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04 February 2012

Learning to Love the Treadmill


If someone would have asked me a month ago if I thought I might learn to enjoy a treadmill run, I'm pretty sure the answer would have been "NO WAY!" However, over the past month, I've learned to really enjoy my treadmill runs.  In fact, I've chosen to run on the treadmill instead of running outside multiple times.  That is something I never thought I would do.  Today, while I was running 7 miles on the treadmill in a really hot room, I started thinking about why I'm learning to LOVE the treadmill.

In the last couple of months, I've read a couple of articles in different magazines and online about the benefits of treadmill running.  The articles talk about improving form and cadence.  They also talk about monitoring effort and output and intensity.  I've thought about those articles and really, mostly I just thought they were relevant to professional athletes.  However, I think they may be right.  In fact, I'm pretty sure that they are right.

Here's what I've learned about loving the treadmill...

I push myself HARD on the treadmill.  I haven't had such great runs in years...literally years.  I'm fatter than I've been and I'm running faster than I have in years!  Today, my entire t-shirt was soaked...there wasn't a dry spot on it.  I'm pretty sure I could have wrung a cup of sweat out of that shirt.  I was running at puke pace with a smile on my face!  It feels SO good to push myself SO hard.

I can mentally challenge myself better on the treadmill.  I love the positive self-talk that rolls through my head when I'm pushing myself through some hard intervals. I love banking those hard runs and I'm certain that these mental challenges will absolutely pay off in my races.

I love the intervals I can do. There is something seriously cool and dare I say fun about bumping up the speed and pushing myself.  I think it's hard to run "a little bit faster" when I'm running outside.  I'm really loving the intervals.

I'm really getting into the numbers.  It's been great to see legitimate improvements in my runs and to especially see those improvements through actual data.  I'm running faster and my HR is staying the same, so I know my fitness is improving.  The numbers are definitely working for me.

How great is it that Tim and I can go running "together" and run at our own paces.  Tim and I do not run at the same speed, so running outside means that one of us has to run faster or slower to stay together.  When we're on the treadmill, we can run next to each other and do our own workouts.  Oh and Tim totally cheers me on and pushes me by reminding me of my goals, and yelling things out like "Bikini!"

When I'm running on the treadmill, I can totally focus on my running.  I don't have to think about dogs running out of yards or cars driving past me or stop signs and crosswalks.  I can totally get inside my head and pull things out of myself that I'm not sure I would pull out if I were running outside.

Mostly though, what I'm loving about these treadmill runs is that I'm running faster and harder than I have in a long time.  I'm totally feeling like a RUNNER again and I'm LOVING the feeling!

2 comments:

Sarah said...

Wow, I'm impressed. The only thing I like about running on the treadmill is being able to watch TV online. Do you watch anything other than the treadmill display? I think I would go nuts. Lately my internet connection here hasn't been so great for video streaming (grrrr!!), so I simply haven't bothered to run. I wish I had your enthusiasm!

wenghonn Kan said...

Awesome site!!"Positive endorphins (happy hormones) are released during exercise creating a positive mood and reduced stress. "<===this is way i love working out..
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