The Backstreet Run | Active with Aaptiv


Were you a 90s kid? Born in 1991, I definitely was. While I was pretty nerdy and spent a lot of time reading the encyclopedia (but actually), my (much cooler) sister LOVED N’Sync. Whether I liked it or not, I grew up with the dulcet sounds of boy bands in the background. So when Erin came out with her Backstreet Run, I HAD to do it — especially since it was right in time for Back Day.

The Backstreet Run – The Breakdown

The Backstreet Run is a 42 minute incline run, meaning that you maintain a consistent speed while increasing your incline. At an Intermediate level, this run requests a speed of 6.0-7.0, but it can be modified for all levels. I ran at a 6.5, which was probably a little too fast. My recovery breaks, which were supposed to be jogging, veered towards walking towards the end so that I could get my heart rate down.

The Workout Intervals

In this workout, as the incline increases, the interval decreases. So while the run itself was getting more challenging, the duration of the challenge lessened — although the recovery time was cut down as well.

  • We began with an eight minute interval at 2.0%, which was more of a mental exercise than physical. This one ended with three minutes of recovery.
  • The next interval was six minutes at 3%. Similar to the first one, this posed more of a mental challenge than a physical one. It’s hard not to get bored when you’re running at the same speed for several minutes at a time. You’ll recover for 2.5 minutes after this one.
  • The workout moves more quickly at this point. The next round is 4 minutes at 4%. This point is when a runner will start to feel the hill. This is when I began walking in the recovery phase, and we got 90 seconds here.
  • The following interval was only two minutes at 5%. With Erin’s directions, the two minutes actually flew. I’m the type of runner who tends to count down for the duration of an interval. I’ll say to myself, “30 seconds in, meaning halfway to halfway there…one minute down, so halfway there…etc.” That technique definitely helped this one fly. We had one minute to recover after this.
  • The next one up was 90 seconds at 6%. You will feel this one in your legs, but 90 seconds is short. Just remember that. Your recovery will also be short though — only 45 seconds.
  • The last one before the final round (see what I did there?) was one minute at 7%. Don’t worry — this minute flies. After this, you recover for 30 seconds.
  • The final round was a kind of lightening round. We did three rounds of 30 seconds at 8%, followed by 30 seconds of recovery. I kept the incline on for the recovery, since by the time I adjusted both the speed and the inclined, I would need to go back up to 8%.
  • Cool down — sweet, sweet relief

The BackStreet Run: The Verdict

If you’re endurance-challenged (which I definitely am), this is a great run. Set to really fun music, this workout requires you to maintain long intervals at uncomfortable (although not impossible) speeds.

The Backstreet Run: Tips

  • Pick a speed that you’d ideally be able to maintain for 40 minutes at a relatively flat incline. If you go too fast during the incline rounds, you will likely need to walk during your recovery.

The Backstreet Run: Personal Stats

Walking Speed: 3.5mph

Fastest Speed: 6.5mph

Jogging Speed: 5.0mph

Total Miles: 4.0

Calories Burned: 432 calories

Time in Fat Burning Zone:3 minutes

Time in Cardio Zone: 39 minutes

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