Hilary Duff loves taking her '12-3-30' workout to the next level

The “12-3-30” workout has been one of the biggest fitness trends of the past few years. The running routine that went viral on TikTok has become the go-to way to work up a sweat for millions of people, including Hilary Duff.

The "How I Met Your Mother" cast joined others in jumping on the 12-3-30 bandwagon, but eventually it reached a point where the routine became too simple. That's when she had to get creative.

In a recent interview with Women's Health , Duff admitted to adding a few extra things to her workouts to kick her walking routine up a notch.

12-3-30 Exercise explanation

If you're unfamiliar, 12-3-30, created by fitness influencer Lauren Giraldo, took off on TikTok in 2021, and the app has since been viewed more than 340 million times.

To workout, simply hop on the treadmill, set the incline to 12%, the speed to 3 mph, and walk for 30 minutes. It sounds easy, but it's only a matter of time before you break out into sweat.

As you complete these steps, you'll build your aerobic endurance while building strength in your legs and glutes.

Hillary's 12-3-30 Hack

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In an interview with Women's Health , Duff mentioned that she was a big fan of 12-3-30, but noted that it ended up feeling too easy, so she started wearing a 12-pound tank top for more challenges .

By putting more weight on his body, Duff immediately increases the intensity. Just like a set of ankle weights can make your regular leg workouts more difficult, a weighted vest will fatigue your muscles faster and increase your cardiac output as you walk. It also helps improve your balance.

Other ways to adjust 12-3-30

There are many ways to modify 12-3-30 to make it easier or more difficult. If 12% is too much of a slope, lower it to 6% (or whatever feels more feasible) and stick with it. Over time, you should be able to slowly reach 12%.

To make this regimen easier to understand, you can try doing it at intervals, i.e. walking at 12% pace for one minute, leveling off the incline for the next minute, and then repeating the up and down process for the entire half hour.

If you're up for a challenge, you can follow Duff's weighted vest technique, or strap weights to your wrists and/or ankles for added resistance. Or, to increase the intensity of your workout, try walking at a faster pace.

Ignite Weighted Vest Target

Whichever route you choose, be sure to avoid grabbing the handrails or the front of the treadmill, as this will render your legs useless. Instead, keep your arms at your sides, elbows bent at a 90-degree angle. This will refocus your focus on the large muscles of your lower body while also boosting your cardio.

Duff’s other fitness favorites

Duff is a fitness enthusiast. The mother of three previously told Bustle that when she's not walking on the treadmill in a weighted vest, she enjoys playing tennis and dancing with Tracy Anderson. She's also a fan of intense HIIT Pilates classes in Silver Springs.

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"There's nothing better than the way [exercise] makes your skin feel," she told Women's Health magazine . "You feel like you're getting rid of what you need to get rid of, and then your skin feels really good."

Lifting weights is another way she likes to work up a sweat. “As a woman, lifting weights is so important,” Duff continued. "It's important for your bones."

Research references:

Gaffney, C. J. (2022). Weighted vests in CrossFit increase physiological stress during walking and running without altering spatiotemporal gait parameters. Ergonomics. DOI: 10.1080/00140139.2021.1961876.

Rogani, T. (2013). Effects of short-term aerobic exercise with or without external loading on bone metabolism and balance in postmenopausal women with osteoporosis. Rheumatology International. DOI: 10.1007/s00296-012-2388-2.

Tantiwiboonchai, N. (2011). Comparing the effects of walking exercise with and without a weighted vest on bone resorption and health-related physical fitness in working women. Thai Medical Journal. Phone number: 22338922.