Can You Walk and Talk? Incline Walking for the Busy Bee!

We all have those days when we decide to grab that third coffee after looking at our calendar and realizing the need to go into hyper mode right?! What if I told you that you can marry your agenda with a solid 30 minute cardio session and still cross things off your list?

Today, and three to four days per week, let’s take an incline walk. I have to admit, I wasn’t the biggest fan the first time I tried it. A trainer told me long ago that I should do an incline walk three days a week for 30 minutes and if I felt like I didn’t have time then to take my iPhone with me on the treadmill. It went from being a chore to a necessity. Not only do I relieve stress though exercise, but I can multi-task and respond to emails, edit drafts, and even make a call if needed!

There are so many benefits to incline walking in addition to crossing things off my to-do list:

Burn Calories

Walking at an incline can burn more than 50 percent more calories than walking at no incline. While treadmills have numerous incline scales, I burn approximately 300-400 calories in 30 minutes by walking at a moderate pace at an eight percent incline. When I took the incline off and kept the pace the same, I burnt less than 200 calories.

Glute Work

By walking at an incline, you activate muscles in your legs including your butt. You can actually target different portions of your legs at different inclines. For me, I like to feel the burn in my gluteus, so I pump the incline up to 12-15 percent. And I burn more calories too!

Tone Your Abs

By walking at a moderate incline, you work your core by engaging it while you’re burning the fat. Always think about your core, touch it to see if you’re engaging it while you walk up. Think about it as killing two birds with one stone. Not to mention all the work you’re getting done too!

Relieve Stress

Incline walking will make that heart rate spike up, which is good especially if you’re feeling a little overworked and need to take a break for some active recovery. Getting your heart rate up and increasing your air flow will help drive your anxious self back down to earth!

Muscle Recovery

Even if you plan to work out later in the day, a healthy incline walk can help loosen up muscles already tight and sore from previous activity, stiffness and stress. The first five minutes may be tough, but barrel through it and I promise you’ll feel great when you step off that treadmill!

What To Do:

Grab a treadmill and increase the speed to between 3.5 and 4.0. Once adjusted, increase the incline to a minimum of eight percent (treadmills differ in incline percentages). To work more butt, take the incline up towards 12 – 15 percent. If your treadmill has a heart rate monitor, go ahead and rest every three to four minutes to keep your heart rate in the fat burning zone of 120 to 135. Watch the clock for a time of 30 minutes and walk!

Paul Rahn, Fitness Entrepreneur, Sweat, Fitness Profile, Healthy Living Chicago, Picture

By Paul Michael Rahn

Sweat Chicago

Walk And Talk -Printable PDF


Edited by Sean Paler


  1. Dr. Michael Veerman

    This is a great way to burn calories while getting tasks done. Remember to keep your phone up to not irritate your neck.

  2. Ginny Lucas

    I am a bit older perhaps than most of you, but I have been cleaning up my email and organizing my daily list while walking for some time…What a difference in burning calories, even at a small incline! I am going to do it!!

  3. Dr. Smitherman

    I have read many a text book and notes on an incline treadmill!

  4. Paul Rahn

    Thanks Healthy Living Chicago for publishing! My incline walks are one of the most important parts of my busy days!

  5. Gretchen Martinez

    Awesome way to add some cardio when you are busy!

  6. Dr. Ariana Brosco

    This is a great way to burn fat and tone the lower body muscles, especially during the summer months. Only 30 minutes a day is not much at all!

  7. Dr. John Culp

    Typing at a desk, looking down at our smartphones, lounging on the couch, and sitting in traffic are known to adversely effect our posture and health. What a great way to still be, and feel productive while working out!


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