Dreadmill Tempo Run

I watched the radar all afternoon as thunderstorms began developing all around the Atlanta area on Tuesday.  My training plan called for a tempo run that would have to be run late in the evening due to my work schedule.  I was hoping that the rain would move in and cool the air down and then move out.  This was not what the storms had in mind.

The rain continued for hours (I didn’t really mind the rain-we need it and it did cool the temps from the 90’s to the 70’s-sounds like good running weather) BUT the lightning stayed as well.  I don’t want my 15 minutes of fame to include a news story about my getting electrocuted while running in a thunderstorm, so I grabbed my gear and headed for the gym.

Oh how I despise running on the treadmill.  Other than the fact that there is not any lightning in the gym, running on the treadmill is worse to me in every way.  My strides feel off. The pace seems much faster. I am, shall we say, uncoordinated.  It takes longer and feels worse.

But…I did  it. This was the first run of my 16 week training for the Atlanta Marathon and I didn’t let the weather keep me from getting it done.  My plan called for 2 easy miles, 2 tempo miles (7:30 pace) and 2 easy miles.  I tried running the 7:30 pace, but on the treadmill it felt like something was going to pull (or break off) in my right leg, so I eased it down to an 8:00 pace and ran the miles.  I ended up running 6 miles in 59 minutes.  Not bad. It took about 5 minutes longer than it would have taken on the track, but I didn’t make the news either. A pretty good trade off…

This wasn’t my best 6 mile run, but it was a great opportunity to test my resolve.  Something really does feel different now that I am “in training”.

I’m curious, does anybody prefer to run on the treadmill? If you hate it like me, why? Does your running form feel “off” as well?

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8 thoughts on “Dreadmill Tempo Run

  1. I hate running on the treadmill with a passion. Last summer, when I couldn’t take another day of temps above 100 degrees, I resorted to the treadmill a few times. It is mind-numbingly boring to me. I think I detest it so much because it’s the opposite of everything I love about running outdoors. My running form doesn’t feel off–it’s actually a little easier on my legs than the pavement–but I just can’t handle the repetition. I get almost claustrophobic and panicky the longer I run on it, and have to put a towel over the miles so I won’t obsessively look at the numbers. I have visions of zoning out and flying off the back end. I’d rather get up at 3am than run on the treadmill.

    1. Amen to everything you said! The entire run I was thinking 1.75 to go, 1.7 to go, 1.65 to go… Here’s hoping that was my last run-in-place for the year.

  2. I loathe the treadmill! I traveled regularly on business and was trapped on the treadmill many times, but preferred to find an outdoor trail whenever I could. To me, the treadmill is just boring. iPods and television monitors cannot replace the sense of the outdoors, the fresh air, nature, the scenery.
    The only time I found the treadmill useful was rehabbing from knee surgery. The treadmill is elastic and gives, or lessens the impact on the joints. I found the off-road running is the next best thing and now run almost exclusively on trails.
    Good luck!

    1. I absolutely agree. Staring out the front door while running on the treadmill, I felt like the outdoors was taunting me.

  3. I set the elevation on the treadmill to 0.5 or 1 and have found that it tends to feel more like the road. Still tough to run like a hamspter on a wheel when you’d rather be breathing in the fresh air! Way to stay dedicated!

    1. I didn’t think about adjusting the elevation. If I ever have the misfortune of running on the treadmill again, I will give it a shot. Thanks!

  4. The only time I run on the Dreadmill is when i am traveling and there is nowhere to run… my company likes to book me at the hotel in the Dallas airport..ugh!

    1. I haven’t been through DFW in a few years, but I don’t recall seeing anywhere to run within a few miles of that place.

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