Efficiency is key. Our busy lifestyles demand that we make the best possible use of every minute. So it is understandable to want a workout to be productive. However, health is not measured in how many calories you burn in a minute.
Exercise is an excellent way to relieve muscle tension and to refocus the mind. So your priority should be that exercise makes you feel good. Whenever you follow any of these tips that increase the calorie burn on the treadmill use your common sense. If it doesn’t feel right, then don’t do it.
How to burn more calories on the treadmill
Before you get on the treadmill
- To eat breakfast or not?
This is always a controversial discussion. Some studies suggest eating breakfast boosts your VO2 max and sets the stage for an increased fat burning mode during the day, which is great.
Other studies suggest that a carb-depleted workout teaches your body to burn fatty acids rather than carbohydrates for fuel, which is also great.
The thing is, we are all so different and what works for your best friend doesn’t have to work for you. So you have to find it out for yourself – breakfast or not?
- Digest your meals
This point is probably valid for everybody. In order to perform on the treadmill optimally and burn more calories, your stomach can’t be busy with digesting food. Depending on how much you have eaten and what your meal contained, you need more or less time to digest it properly.
- Working out in the morning
There are a lot of benefits of working out in the morning. It takes advantage of your natural hormone cycle. You will be more focused during the day. And you will be less likely to find an excuse for not working out in the evening.
- To socialize or not?
Are you easily distracted when you are working out with a friend? Or do you work harder when a running buddy is around? Experiment and do whatever makes you run harder on the treadmill to burn more calories.
- Listen to music
A great playlist can sidetrack your mind. Studies have shown that when listening to music athletes had a lower perception of the level they were working out at. Meaning you can go harder without your mind complaining about it.
- Do dynamic stretches
Dynamic stretches are for example the self-hugging moves that swimmers do before they hit the pool. Your body is moving while you stretch your limbs and that is like a little warm-up for your body. When you hit the treadmill your calorie-burning furnace can kick in right away without first using any kindling.
- Do strength training first
The more muscles you have the more calories you burn. That makes sense, right?
On the treadmill
One way to burn more calories while being on the treadmill is to increase the incline. A 1 to 1.5 incline simulates the conditions outdoors. Play with that up and down button.
You also can implement some speed interval training. You probably have heard about HIIT. Studies have shown that short bursts of almost maximal power followed by a recovery period boosts health regardless of your fitness.Furthermore intervals on the treadmill break it up nicely. And before you know it, the workout will be over.
- Go longer
Stay on the treadmill a little longer every time. Start with a number that seems reasonably to you and than add 1 minute or so every time you are on it. The longer you go the more calories you will burn.
- Use arms
You like multitasking? Depending on the speed you run, you could implement a little arm workout and carry some dumbbells. However, be cautious this may also be a recipe for disaster, especially when you are just starting out with your new treadmill routine.
Instead of the treadmill
- Switch it up
Have you noticed all the other fancy training machines in the gym? It doesn’t have to be the treadmill all the time, especially if that is your go-to machine. Challenge your body with new moves, which will burn more calories.
- Take it outdoors
Some people say, that running on the treadmill is terribly boring. Well, let’s move it outdoors. The uneven terrain, the uphill, the downhill, the jumping over roots and the running away from dogs all train different muscle groups and burns more calories than the same time spent on the treadmill.
After you get off the treadmill
- Refueling after workout
A workout is not done unless you have refueled with proper nutrition. Working out not only means that you burn calories but you also teaching your body to become stronger and more efficient.
During a workout (if you go hard enough) you basically damage body tissue that needs to rebuild. And if your body doesn’t have the tools to repair that damage, you leaving it more vulnerable. In the long run that means, you are wearing your body down and become more un-efficient.
Happy running everyone. Oh hey, I like your shoes!