As a relative of mine was running on a treadmill one day, she noticed the very toned woman next to her walking on her treadmill at a 25 degree incline instead of jogging. She snuck a peak at her stats, and was surprised to see that in the same time spent on the treadmill, this woman burned about 2.5x calories! After looking into it we both learned that a brisk walk on a significant incline offers the same calorie-burning effects as running.FIT FACT 1:
Turns out there’s a logical answer why. Running or walking on a flat treadmill is working along with the normal gravitational pull on your body. However, inclining a treadmill causes you to work against the earth’s gravitational pull (you’re pushing away from the Earth). Making you work harder. That’s why you get so tired walking up a flight of stairs. You are fighting against gravity to go away from the surface. Hence the reason stair climber machines are such a good calorie burner as well. For weight lifters, the benefits of inclined walking or stair climbing are significant as well. According to science, you burn more fat, and less muscle. I personally recommend including weights in your workout routine (Read my article “Busting Myths about Getting Fit to learn why), and if you are a weightlifter and want to see more definition in your muscles, inclined walking is the way to go. However, if your routine primarily consists of cardio then consider changing to rowing when possible. Rowing will burn the similar calories as inclined walking or running, but also provides toning to both upper and lower parts of the body. As you’ll read in my article on The benefits of Rowing, the pulling with your upper body combined with the pushing with the lower body creates a complete fat burning, body toning workout.FIT FACT 2:
Not a professional athlete? Then take it easy! Start with a lower incline, or slower stair climber speed. No need to burn out. You’re gonna be doing this for the rest of your life! Need more info.? See the articles in the references below. They have more specifics on how much incline, how fast you should walk, and the science behind it all.