The treadmill has been around since the early 50’s, though it was originally used for cardiac research. Since that time, the treadmill has become sleeker, lighter and “home friendly.” Many people have them in their homes and use them to stay in shape.
The following is a list of popular treadmill benefits:
Quite honestly, walking or running on a treadmill is one of the easiest ways to work out your cardiovascular system and one of the best. It strengthens your heart and can lower your blood pressure over time. By walking on the treadmill, you help reduce your cholesterol level which also lowers your risk of stroke. At a speed of 3.5 mph, the average 160 pound person will burn around 314 calories per hour. With a growing obesity rate, comes increased heart problems and deaths related to these problems. Twenty minutes a day, and your body will reap the benefits. Your heart will thank you.
Lower Body Strength: The quads, hamstrings, thighs, calves and hip flexor all get a major workout. Just as with walking or running outdoors strengthens your lower body, the treadmill does it without putting as much stress on your joints. Many people who have suffered with chronic injuries such as shin splints or bad knees, have not been able to continue running outside. Many, though, have reported a lot less stress on the joints and bones and have been able to successfully return to running. As a bonus, a lot of the treadmills today have an optional incline that can really work out those glutes!
Upper Body and Abs: To add some dimension and work other areas of the upper body you can add light dumbbells. Doing curls or overhead presses adds a great upper body workout. Tightening your abs as you walk not only works the abs, but helps support the back muscles. We don’t recommend using weights on a treadmill if you are a beginner or have any physical limitations.
When walking or running on a treadmill, one advantage is crystal clear right away. No uneven pavement, potholes, rocks, curbs, puddles or snowbanks to contend with. You have a smooth, even surface. No tripping or face planting on the pavement. A treadmill also allows for a consistent speed. No having to stop for lights or trying to keep a pace. It’s always at the speed you set and can be adjusted based on your goals, level of conditioning or fatigue. Personal safety is no longer an issue as it’s safer to run on a treadmill than outdoors at night.
For those who have a treadmill at home, you can exercise anytime you want. Day or night, you don’t have to leave the house to work out. You can squeeze in a quick cardio workout anytime. You don’t have to worry about snow or rain. With the treadmill desks available today, you can even work while you walk.
The treadmill can be an extremely effective way to stay in shape. For those thinking about investing in a treadmill at home, remember this: The cost of a good treadmill is typically less than a year membership at the gym and the benefits lead to a lifetime of good health.