This week we're going to take a break from HIIT workouts and have a bit of fun with the treadmill. "Ugh, the treadmill? Seriously?" Yes, seriously. The treadmill can be a great resource for increasing our running speed and endurance. By completing weekly speed workouts I was able to cut a full minute off my 5K time from November to April.
Before we get started you will need to have an idea of your comfortable speed on the treadmill, what you would consider a "fast but sustainable for ~20 minutes" speed, and what would be an all out sprint for you.
The numbers I'll give you are based on where I am currently at in my speed routine. You can easily scale to fit your ability. I generally run at 6.0 - 6.6 mph (9:00-10:00 min/mile) depending on the temperature, humidity, and other external factors. My hope is that this knowledge will give you an idea of what speed to start your workout at.
Please note that when you are doing a speed workout it is very important to be in control. If you find yourself fumbling and flailing-- back off the speed slightly and build up to a faster speed as the weeks go on.
Don't forget to stretch! Your hips, quads, and hamstrings were worked pretty hard in this workout so give them a little TLC when you're finished. Consider doing low runners lunge, lizard pose, pigeon pose, wide leg forward/left/right bend (standing or seated), and the basic standing quad stretch.
You should finish the workout with slightly jello-y legs and feeling "empty". You want to feel like you gave it your all-- which is why I like to finish with an all out sprint. If you feel like you could run a few more miles, you probably were not running the "fast" repeats fast enough. No big deal :) adjust your speed next time.
Your turn! Do you use the treadmill as a tool in your running arsenal? Or do you completely avoid it? Do you incorporate speed workouts into your regular routine?
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