How to Get Toned Legs Using a Treadmill

You can do an entire lower-body workout on a treadmill. Along with walking and running, treadmills are ideal for toning exercises that build strength in your glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings and calves. Svelte legs can help you move faster, have increased stability and better agility. Toning your legs during a treadmill session also gives you a cardio and strength-training workout in one.

A woman is jogging on a treadmill. (Image: boggy22/iStock/Getty Images)

Step 1

Run on the treadmill. Running requires that all of your lower-body muscles be engaged throughout your entire session, which can help you tighten and tone. Running a 10-minute mile can help you burn 300 to 450 calories in 30 minutes, depending on your height and weight. You burn fat from your entire body, including your legs.

Step 2

Increase the incline and walk up hills during your treadmill workout, which will target and tone the back of your legs and butt. Take small steps when walking up hills to avoid injury to your knees, lean forward slightly and keep your abdominal muscles engaged.

Step 3

Side shuffle on the treadmill to tone your inner and outer thighs. Set the treadmill k at a moderate speed to avoid falling or losing your balance. Turn so the side of your body is facing the control panel. If your right side is towards the control panel, step out with your right foot. With a slight hop, bring your left foot in to meet the right. With the weight on the left foot, step out with the right again and repeat the shuffle. Side shuffle for five minutes with your right side facing the control panel and then switch and repeat on the left side.

Step 4

Execute walking lunges on the treadmill to strengthen and tone your core, glutes, hamstrings, quadriceps and calves. Set the treadmill at a slight incline and moderate speed. Place your fingers on the hand railings for balance if you feel wobbly. Do two to five minutes of walking lunges and then lower the incline back to neutral and walk for several minutes to recover.


Add 30-second sprints into your treadmill running routine every three to five minutes to add more strength and muscle tone.

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