Is the 12-3-30 Workout Trend Worth the Hype?

Is the 12-3-30 Workout Trend Worth the Hype?

It can be tough to find a workout that’s effective at torching calories and inspiring enough to do consistently. But TikTokers may have solved this problem with the 12-3-30 workout, a kick-butt treadmill routine that personal trainers are on board with.

In 2019 Lauren Giraldo introduced the 12-3-30 treadmill workout, and the trend has continued to gain attention — especially after she posted a video touting its perks in 2020. Since then, the hashtag #12330 has garnered a whopping 98.9 million views on TikTok.

What Is the 12-3-30 Workout?

Simply apply these settings to the treadmill:

  • Incline 12 percent
  • Speed 3 miles per hour
  • Time 30 minutes

And that’s it!

Giraldo credits her 30-pound weight loss to the 12-3-30 workout. After two years, she’s been able to keep the weight off by doing the 12-3-30 workout about five times a week, she says.

Her 2020 video inspired people to participate in the #12330challenge (37.6 million views), which challenges gym-goers to do this workout five times in one week.

What Personal Trainers Are Saying About the 12-3-30 Workout

The 12-3-30 workout is dynamic, says Heather Hart, an American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM)–certified exercise physiologist and Road Runners Club of America–certified running coach who is based in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. “Adding the incline element to this workout is a fantastic way to increase workout intensity, while still maintaining low-impact status.”

The 12-3-30 workout is also safe for people of all fitness levels to try, so long as they don’t experience pain or have medical restrictions on exercise, Hart says. But, as Dr. Metzl suggests, beginners may find the incline and speed challenging to keep up for the full 30 minutes. If this happens, Hart suggests starting with a lesser incline (try 8 percent), speed (try 2.5 miles per hour), or time (such as 20 minutes).


The 12-3-30 workout is a safe, time-efficient, and effective low-impact cardio workout that’s suitable for people of most ages and fitness levels. If it’s too challenging when you begin, dial down the intensity by lessening the speed, incline, or time.

No treadmill? Don’t sweat it! Hart and Metzl say that any hill will do as a supplement to the cardio machine. “Find a larger hill in your neighborhood, and try to walk up it at a continuous, steady pace. Once you reach the top, head back down, and continue the hill repeats for the desired time,” says Hart.

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