How Long Should I Run On the Treadmill?

Last Updated on November 22, 2022 by Justin Harris

How Long Should I Run On the Treadmill: An exercise that gives health benefits to the entire body is running, and this is why you see so many people in the parks or playgrounds running in the early morning hours or in the evening. It is not always possible to run outdoors because the weather can play spoilsport.

How Long Should I Run On the Treadmill

A better alternative to running outdoors is exercising on a treadmill. A treadmill makes running safer because it has a smooth and even surface. You can achieve different fitness goals on a treadmill because of the variety of working out that it offers.

However, it is necessary to know how long you must use the machine. In this article, we aim to look at the duration you need to be on the machine to reach your goals.

Health Benefits Of Running

Before explaining how much time you must spend on your treadmills, it is essential to know what health benefits you get by running.

  • Running can make your muscles stronger and immensely helps your glutes and hamstrings.
  • Running is an exercise that improves your capacity to bear weight and significantly increases bone mineral density.
  • Running can make your cardiovascular system more robust, using carbohydrates and fatty acids as energy.
  • As you burn carbohydrates and fatty acids when running, this is the most suitable exercise for reducing your weight.
  • This workout releases happy hormones in your body and helps relieve your tension and worries.

How Long Must You Exercise On a Treadmill?

The first thing to understand is that nobody can give you an exact duration for which you must exercise on this machine. Health and fitness differ from person to person, which is why it is not possible to prescribe a fixed duration for your exercise.

The duration will depend on how much exercise your body can handle. However, looking at different body types and ages, we can say that you can do 15 minutes of slow running for three days a week for a start. You can increase this to 30 minutes for four days.

It is best to exercise for 150 minutes a week to improve fitness, which you can split into 15 minutes of moderate exercise for five days per week. You can gradually move from moderate to vigorous working out as you get used to the workout.

Based on experience and information from those who have achieved their goals, we are giving below exercise duration for achieving different fitness goals.

For Those Who Want to Lose Weight

Many people exercise with the sole aim of shedding their excess weight. The duration will depend on whether you are doing high-intensity interval training (HIIT) or a steady-state workout. You can do either depending on your fitness and how fast you want to become slimmer.

In the HIIT method, people do short bursts of rigorous workouts, followed by a period of rest or recovery. In general, a total duration of 20 minutes per day is good. There is a ratio of work and recovery that people follow. For beginners, it can be 1:3, which means that if you exercise vigorously for 15 seconds, you must rest for 45 seconds.

In this method, even the rest period burns some amount of calories. This is because, after intense exercise, the body’s metabolism rate rises and lasts at that level for a short time. During this period, the body uses more oxygen and burns fat. This is the advantage of the HIIT method of working out.

When you do a steady-state workout, it may take a little longer. You can start with 30 minutes of steady jogging. You can increase this later gradually. According to experts, a beginner should start with steady-state exercise before moving to HIIT. It would help if you allowed the body to get accustomed to working out regularly.

Exercise to Improve Fitness

For those who are using the treadmill to improve fitness, it is best to run from a moderate to vigorous intensity. If you are running at moderate speeds, it is advisable to run for at least 150 minutes a week. For those who can manage faster running, the duration can be 75 minutes a week.

The treadmill allows you to increase or decrease your workout intensity. You can adjust the speed of your running track. Using the incline to get the effect of running uphill is another way to do a vigorous workout. It is advisable to keep monitoring your heart rate while you do this workout.

Aiming to Win the Short Race

One of the common forms of racing that you can see in your neighborhood is the short race. In this type of racing, the distance is usually 3.1 miles or 5 kilometers. If you plan to take part in this race, you must start working out on your treadmill regularly. It would help if you first had a time goal for the distance before you start to practice.

Running around 2.5 to 5 kilometers per session is ideal in the weeks leading to the race. It would help if you varied the pace of running on the treadmill. You can run slower, faster, and at precisely the pace that you want to achieve. For someone aiming to run a mile in nine minutes, the duration per day will vary from 25 to 50 minutes.

Training for A Long Race

If you wish to participate in a marathon or half-marathon, the training time on the treadmill must be longer. If you plan to complete a half-marathon within 90 minutes, you must spend the same time on the machine during the weeks you are training for the race.

It is also better to know the route for the race. If you expect to run on a path that includes hilly areas, it will be beneficial to increase your equipment’s incline. This will not only train for the elevation but also make you stronger. You will be more ready for your long race.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)

1. Why is Running on Treadmills Better Than Running Outside?

You can run on a treadmill without worrying about negative factors like the weather or uneven surfaces. Treadmills offer an even surface that has less impact on your joints.

2. Is It Better to Run Slower With an Incline or Run Faster With No Incline on a Treadmill?

You must do both for the best benefits. The slower uphill run will improve strength and power. The faster run without an incline will build stamina, speed, and endurance. Using both methods will help to mimic exact outside conditions.

3. What is the Purpose of Setting an Incline on a Treadmill?

Unlike running outdoors, there is no wind resistance when you work out on a treadmill. Setting a slight incline can include the resistance factor in your exercise, which will largely help improve your strength.


It is not just the duration or intensity of the exercise that matters most. It is your commitment to work out regularly that matters. Once you have set your goals, you must have an exact workout schedule that will lead you to your target within the period you have set for yourself.

Another thing to keep in mind is that, like any other activity out of the ordinary for you, running on the treadmill also needs preparation. Before you start your regular exercise, it is best to exercise on the treadmill at low intensity. This will help to increase your body temperature and loosen your muscles.

Safety is of utmost importance in any exercise. You must use all safety measures.  You must hold the handrails when stepping onto the machine and starting the exercise. If the equipment has a safety kill switch, ensure that you attach it to yourself before you start working out.

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