Avoid These 8 Treadmill Mistakes

Spartan FitnessSo you decided to invest in a solid piece of home fitness equipment. Getting a treadmill from a fitness equipment specialty retailer like Spartan Fitness is a wise choice. Whether you purchased a Precor, Life Fitness or BH brand, I applaud you for deciding to start at home. When it comes to home fitness products, I always look at cost of ownership v.s. lowest price. Clearly you wanted quality and not quantity over the years. This is why I always recommend all our in-home personal training clients go see a Spartan Fitness retail specialist.

Now, the next most important thing to consider is, ‘am I using my treadmill correctly and making the most of it?’ Listed here in this article will be the most common 8 mistakes I see clients making – without even realizing it. Avoid these 8 mistakes and your treadmill experience will be quite beneficial and you will see better results in the comfort of your own home.

Mistake #1. You are not wearing the appropriate footwear. Treadmills are constructed to make you move in a linear type fashion – always walking forward like you would if you were walking outside to get to a destination. For this reason, I recommend all my clients to choose a running shoe.

Running shoes are meant and designed for linear type movements; with their cushioned and dampening sole and cloth or mesh-like uppers for breath-ability. You will notice a stark contrast with a cross-trainer which will typically have less cushion and more use of leather material for additional lateral movement support.

Mistake #2. You hold the bars too much. Now I am a big proponent of safety, so if you have balance problems, please hold the bars! However if your balance is good and your equilibrium is ok, you should be swaying your arms in a natural motion.

Not only will this allow you to burn more calories, but it will be better for your posture and lower back. In fact, if you have a wearable tracking device like a FitBit for example – it might not even register all those steps you are getting because your arms are stagnant holding the bars. If you run on the treadmill, holding the bars can do more harm than good. So, don’t do this treadmill mistake.

Mistake #3. You only use ‘QuickStart’. I have always hated the QuickStart button in the past because of the monotony of what it creates. A greater majority of the clients we see only end up using 10% of their treadmills true potential because of QuickStart. Therefore, it becomes an expensive clothes hanger and seldom used. Don’t let this be you.

Delve into the treadmills many other programs that it has. Not only will this eliminate boredom of the same old program again and again, but changing up your program gets your body to create different results and changes to your health. Interval training is a popular trend that has been scientifically studied to show benefits of shorter workouts that create better results. Try one of the many interval based programs your treadmill offers.

Mistake #4. You look down too much. I see it all the time. When people use the treadmill for some reason I see so many of them looking down…but at what? Not only is looking down boring, but it can be bad for your posture and make you lose your balance.

When using a treadmill, focus on; upright and rolled back shoulders, chest proud, eyes on the horizon and do not lean forward. Keeping this great posture will allow your hips and legs to follow so you avoid another of the treadmill mistakes.

Mistake #5. You run heel to toe. This is just bad news for your knees. I know treadmills usually have ‘flex-deck technology’ with highly cushioned belts and platforms but that isn’t enough to protect your knees.

Most good running shoes seem like they have air pockets in the heels to promote heel to toe running. But I say don’t do it. There are reasons why the newest technology for footwear seem to be simulating barefoot type running patterns. Run on the balls of your feet.

Mistake #6. Your stride is too long. If you have a long stride, you have a long stride. Don’t try to create a long stride if you are 5’6 for example. Run or walk normally or naturally. Changing what you normally do can lead to long term joint pain in your hips or an injury even. I have tried this before and this treadmill mistake gave me bad shin splints.

Besides, creating a long stride forces you to almost leap off the treadmill up in the air. This wastes too much of your energy and therefore can limit your fitness results you seek.

Mistake #7. You use your smartphone while walking or running. Of course you may be well aware of the dangers of texting while walking or running anywhere outside for that matter. Sure, on your treadmill typing can be safer than fast moving cars or trucks in busy streets. But there could be some dangers still by keeping your thumbs and fingers too busy.

You might drop your phone and trip over it or worse case break it? Using your smartphone also creates that poor posture hunch we are trying to avoid? Your smartphone can make you trip over your own feet too. All that typing will slow down your workout and potentially cause too much stress on your brain and body by trying to do 2 things at once.

Mistake #8. You overdo it. When you 1st get your treadmill you might be excited to use it. Who wouldn’t be? After all, it was a well-thought investment and probably took you some time to pull the trigger.

Unfortunately what I have seen way too often with many in-home personal training clients is them becoming injured from over-usage. The client is not only eager but highly motivated to achieve big fitness goals. They start doing 2-a-days or hour long jogs and before you know it – out of commission on the couch for months. Don’t let this be you. Listen to your trainer and follow a guided routine that will safely help you achieve all around optimal wellness.

So there you have it. 8 treadmill mistakes to avoid when using it. Take your time eager beaver. Better yet, don’t be afraid to invite us over to your home for a free fitness equipment orientation – which is valued at $200 and is valid until 30 days after receiving your treadmill. Not only will we help you completely get oriented with it by showing all the bells, whistles and integration of apps…but we will also offer a free mini fitness assessment.

To take advantage, call us at 1.888.269.1867 or email us at info@trainersonsite.com Thank you, Robert Foster

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