Bennett’s straightforward treadmill routines involve hopping on the treadmill to walk in a minute-by-minute sequence and rhythm organized by a selection of songs from her nearly 30-minute playlist. Her first strut workout—a playlist full of Taylor Swift hits—has racked up more than 3.6 million views and sparked a treadmill craze.
The key element of these strut workouts is that you increase your speed by .1 miles per hour (MPH) each time the song changes. Most playlists start somewhere between three mph, so that by the end of it, you’ve steadily worked your way up to a power walk or even a jog—maybe without even realizing it. “It makes it very beginner friendly, very accessible, which, I think, is hard to find on TikTok because it’s just ‘sprint for this long and then do a back handspring,'” says Bennett, emphasizing the extreme feat of fitness. to attract eyeballs on social media platforms.
To try and change that narrative, “GymTok,” a 23-year-old from Raleigh, North Carolina, decided he wanted to create a workout that empowered people to jam out wherever they wanted for the sole purpose of making their bodies feel good. the artist
But are treadmill squat workouts as effective as they are fun?
In short, hack yes. You don’t have to be drenched in sweat for exercise to be beneficial. Walking is an incredibly powerful form of exercise with low barriers to entry and major benefits—and that’s true whether you’re a marathoner or can’t remember the last time you wore a pair of sneakers.
Logging in for just 21 minutes of walking each day can reduce your risk of heart disease by 30 percent, for example. The good news is you can accomplish that goal with one of Bennett’s strut workouts. The TikTok creator is constantly creating new playlists inspired by his favorite artists, from a booty-shaking Lizzo workout to a strut entirely devoted to early 2000s bops.
The Beanie gives you a lot of flexibility to adjust to your fitness level, says Bennett. If you don’t want to speed up during a fast song, stick to a speed that feels comfortable. Want to up earlier? Throw a pair of light dumbbells or ankle weights while walking. Alternatively, some people like to throw in treadmill struts as a warm-up or cool down activity.
No matter how you change, Bennett urges people to remember the true spirit of the strut. It’s not about shedding pounds or setting PRs. It’s to remind yourself that moving your body can and should be fun.
The mental benefits of the TikTok treadmill strut are also good
Beyond the physical benefits of a 30-minute walk, it turns out there’s a lot of mental magic going on in these workouts that makes them almost addictive.
The simplicity and seemingly “easy” nature of these struts make us feel competent, says Angie Pfeiffer Winter, Ph.D., CMPC, a high performance coach at HigherEchelon in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. And while that may seem like a low bar, competence in motivation is one of our three main psychological needs—the other two being autonomy and relatedness.
The hesitation we feel when we hit the gym without a plan or prepare to run a particularly difficult interval drill is that we feel unsure of our ability to perform the task at hand. Sometimes that feeling can be so strong that we skip the workout altogether because we’re afraid we’ll fail.
Bennett’s struts solve that problem by giving us a clear plan that we’re confident we can complete with a piece of gym equipment everyone is familiar with. It’s almost guaranteed success.
In fact, many people are finding that they’re capable of more than they thought when they turned on one of Bennett’s playlists. Typically, the last two or three songs are designed to run, and even those who wouldn’t normally classify themselves as “runners” are in for a surprise. “Part of it is that you build confidence as you go,” Winter says. “I think a lot of times we hold ourselves back thinking we can’t do something, and so we don’t really try.” But this progressive ramp up helps you perform, he adds.
The last — and arguably most compelling — component of these treadmill struts? Music that makes you feel like a boss. “Music is a big game changer,” says Winter. It gives our mind something to occupy itself with and something to connect with our emotions. “And the songs are very upbeat, positive, deliberately chosen for improvisation.” Not only does it give us a nice rush of endorphins, but it can motivate you to push yourself a little harder than usual.
Bennett releases new playlists all the time, so there’s always a new batch to choose from in his Strater squad. And because these workouts make you feel confident and capable, you’re more likely to lead a more consistent workout routine, which boosts your fitness level.
If you want to add your stuff to one of Bennett’s treadmill playlists, you can find him here on Spotify.
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