Two Treadmill Questions

After a nice two-day break from the gym, it felt good to get my legs movin’ on the treadmill in the hotel gym this morning.

treadmill workout 002

Last night I knew I wanted to do a treadmill workout this morning, but I wanted to try something new, so I put out a call on Twitter and and ended up jotting down a treadmill workout from FitSugar. I changed it up a tiny bit and in the end my workout looked like this:

Minutes Speed
0-5 6.5
5-6 8.0
6-7 5.0
7-8 8.0
8-9 5.0
9-10 8.0
10-11 5.0
11 – 11:45 9.0
11:45 – 12:45 5.0
12:45 – 13:30 9.0
13:30 – 14:30 5.0
14:30 – 15:15 9.0
15:15 – 16:15 5.0
16:15 – 16:45 10.0
16:45 – 17:45 5.0
17:45 – 18:15 10.0
18:15 – 19:15 5.0
19:15 – 20 10.0
20-25 4.0

Those 10s made my heart feel like it was going to beat right out of my chest. Woo-wee.

I rounded out my cardio session with 25 minutes on the elliptical while watching Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader? (Turns out, I am. I was killin’ it on the trivia questions today! 2nd grade animal science has nothin’ on me!)

Since I completed a treadmill workout, I figured now would be a good time to address a couple of questions I receive from at least one reader every time I post a treadmill workout.

  • Do you write down your treadmill workouts, make them up as you go or memorize them?

I typically write down or print off workouts and prop them up on the treadmill to follow. Occasionally I’ll make up workouts as I go as well.

treadmill workout 003

  • Do you hold onto the side rails when you do treadmill workouts with a serious incline?

No. I never do. If I find that I really need to hold onto the sides to make it through a workout, I’ll decrease the intensity so I can finish without holding onto the sides.


Lunchtime arrived at the perfect time today. I spent a lot of time working on a PowerPoint presentation this morning and was more than ready for a breather and some yummy food when noon rolled around.

treadmill workout 007 

I heated up the same Amy’s pocket sandwich I enjoyed so much last week.

treadmill workout 008

While the pocket sandwich was heating up, I snacked on a cup of Stonyfield Activia vanilla yogurt and some Babybel cheese.

treadmill workout 005

I’m still a little hungry, so I think I may be venturing into the hotel lobby for one of their free peanut butter packets to enjoy with a cold apple from our fridge.

The rest of the day will be spent finalizing my PowerPoint presentation and hopefully getting a jump start on tomorrow’s Blog Talk Tuesday post! 


  1. says

    I can never hold the side rails because for whatever reason it really throws me off. But I also really don’t do anything other than hills on the treadmill and I run at pretty much the same pace.

    I should probably mix it up one of these days to keep my body guessing 😉

    Those Amy’s pocket sandwiches look amazing – I’ve never even seen them around!


  2. says

    Sometimes I look at folks who are BLAZING on the treadmill for a hot second before I realize that they’re practically floating above the fast-moving track while holding their entire body weight on the side rails…. seems a little counter productive, unless they’re doing a weird upper body workout I’ve never seen before.


  3. Lee @ in the pink of condition says

    I usually just make them up as i go! My favorite interval workout is to just keep increasing by 0.2 or 0.3 every minute, holding each speed for a minute, until I get to a speed where I can no longer hold it for an entire minute, then i just drop it back down to the beginning speed and start again. This way, I can make it easier or harder depending on how tired I am that day!


  4. says

    I find that holding onto the handrails throws me even more off balance. I guess it brings my brain back to the realization that I’m not actually going anywhere. If I focus ahead, I can run no problem. As soon as I touch the side, I start getting out of control.


  5. says

    No side rails for me. I’m boring on the treadmill. I just walk at 4 mph or run at 6.3 mph. Going to start incorporating your treadmill workouts soon and KNOW i’ll print them and bring them with me, just like I do with ST workouts!


  6. Girl in the pink says

    I never use the rails, I’d lower the incline if I felt that I needed the rails. I write down weight workouts, but not treadmill usually! I have a general TM plan in my head and just go with it!


  7. says

    I don’t have gym memberships or anything like that in my community so I’m not on treadmills much! actually, never! haha. I just don’t like them that much. But I guess when it’s available during traveling and stuff, it’s definitely a big help! 🙂


  8. Holly @ The Runny Egg says

    I’ve heard that holding onto the treadmill railings pretty much negates most of the hard work you are doing. Regardless, if I feel the need to hold onto the railings I also just lower the speed or incline.


  9. says

    Great workout Julie! I’m also not a fan of holding onto the sides of the treadmill. I usually print them off but memorize them somewhat so I don’t have to keep glancing down. I think having them in writing makes me more committed to doing the full thing!


  10. says

    I have to write down any treadmill or cardio workouts, and I have it write it really big on paper because when I’m running it’s hard for me to focus and line up the speed with the incline with time if I used size 12 font. My eyes are horrible!


  11. Yolie @ Practising Wellness says

    I mix and match my workouts – sometimes I write them on a post-it note or piece of paper and pop it on the treadmill (or elliptical) to workout from, but other times I just go with the flow adn see how I’m feeling. Normally when I am feeling a bit tired I go with an easy made-up workout, but love more complicated challenging set ones when I’m on an energy high! 😀 I also love using the interval programmes or hill programmes on the treadmill (or elliptical) … depending on how good they are, of course 🙂
    I never hold the rails, I just decrease the intensity until I can do it without.
    A power point presentation? I’m intrigued, lol! 😛 Good luck with the rest of it! And I’m so looking forward to the Blog Talk Tuesdays post!


  12. says

    I usually make them up as I go, that way I don’t feel like a complete loser if I can’t finish a certain workout haha…

    And I can’t eat an Amy’s pocket without scorching the roof of my mouth. It’s kind of ridiculous.


  13. says

    I make up treadmill workouts as I go. Mainly because I think I can do more when I’m writing it, but once I start doing it…it might be too hard.

    And I read somewhere that holding on to the rails makes the workout much easier, so unless I’m going to pass out and roll off that thing…I don’t touch them.


  14. Amanda says

    I have a couple treadmill exercises printed out in my gym bag for when I want a plan. If I just go into it without a plan, I usually make one up on the spot, like running at an incline of 1.0 fast, then increasing to 2.0 incline and decreasing speed a bit, then up to 3.0 incline and decreasing speed more, etc … don’t think I could just jog for 30 mins without a routine!


  15. says

    Fitsugar has some of the best intervals I know of! I always write mine down or take a picture of it with my phone of the computer haha 🙂 I can’t imagine me being capable of going past 8 on the treadmill though..yikes!


  16. says

    I wish my gym had a treadmill that would allow me to program my workout! That way I wouldn’t have to constantly be paying attention to the time/speed and it would just do it for me. (The treadmills do have the “random” button, but I always hate the workouts it comes up with!)


  17. says

    I’m excited for tomorrow’s blog talk! I love that you do this series.

    I never hold on to the rails. In my opinion, if you need to hold on to the rails you need to slow down or ease up on your workout. It’s not doing any good to go a million mph on a crazy incline if your holding yourself up on the railing the entire time.


  18. Lizzy says

    Totally unrelated to treadmills… I live in Atlanta we went to Constantine’s restaurant last night – he is pretty much just as dreamy in person! He was loving life and saying hello to all the tables! I also spotted Ames in NYC a few weeks ago with my girlfriends at Dinner…he was kind of rude!!


    • Whitney says

      That’s crazy – my friend was at a bachelorette party in SC this weekend and saw Blake (the denist) from this season. She totally caused a scene at the bar and had all the drunk girls taking pictures with him. haha

      She said his smile is even more amazing in person! It better be – never trust a denist with ugly teeth!! 🙂


  19. Katrina says

    I normally write down my treadmill workouts. Or I do a tempo run à la Hal Higdon (continuous run with a build up in the middle to near race pace; don‘t need to write that down 😉 )

    BTW, I‘m looking for a new sports bra. Since you work out a lot I thought maybe you can recommend one? Or make a post about your favorite workout clothes? Would be great! 😉


  20. Ashley@foodfitnessfun says

    Looking forward to tomorrow’s Blog Talk Tuesday! I’m one of your new biggest fans, Julie! 🙂 You have definitely inspired me with my own blog. I used to have a blog all about my “life happenings”, but I’ve always wanted to center it more around health, food, fitness, etc. I decided to switch it up, and can’t wait to post more each day. Thanks for the inspiration!

    Holding onto the handrails while running on the treadmill actually makes you not work as hard, which in turn doesn’t allow you to burn as many calories. Treadmills shouldn’t even have handrails, in my opinion! 😉


    • Ashley@myfoodfitnessfun says

      Oops! Just realized I left out the “my” in my web address in my comment. It should be “”


  21. Laura (Cookies vs. Carrots) says

    I always have to write down my treadmill workouts! I get way to confused with counting the minutes when it isn’t all written out for me! (Not smarter than a 5th grader, haha)


  22. says

    Hi Julie, thank you so much for your blog Tuesdays post, it really gave me a push to take my blog on a new level, I even got my own domain, I mean from

    that’s a huge progress !

    My goal for this month is to work extra hard on my blog and get some traffic flowing, I started blogging in 2009 and never had any traffic,that’s sad.
    I wrote you an email about 5min ago,can you please read and let me know what you think.


  23. Rosa - Fitness, Food, Fulfilled says

    Incline workouts are so awesome. Even though you huff and puff and groan your way through them, they are so great for they tushie (yes, I said tushie, it happens when you have a three year old). Living out of a hotel is no fun unless you’re on vacation, so I have my fingers crossed you’ll find a house soon!


  24. says

    Your treadmill workout is awesome! A lot of times I think I’m getting an effective workout just because I am on the treadmill for 30 minutes, but I’m sure it’s better to get your heart rate up by varying the speeds. Awesome! Love from 🙂


  25. says

    I have never printed out a treadmill workout – I never even thought about doing something like that! I will have to look for some, it would make my treadmill time feel much more productive. I so hate the treadmill sometimes!


  26. says

    That treadmill workout looks killer, I’ll have to try it! Love the use of your resources by borrowing workouts from fitsugar. I will have to print some out to keep handy for those still asleep/drowsy trips to the gym.


  27. says

    I love to make up workouts as I go. Then I get a feel for hard I can push myself. But if I’m feeling unmotivated it helps to have a PLAN!

    I hate it when people hold the rails. I want to go yell at them. And I never yell. Lol. Ever.


  28. says

    Hi Julie! I have a question for you regarding the transitions between speeds / inclines on treadmill interval workouts such as this one today (though it doesn’t look like inclines were adjusted today).
    How do you account for the few seconds it takes to adjust the speed / incline? I feel like it always takes me at least 5 seconds to fully adjust the speed, and perhaps even more time to adjust the incline. My index finger hurts by the end of interval workouts from adjusting the speed button!
    I just wanted to ask since today’s workout had some shorter intervals. And holy heck that’s amazing you were running at 10mph!


  29. linz says

    i never hold on to the rails and it really irritates me when i see people holding on! it’s really not good to do that… you do the right thing by slowing down!


  30. says

    True story: I run in my basement and there are times when I get off, get a drink or stretch. I always thought that was cheating but then I remembered that there are no rules when it comes to running for fun.


  31. says

    I love your treadmill workouts and really want to try adding intervals into my cardio, but I’m so scared of going fast on the treadmill! I’m convinced I’ll lose my balance and fall face-first onto the belt. I’m still working my way up to 30-minutes straight jogging (I’m not really at the “running” level yet).

    Any suggestions for intervals for scardy cats?


  32. nancy says

    Just curious if you’re doing the Activia challenge (ie eating the yogurt on a regular basis) or having one every one in awhile? I’m curious if it actually regulates the digestive tract as the commercials claim!


  33. says

    You are killing me with the pictures of the Cake Batter ice cream! I’m trying to reduce my desserts and this got me drooling. 😉

    BTW. Oatmeal Cookie Chunk really is the best flavor, ever!

    Love your blog!!


  34. says

    I get dizzy trying to read the times, speeds, and incline. I can never focus on the numbers when I am running on a treadmill…supposedly my dad’s has the option to pre-program the treadmill, but I’ve never tried to figure it out.


  35. Stephanie Clement says

    Hi Julie!

    So, I am about as novice of a treadmill runner as they come. I have been really wanting to give it a whirl though. I was wondering: when you change intervals (ie: going from 5 to 10) are you just pressing the buttons to bring it up? Do you worry that the beep of the machine bothers anyone else? Is there some kind of secret? I just feel like with only 1 minute intervals, all I’d be doing was pressing buttons and not totally focused on the running aspect. Thoughts??


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