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Everything you need to know about the 12-3-30 TikTok treadmill workout

Is the TikTok workout trend worth the hype?

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A man works out on a treadmill.

Mark Snyder, of Canton, Mass., works out on a treadmill, Monday, July 6, 2020, at the Answer is Fitness gym, in Canton.

Steven Senne, Associated Press

Though the name may suggest an easy workout, 12-3-30 is anything but that.

The workout, originally created by Lauren Giraldo, first popped on YouTube in 2019 before it went viral on TikTok, per Runner’s World. Currently, the video has 12.2 million views and 2.7 million likes.

Giraldo, like many, struggled to follow the fitness advice and workouts she found online, which is why she decided to create her own routine, the report said. Experimenting with different settings is how 12-3-30 was born.

What is the 12-3-30 workout?

The workout is straightforward — Set the treadmill to a 12 incline, 3.0 speed and walk with the setting for 30 minutes.

  • Per Runner’s World, Giraldo found the combination easy enough to do every day but challenging enough to feel accomplished after. “It was what got me in the gym every day and set the foundation for my fitness and health journey.”

Walking hardly seems like an intensive workout but the speed combined with a steep incline can become an ideal fuel-burner for some.

  • “You have to be in pretty decent shape to go at that pace and that incline for 30 minutes,” said exercise physiologist DeAnne Davis Brooks to Health.
  • The muscles in your glutes and back of your legs will have to work extra hard to work through the gravitational resistance created by the incline. It will also make your heart work harder, according to the magazine.

Does the 12-3-30 routine work?

If you do just this workout five times a week, you will easily meet the physical activity guidelines set by the government, which encourage adults to get 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity a week or 75 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity a week.

But if the goal isn’t just to be active but lose weight, then there are other things to consider.

Selina Shah, board-certified sports medicine and internal medicine private practice physician with Bass Medical Group, told Health that a healthy weight loss program combines working out with an appropriate diet. Losing weight entails burning more calories than you’re consuming.

Giraldo, the innovator of the workout, said it helped her lose 30 pounds, per Health.

Shah agrees that the 12-3-30 can be incorporated into the weight loss program, but any exercise can fulfill this role. It is, by no means, a miracle workout.