Ready for some HIIT? Okay, but which type of cardio equipment is best?

There are many things to consider like impact, comfort and boredom! I vote for the treadmill.

If you dread a particular piece of cardio equipment–and many don’t care for the treadmill, then it isn’t the best kind for high intensity interval training for you because you’ll never push yourself as hard on it as you will on the cardio machine that you like much better.

On the other hand, you may be willing to push yourself to your limits on whichever cardio equipment you learn is the absolute best for high intensity interval training.

The reason I vote for the treadmill is because you can do more things on this cardio machine than you can on other equipment.

Also, high intensity interval training can be done with low impact on the treadmill, as well as high impact.

Some treadmills go up to 15 mph, and others go up to 30 percent grade. Imagine all the possibilities.

Here’s an example of a spectacular high intensity interval training workout on a treadmill that goes up to 30 percent grade:

Six mph at 30 percent grade for 30 seconds. Recover at 2 mph at zero grade for three minutes. Repeat this cycle seven more times.

Perhaps on the fourth or fifth work segment, you won’t be able to complete the 30 seconds, perhaps reaching your limit at 25 seconds or less.

That’s fine. During the speed segments, do not hang onto the equipment.

High intensity interval training done at high inclines is actually low impact. It’s when you’re running at 10 or more mph that it becomes pretty high impact.

For those of you who don’t care for inclines, set the treadmill at its fastest speed and see how long you can run at zero incline (without hanging on).

If the treadmill only goes up to 10 mph, this speed will not be fast enough to produce a HIIT workout for fitter individuals.

Ever thought of jumping on a treadmill for high intensity interval training?

Set speed at 4.5 mph and 15 percent grade. Without holding on, hop on the tread for 30 seconds, feet leaving the surface at the same time and coming down at the same time, like a kangaroo.

Practice first at 3 mph and 15 seconds to get a feel for it. For the next round try 3.5 mph. And so on.

You may find that after 30 seconds of 4.5 mph and 15 percent grade, you’re not that winded. Try 5 or 6 mph.

Jumping for high intensity interval training on a treadmill should be reserved for natural athletes. In between work segments, slowly walk level for a few minutes.

High intensity interval training can be done with walking at high inclines., diana.grytsku

For many people, maintaining a walk at 4 mph and 15 percent grade for 30 seconds without holding on will be nearly impossible. This is an ideal work segment.

If the treadmill goes up to 30 percent, then experiment. See how long you can walk 4 mph at 30 percent.

Walking 4 mph at high inclines is entirely different than jogging this speed. Recovery segments can be easy level walks for a few minutes.

Another way to use the treadmill for high intensity interval training is to jog at 15 percent grade at 4-6 mph for 30 seconds — holding 5-pound, 8-pound or 10-pound dumbbells.

You get the picture: The treadmill offers many permutations for performing high intensity interval training, which is why it gets my vote for being the best cardio equipment for this kind of workout.

Lorra Garrick is a former personal trainer certified through the American Council on Exercise. At Bally Total Fitness she trained women and men of all ages for fat loss, muscle building, fitness and improved health. 



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