Ahh the treadmill. A device so loathed by many that it is often referred to as the dreadmill. It takes an activity we love for its adventurous nature and turns it into monotonous, repetitive, and just plain BORING.
But with the country in icy grips, runners everywhere are sucking it up and taking their run inside. Even if you’re one of the toughest runners out there—we’re looking at you, dude in short-shorts and a singlet in 20-degree weather—sometimes the outdoor conditions are just too dangerous to tackle.
Enter the ‘mill. So, how can you survive this medieval torture device? Try these 6 tips to keep your running game on point, without having to slog through 10 inches of freshly fallen snow.
1. Rock Out
Make a killer playlist that’ll have you rockin’ out your entire workout. Try alternating slow songs and more upbeat tunes. Pick up the pace for the fast ones, and ease off when the beat is slow for a workout you won’t snooze through. Bonus: Download new tunes just before you step on the ‘mill to keep your playlist fresh.
2. Switch it Up
Long runs on the ‘mill can end up feeling even longer if you’re in the same spot for too long. Beat boredom and mind fatigue by switching treadmills every few miles. You might think you look silly to those watching, but who cares? You’ll be surprised at how refreshed you feel with a slight change of scenery.
3. Play Games
Don’t just set the same pace for your entire run. Switch things up to keep your motivation going and to reap some fitness rewards. Try running a comfortable pace for 5 minutes, then go all out for 1 minute. Repeat until you’ve reached the mileage goal you’re after.
4. Treat Your Feet
Make sure you’ve got the right footwear for the running machine. Pounding on the treadmill can be tough on joints, especially if it’s an older model and you’re used to soft trails. Soften your steps with a running shoe that’s designed with plenty of plush cushioning, such as the Brooks Transcend.
Just like in a race, pick out someone near you on a machine and take ‘em on. They’re running an 8-minute mile? Bump your ‘mill up a notch faster. Sure, they don’t know you’re competing with them, but it makes the run go that much quicker. Game on!
Not in sweet treats or a shopping splurge. We mean indulge in some of your favorite guilty pleasure television shows while you rack up the miles. Plan your treadmill session around your must-watch shows, and the minutes and miles will fly by.
So if Mother Nature’s fury is putting a damper on your running parade, don’t be afraid to take it inside. You just might—gasp!—end up enjoying it. Don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone.
What are some of your treadmill survival tips?
[Photo: Scott Barbour/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images]