Let’s go ahead and be honest, everyone wants a stronger core. Not only does a strong core look amazing, but it also impacts just about every other part of your life as well. According to Harvard Health Publications, a strong core can have a beneficial impact on your posture, balance and stability, everyday tasks, maintaining a healthy back, sports performance, and everyday chores. Core strength is undoubtably important, what you may not realize is how easy it is to enhance your abdominals on the treadmill. Jim Bompensa, a personal trainer of 20 years and the owner of Body Physics Fitness and The Haddonfield United Martial Arts Academy has put together a tutorial teaching how to strengthen your core on the treadmill.
When walking or running on the treadmill it is important to maintain good posture. This means standing straight with your shoulders back, relaxed in-line with your spine and your head up. By walking or running with proper posture, you are recruiting your core muscles to play an active role in your workout and thereby strengthening them.
It may seem strange to think that simply breathing effectively can play a part in improving your core, but it can. Make sure and breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth while concentrating on contracting those abdominal muscles. This can be hard to do while running, but by actively contracting your abs while you breathe you are helping to strengthen your core.
Swing Your Arms
According to Bompensa, “upper body movement helps increase your capacity to burn fat by raising your heart rate. For an added challenge, try raising your arms over your head or lifting them to the side, this will give you maximum calorie burn.” The more calories you burn, the stronger your core will become.
Interval training is a workout technique that incorporates various workout intensities. An example would be sprinting on your treadmill for 1 minute, and then walking for 2 minutes. You can also incorporate the incline on your treadmill as a method of interval training. Treadmills like the Nordictrack X7i are capable of increasing their incline by 40%, simply walking at such an incline will require your lower abdominals to contract and strengthen them in turn. Check out this site for a great high intensity interval training workout that you can do on your treadmill.
The last tip Bompensa recommends implementing into your treadmill core workout is to increase resistance. This can be as simple as incorporating wrist and ankle weights to your workout. For an ever better burn, while you are walking hold either free weights or use wrist weights to first, raise your arms to the side at shoulder height, second, bring your arms up above your head or third, do bicep curls. Adding this extra resistance to your workout will burn more calories and help tone your muscles.
Strengthening your core doesn’t just happen by doing sit-ups. By making a concentrated effort to contract your muscles in everything you do, you are helping to strengthen your core. As your abdominals become stronger, you will start to notice the positive impact it has on other aspects of your life, and you’ll look good.