Running or walking on an incline burns more calories than on a flat belt. Adding an incline can double the calories you burn during your workout. Also, when you exercise and then stop, your body doesn’t realize it’s time for your heart to slow down for quite some time. So spending an hour walking uphill will elevate your metabolic rate for a lot longer than an hour! Burning even more calories!
- If you weigh 150-lbs you’ll burn about 130 calories walking at 4 mph with no incline for 30 minutes. Increasing the incline to 5 percent you will burn almost 230 calories. If you can sustain a 4 mph speed at an incline of 10 percent, you will burn nearly 330 calories in the same amount of time.
- If you weigh 160-lbs and walk at a 4.0 mph pace on no incline, you will burn approximately 145 calories in 30 minutes. Raise the incline to a 5 percent grade and you will burn 243 calories in that half hour. Go up to a challenging 10 percent and burn 345 calories.
An incline provides you with the ability to increase the cardiovascular challenge of your workout and improve your cardiovascular endurance by increasing your heart rate, especially if you are relatively fit. Running or walking uphill requires more effort than flat terrains. People who prefer walking to running, or find the impact of running aggravates injuries and joint problems. incline offers a way to increase aerobic challenge and improve cardiovascular fitness without adding impact.
- Walking on an incline increases the workload, thus raising the heart rate without having to risk aggravation of injury by running.
Walking on an incline encourages the body to burn a greater amount of fat than running quickly on a flat road. When you run on a flat surface fast, your body dips into carbohydrate stores for energy but on an incline your body uses fat for energy.
- Walking at 3 MPH on a super-incline trainer raised to between 16 and 18 percent burns 70 percent more fat than running on a zero percent incline.
Setting your treadmill at an incline of between 1 and 3 percent helps you better simulate outdoor conditions. The slight incline makes up for the lack of wind resistance indoors and simulates the body leaning forward during outdoor runs If you are preparing for a hilly race, but live in a flat area, you can simulate the course on the treadmill. You can do “hills” of any length and incline—-most commercial treadmills reach 15 percent incline.
Walking on an incline increases leg muscle activation. Incline treadmill walking activates the muscles of the calves, hamstrings and glutes more than walking on a flat surface. Significant strength training benefits for the legs are experienced at inclines above 15 percent.
When you walk on an incline, you not only need to move forward at whatever pace you are moving at, you also need to climb — a little with every step because of this. These “hills” improves your efficiency and skill by building strength, mechanics, power and aerobic conditioning. If you try to maintain your flat road speed on the treadmill inclines, or perform hill sprints, you will work on your ability to sustain higher heart rate levels for longer periods of time. Over time, this type of training improves your ability to reach and sustain faster workouts.
So basically, if you make a long-term change from walking on a flat surface (or treadmill) to walking up a hill (or inclined treadmill), you’ll burn extra energy with every step!