It can be difficult to start any new habit, and the difficulty level increases when the developing habit is difficult. But when you choose to invest in your health and pick out an excellent treadmill, you want that treadmill to become an addiction, not a coat hanger.
Below are our top 5 tips to help you develop a strong treadmill running habit that will benefit you for the rest of your life.
Tip 1: Outline A Reasonable Running Schedule
Many times, people approach working out like they are making up for years of skipping out on exercising—going 0 to 60 very quickly. But very few people can go from nothing to working out 6-7 days a week.
Instead, give yourself reasonable goals to work towards. One way to do this is to find a training schedule that works best for you. There are many beginner runner training schedules, which will help you be consistent with your training.
Tip 2: Give 60-75% Effort For Most Runs
The first time you workout after a long break can be exhilarating. But we advise you to be cautious if you want your new treadmill running habit to stick. It is easy to become injured if you push yourself too hard, too fast.
Instead, a good rule of thumb is to give 60-75% effort every workout. You should be able to breathe evenly and hold a conversation. As a beginner, only one of your workouts a week should be at peak effort. That way you can protect your body as you develop a strong, healthy running habit.
Tip 3: Track Your Treadmill Workouts And Health Progress
Once you’ve set your running schedule, you should track your progress. When it comes to the running aspect of your workouts, keep track of your workouts’ speed, time, and incline. As you stay consistent, you can track how you’ve been doing and know where you are improving or can push yourself further.
Health-related metrics you should track as you develop your running habit are:
- Resting heart rate
- Measurements (arms, thighs, waist, etc.)
- Blood pressure
Tip 4: Give Yourself Multiple Goals To Reach
Part of what causes people to fail at their workout goal is setting a vague goal or one that has a faraway goal post. For instance, if your goal is to lose a large amount of weight and run a marathon, you need small goals to help you stay motivated. Some things you can do are:
- Set incremental goals – While a marathon may be the ultimate goal, start by focusing on completing a 5k. Start small then achieve big. The same applies to weight loss, focusing on reaching 5-10lbs of weight loss at a time.
- Create rewards – As you reach your small goals, create rewards for yourself. For many people, rewards are tied to food. Instead, try to pick things like a new shirt for a small goal achievement, or a spa day for a larger goal being reached.
Tip 5: Keep Your Workouts Fresh
Running on a treadmill can become repetitive if you don’t mix things up. You don’t want this as repetition breeds boredom, which can kill your budding running habit. We like to recommend several different things when it comes to keeping things fresh while running on your treadmill:
- Audio entertainment – Listening to audiobooks, podcasts, or music is a great way to keep your mind busy as you workout. If you can’t wear headphones as you workout because you need to be able to hear your kids, all NordicTrack treadmills have digitally amplified speakers for you to plug your audio playing device into.
- iFit® – Utilizing the iFit® app is a great way to keep things fresh while running. Most of NordicTrack’s excellent treadmills are compatible with iFit®, which gives you access to unlimited workouts by elite personal trainers—some of which allow you to virtually run all around the world.
- TV watching – Running can become your guilty pleasure when you mix it with your TV watching. If you save some of your favorite TV shows for viewing only when you run, it can become even more motivating to put your shoes on and workout.
It takes time to develop a healthy treadmill “addiction”. But if you remain consistent in your habits and follow our tips, you will be able to develop a strong habit and stay healthy for years to come.