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About Treadmill Workouts That Can Prepare You For Military Training

by Anna, a treadmill tester for Run Reviews

I decided to write this article after having the chance to train on an unexpected treadmill that offered me a unique experience. I donít want to focus here on the treadmill itself, but on the options you can take advantage of if youíre training to be admitted to a military academy.

Each military training demands you pass a series of physical tests before they consider you a suitable candidate. All tests demand you pass a running challenge, among other exercises.  Preparations for the running tests require intensive and consequent training, and most of the time you must have someone by your side to guide you. 

The treadmill I was telling you about includes a series of military workouts which you just need to turn on, then start running and check your results at the end. The set-up process is very easy which makes the workout very much enjoyable.

There were 5 military workouts that got my attention.

The first treadmill workout I tried was the Army Physical Fitness Test. This test includes a 2 mile run.

The second workout was dedicated to the Navy Physical Readiness Test which includes a 1.5 mile run. It is similar to the Army Physical Test, but for a shorter distance.

The third workout focused on the running exercise from the Air Force Physical Readiness Test which lasts for 1.5 miles also.

The forth was the Marines Physical Fitness Test which includes a 3 mile test run.

The fifth, I also tried the Gerkin Protocol test which is requested by the International Association of Fire Fighters. This tests the aerobic capacity using a specific protocol. The test is mostly done on the treadmill because the results are calculated based on the sub-maximal treadmill protocols to predict the peak of VO2. VO2 translates to the maximum amount of oxygen one can use during intensive exercise. The more VO2 you produce, the better athlete you are. For this workout you must use a heart rate readings system. The best is to use the wireless chest strap because it gives more freedom while you run. The console will calculate the VO2 when you reach the maximum target heart rate and you stay in that zone for at least 15 seconds.

After testing all these workouts I am sure that all (except the Gerkin Protocol) can be done on any other treadmill (not just this specific one) or while running outside. There is no secret in how results are calculated: the faster you run, the better you score.

But, what I found to be very special with this treadmill is that the workout considered my age, gender and my finish time to display my results right at the end of the workout. So you donít need to check any other documentation. After sweating on the treadmill you see right away how well you did and what points you scored for the Army, the Air Force, and the Marines tests. For the Navy test the console displays a qualitative score.  I find this system extremely motivational. 

 Another detail I liked was that for Navy and Marines tests I was asked to select what altitude area I wanted. For the Navy the level I could choose between 5,000 feet above or below sea level. For Marines my options were 4,500 feet above or below sea level. The difficulty was different with each option.

I also liked that the workout was divided in 2 steps, mandatory for any exercise. The first was the part where I ran to reach the distance goal as fast as I could. The second was the cool down. The cool down system was smartly installed. If you reached the distance goal in less than 5 minutes, you had a 1 minute cool down period. For 5 to 15 minutes, the cool down period lasted 3 minutes.

To reveal the mystery, my experience was possible on a Life Fitness treadmill, which by the way you can find in the gyms. On their website they list all the locations were you can use the Life Fitness equipment.

And although I didnít score too many points, the memory of this great workout still persists in my mind and it will probably stay there for some time.

This article is written by Anna, a treadmill tester for Run Reviews. If you want to find out more details about this brand, check
Life Fitness Treadmills Reviews from Run Reviews. 


Stew Smith is a former Navy SEAL and fitness author certified as a Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. If you are interested in starting a workout program to create a healthy lifestyle - check out the Fitness eBook store and the Stew Smith article archive at To contact Stew with your comments and questions, e-mail him at



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