Why Walking On An Incline Is Better Than Flat Out Running

hill

hill

Just got off the treadmill in my garage and managed to kill 300 calories in 25 minutes!

As my title points out, I didn’t get to this accomplishment today by running at a full-on sprint. What I did instead was a way more enjoyable workout (I hate running so much.) that consisted of walking with a speed of, not a blood vessel bursting 6, but a way more tame 3-3.5, and get this- an incline of 12-13.5. Now this sounds easier than it actually is. I mean, a 3 is about the speed of a brisk walk around the block. And if I were to keep the treadmill at a 0 incline, it would have felt just like that, with no tired after-workout feel when I was done.

But the incline is what matters here. With a 12-13.5 incline, basically like climbing up a hill, my butt was handed to me on a silver platter by the time I completed an episode of Portlandia on my iPad (the built in book brackets on the treadmill are so convenient). And I burned 300 calories in the process (perfect for working off this Winter Break jiggle I have going on).

My friend Halle had introduced me to this workout a while ago and told me that incline walking is better than running because it doesn’t burn away at just calories in general. Instead, the workout is targeted, more or less, towards burning fat calories, leaving your body with that nice tight and toned feeling. It makes you sweat A LOT in just a short amount of time. I find this much more productive and less time consuming than focusing on how many more miles (and wasted time) I want to tack on to my run. And I don’t feel as happy after a run as I do after an incline walking session.

After running I just feel like I have a cold for the next three days.

It’s miserable.

So I recommend this workout for anyone who detests running as much as myself. At first, don’t be afraid to go at your own pace. In my opinion, a good start is a 3-3.5 speed with a 10 incline, but feel free to adjust things to suit your needs. After a while, set your bars higher. Give yourself a challenge. What helps me during this workout is distraction. So, I either put some heavy banging pop music on or I set up Netflix on my iPad and watch a TV episode.

Watching Netflix actually helps me better to gauge how long to stay on the treadmill (Portlandia episodes are about 25 minutes long), plus it’s entertaining. After each workout, take a picture of your results and, after a week or so, check back on your progress. You will improve. Sometimes without even realizing it. For instance, my last workout (about two weeks ago) I walked up 680 feet in elevation. Today I climbed 800 and I wasn’t even aware! And you’ll see results relatively quickly as your body starts to look more tight and fit and cellulite starts to melt away.

Don’t have a treadmill? Find some large hills in your local area. Maybe some rolling hills near the beach or nestled in the countryside for some nice scenery. Climb up them for as long as your body can stand it.

You shouldn’t have to shell out hundreds of dollars to join a gym when you can workout for free. Let the world be your fitness oyster.

And be sure to have some ice water near you. You’re gonna need it.