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Keep the treadmill workouts from getting stale. Here’s how:

For the runner who finds themself stuck in a resort gym this winter: hacks to make the treadmill running more fun

Now that winter has arrived, the treadmill becomes a necessary evil for many. The colder winter months in Canada often come with dangerously slippery streets and wind chills that can cut the run short. A mean drop in temperatures can be enough to convince a runner to skip the planned evening 10K and instead stay in with a second helping of comfort food. The treadmill – which has been unfairly dubbed “the dreadmill” by many runners – can actually offer a happy medium. By jumping on this piece of gym equipment, runners can get a break from the elements while still getting in the mileage. (Not to mention, sometimes when travelling for the holidays, the hotel treadmill is the only option.) Not convinced you’ll love this gym staple? Below are a few ways to keep treadmill running from getting stale this winter. 

RELATED: Seven ways in which winter running is actually the best

Enlist a partner

Buddy up and get it done. The best way to get over a dip in motivation is to have a friend tag along. If you’re on vacation this holiday season, get your sister to join you for an a.m. run or if the winter weather is becoming draining, commit to a gym session a couple times a week and convince the BFF to join. Do something fun after as a reward. 

Find an app that makes it fun

Get creative this winter. If indoor workouts have become a bore in years past, change things up for 2018. It’s no secret that technology has changed runners’ worlds and apps like Zombies Run are part of that shift. This zombie game that’s meant to be taken on the run gives runners their mission through their headphones and lets them know when they’re being chased by these blood-thirsty monsters (i.e. time to speed up!). Over 200 missions are available so the game doesn’t get repetitive for its one million players. Of course, it tracks your runs as well as gives rewards based on performance for users to build a solid base.

Take up a 30-day challenge

There really is something to be said for the 30-day challenge. A one-month period is long enough to see progress however it isn’t an intimidating block of time like, say, a full year. If the weeks leading up to the new year, for example, are typically tough, take up a fun challenge. That could be anything from upping the incline or actually doing a proper warm-up on the treadmill before jumping into the workout. 

Find a new TV show only for treadmill time

Make this one a cliffhanger too. The point here is to watch this show only during treadmill workouts. Yes, runners who take this recommendation will find their self-discipline put to the test… but it’ll be worth it in the long run. 

Catch up on our podcast

We’re aware of the shameless self-promotion but in all seriousness, the Shakeout Podcast tackles hot running topics from interviews with elites, to tell-all details of the craziest stories in the running scene. We do it to keep the community informed and entertained. So if the treadmill just got boring, hopefully our show can provide a bit of a boost. 

Try one of these workouts:

Take your pick and when confined to a resort or hotel gym this winter, get the work done earlier rather than later. 


5-15 minute warm up – 8-12 x 60 second hills at 8-10% incline with 2 minutes rest at 1-2% incline – 5-10 minute cool down

5-15 minute warm up – 5-8 x 2 minute hills at 6-8% incline with 3 minutes rest at 0-1% incline – 5-10 minute cool down

Run at a easy/comfortable pace but alter the elevation: 2-3 sets of 3 minutes at 1% – 3 minutes at 3% – 3 minutes at 5% – 3 minutes at 7%


5-15 minute warm up – 10-15 x 1 minute ‘ON’ (5-10K pace) with 1 minute ‘OFF’ (very easy) – 5-10 minute cool down

5-15 minute warm up – 8-12 x 400m at 5-10K pace with 400m easy – 5-10 minute cool down

5-15 minute warm up – 2-4 sets of 1 minute fast (half marathon pace) – 1 minute faster (10K pace) – 1 minute fastest (5K pace) with 2 minutes between intervals and 5 minutes between sets – 5-10 minute cool down