Surviving the Treadmill

Has anyone else run more on the treadmill this last week or two than all of last winter?!

I can’t remember the last time we’ve had this many days of single digit temps in a row.  I am not a big fan of the treadmill but 20-25 degrees is about my limit to outdoor running.  I will occasionally run in colder temps, but I run because I enjoy it and honestly, there is not much I enjoy about a cold run.

So I’ve run the last 6 or so runs on the treadmill, with a long treadmill run coming up this weekend when the high is supposed to be 5!

Here are a few tips for surviving the treadmill:

Incline: To ensure that your workout is imitating an outdoor run, set the incline to 1%.  On easy runs, I like to throw in a few quarter mile repeats at 2 or 2.5% incline now and then for some gentle rolling hills, at a nice slow pace.

Music: I never use music outside, so music is one of the ‘treats’ of treadmill running for me.  I use playlists from fitness classes I teach so the music is high energy and motivating.

Cover the dashboard: I go crazy if I see the mileage creeping up slowly so it works best for me to throw a towel or running jacket over the top of the treadmill and only check in occasionally so I’m not thinking about how much further I have to go.

Interval runs: My favorite! I love how fast time flies by when I do interval workouts on the treadmill.  For a fartlek workout, this can be short bursts of speed on the chorus of a song with easy running between.  Or it can include a ‘track’ or tempo workout that would normally be done outside.  With the pace changing frequently, these runs pass quickly.

I shared a few treadmill workouts I like here.

Netflix: Like music, the distraction of catching up on a show is a perk to the treadmill.  This works best for easy runs.

What other tips do you have?

Are you more likely to brave the cold or head to the treadmill?

I’m linking up with  SuzRachelLora, and Debbie for Running Coaches Corner, and NicoleAnnmarieMichelle, and Jen for Wild Workout Wednesday and Marcia for Tuesdays on the Run.

8 thoughts on “Surviving the Treadmill

  1. I love to hate the treadmill but I’m so glad I have one on days that it’s beyond my comfort zone. I usually will get out in most everything but when it’s below zero, it’s not my favorite. Running with friends makes it easier…in a way. Thankfully, right now my mileage is still low so I don’t have to worry about logging super long miles outside. I can gut it out for less than 10! 🙂
    angela @ happy fit mama recently posted..Goals for 2018My Profile

  2. Since I help care for a feral cat colony near the path where I run, I have a little more motivation to run outside. But I did ladder intervals on the mill today, which I love, and will definitely hit the mill tomorrow and Saturday instead of suffering though extremely frigid conditions. I think headphones are my biggest mill tip. Without them, it is simply a torture device 😉

    Re: incline, I thought the 1% rule was true too, until I read about a study that showed raising the incline at 1% only really simulated outdoor conditions if your pace is 7:09 or faster (which yours is, obv, speedy lady). But hey, even if that’s not your pace, it still gives you an edge! Here’s the article: https://www.runnersworld.com/newswire/biomechanics-expert-debunks-treadmill-running-myths Happy New Year!
    Dynise recently posted..Running year in review: 2017My Profile

  3. I have never been a fan of the treadmill. I used to own one and ended up selling it because I preferred to walk and run outdoors. I do like my Bowflex Max Trainer though. I find music or turning on a television show helps me to get my mind off how hard the workout is.

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