Fitness Tips

Use Your Treadmill to Get the Hardest Abs and Glutes Workout of Your Life—No Running Required

Zoe Weiner

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Photo: Stocksy/Mosuno

Treadmill workouts have always been fairly straightforward. You hop on the belt, turn it on, and… run. You can play with the pace and incline, sure, but treadmills have traditionally been associated with placing one foot in front of the other at whatever speed you want and however many miles you can manage. And while walking and running are great workouts on their own, you can use the common piece of at-home equipment for a whole lot more.

According to Barry’s chief instructor Astrid Swan, mixing up your moves on the treadmill is a great way to get a dynamic, full-body workout. I love the treadmill for a full-body workout because you can use the entire machine, front to end,” she says. “You can warm up by walking and then set up a circuit by mixing in jog, run, sprints with body weight exercises in between.” To mix up your usual running routine, turn the treadmill off, then get to work with the below.

Treadmill workout for abs and glutes

1. Incline push-ups: To work your chest and core, place your hands on the top rails of the tread and your feet on the side panels. Bend your elbows to lower down so that your chest is parallel to the bars, the way you would in your usual push-up, then extend your arms to push back up to start.

2. Quick knee drives: This is a great way to spike your heart rate without having to run, and will also light your legs and glutes on fire. Step one foot onto the back of the (non-moving) treadmill, and drive the other foot from the floor toward your chest while pumping your arms. Be sure to lean forward to really target your lower body.

3. Sled pushes: In this move, your body will act as the motor for the treadmill. Turn the machine off, hold onto the rails, and dig your toes into the belt to try and move it as you run. Go as fast as you can—even if it feels slow. It will leave your heart racing.

4. Pike to plank: Make your usual plank-to-pike move harder than ever by elevating your legs. With the machine off, place your feet on the belt and your hands on the floor in a plank position. Pike your hips back so that they extend toward the sky, then press back to your plank. Your core will be screaming.

5. Bear crawls: Bear crawls are hard enough on their own, and adding a treadmill to the mix takes them to a whole other level. Place the treadmill on a very low speed, and get down on all fours with your knees hovered two inches off of the ground. Then, crawl. This move will not only burn out your core, but will also work your upper body and your quads.

If you *do* want to add some running into your treadmill workout, this speed-training series is a great way to do it: 

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