8 Walking on Incline Benefits You Wished You Knew Sooner

Have you ever tried incline treadmill walking? I, too, was skeptical—a ‘mountain molehill’ kind of person—until I ran out of snack chips and excuses.

And man, was I in for a surprise.

It turns out the walking incline benefits were more than just a way to justify an extra cookie; they were a ticket to an overall healthier life.

In fact, I lost over 10 pounds, which is nothing compared to other folks who have been incline walking on a treadmill.

And guess what?

You’ve got a VIP ticket to the weight loss express, and it comes with a whole host of other awesome benefits! Keep reading to find out.

Key Takeaways

  • Incline walking offers a challenging yet rewarding workout
  • Benefits such as improved heart health and increased calorie burn can be experienced
  • Exploring incline workouts adds diversity and excitement to fitness routines

woman walking on treadmill

Walking on an incline can be a game-changer. Who knew just a touch of an uphill battle could do wonders for my body and fitness levels?

Allow me to share some insights about how this simple tweak in cardio exercise can amplify your workout.

Exercising on an Incline

The first time I hopped on my trusty workout machine and tried incline walking, I turned the gradient up and quickly realized just how much more challenging it was.

The common advice is to start at a lower incline of 0.5% and gradually crank that incline up to a steep 15%, perfect for turning your home (or gym) into your personal hiking paradise.

My hamstrings, quads, and calf muscles were screaming for mercy, but the end result was so worth it. This type of training has helped improve my endurance and strengthen my beloved posterior chain.

Plus, a little secret between you and me, treadmill incline walking has made my regular walking routine feel like a walk in the park.??

Posture Perfect: Walking with Style

Between you and me, I wasn’t born with the most impeccable posture, but incline treadmill walking came to my rescue.

Walking uphill has forced me to stand tall, engage my core, and lean slightly forward, making me look like royalty striding through the kingdom—okay, maybe just a smidge less regal.

My new and improved posture not only made me feel confident but also took some pressure off my knees.

Let me just say that they are very grateful.

So, whether you’re hitting the gym or conquering a mountainous landscape, trust me (and my hamstrings)—the benefits of incline walking are definitely worth the challenge.

incline treadmills

#1: Incline Walking Increases Your Heart Rate

When I started walking on an incline, I felt my heart beating as if I were in a rom-com movie scene. Little did I know that this boost in heart rate was actually great for my cardiovascular health.

#2 Every Muscle Gets Their Moment

Who knew walking uphill could transform me into a Greek statue? Well, maybe not that chiseled, but incline walking definitely works out different muscle groups, letting each one have their moment in the sun.

That said, the steeper the incline, the more effective your treadmill workout will be when it comes to building muscle building.

#3: Incline Walking Improves Aerobic Fitness and Cardiovascular Health

The uphill battle isn’t just about looking good; it’s about feeling good, too.

By improving my aerobic fitness and cardiovascular endurance, incline walking has me bursting with energy like a super-powered version of my former self.

#4: Incline Walking Is Good for the Joints

Incline walking is like a heartfelt hug for my joints. They get a good workout without getting too beat up.

Plus, walking uphill can actually help prevent injuries compared to flat surfaces, or downhill walking.


#5: Incline Walking Burns More Calories

If you’re trying to lose some weight (like I was), incline treadmill walking is without a doubt an awesome shortcut.

Not only do you get to build some impressive muscles in your legs, but you’ll also be burning calories faster than when walking on flat land.

Just keep in mind that incline walking isn’t some “magical” weight loss device. A healthy, balanced diet is just as important.

#6: Incline Walking Is Challenging But Doable

Sure, incline walking had me huffing and puffing like the Big Bad Wolf, but in a fun way.

It’s a challenging treadmill workout, but totally doable even for a beginner like me. And hey, if I can tackle those steep hills, anything is possible, right?

#7: Incline Walking Is Good for All Fitness Levels

Incline walking is like the Swiss Army Knife of Fitness—it’s got something for everyone. Whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned pro, you can reap the cardiovascular benefits and feel the burn.

#8: Incline Treadmill Workouts Can Be Varied

And one of the last benefits of incline walking is that it’s far from boring when you play around with various workouts.

Just like the famous 12-3-30 workout. Suddenly, my treadmill transformed into a playground for my fitness and well-being

woman thinking

So, you’re sitting there, eyes squinting at this blog post, and thinking, “Alright, should I give this incline walking thing a whirl?”

And my response, as your unofficial incline walking cheerleader, is a resounding yes!

In case you are still not convinced, here is a list of people who will reap the most benefits of incline walking:

The Curious Cats

If you’re the type that hears “walking on incline benefits” and wonders, “Hmm, what’s all the fuss about?” Then, by all means, strap on those sneakers and give it a go. Curiosity didn’t kill the cat; it just made it really fit!

The Flat Track Faithfuls

You love your regular walks, but you’re kind of in a relationship rut with your treadmill. Spice things up with a bit of incline. Your flat treadmill routine will appreciate the uphill excitement.

The Fitness Connoisseurs

You know who you are. You’ve done it all: Pilates, Zumba, and CrossFit. But have you tried incline treadmill walking? It’s the gourmet dish your fitness menu is missing.

The Mountaineers At Heart

You fantasize about hiking up picturesque hills, but the closest mountain is hundreds of miles away. Let the incline treadmill transport you to the slopes!

The Calorie Crushers

If you’re on a mission to burn those stubborn calories, walking uphill is your secret weapon. Every step on that incline feels like a victory against the calorie empire.

man looking excited at treadmills

So over the past couple of years, I have developed an awesome incline treadmill workout that you are going to love just as much as me.

It’s super simple, but the benefits have been fantastic, not to mention that it’s a great way to challenge your muscles, increase your heart rate, and burn more calories.

First, I like to start with a warm-up—a light walk on a flat treadmill for about five minutes.

After that, it’s time to crank up the incline.

I’ll usually push it to a 5% incline and walk briskly for two minutes.

Then, I’ll bump it up to a 10% incline and keep walking for another two minutes. My legs really start feeling it at this point, but who doesn’t love a good burn?

The real fun begins when I raise the incline to the highest level—which on most treadmills is 15%—and I keep going for three whole minutes.

I can practically feel my hamstrings and glutes thanking me.

Finally, I bring the incline back down to 5% for a lovely two-minute cooldown walk. The whole routine lasts about 12 minutes.

Here’s a handy table to sum up this fabulous workout:

Time (min)Incline (%)Action
0 - 5 0Warm-up
5 - 75Brisk walk
7 - 910Challenging walk
9 - 1215Ultimate incline
12 - 145Cool down

You’ll feel the burn, and your glutes and hamstrings will be more than grateful for the workout.

Now go conquer that hill, my walking warrior.

My Final 2 Cents on Incline walking

So now you know the secret sauce to muscle toning, weight-loss wizardry, and supercharging your heart health: incline treadmill walking.

It’s like a health club membership, but you’re the only VIP.

Don’t you have the gear yet? No worries. We’ve done the legwork for you and compared the best treadmills that are worth every penny.

A treadmill is not just an investment in a machine but in your health and future, which sounds pretty solid to me.

So, what’s the holdup? It’s time to make incline walking a shining star in your workout routine.

Evander Nelson

Evander Nelson is a NASM-certified personal trainer who has worked in fitness, martial arts, and nutrition for more than 10 years.

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