Winter weather can wreak havoc on a runner’s training schedule, especially when it’s a downpour of rain one day and several feet of snow the next, like the weather that has hit much of the United States hard over the past few months. If you’re a runner who is used to running outside, but the weather limits your activity, it might be time to consider the treadmill as a training tool.
Things to Remember When Transitioning from Outdoor Running to a Treadmill
When you make the switch, you’ll discover a few differences that you’ll have to adjust your running style for.
- You’ll use your quadriceps more indoors because the belt does the work to help finish your stride. Outdoors, you’d feel the work more in your hamstrings.
- The treadmill terrain is smooth. Keep in mind for when spring rolls around that the outdoor route you’ll return to is much less consistent and changes rapidly.
- A treadmill workout cannot simulate wind resistance. To overcome that, raise the incline of the treadmill.
Tips for Safe Indoor Training
- Don’t run steep inclines for extended periods of time. Even though a 1-2 percent incline helps to simulate the outdoors, experts say that inclines greater than two percent for a long run can cause Achilles tendon issues and strain your back, hips and ankles.
- Pay attention to your stride, not the console.There are fewer distractions when you’re inside training on a treadmill, so it’s the perfect time to concentrate on how your feet are hitting the treadmill. Experts suggest making sure you strike the treadmill with your mid-foot and strive for 180 steps per minute.
- Use appropriate earphones and pick a playlist you enjoy. Sport earphones work well for runners whether indoors or out, because they allow you to hear what is going on around you while providing high quality sound that can spur you on or even distract you from being inside.