How to Warm Up on the TrueForm Runner

How to Warm Up on the TrueForm Runner

With the introduction of the TrueForm Runner in recent years to a variety of fitness competitions including the CrossFit Games; it’s becoming increasingly important for athletes to learn how to use the device. The most important part of using the TrueForm Runner is getting used to its unique design and operation. This starts with learning how to warm-up on the TrueForm Runner.

Let’s start taking a look at how the TrueForm Runner functions, which is unlike your typical treadmill. A typical treadmill operates by using a motor inside of the device to spin the belt you run on at a consistent pace. A TrueForm Runner operates without the use a motor inside. The curved design of the TrueForm Runner and the lack of a motor means you set the pace and speed by simply running on it as one normally would run outside. It’s design also punishes and force corrects you for running with improper form.

In the video above, a representative from the company took some of our sponsored athletes through a running warm-up protocol for the TrueForm Runner. Here’s a breakdown of how you should structure your warm up using the equipment:

  • Shoes and Socks Off – Try practising on the TrueForm with shoes and socks off for the benefit of proprioception. However, if you feel pain anywhere in your lower extremities during the warm-up, put your shoes and socks back on.
  • Start By Walking – The common phrase “don’t run before you can walk” applies also to the TrueForm Runner. The running equipment can feel quite odd once you first step on it. Spend some time familiarizing yourself with how the machine feels and works by walking slowly with control. You should always familiarize with new equipment in slow and controlled fashions before you progress to more intense training sessions. You should also try walking backwards which can be significantly less strain on your joints.
  • Try Skipping – Specifically, we are referring to the A and B Skip running drills commonly practiced in the running sports world. You can check out a video detailing them in the video above or in this video by Nike Running.
  • Keep the Belt Underneath You – A common mistake in running is landing your front foot way to far in front of your body with each stride. If you try this on the TrueForm, you may end up losing your balance quite quickly due to the curvature in shape of the device. Keep landing your feet underneath you, not in front as shown in the video above.
  • Use Your Arms – It may seem counterintuitive, but arm swing is critical to proper running technique. Be sure to swing your arms tight and close to your body in proper rhythm with your feet to get the proper balance on the TrueForm Runner.

Finding Your Maximum Aerobic Function Heart Rate

A great way to warm up for training sessions using the TrueForm Runner is with the assistance of a heart rate monitor and knowledge of what your individual Maximum Aerobic Function Heart Rate is.

Heart rate training in the warm-up with the monitor helps the athletes visually connect with how each of the minutes feel, which will inevitably help the athlete pace future workouts using the TrueForm runner.

Here is a formula you can use to find it.

180 – Age + ( +/- 5 Lifestyle Factors)* = Maximum Aerobic Function Heart Rate (MAF)

*Add 5 if you feel fresh and well rested. Subtract 5 if you feel any pain, nagging pains, or excessive soreness.*

With the heart rate monitor attached and awareness of what your Maximum Aerobic Function Heart Rate is take your heart rate up towards that number over the course of the next few minutes. Ideally you should be taking your heart rate up by 10 every minute for four minutes. In addition, you are attempting to hold that number for the duration of the minute.

Example: 25 Year Old Crossfit Athlete with no soreness or pain.

180 – 25 + 5 = 165 MAF

Warm Up:
Starting from 60% of MAF Increase Heart Rate by 10 Every Minute for Four Minutes

This athlete would start the warm-up session by walking and slowly build up to their Maximum Aerobic function Heart Rate by 10 every minute for four minutes.

To summarize, the best way to prepare for using the TrueForm for competitive situations or even training is by properly warming up on it, learning how to run on it properly, and getting a feel for your Maximum Aerobic Function Heart Rate.

Stay tuned for more information on how to use the TrueForm in training sessions and even some common mistakes to avoid when using the TrueForm Runner.


CrossFit® is a registered trademark of CrossFit, Inc. OPEX Fitness’s uses of the CrossFit® mark are not endorsed by nor approved by CrossFit, Inc., and OPEX Fitness is in no way affiliated with nor endorsed by CrossFit, Inc.

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