If you can’t get outside or to your local gym to work out, it could be challenging to stay in shape or lose weight. That is, if you don't have a treadmill. The best treadmills are incredibly useful to have around and are one of the best investments you can make in your health.
If you’re curious about all of the different treadmill benefits, keep on reading because we have them all right here!
Table of Contents
What Muscles Do Treadmills Work?
Part of the reason why treadmills are so popular is because they offer varied and complete workouts. In order to prevent muscular imbalances which can place you at a greater risk of injury, you must not neglect any muscle groups.
What Does Treadmill Exercise Do For Your Body?
Treadmills can be used in so many different ways, and while the overall benefits are similar, using them at different paces or positions can give you different results.
Walking (Slow to Moderate Pace)
There are many benefits of walking on a treadmill daily, and it doesn’t have to be intense to get them. This is actually the best fat-burning zone, if you can keep going for at least half an hour. This pace will get your body moving and blood flowing, and if you’re just beginning, then it's probably the best way to use your treadmill.
Walking on High Incline
Walking on a high incline will begin to engage your quadriceps and hamstrings even more, along with the glutes. Get yourself one of the best treadmills for walking and ramp that incline up to burn even more fat while toning muscles.
Walking Backwards or Sideways
Not only has walking backward and sideways on treadmills been proven to help balance and stability, but it also works muscles we don’t normally address by walking "normally." They can help equally strengthen the muscles and ligaments around the knees, engage the quads even more, and specifically tone the inner and outer thighs.
Running (Medium to Fast Pace)
If you don’t have time to walk slowly on a treadmill but want to burn fat and get your heart in good shape, running at intervals has been proven to be the most efficient way to do so. Running is an action that engages just about every muscle in the body – from our calves, quads, hammies, and glutes to our abs, deltoids, back muscles, and more.
9 Amazing Benefits of Treadmills
While weight loss and overall keeping in shape are obvious benefits of treadmills, there are others that can make a massive impact on the overall quality of your body and life. Let's cover each benefit and the different types of treadmills that work best for them.
1. Running with less impact
Running on hard cement outside can take a toll on the body – particularly on the joints. This can exacerbate or cause joint or back problems later on, no matter what your age is. Getting a treadmill with a softer surface and great shock absorption can help prevent this!
2. Running with control
The great thing about treadmill workouts is that you get to control the speed, incline, and decline (if the model allows for decline)! You aren’t basing your workout on a track or outdoor space; instead, you're choosing exactly how you want it to go!
3. Helps with mental health and motivation
Wouldn't it be great if you could take a magic pill that would make your brain snappier and happier? Well, it may not be "magic," but running on a treadmill can help you release endorphins. Endorphins being released can cause a euphoric feeling, and exercise can help you think quicker!
4. Great for cardiovascular health
Running requires our blood to be pumped at an even quicker rate, which means your heart has a lot of work to do. As it’s a muscle, it gets “fitter” over time, just like any other muscle in our body being used repetitively. Improved circulation from a fitter heart results in oxygen being transported more quickly to our muscles and brain, allowing us to be active for longer! It can also keep blood pressure low, which is crucial in preventing heart disease.
5. Weight loss
This is probably the biggest motivating factor for people to get a treadmill, and it makes sense. After all, you can realistically burn 100 calories or more each mile you’re clocking in. Traveling at 6MPH, you can burn 600 calories (depending on your weight, age, body fat percentage, etc.).
6. Building muscle
In order to "tone up," there needs to be a focus on losing body fat as well as building muscle. Running is great at helping to do both! As you’re going to be using your muscles so often, they’ll undoubtedly become stronger and more resilient. Of course, you’re not going to be getting Arnold-big from running. But for lean, dense muscles, hop on your treadmill.
7. Improve joint flexibility
Joint flexibility plays a big role in minimizing the risk of injury, combating arthritis, osteoporosis, knee issues, and so much more. If you’re running on a treadmill with enough cushioning and impact absorption, it will reduce such risks and keep joints flexible. It won’t eliminate the risk, but keeping active will certainly help.
8. Easy, safe, and convenient to use
With a treadmill, you don’t have to worry about random debris getting in your way, other runners, cyclists, vehicles, etcetera. You don’t have to plan your run or walk around daylight, either. Whenever you want, you can hop on and get in a solid workout without worrying about someone or something bothering you.
9. Helps build bone density
This kind of goes hand-in-hand with joint flexibility, but the regular (minimal) impact running on a treadmill offers can also help keep bone density high. High bone density will help reduce osteoporosis and strengthen your bones instead of allowing them to become brittle, which inactivity can promote over longer periods of time.
What Are the Disadvantages of a Treadmill?
While treadmills certainly have a lot of benefits, there are potential disadvantages as well.
Treadmills can take up a lot of space
How much space do you have allotted to keep your treadmill in? If you’re tight on space, then you’ll probably want to get one of the best folding treadmills. This way, you can unfold it while it’s in use and fold them back up and stow it away when you’re done.
Some have loud motors
Let’s think about your household. Do you live in an apartment with thin walls? Do you plan on working out while others are asleep, studying, or working? If so, then you need a quiet treadmill that allows you to work out without disturbing anyone around you.
Can be monotonous
While treadmills can be used in various ways, you’re still going to be limited in some sense. You’re going to be running or walking on the same surface, likely in the same space every time. However, you can make things more entertaining by selecting a treadmill that comes with a large screen, Bluetooth, running apps that let you run through virtual worlds, etc.
Maintenance/repairs require a pro
While you can perform a lot of maintenance like keeping things well-oiled and clean, most are going to require you to call up a professional. This can be a bit of an annoyance, depending on how many you have in your area and how much they cost.
May cause stress on knee, hip, and ankle joints
We know we just said that a benefit of treadmills is that they are easy on the joints. However, this depends highly on the model that you choose and how you are using it. Get yourself one of the best treadmills for bad knees to save yourself that hassle.
People Also Ask (FAQs)
How much weight can I lose on a treadmill in a month?
This will depend on your weight, but you can realistically lose around 1-2 pounds per week, so about 8 pounds per month.
How often should you use the treadmill?
3-4 times per week is an excellent place to start. You’ll develop a habit, see results, and get a day of rest in-between.
How many calories do you burn in a 10-minute run?
This will depend on how much you weigh and your current body composition. However, a 120-pound person burns around 114 calories during a 10-minute mile.
What is a good speed for a beginner on a treadmill?
If you don’t have any knee conditions or previous injuries, then you should be good to start out at a slightly brisk walking pace around 3.5 MPH. Stay there until you feel you aren’t breaking a sweat after a few minutes or don’t feel like you’re working very hard.
Is it better to run outside than to run on a treadmill?
They both have their benefits! Outdoors, you obviously get some fresh air and sunshine. However, on a treadmill, you can fully control your workout, what you encounter along your "trail," and keep track of your workouts.
Now that you’ve read all about the benefits of owning a treadmill, have you decided if it's the right decision for you and your household? We're sure that you'll love having one and be able to see positive changes right away. We hope our guide has helped you out and answered any questions regarding treadmills that you may have.