Treadmills : My love-hate relationship

Today it was raining all day long. I have always said when it comes to running, I can do rain or I can do cold, but I cannot do cold rain. So today I was bound to my frenemy, the treadmill.

I had 4 miles on the agenda today but I only managed to get through 3 of them. I was tired, achy and just frustrated and bored. It really made me realize that my attitude toward treadmills is still all wrong.

Here are my stats:

  • Distance: 3.0 miles
  • Time: 33:28
  • Pace: 11:09 / mile

I walked until the clock read 40 minutes to cool down. I also did some light stretching. As I sit here my knees are really hurting me. I can’t wait to get back outside. Oh yeah, back to my attitude.

Yes, the treadmill is different. I used to be more friendly toward it; in fact I did many of my training runs for my first half marathon (2008) on the treadmill. But I got away from it for so long that it’s been a process I have not embraced again just yet.

I’ve started to learn again that I need to go slower on the treadmill and worry more about distance than time, at least with longer runs; I can do speed work on the treadmill if I’m just doing a mile or two. I also need to start taking a towel with me.

Since I don’t have any scenery to look at, I need to plan for distractions to keep me from realizing what’s going on, to not feel like a hamster on a wheel. This might be music, television, or perhaps just covering up the screen with a piece of paper. I certainly don’t track myself like this outside, I just sort of go with the flow.

I read a really great article earlier this week about treadmills called The Upside of Running Inside and I think it is no coincidence. This hit home, especially today: “10 minutes per mile is a happy conversational run outside, but an insufferable slog on the mill.” Ha.

I really need to figure out how to make treadmills a positive part of my training. I will likely only have to use them once or twice a week at the most, less when the weather is more tolerable. So what’s the big deal?

How about you? Treadmills : love ‘em or hate ‘em?


About Sarah Frankel

I am 29 years old and a resident of Louisville, Kentucky. I've been married to my husband Josh for 6 years and we have a 5 year old beagle named Suzie. Four years ago, I changed my eating and exercise habits, dropping 70 pounds and gaining an entirely new life. I took up running in September 2007 and became vegan in October 2009. I am constantly striving to improve my life so that I can live it to the fullest! I hope you will join me on my life journey.

Posted on January 21, 2010, in running and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. I did totally hate them, they still aren’t my fave. But, some workouts for hills/intervals I am finding are good and they don’t bore me because I have to pay attention to what I am doing! 🙂

    Hope for both of our sake’s the weather plays nice soon!

  2. LOVE ‘EM! Like you’d expect me to say anything else, right?! You already know that I’m a very picky runner, and us midwestern girls don’t have a very big window that fits into my “pickiness!” So I have learned to love my TM. Between music and watching tv online (because my computer is in the same room as my TM) I stay pretty entertained. I love busting outside to run when I can, but probably 70% of the time, I’m on the ol mill…and I’m not complaining, I’m thankful to have it!

    • Thank you Erica! I have a new thought. Perhaps if I owned a treadmill I would feel differently? Like if it was mine, I would learn to enjoy it more? Or maybe it’s going to the gym and being stuck in there instead of in the comfort of my own home (where I could place a tv, computer, or other things)? Hmm…lots of thinking to do 😉

  3. I appreciate the convenience of them, but I definitely prefer the outdoors. Of course, the fact that I can take my dog along with me when running outside is a definite plus.

  4. I love treadmills cause it give me generous information on my exercise like the heart rate, calories burned. They are beneficial for me to implement my workout route and achieve my goals. I hate treadmills as it is kind of most boring thing to do when you are not in the “running” mood. At this occasion I would like to run outside to enjoy street views on my way.

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