Therapist: So what’s going on between the two of you?
Me: Well, Treadmill and I used to have a healthy relationship and we were really happy. He used to make me completely out of breath, drench me in sweat and made me burn a lot of calories. But now after being with him for so long, I just don’t feel like he’s doing much for me anymore and I’m not getting a good workout.
Therapist: Well, it looks like you just need to switch up your workout routine. It’s not that you’re over Treadmill, you’re over running. So my advice for you is to take it slow and start walking.
Me: Ha! That’s funny. I’m not going to waste my time walking. I don’t sweat when I walk, therefore, I’m not getting a good workout.
Therapist: Well, Gi, that’s where you have it all wrong… When it comes to burning fat, cardio is important because it increases your heart rate. It’s not how much you’re sweating or even how winded you are after you workout, it’s having an increased heart rate that you should be worrying about.
An increase in heart rate means that your heart is demanding more oxygen so it can pump blood to the rest of the body efficiently, and yes, running will do this for you because you are pushing the body really hard and the body needs more oxygen to keep up. But walking can do the same thing too.
When you’re running on Treadmill, you’re heart rate increases to between 150-180 (which is, by the way, the number you need in order to slim down), and walking, although you are not pushing yourself as hard, can still make you maintain this heart rate. All you need to do is play with the inclination levels. This way, you’re not just walking because your body is requiring more oxygen to push yourself uphill, which raises the heart rate, resulting in burning unwanted fat.
So don’t worry about the amount of sweat you’re wiping off your forehead, focus on your heart and what it needs.
Here’s what you guys should do to get your healthy relationship back:
- Set the treadmill between 3.5-3.8 speed.
- Start off with zero percent incline and start walking.
- For each minute that passes, increase the inclination by one percent. So at five minutes, you should have 5 percent incline, and by 10 minutes, you should have 10 percent incline.
- Keep adding inclination to your steady speed until you are at 15 percent incline after 15 minutes of walking.
- Now, for every minute past 15, decrease the inclination one percent. So at 16 minutes you should be at 14 percent incline, and at 25 minutes you’re at 5 percent incline.
- Do this until you’ve reached 30 minutes and you’re inclination level is back at zero.
- Make sure you are NOT holding on to the treadmill! That defeats the purpose of making your body work hard to push yourself uphill.
Now get back to me in a few weeks and tell me if you guys are still together 😉 Who knows? Maybe you’ll sweat just as much as the first time you guys met.