Among runners, there are two opposing camps debating on the merits of running indoors, particularly on top of a treadmill. One faction is very vocal in its dislike of these man made contraptions that are very popular equipment in spas and gyms.
The other group is equally at home running on treadmills as well as doing their jogging outdoors. These runners do not particularly like one over the other. Most often, the reason they give on why they use treadmills is convenience rather than preference.
Treadmills are preferred and popular in smog-filled urban areas and outdoor running are enjoyed by those in suburban places where smog is not yet a menace.
There are many reasons given by treadmill users and fans regarding their preference of the gym’s most-used equipment.
Treadmills are consistent and familiar all throughout. Aside from the safety factor in running indoors, treadmill users like the familiarity aspect of the equipment. What is more, you can set the speed and the incline of the contraption.
In treadmills, you do not have to worry about rains, extreme heat, or snow. In the comforts of a closed indoor space, you can work out to your heart’s content.
You can safely wear your iPods and headphones and listen to your favorite music while exercising. (For relative safety, use of headphones for music listening had been discouraged for outdoor runners.)
On the other side of the discussion, there are runners who will brave the most inhospitable weather like a heavy downpour rather than run on top of a treadmill.
For them, the visual stimulation of the sights afforded them during their runs adds up to the appeal of outdoor running. Some runners who can run up to 10 miles outdoors get bored after only a couple of miles on a treadmill.
More treadmill uses
For anti-treadmill runner, there are other ways to make treadmill use more exciting than usual. One can open some seldom-used controls of the machine and use them to your advantage.
One way is to incorporate sprints in your workouts. After warming up for about 10 minutes in a leisurely pace, increase the speed and do a sprint for about 2 minutes.
Afterwards, slow the pace and do some jogging for a few minutes until your heartbeat falls to about 120 beats a minute. Speed up the machine again and do a sprint for another 2 minutes or so.
Another way is to take advantage of the pre-programmed courses on most of the new models of treadmills. These courses include several changes in speed and incline. Runners who have tried them swear they are no different from those natural elements they meet in outdoor running.
Still another use of the treadmill for runners is to use them to train for faster speeds, say, if you are angling to enter in your local 5K run. Begin by incorporating short sprint intervals in your treadmill running starting as short as 30seconds of your desired speed.
Once the 30-seconds intervals become easy gradually elongate these intervals into longer and longer time frames until you can run the entire course at this speed.
Who says indoor running is boring?