronger and healthier.
Treadmills improve your heart health, but it’s always important to see the results of your work on the outside, too. Losing weight is a natural result of using a treadmill. Adding more physical exercise into your routine helps you burn a more significant number of calories in the day, which leads to weight loss.
Fifteen minutes on the treadmill to get a quick walk in before work in the morning, or coming home and changing into sneakers for a mile run to de-stress after a long day, adds up to all the minutes you need in the week to burn off some unwanted weight.
Being healthier on the inside and feeling better about the way you look on the outside can relieve some of your stress. Working out causes our bodies to release natural endorphins that put us in a better mood.
Sometimes, though, the thought of having to make the drive to a faraway gym or group exercise class can be the very thing that adds stress to your day! Not only do cardio workouts release tension from our bodies, but having a machine in your home like a treadmill that you can easily access for a workout, makes pushing yourself to actually do it much less stressful.
Then, once you get a routine going, fitting in a walk or run each day is a piece of… broccoli? Well, what the heck, a small piece of cake — you earned it.
Keep in mind, if you are thinking to yourself that you’d prefer to exercise outside of the house, I have never been to a gym that doesn’t have treadmills available, so knock yourself out! You can always mix it up, too, by doing half the week at home and half at the gym.
It’s all about finding a healthier routine that works for your lifestyle and reduces your stress levels.
How To Use Your Treadmill
What is nice about treadmills is most of them have pre-designed workouts programmed in. There is always the manual setting you can choose if you already know precisely what treadmill workout you want to do that day, but if you’d like to take the guesswork out, almost all modern treadmills have settings you can choose from based on your goals.
These settings will automatically adjust your speed and incline during a workout to fit your needs. One setting, for example, is usually called something close to “Fat Burn,” which does just that.
The speed and incline will be automatically set to get your heart rate into a zone that burns your fat away. Another setting seen on most treadmills is “Speed Interval.” This workout switches up your pace between walking, jogging, and running, which will get you sweating more quickly.
The pre-designed workout settings that come on most treadmills are wonderful when you want to get a good workout in, but don’t want to have to worry about pressing any buttons or how many calories you are burning and at which speeds and inclines.
Tracking Your Progress
What is nice about exercising on the treadmill, as opposed to other methods of working out, is you can program them to track your progress as you go. When you step on a treadmill, there are heart rate monitors built into the handles in front of you.
As soon as you get started, you simply grab these sensors and your heart rate will be recorded. To get the most accurate tracking, keep your hands on these sensors during your workout. This can get uncomfortable, though, because it is natural for us to swing our arms when we walk or run.
That is okay! Because you will be asked for your weight and age before your workout, as long as you touch the sensors every few minutes, the treadmill has a way of filling in those gaps pretty accurately. Tracking your progress is made easy by treadmills, encouraging us to keep pushing!
Many adults do not get the exercise they need to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The World Health Organization recommends a minimum of 2 hours and 30 minutes a week of moderate activity or 1 hour and 15 minutes of intense activity.
With a treadmill, you can walk at a moderate pace or speed up for a more intense workout. Either way, exercising on a treadmill can help you get those minutes in. Working out for the recommended amount of time each week is essential to maintaining cardiovascular health.
When one focuses on keeping their heart healthy, this typically comes with the benefit of weight loss. Feeling good and loving the way you look can reduce stress, as does making exercise as convenient as possible — something a treadmill can provide.
After having read all this information, it is essential to weigh the pros and cons of using a treadmill. There are many pros for you to think over here, but some concerns you may have are the price, size, and possible monotony of using a treadmill over time.
Purchasing a treadmill and finding a place for it may seem expensive and bothersome at first, but it is hard to put a price tag on one’s health. Also, while simply walking or running indoors can become boring, remember, treadmills usually come with many pre-designed workouts to keep things interesting.
Are treadmills bad? Absolutely not. So…no excuses…is starting to use a treadmill the right decision for you? I bet it is!
Share your treadmill success stories below.