Of course you want to get the most from your workouts. You also want toned, non-gelatin-like thighs. Acting on the findings of a study by the University of Colorado may help you to accomplish both. They found that the hamstrings -- located on the back of the thigh -- work 635 percent more when climbing an incline than when walking on a flat plane. By increasing the incline of your normal treadmill routine, you can use your time more efficiently and get the maximum burn from your workout. Strong hamstrings also help to reduce the risk of knee injuries.
Set the treadmill to a 1 percent incline. Walk or jog for five to 10 minutes on the treadmill to warm up.
Adjust the treadmill to a 4 percent incline. Run or jog for five minutes.
Change the incline to 6 percent and run for another five minutes.
Increase the incline to 8 percent. Run for five minutes.
Modify the incline to 12 percent. Continue running for 10 minutes.
Lower the incline to 8 percent and run for five minutes.
Reduce the incline to 6 percent and keep running for five minutes.
Change the incline to 1 percent. Jog or walk for five to 10 minutes to cool down.
Stretch your hamstrings. Lie down on your back on the floor with your right side next to a door frame. Lift your right leg into the air and put your heel against the wall. Your leg should be as straight as possible. Hold this position for 30 seconds. Repeat with the left leg.
Items you will need
- Do not hold onto the handles of the treadmill and lean backward, as you will not reap the benefits of walking on an incline, and you may even injure your back.
- Talk to your doctor before starting any new exercises.
- Life Fitness: Treadmill Inclines Maximize a Workout
- Gait & Posture: The Effects of Grade and Speed on Leg Muscle Activations During Walking
- Mayo Clinic: Hamstring Stretch
- ExRx.net: Hamstrings
- University of Delaware Sports and Orthopedic Clinic: Preventative Exercise Progression for Hamstring Strain
- FitnessRx: Elevate Your Treadmill to Elevate Your Fitness
- Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images