Fitness Friday – Treadmill Games

In order to keep my running streak going, I made sure that I was staying at a hotel with a fitness center.  Without really knowing the surrounding area near our hotel, I was a little reluctant to head off for a solo run.  I tried to research running routes using Mapmyrun, but all of the routes required driving into Harrisburg, VA and I wouldn’t have the time to do that each morning.  So the treadmill is my only choice for the next few days!If you’re like me, the “dreadmill” is used as a last resort.   The only time I like to run on the treadmill is if the weather is just too bad (hot or snow) to safely run outside or in this case, I’m stuck and I can’t get a run in outside.  So in order to make it a bit more entertaining, I found that I have to keep pushing buttons to keep myself engaged.

One of my workouts this week is Mona Fartleks.  What’s a fartlek?!  (I seriously can’t ever say that word without laughing!)  It’s a Swedish word for speed play.  Some fartleks just require you to pick your speed at random times throughout a run.   My Mona Fartleks are a little bit more structured, but perfect for the treadmill.  I have to run 15, 60, 90’s (15 seconds quick, 15 seconds rest, 60 seconds quick, 60 seconds rest, 90 seconds quick and 90 seconds rest) twice.  I do have a 2 minute rest break between the sets and a mile warm-up.  This type of workout is perfect for the treadmill.  Watching the time and hitting the speed buttons keeps me entertained and I also tend to run a bit quicker pace on the treadmill vs the pavement.  You could also do a similar workout with just doing mileage.  Speed up for .25, then recover for .25.  Doing that for 2-3 miles will make the time go by so much quicker!

The other thing that I’ve done before requires listening to music.  Find a really great pump-you-up song and run easy for the verse and then as it’s leading into the chorus, hit that speed up button and bust it out for a bit.  When it goes back to the next verse, slow your roll back to an easy run.  I do this for a couple of songs and again, the time goes by a lot quicker and you’ve gotten a really good quality workout!  An alternative would be to watch a tv show.  Run easy for the length of the show, but kick it up during the commercials.


Finally, play Mountain Climber!  Don’t worry, yodeling is optional!  Research the elevation profile of your upcoming race and look for the toughest incline!  For me, the Raleigh Race 13.1 has a incline at 8%?!  So here’s a workout option: Warm-up with a mile and then let the pushing buttons begin!  Push the incline button up to .5% for every few minutes, but keeping your speed at your target race pace, if you can.  If you want even more of a challenge, increase your pace as you increase the incline!   After 2 minutes, continue pushing the incline button until you get to the incline of the toughest hill in your scheduled race.  So I’ll be working up to an 8% grade while trying to keep it at my pacing target, 10:17.    YIKES!   Cool down with a recovery mile.

Hope these suggestions make your next treadmill run a bit more entertaining!

Share any suggestions that you use for treadmill workouts!  I’d love to try something new.

Check out other Fitness Friday posts

 Happy Fit Friday!


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8 thoughts on “Fitness Friday – Treadmill Games

  1. I love the idea of using different parts of a song as cues when to speed up/slow down. I had heard of using full songs before but that seemed like a little much for me so I never tried it. I’m going to have to give this a try though!

  2. I love to run to music–especially with speed play. The ‘mill is definitely as last resort for me. Mine is 17 years old, so you know I’m not using it much…

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