The treadmill is often a staple in many exercise routines. Treadmills offer a practical venue to stay consistent with a cardio program no matter what the weather may be outside. The treadmill operates by using a motor to rotate a cylinder which in turn rotates a rubber tread around in a continuous loop allowing the user to simulate running without actually going anywhere.

Treadmills come in various shapes in sizes. One of the most important features on a treadmill for the running enthusiast is the maximum speed the treadmill can operate at. The standard treadmill will max out at a top speed of 10mph. If you are looking to go beyond this limitation, be sure to check the top speed on the machine. With so many variations of the treadmill, it is easy to be overwhelmed by features and options but generally they have the following in common:

  • Adjustable speeds
  • Adjustable incline levels
  • Emergency stopping equipment
  • Calorie usage estimator
  • Distance display
  • Built-in heart rate monitor

Treadmills are not only popular in gyms but many people also purchase treadmills for home use (if you decide to purchase one for home use, be cautious, treadmills can be quite heavy because of the motor used to turn the tread). When deciding where to put the machine, be sure it has good ventilation as you will get warm when exercising on it.

Pros of the treadmill:

  • Allows for year round running in any climate
  • Ability to track exact distances
  • Able to set workout routines such as flat surface or hill runs
  • Heart rate monitor allows for target heart rate zone tracking

Cons of the treadmill:

  • May become boring/monotonous as there is no change of scenery
  • Maintenance costs
  • Dizziness may occur when stepping off immediately after a workout

Optimize your workout further by reading more about cardio exercises. Additionally, the treadmill is a great place to start if you're looking to burn away excess fat and get a 6-pack. Couple this with lower ab exercises and you'll have a great workout combination.

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