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One of the great perks of working with a mad exercise scientist like Dr. Jack Daniels is that he has formulas for everything! Running a tempo run up a hill at altitude into the wind on an 85 degree day and want to convert the pace to sea level in ideal conditions on flat terrain? He’s got you covered. Have a short speed session planned but can’t do it outside? Jack’s got you covered with some speedwork treadmill simulation.

Below is a chart to help to simulate a 400m Rep session on the treadmill using a % grade incline.

First, determine¬†your current VDOT if you’re not sure how fast you should be running your 400m Reps. If you know what your 400m pace is pick it out below to determine the % grade you need to set the treadmill to for your Reps. After an easy warm-up set the treadmill to 6 MPH if you’re below a 62 VDOT or 79 seconds per 400m pace. If you’re 62 or above set the treadmill to 6.5 MPH after your warm-up. Then add the % grade associated to your VDOT below.

Let’s say you were scheduled to do 8 x 400m at Rep pace at 91 seconds per 400m. Then, set the treadmill to 6 MPH at an 11% grade (See below). Run for 60 seconds at that grade, then step both feet off or quickly decrease the incline and jog slowly for 2-2.5 minutes. Repeat! If you’re doing 8 x 200m or 12 x 200m then run for 30 seconds at the assigned % grade then take 60 seconds rest.

VDOT     Sec/400      Mile pace     % Grade @ 6 MPH

30              142                9:31                 2%

32              135                9:02                 3%

34              128                8:34                 4%

36              122                8:10                 5%

38              117                7:51                 6%

40              112                7:31                 7%

42              108               7:15                 7.5%

44              104               6:58                 8%

46              100               6:42                 9%

48              97                6:31                 10%

50              94                6:19                 10.5%

52              91               6:06                11%

54              88                5:54                 12%

56              86                5:46                 13%

58              83                5:34                 14%

60              81                5:26                 15%

62              79                5:18                 13% (6.5 MPH)

64              77                5:09                 14% (6.5MPH)

68              73               4:54                 15.5% (6.5MPH)

70              71                4:46                 17% (6.5MPH)