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What Is Better, Treadmill Running Or Outdoor Runs?

"Treadmill Running As a Running Performance Tool"

treadmill runningTreadmill running is a great tool. Running on a treadmill can improve running form, even compared to outside running and improve the general fitness of runners.

When Ingrid Kristiansen, former world record holder in the 5k, 10k and marathon was at her best (which meant 2.21 in the marathon and a female world record!) she would run up to 10 sessions weekly on the treadmill in her marathon training, even in the summer schedule.

Here are some treadmill running tips.

"So what is the deal with treadmill running compared to outdoor running ?"

In this article you'll find :

  • the pros of treadmill running,
  • the cons
  • how to do it better.

A small touch on the pros first...

Yes, you have the obvious things. It is winter outside.

You can avoid the cold, icy streets.

Traffic jams and polluted air.

Then you have the other aspect of it ;

" Can treadmill running actually be beneficial for my running ? Even when compared to outside running."

Pretty interesting question.

What The "Science Guys" Are Saying..

There is actually a whole series of research on treadmill running. How it influences your running stride. Plus how much oxygen demand it takes compared to outdoor running.

A summary out it goes like this :

Because Of Increased Wind Resistance When You Run Outside, The Oxygen Demand Increases Exponentially With Speed.

  • You go faster, you have to spend a lot more oxygen.

On the treadmill it is different.

  • You run on the spot and do not have any wind resistance.

Which means : On the treadmill, you can do faster stuff than outside at the same effort.

Actually, when you are running at 20 km pr hr (which is about 4:40 mile pace), about 8 percent of your total energy goes into the wind resistance you experience.

On The Treadmill, For Joggers, Or If You Are Running Slow Your Running Stride Is Shorter On The Treadmill.

However the frequency, which is number of strides pr minute, is higher (for the really fast runners this is actually opposite)

Which means that on the treadmill, you can increase your running frequency ; your drive compared to outside running.

On The Treadmill, The Time You Spend On The Ground In Each Stride is Longer.

Maybe not ideal initially in terms of performance. Though, over time, you can learn how to decrease the waste time you spend on the ground in each stride. It is a good learning curve for your stride.

Which means : On the treadmill, you can work on bettering your running economy, your running form.

Those three points are the main reasons why treadmill running can benefit you to a great extent..

Now then, what are the best ways be running on a treadmill, what kind of sessions works the best ?

There are many ways. Here are three good ones :

1.To Avoid Icy Roads :

If it is too icy outside. Stick to the treadmill no matter what kind of training. Running on ice can lead to injuries and injuries to more injuries. They can also be part of your running program periodization.

2. For Faster Work :

Run some of the faster repeats on the treadmill. Which means work under 2 to 3 minutes per repeat. For example 10 times 2 minute running.

This is excellent to do on the treadmill to improve your overall fitness.

If you do not have icy roads (if this was the case, you can do all running on the treadmill), aim for about 50 percent outside and 50 percent inside during the wintertime.

This balance outside and indoors will benefit your running form and toe off to a great extent.

In this way, running on the treadmill may actually be one of the better running tips you will find out there.

3. Pace-Judgment :

Do mixing of speed sessions on the treadmill to get used to speed variations.

You go at a certain speed for 6 minutes, then down to a certain slower speed for 2 minutes. Feel the speed. This gives you an edge for the other work because you know how fast it feels. This is a must for running a marathon or even shorter distances such as the 5k or 10k.

For example 6 minutes at 16 km/hr. Down to 12 km/hr. Up to 15 km/hr. Down to 11 km/hr. Up to 17 km/hr.

"Feel the different speeds and get used to how that feeling is like. This kind of running on a treadmill will greatly benefit you in your upcoming marathon race or in you general outdoors training".

I wish you good luck with the treadmill running. Below are more articles ;)


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