6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

Welcome to another edition of Workouts for Runners! In honor of the blistering cold, piles of snow, and icy sidewalks that become the bane of runners from December to March, we’re bringing you 6 treadmill workouts for runners today. 

6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

While I used to run exclusively on the treadmill, I run outside whenever possible now – through heat, cold, rain, and more rain. I need to run outside whenever possible. But common sense prevents me from running outside in certain conditions, especially winter conditions when the roads are slick with ice and it may actually be colder than Mars outside. 

During winters in Northwest Indiana, the treadmill saved both my training and my sanity. Especially during the years of the Polar Vortex, 90 inches of snow, sheets of ice, and temperatures below zero with windchills below -20 left no option for running outside.

What kept treadmill running from becoming mind-numbingly monotonous were fun treadmill workouts such as these: runs that constantly changed the pace and incline on the treadmill, so that I used different muscles and was mentally engaged in the run.

These 6 treadmill workouts for runners will provide you with a wide variety of fun and challenging workouts, so you don’t have to dread the treadmill when nature forces you to stay inside this winter. 

My treadmill workout lasts an hour, so you will cover anywhere from 6-9 miles, depending on your pace. Warm up with 15 minutes of easy running (45-90 seconds slower than your marathon pace, RPE 2-3), gradually increasing the pace every few minutes. For the main workout, run 2 sets of 2 minutes hard (3K-10K pace, RPE 7-8) with 1 minute of easy running after each, 4 sets of 4 minutes hard with 2 minutes easy after each, and then 2 more sets of 2 minutes hard followed by 1 minute easy. Finally, you gradually decrease your pace and cool down with 10 minutes of easy running. 

6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

Brooklyn Active Mama gives you a quick 20-minute treadmill workout for when you’re busy or running easy:


6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

Happy Fit Mama‘s treadmill workout is a fun variation to a tempo run. 

6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

Run Far Girl gives you a lung-busting hill workout from the comfort of the indoors:

6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

Vita Train 4 Life’s treadmill workout features varied hill intervals to pass the time:

6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

Fine Fit Day teaches you how to make the dreadmill fun again: 

6 Treadmill Workouts for Runners

Find more workouts in the previous Workout for Runners round ups:
6 Favorite Workouts 
6 Yoga Workouts for Runners
5 Dynamic Warm Ups for Runners
6 Core Workouts for Runners
6 Speed Workouts for Runners 
6 Hill Workouts for Runners 
6 Injury Prevention Workouts for Runners 
6 Upper Body Workouts for Runners 
6 Two a Day Workouts for Runners 
6 Indoor Workouts for Runners (a great option if you’re stuck inside and DON’T want to run on the treadmill!

Linking up with Coaches’ Corner and Wild Workout Wednesday!

How do you survive running on the treadmill?
Do you prefer to run inside or outside in winter?
What’s your workout today?


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29 Responses

  1. I definitely think the key is to keep changing things up when it comes to treadmill running! I usually like to play around with pace and incline. I have no idea when I will run on a treadmill again (probably next Christmas!) but I will have to keep these workouts in mind for when I do!

  2. I’m the same way, give me fresh air any day of the week BUT if it comes down to time constraints or the conditions are just plain crazy (hello ice!), then I’ll hit the treadmill. These workouts will come in handy for me during the next few months. Although fingers crossed I don’t have to use them too often! 🙂

    1. Ice is definitely a reason to hit the treadmill! Even if you could run on it, it can throw off form so much. Hopefully you don’t have to be on the treadmill too often this winter!

  3. Wait…did you write that you used to run exclusively on the treadmill???? What? OMG, why? You need to write more about that!! So glad you have now found yourself out on the roads 🙂
    Love this round up and hope I can try your workout soon!

    1. I know! It was senior year of college through grad school, when I’d run before sunrise, lived by myself, and relied on the treadmill for safety (especially in grad school). Plus Midwest weather can be really nasty!
      I tried your workout this morning – loved it! The hills made the treadmill so much more comfortable both physically and mentally!

  4. Ohhhh boy it’s that time of year again eh?

    I don’t have access to one anymore so I’m running outside come rain, sleet, snow or vortex. Whoo hoo.

    I did some of the pre programmed hill workouts in the gym treadmill last winter while training for Pittsburgh. My goodness it was hard. Don’t ever let anyone say the mill won’t give you a good enough workout!

    1. Be sure to stay safe in all that winter running! Hill workouts on the treadmill are so hard – and they may just be my favorite way to keep the mill interesting!

  5. I’m going to try Run Far Girl’s hill workout today because I haven’t done hills in forever; I’ve been on the treadmill most of the time because of our snowy/icy conditions. Thanks for these!

  6. I’m with you — I much prefer running outside. The only time I won’t is: if it’s dark out and it’s potentially icy OR if it’s below 0˚. Because that’s just ridiculous… I may be crazy but I’m not negative temperatures crazy. 😉

  7. I run on a treadmill 3-4 times a week for an hour at a 10 minute mile. I watch an hour long show just to keep my boredom down

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