Archive for the tag - sprinting

5 Treadmill Mistakes You’re Probably Making!

653_1Treadmill walks, jogs, runs or sprints can be a great way to get your heart rate up and your blood pumping. But there are a lot of mistakes that even avid gym-goers make.

Here are 5 common treadmill mistakes:

  1. Spending too much time. When it comes to time on the treadmill, more isn’t more. If you’re spending 30 or 45 minutes or more on a treadmill, you may be cannibalizing your results. Longer cardio sessions result in the release of an anabolic hormone called cortisol that reduces protein synthesis, facilitates the conversation of protein to glucose and stops tissues growth. It’s also associated with increases in fat stores around the body’s midsection. Instead of a low intensity, long cardio session on the treadmill, challenge yourself. Do more in less time. Maybe even try high intensity interval training.
  2. Holding on. Please, stop holding onto the treadmill. By holding on, you’re negating the intensity of your workout – especially if you’re using an incline. In fact, it’s estimated that holding onto the treadmill reduces calories burned by 20% – 25%. It also worsens posture, balance and doesn’t translate to real world gains. If you’re running on a street or track, there’s nothing to hold on to. Let go.
  3. Static stretching. A lot of runners engage in static stretching before their treadmill session. It’s the type of stretching wherein you hold a pose for an amount of time – like touching your toes. However, recent studies suggest that static stretching decreases strength and power and increases injury risk. Replace static stretching with dynamic stretching like jumping jacks or arm circles.
  4. Not using the incline. Many runners ignore the incline – mostly because it makes the workout more challenging. But that’s exactly why you should love and use it! For every 1% increase in the incline, you expend 4% more energy. This is especially useful if you’re not able to increase your speed, but still want an extra challenge. It also shifts muscle use upward – and can give you a great butt workout.
  5. You’re on autopilot. Doing the same workout every day gives you the same results. Most cardio exercisers cruise through their workout session. Some are even able to talk on the phone or text while exercising. I’ve got news for you: If you can text while running, you’re not running fast enough. If you want enhanced results, you need to increase the intensity of your workout; you will always get out of your workout what you put into it. So instead of doing the same old treadmill workout, do something that’s intense and challenging. And then keep pushing yourself.

What other mistakes do you see people making on the treadmill? Share them in the comments below!

6 Tips to Run Longer!

Hey Davey,

I’ve always loved running but I tire out quickly. How can I run longer distances (more than a mile) without slowing to take a break?

From,
John

Hey John,

As an avid runner myself, I do have some advice for you! Try these 6 tips to boost your running endurance.

  1. Create a goal. First things first, it’s helpful to set a goal. Since it sounds like your goal is distance-based, you may want to target something like 1.25 miles.
  2. Slow down. Reaching your goal may require that you slow down a bit. It’s very difficult to maintain a sprint pace, for example, but much easier to maintain a jog. So, if you’re overexerting yourself – it may be beneficial to take your pace down a few notches.
  3. Decrease breaks. Even after slowing the pace, you may still find that you need to take a break to catch your breath. That’s fine. But once you catch your breath, start running or jogging again. Get back up to your pace speed. Over time, slowly try to take shorter breaks – and eventually eliminated them altogether.
  4. Train regularly. Most importantly, you’ll need to stick with it. Running endurance can be built fairly quickly – but it also fads fast. Make running part of your routine, and you’ll notice that you’re able to build on your gains.
  5. Mix it up. Every now and then, switch up your distance-based cardio workout with something different – like interval training.
  6. Modify goal. Eventually – once you reach your distance goal of 1.25 miles – you may want to work on slowly increasing your pace. Or, you may want to extend the distance to 1.5 miles and go from there. Set a new goal for yourself.

If anyone else has any tips to run longer distances, I’d love to hear them in the comments below!

I hope that helps!

Love,
Davey

Bust Your Ass (and Belly) with Interval Training!

Running his way into my heart.

One of my favorite training techniques is interval training. I love interval training because it burns 30% more calories than exercising at one pace and it boosts your metabolism like none other – for up to 12 hours after exercise. It’s great for losing weight, toning, definition (hello, six pack), injury prevention, burn-out reduction and performance.

Want to give it a shot? Set aside 40 minutes and grab a sweat towel:

  1. Warm up with five minutes of low-intensity jogging.
  2. Stop and stretch for a good three minutes. Stretching will improve your performance and reduce the risk of injury.
  3. Start cycle 1: Pick up your pace to a medium-intensity speed and hold it for three minutes. This is a pace that you’d be able to maintain for the entire workout.
  4. No, go full out. Run hard for 1 minute. Really burn yourself out at a speed that pushes you to your limits. After the one minute, drop back down to your medium-intensity speed.
  5. Each subsequent cycle will follow this same pattern. 3 minutes of aerobic/recovery and 1 minute of anaerobic/sprinting. Do four more cycles (five cycles in total).
  6. Cool down with five minutes of low-intensity jogging.
  7. Stretch again.

I usually do my interval training (and running, in general) on a treadmill; it’s easier to set a speed and monitor the time. But, you can certainly perform interval training outside with the help of a watch or stopwatch.

Running not your thing? Try this same program on a bicycle. Or, modify it slightly to try in the pool (2 laps recover, 1 lap sprinting).

And, feel free to change the numbers. You may want to shorten recover time or do more cycles. Make it your own and have fun with it. It will kick your ass, but the results speak for themselves. Enjoy!

Buns of Steel: Which Cardio Machine is Best for Your Butt?

Buns of steel could be only a jog away, according to a recent study.

As a gay man, I spend a lot of time thinking about butts. So I was especially excited to get my paws on a new study about glutes (a.k.a. ass muscles) and cardio machines. So which cardio machine is best for your backside? Is it the treadmill, the recumbent bike, the stair master, or the elliptical? You may be surprised by the answer.

Here’s what the study found:

  1. Treadmill (jogging): 48.9% of glutes activated.
  2. Elliptical: 32.6% of glutes activated.
  3. Treadmill (walking): 24.3% of glutes activated.
  4. StairMaster: 24.0% of glutes activated.
  5. Recumbent Bike: 6.0%of glutes activated.

Jogging on the treadmill is the clear winner (running or sprinting, though not included in the study, is presumably even better). Jogging speeds, by the way, are different for different people – it’s based on perceived effort – though most jogging speeds are less than 6 mph.

Here are a few tips to dig even deeper when doing cardio:

  • When walking, jogging, running or sprinting on a treadmill, add an incline to activate a greater percentage of your glutes.
  • When cycling, use the upright bike instead of the recumbent bike.
  • When stair climbing, take bigger steps.

Bottom line: If a stronger ass is in alignment with your fitness goals, picking up the pace on a treadmill takes the cake.