Treadmill Hill Interval Workouts


Use these four hill interval treadmill workouts to improve your speed, strength and power

Treadmill Hill Interval Workouts
Characterized by alternating timed periods of work and rest, interval training is the key to developing the cardiovascular system without losing strength, speed and power. Performing hill interval training on the treadmill can include workouts such as hill repeats, tempo training, rolling hills or timed intervals. With the increased intensity level of hill interval training, always complete a total body warmup before the workout and consult your physician before starting an interval training program.

Hill Repeats

Performing hill repeats on the treadmill consists of running at a specific incline for a specific distance followed with a specific rest interval. A sample hill repeat interval workout starts with setting the treadmill at a 7 percent incline. Then, run as fast as possible for 3/4 to one mile followed with a two minute recovery. Repeat the intervals for two to three rounds trying to maintain the same speed for each interval.

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Tempo Training

Tempo workouts are an essential component of a training program. Use your goal race time as the pace for the hill intervals. For example, if you have a goal of breaking 19 minutes in the 5K requiring a six-minute per mile pace, set the treadmill on a 5 percent incline and a speed equal to the goal pace. Run for 1/4 miles followed with a three minute rest and repeat for four to six rounds.

Rolling Hills

Rolling hills on an outside course provides challenges to any runner, requiring them to encounter numerous hills of various elevations and lengths. For a rolling hill interval treadmill workout, change the incline settings from 2 percent, 5 percent and 8 percent after each interval. Run the first interval for 1/2 a mile at 2 percent, followed with a mile at 5 percent and 1/2 a mile at 8 percent. Perform a total of two to three rounds of the rolling hills circuit.

Interval training consists of alternating periods of work and rest.


Tabata interval training is defined as 20 seconds of work followed with 10 seconds of rest repeated for eight rounds. Perform a tabata interval hill workout on the treadmill with the incline set at 12 percent. Set the speed at zero to 30 seconds slower than a recent 5K time. Start running for 20 seconds before grabbing the handles of the treadmill to jump off for the 10 second rest. After the 10 seconds, jump on the treadmill and start running for another 20 seconds.


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