Treadmill workouts are a great way to get in shape and lose weight. Whether you’re a beginner or have been working out for years, the treadmill can help you get your heart rate up and burn calories quickly.

But not all treadmill workouts are created equal. You want to make sure you’re doing the right thing for your body and getting the most out of your workout.

That’s why we’ve compiled this list of 40-minute treadmill workouts for weight loss. They’re all designed by experts to help you get results, whether you’re starting from zero or are already an experienced runner.

These workouts are perfect for anyone who wants to lose weight but doesn’t have a lot of time to work out each day—they’ll give you just enough activity without taking up too much time in the day.

Right here on Buy and Slay, you are privy to a litany of relevant information on pro tips for hiit, treadmill hiit workout, hiit treadmill workout for fat loss, and so much more. Take out time to visit our catalog for more information on similar topics.

40 Minute Treadmill Workout For Weight Loss

Regularly working out helps with weight loss because exercise efficiently increases the number of calories you burn. Whether your 40-minute workouts on the treadmill will lead to weight loss depends on a number of factors, including how often you do your workouts and the intensity of your sessions.

Keys to Losing Weight

Your body constantly needs calories to fuel a variety of body processes and it gets these calories from the food and drink you consume. If your body needs more calories than it receives from what you eat and drink, it’s forced to get the calories from breaking down the body fat you have stored on your body. Therefore, to lose weight, efforts should focus on burning a higher number of calories than you consume every day. Every 3,500 caloric deficit leads to one pound of fat loss.

Treadmill Workouts

The number of calories you’ll burn during your treadmill workouts depends on the speed you’re walking or running, how long you go for and how much you currently weigh. According to, a 160-pound person walking at 2 mph will burn about 137 calories during a 40-minute workout or about 210 calories if she walks at 3.5 mph. If that 160-pound person picked up the pace and ran at 5 mph, she would burn about 406 calories during that time. A 200-pound person will burn even more calories during his treadmill workouts. A 2 mph walk will burn about 171 calories in 40 minutes, while walking at 3.5 mph will chalk up about 262 calories burned. Every 40 minutes a 200-pound person runs at 5 mph will burn about 506 calories.

Rate of Weight Loss

A healthy rate of weight loss is about a half to two pounds per week. This would mean you’d need to create a weekly caloric deficit of 1,750 to 7,000. By understanding how many calories you burn during your 40-minute treadmill workouts you can then determine how long it will take you to lose weight. For example, the 160-pound person who walks on a treadmill at 3.5 mph for 40 minutes and burns about 210 calories during each workout will lose a pound of fat about every 17 workouts. This was determined by dividing 210 by 3,500. If she got in five walks per week, it would take her a little over two weeks to lose a pound.

Nutritional Considerations

Being consistent with your treadmill workouts will still not result in weight loss if you don’t pay attention to the number of calories you eat and drink. A single higher-calorie meal or an extra beer in the evening can quickly cancel out the calories you burned during your workouts. Limit your calorie intake by drinking primarily water, consuming primarily fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, low-fat dairy products and whole-grain foods, and cutting your portion sizes.

Beat Boredom and Torch Fat With This 40-Minute Treadmill Workout

Part 1: Progression Run

The first part of this workout starts with an easy jog and gradually increases your pace by 0.5 mph every 2 minutes. Takacs recommends beginning at about 5.0 miles per hour (mph), but listen to your body; you can increase or decrease your starting pace as needed.

  • 2 minutes at 5.0 mph
  • 2 minutes at 5.5 mph
  • 2 minutes at 6.0 mph
  • 2 minutes at 6.5 mph
  • 2 minutes at 7.0 mph

Part 2: Incline Work

Hill running undeniably increases the intensity of your workout (just try to hold a conversation while running uphill). But upping the incline can also help runners build strength and speed, according to the American Council on Exercise (ACE).

Set the incline of your treadmill between 6.0 and 8.0, depending on your comfort level. Then do:

  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.2 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.8 mph

Part 3: Active Recovery

The goal of the next 10 minutes is to lower your heart rate for the sprint intervals that follow. Bring your treadmill incline back down to 0, and focus on your form and your breathing.

  • 1 minute at 5.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 6.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 7.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 7.2 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 7.6 mph
  • 1 minute at 5.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 7.8 mph

Part 4: Sprints

Alternating between intervals of intense exercise and rest can help you burn more calories — and keeps you engaged in your workouts. Cap your rest intervals at one minute; limiting your rest keeps your heart rate elevated throughout these final 10 minutes.

During your rest intervals, take deep breaths and sip water as needed.

  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 8.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 8.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 8.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 9.0 mph
  • 1 minute at 2.5 mph
  • 1 minute at 9.0 mph

Pro Tips for HIIT

Proper Hydration Prior to HIIT

HIIT is exactly what the acronym says – high intensity. This puts a load on your muscles that they don’t get on an everyday basis. So it’s very important to be properly hydrated when doing HIIT, or your muscles will cramp (especially legs). And this doesn’t mean drinking a 1/2 gallon of water an hour before the workout. It means for the day prior. But proper hydration is important for many reasons, so practice hydration daily and you’ll be fine during your HIIT workout.

Excellent Health Prior to HIIT

HIIT is best performed by people who have a base fitness level. It is not suited for a beginner who might be 50 pounds overweight, and has not worked out in 3 years. It is always best to consult your doctor prior to doing any high intensity exercise, including HIIT.

Make Sure Your Muscles are Warm and Loose

HIIT puts an extra burden on your muscles and your body, which is why it is so effective. This also brings certain risk to the process. So make sure your muscles are properly warmed up and loose prior to your HIIT workout.

An effective warm-up is walking at a slow speed (3.0) on treadmill for 1-2 minutes prior to starting HIIT.

Safety on a Treadmill

A treadmill can be a dangerous place for HIIT unless you are very focused on the task at hand! Make sure you stay very focused when doing HIIT on a treadmill, and the dangerous part is obviously the sprinting (or fast run) phase of HIIT. So follow these safety tips:

  1. Make sure that your running shoes are laced tightly so they will not unlace. Check them during the walk phase of HIIT. 
  2. Ensure that you stay in the exact center of the treadmill. It’s easy to lose focus and drift to one side, or drift to the back of the treadmill. If your foot steps off the treadmill in any direction, you will crash hard.
  3. Don’t get distracted by the treadmill TV, or your music. You don’t want to “zone out” and lose your focus. Stay very focused on your sprint and staying in the center of the treadmill.
  4. Practice in your mind to prepare for an instant cramping muscle (hamstrings, or back of thigh, are most common). And how you will immediately step off to the left and right rails so that you straddle the treadmill, and at the same time grab the handrails with your hands. Be mentally prepared for this possibility, so if you were to have a cramping leg muscle, you are ready. A cramping leg muscle can lead to a wipeout if you’re not prepared.
  5. Emphasizing the point above: make sure that you are well hydrated prior to HIIT, as the intensity can create cramping if your muscles are dehydrated.

What are the Benefits of a HIIT Treadmill Workout?

HIIT workouts are generally quite short compared to regular cardio, so you can squeeze them into your busy schedule with little problem. Most HIIT workouts typically last 4 to 20 minutes, so they are quite short. HIIT is also very effective! You can burn a lot of fat and build muscle without spending hours at the gym. The 20 minute treadmill HIIT workout is perfect for the busy working person.

HIIT workouts are great for more than just losing weight. They increase the number of calories you burn for up to 72 hours after each workout. They also activate your fast-twitch muscles (type II), which you use when jumping or sprinting. HIIT can also increase your metabolism and endurance.

Who is a HIIT Treadmill Workout for?

HIIT treadmill workouts can be done by just about anyone, but you should always be cautious with high intensity workouts! See pro tips below. But if you’re in good health, and you can run and walk on a treadmill, then you can do this workout. 

However, if you have any type of medical conditions that could be worsened by a rapid increase in your heart rate, then HIIT will probably not work for you. Remember, the main goal is to get your heart pumping by doing short bursts of activity!

HIIT workouts should also be approached with caution if you have any type of injury. You should still be able to get a workout in, but be sure that you aren’t pushing yourself too hard! You don’t want to sustain the same injury again and slow down your recovery.

This 20 minute treadmill HIIT routine is a great way to ensure that you get an awesome workout when you don’t have much time. If you’re new to HIIT, just go for 10 minutes at the beginning, and at slower speeds. It takes some practice to get comfortable with HIIT. As you gain endurance, you can increase the time until you can go for the full 20 minutes!

Treadmill Hiit Workout

We get it: Treadmills don’t always make for the most riveting workout. But adding some HIIT treadmill workouts to your routine can help liven things up—plus bring some serious performance benefits to your running game.

With many gyms still closed due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, hopping on a treadmill at your regular studio or gym is probably not an option right now. But if you invested in a treadmill as part of building an at-home workout space, chances are pretty high you want to put it to use. After all, at-home treadmills can be pricey, so you definitely want to make use of your purchase. (Plus, as the temperatures remain low, logging miles indoors sounds extra appealing.)

Running on a treadmill is convenient—and doing so in your own home is the safer option than risking the crowds at a commercial facility—but it can be monotonous, especially if you just hop on with the mindset of getting through a certain number of miles. One way to keep things interesting is to vary the intensity of your workout, like by adding high-intensity interval training (HIIT) to the mix. With HIIT treadmill workouts, you’ll be focusing alternating short bursts of intense, all-out work (either with speed, incline, or a combo of both) with less intense recovery.

HIIT is extremely beneficial for building endurance and saving time, Hannah Eden, a CrossFit and IKFF-certified trainer for iFit, tells SELF. “The short bursts of high intensity work will help increase the volume of oxygen your body is able to consume during intense exercise, allowing you to work for longer periods of time with a higher heart rate,” Eden says. “The lower intensity work will build your baseline, a relatively easy pace that you can build upon. The combination of high and low intensity work will improve your endurance, strength, and have you running faster for longer with more ease.”

But even a HIIT treadmill workout can get boring if you keep turning to the same one. That’s why we gathered a variety of trainer-recommended treadmill workouts to help maximize your time on the ’mill. Keep in mind that the speeds and inclines are given as a point of reference, so feel free to modify based on your fitness level or where you are at in your running journey. Feel free to experiment with them to make sure you can handle the settings you choose.

1. The Get-Focused Workout

When many people hop on a treadmill, they may not be lasered in on the task at hand: Too often, their mind is elsewhere, Andia Winslow, a certified personal trainer and founder of the Fit Cycle, tells SELF. This routine will keep your mind focused as your body continually adapts to the changing inclines and speed. Put your phone down for this one—you’ll definitely need to keep your mind on task here.

How to do it:

  • 5-minute walking warm-up between 2.5 and 3.5 mph
  • 1-minute strider: Not a jog, not a sprint, but somewhere in between (4 to 7 mph with elongated strides)
  • 3-minute walk (3.0 to 3.5 mph) at 5% incline
  • 1-minute strider (4.0 to 7 mph) at 5% incline
  • 3-minute walk (3.0 to 3.5 mph) at 8% incline
  • 1-minute strider (4.0 to 7 mph) at 8% incline
  • 5-minute cooldown (3.0 to 3.5 mph) at 1% incline

2. The Lateral Walk Workout

Yes, you can get a great treadmill workout without breaking into a run. This walking-only routine targets your glutes, gets your heart rate up, and improves balance, says Katina Brock, C.P.T. “Don’t let the lower speeds fool you,” she says. “The amount of effort this produces will surprise you. While walking sideways, or laterally, use a light touch on the rails for stability, but do not support with your arms. Keep your feet pointed to the side of the treadmill, not forward. You can shuffle your feet together and apart or, at slower speeds, cross one foot behind or in front of the other. You’ll definitely keep the speed low for your lateral work.

How to do it:

  • 5-minute warm-up: Gradually increase speed from 2.4 mph to 3.5 mph
  • 2-minute lateral walk at 2.2 mph (1 minute facing right, 1 minute facing left)
  • 2-minute lateral walk at 2.4 mph (1 minute right, 1 minute left)
  • 1-minute forward walk at 4.5 mph
  • 1-minute forward walk at 3.5 mph
  • 2-minute lateral walk at 2.6 mph (1 minute right, 1 minute left)
  • 2-minute lateral walk at 2.8 mph (1 minute right, 1 minute left)
  • 1-minute forward walk at 4.2 mph
  • 1-minute forward walk at 3.5 mph
  • 2-minute lateral walk at 2 mph and 5% incline (1 minute right, 1 minute left)
  • 5-minute cooldown: Gradually decrease speed from to 3.0 to 1.8 mph

3. A Done-in-30 Workout

With this 30-minute workout, you’ll work on holding your effort consistent at certain percentages of your max heart rate, says Eden. This is easy to determine if you’re using a fitness tracker—it will usually give you your max heart rate—but if you don’t have a tracker, you can gauge it off your ratings of perceived effort or exertion, she says. (For instance, if you’re working at 80% of your max, it’ll be “not quite everything you’ve got, where you’ll be holding back a bit,” Eden says. Working at 40%, on the other hand, should be relatively easy for you.) This makes each level relative to each individual.

“This is a great HIIT workout to reap the maximum benefits in a short amount of time, and is ideal for anyone from beginner to advanced,” Eden says of the workout she created, which originally appeared on iFit’s Fast and Fit HIIT series. “The intense work is only for a short amount of time, which gives a beginner the opportunity to push themselves outside of their comfort zone and quickly return to a comfortable pace.”

How to do it:

  • 5-minute warm-up: Dynamic drills like high knees, hip openers, and butt kicks, followed by easy jogging
  • 30-second run at 80% effort
  • 30-second walk at 20% effort
  • Repeat 10 times total
  • 2-minute jog at a conversational pace (40%-50% effort) to recover
  • Repeat the 30-seconds run/30-seconds walk block 10 more times
  • 3-minute cooldown: Walk for 3 minutes

4. The Never-a-Flat-Moment Workout

Using an incline can help you get the benefit of HIIT without the need for speed, says Brock. You won’t be sprinting here, but the incline will make you really work hard.

How to do it:

  • 3-minute warm-up: 1 minute at 3.0 mph, 2 minutes at 3.5 mph
  • 2 minutes at 3.5 mph and 7% incline
  • 2 minutes at 4.0 mph and 4% incline
  • 2 minutes at 2.8 mph and 10% incline
  • 2 minutes at 3.2 mph and 6% incline
  • 2 minutes at 3 mph and 8% incline
  • 1 minute at 3 mph and 3% incline
  • 7 minutes running intervals at 5% incline: 1 minute at 6.5 mph, 1 minute at 3.5 mph, 2 minutes at 6 mph, 2 minutes at 4 mph, 1 minute at 3.2 mph
  • 11 minutes endurance intervals at 3.2 mph: 3 minutes at 15% incline, 1 minute at 1%, 3 minutes at 10%, 1 minute at 2%, 3 minutes at 12%
  • 3-minute cooldown: 2 minutes at 2.8 mph at 3% incline, 1 minute at 2 mph at 1% incline

5. The Hill Ladder Workout

This progressive hill treadmill workout, created by Jason Loebig, a Nike Running coach, Barry’s Bootcamp instructor, and cofounder of Live Better Co., features hard efforts at varying inclines to increase your strength during short conditioning sets, making it both effective and efficient.

“Any runner looking to build leg strength, improve their leg drive, foot speed, running posture, and conditioning will benefit from this workout,” Loebig tells SELF. “This treadmill set can be made harder or easier by adjusting pace, making it a great strength-builder for any runner.”

The focus of this workout should be on posture, leg drive, and building progressive speed, Loebig says. As you move through the 10-round workout, your “sprint” speed should either maintain or increase as you go through the workout, which means you should be conservative about how you start if unsure of your current pacing and speed potential. All sprints should be done at incline, and all walking recoveries should be on flat ground. Then, 10 seconds before the next sprint is about to start, readjust the incline and get ready to let it rip.

How to do it:

  • 30 seconds to 1 minute of each warm-up drill: light jog, high knee hugs, high knees, quad pulls, butt kicks, and A-skips
  • 30-second sprint at specified incline (round 1 at 2%, round 2 at 3%, round 3 at 6%, round 4 at 8%, round 5 at 6%, round 6 at 4%, round 7 at 2%, round 8 at 4%, round 9 at 6%, round 10 at 8%)
  • 90-second walking recovery (no incline)
  • Complete 10 rounds total
  • 30 seconds to 1 minute each of cooldown: light jog, figure-4 stretch, standing forward-fold stretch, and calf stretch

6. The Speed Endurance Workout

In this heart rate–based speed endurance workout by Garrett Shinoskie, C.S.C.S., you’ll be alternating between one minute of hard work and a one to two minutes of easy recovery.

How to do it:

  • 5- to 10-minute warm-up: Walk or jog at a comfortable pace
  • 1-minute run: Find a challenging pace where your heart rate should reach 80% to 85% of your max
  • 1- to 2-minute recovery: Slow to a moderate walk or jog until your heart rate falls into recovery (usually between 120 to 130 beats per minute)
  • Alternate run and recovery intervals for 20 to 30 minutes
  • 5-minute cooldown: Walk or jog at a comfortable gait, gradually slowing pace

7. The Sprint Workout

Max yourself out during these short sprint intervals, then catch your breath and recover during the longer rest periods. This type of routine boosts your anaerobic power and capacity, and breaks up the monotony of your typical treadmill workout, says Shinoskie.

How to do it:

  • 5- to 10-minute warm-up: Walk or jog at a comfortable pace
  • 15-second sprint: Sprint at an all-out speed for you—your heart rate should reach 85% to 90% of your max (you shouldn’t be able to maintain your pace for much longer than this).
  • 1- to 2-minute recovery: Slow to a moderate walk or jog until your heart rate falls into recovery (usually between 120 to 130 beats per minute)
  • Alternate run and recovery intervals for 20 to 30 minutes
  • 5-minute cooldown: Walk or jog at a comfortable gait, gradually slowing pace

8. The On-and-Off-the-Treadmill Workout

Mix up your regular treadmill workout by incorporating a few full-body strength moves (off the treadmill, of course) in between running sets. Hopping on and off the treadmill will keep your heart rate up during the strength moves, giving you cardiovascular benefits, says Shinoskie, plus it puts muscles like your arms and core front and center.

How to do it:

  • 5- to 10-minute warm-up: Walk or jog at a comfortable space
  • 60 seconds running at fast speed for you
  • 30 seconds kettlebell swings
  • 30 seconds push-ups
  • 60 seconds plank
  • 60 seconds running at easy speed for you
  • Repeat four to six more times
  • 5-minute cooldown: Walk or jog at a comfortable, gradually slowing pace

9. The 16-Minute Burnout

This treadmill session, created by NASM-certified trainer Nate Feliciano, owner and head of training at Studio 16 in New York City, will also challenge more muscles than just your legs.

“This workout is beneficial because not only will you be increasing your heart rate, but you will also be working your core and upper body,” Feliciano tells SELF. “This can be used as a finisher for a workout or as your actual workout.”

For this one, you’ll be doing a couple moves with the treadmill—the sled push and the plank walk—so it can be helpful to familiarize yourself with what they entail: For the sled push, some treadmills have a sled setting, with handles below the console, allowing you to grip in front of you rather than to your sides. Turn off the treadmill, place your hands on the handles, and drive your legs back as if you were running. You’ll feel the friction from the belt adding resistance to the movement. (You should only do this if your treadmill has a secure place for you to grip.)

For the plank walk, set the treadmill to 1–2 mph, then walk behind the treadmill and get into a plank position with your hands on the treadmill’s base, on either side of the belt. Once your body is in the plank position, place your hands on the treadmill’s belt and start to “walk” your hands forward.

How to do it:

  • 1-minute slow walk
  • 1-minute sprint (Don’t push yourself to your max right out of the gate, Feliciano says. On the first round, start off slower so that you can get a feel for the treadmill.)
  • 1-minute sled push on treadmill
  • 1-minute plank walks
  • Repeat four times total

Hiit Treadmill Workout For Fat Loss

Check out these six HIIT treadmill workouts to help you lose fat quickly.

1) Sprint to Backward Incline Walk

Here’s how you do this exercise:

  • Stand on the edges of the treadmill, and lightly grasp the handrails. Adjust the belt to your optimal sprint speed (depending on your ability).
  • Transfer cautiously onto the belt, and race for 30 seconds.
  • Immediately slow the belt down to a leisurely walking pace (about 2.5 mph is a decent speed), but add a twist: raise the inclination of the treadmill to 10 and walk in reverse for two minutes.
  • For 15 to 20 minutes, alternate 30-second sprints forward with 2-minute incline backpedals.

2) 16-Minute Don’t Quit Workout

Tabata training is a type of HIIT that lasts only four minutes but can significantly contribute towards fat loss.

Here’s how you do this exercise:

  • Start by warming up on the treadmill for three to five minutes.
  • Sprint for 20 seconds.
  • Walk for ten seconds to complete your 4-minute workout.
  • Repeat this set eight times. Complete three rounds with one minute of rest in between rounds.

3) Ladder

Here’s how you do this workout:

  • Walk for two minutes, and jog for one minute, and then sprint for 30 seconds.
  • Return the belt speed to walking speed, and repeat while standing on the sides of the treadmill.
  • It should take roughly four minutes to assemble the ladder.
  • Perform five repetitions.

4) 24-Minute Power Workout

Here’s how you do this workout:

  • Start by warming up on the treadmill for three to five minutes.
  • Sprint for 30 seconds followed by rest (walking) for a minute.
  • Repeat 16 times.

5) Cardio Cross Trainer

Here’s how you do this HIIT workout:

Place a kettlebell and two dumbbells on the ground next to a treadmill. Perform this circuit for three rounds:

Set 1

  • Treadmill Jog x 3 minutes
  • Kettlebell Swing x 25 reps
  • Pushups x 20 reps
  • Rest for two minutes.

Set 2

  • Treadmill Jog x 3 minutes
  • Dumbbell Bentover Row x 20 reps
  • Kettlebell Goblet Squat x 15 reps
  • Rest for two minutes.

Set 3

  • Treadmill Jog x 3 minutes
  • Kettlebell Romanian Deadlift x 20 reps
  • Dumbbell Renegade Row x 10 reps each side
  • Rest for minutes.

6) Prisoner Walk

Here’s how you do this HIIT workout:

  • Set the slope of a treadmill to a moderate grade, and jog at a rapid pace for two minutes.
  • Reduce the speed to a walking pace (but do not decrease the gradient).
  • Walk in a prisoner’s stance (interlacing hands behind head, keeping elbows wide without pulling on head).
  • Spend two minutes walking on the treadmill.
  • Alternate running uphill and walking in a prisoner’s stance for 12 to 16 minutes.
  • That may appear straightforward, but it’s more difficult than it appears. Maintain a stretched chest; do not slouch.


As intervals raise your heart rate and body’s oxygen consumption, HIIT workouts are preferable to steady-state cardio, as you can burn more calories both during and after the activity.

By doing HIIT workouts, you may work out for less time each week while getting the most out of each interval training session. Due to the intensity of these workouts, you can burn up to 450 calories in 30 minutes, as opposed to 200–250 calories during a steady-state cardio workout.

The appropriate diet combined with HIIT can help you lose weight easily and effectively.

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