7 Ways to Make Treadmill Running More Fun

No one can deny the fact that running on the treadmill is boring.

There you are. Pounding the pavement over and over again, yet not going anywhere.

But that doesn’t mean it’s a hopeless case. There are many things and measures you can take to make treadmill running more fun.

I used to be anti-treadmill myself, but I got savvier, I picked up a few strategies that helped me overcome my boredom so that I can keep running all year round.

In today’s article, I’ll share with you some fun, simple tactics to spice up your treadmill running routine. Apply the following strategies to give your brain a break from the monotony and make treadmill running more tolerable and fun.


  1. Watch A TV Show

The best strategy for beating boredom during indoor running is a distraction. You need to give your brain something else to get busy with instead of the machine’s dashboard.

In my experience, watching TV is the ultimate form of distraction.  It‘s fun and hassle-free to do while pounding the belt.

Save your Netflix shows and download movies (hopefully legally) to watch during your treadmill runs.

Go for shows you don’t have to be too involved in and would rarely let yourself sit around and watch. I won’t watch the walking dead finale on the treadmill.

Need some good ideas? Here’s a list of my favorite shows:

  • How I met Your Mother
  • It’s Always Sunny in Philadephia
  • Casa De Papel
  • Stranger Things
  • Daredevil
  • Into the Badlands
  • Preacher
  • Supernatural

2. Hit the Treadmill With a Friend

Pairing up is one of the most effective ways to make any exercise more enjoyable— and that’s true of the treadmill as well. It’s a fantastic way to build a sweat and spend quality time.

Also, a little friendly competition can go a long way.

Next time you head to the gym, peer up with your friend. Feel free to do interval workouts together, or challenge each other by racing. You can also try treadmill group classes.

3. Do an Interval Workout

If you usually pound the belt at the same incline and same speed day-in-day-out, your training will get boring—super fast.

Instead, shake things up by doing intervals. High-intensity interval training, or HIIT for short, sessions provide a quick, yet an effective way, to increase training intensity and burn some mad calories—while taking less time, too.

Here’s how to proceed.

Following a thorough warm-up, increase your speed to a sprint for 30 to 45 seconds, then slow it down to an easy jog for 60 to 90 seconds. Repeat the intervals a total of six to eight times.

Finish the workout with a 5-minute slow jog/walk as a cool down.

Here are a few of my favorite routines

4. Increase the Incline

If increasing speed didn’t do the trick for you, try raising the incline.

The higher the incline, the more challenge. This also simulates outdoor running. Here’s how to proceed.

Following the warm-up, increase the incline on your treadmill to 7 or 9 percent grade and perform two to three minutes intervals at your 10K pace with a 2-minute of recovery, easy running between reps.

Repeat the cycle six to eight time, then finish it off with a 5-minute walk as a cool down.

Make things more challenging. If you can comfortably keep a conversation with your buddy while barely breaking a sweat on the treadmill, you’re probably not training hard enough.

5. Listen to a Podcast

Listening to a podcast while pounding the belt is an excellent way to distract yourself why staying updated on the latest trends and events. It’ll take your mind off how many minutes, seconds, and milliseconds you have left to go.

There are plenty of good and informative podcasts to suit any interest. Here are a few of my favorites:

The Joe Rogan Experience

The RT Podcast

The Pete Schiff Podcast

If you’re not into podcasts, then try an audio version of a book you wanted to read (but probably won’t). Or brush up on some German before your next trip to Berlin. The choices are virtually limitless.

6. Use A Running App

No matter your running goals are, there’s probably an app for that. You can find plenty of cheap apps for different running goals that you can download to make your training more exciting.

Need distraction? There’s an app for that!

Need motivation? There’s an app for that!

Need inspiration? There’s an app for that!

Need more structure for your training? There’s an app for that.

See, there’s an app for almost any running goal or desire.

My best recommendation?

You can turn you run into a virtual game with the app Zombies, Run!. This app turns your treadmill workout into a story about surviving a zombie attack.

Set in a post-apocalyptic world in which you have to gather supplies and protect your outpost from the living dead by collecting supplies while out running.

A fan of music? The app RockMyRun offers plenty of various playlists to suit any taste, from country, hip hop, pop, to metal.

The app can also help you find your ideal running music by calculating your strides per mind and coming up with a playlist that has a matching tempo.

7. Visualize a Route

This one requires a bit of creative imagination, but it’s super helpful for making treadmill running more real and fun.

Here’s how to proceed.

Imagine yourself running along and picture the buildings, surroundings, and other landmarks you’d pass along the way.

Go the extra step by printing out a real-world route map, indicating the distances and inclines, and then imagine yourself tackling it. Or you can choose a treadmill with a built-in Google Maps, so you can pretend that you’re outside running.

Got an upcoming race? Visualize your racecourse during your treadmill session. Push hard during the last few miles and finish strong at the finish line.

You can also check out youtube for virtual walks. In your virtual world, you can run in the forest, beaches, jungles, or cities like Paris, Rome, London, etc. Explore the world from your treadmill.

You can also try an app like BitGym that allows running virtually on routes from around the world from your smartphone or tablet.


There you have it. The above simple training guidelines are all you need to make running on the treadmill more fun and less boring. The rest is really up to you. Take action now.

Please feel free to leave your comments and questions in the section below.

In the meantime, thank you for reading my post.

Keep running strong.

David D.