Quick Tip-Why You Should Never Run on the Treadmill Again!

In last week’s quick tip post/episode, I talked about why you should get outside and go running in the summer heat instead of staying inside and running on the treadmill.

Today I’m going to go one step farther, and explain why you should never run on the treadmill again.

You Should Never Run on the Treadmill

You Should Never Run on the Treadmill. Seriously.

If you’ve been paying attention to the podcast, some blog posts, or my twitter feed you already know that I’m not a treadmill guy.

So please be aware that my pre-determined biases are on full display in this post, yet I really don’t care what kind of BS excuse you’re going to give me, I can’t think of ANY REASON that I will ever run on a treadmill again.

If you’re into the kind of torture that treadmill running provides, that’s all on you.

3 Reasons You Should Never Run on a Treadmill Again

Honestly, I could probably go on for 3 months about why you shouldn’t run on a dreadmill, but this is a quick tip so I’ll try to keep the post somewhat short…er, quick.

  1. Too Much Wear and Tear on Your Joints: I know you’ve probably heard before that running on a treadmill is better for your joints because it lessens the shock/force on your joints when compared to roads/sidewalks. While that is true, saying treadmill running/walking is safer for your joints is a complete joke and here’s why. When you’re running on a treadmill, your feet pretty much hit the ground in the exact same manner EVERY. SINGLE. STEP. This is a problem. That means that while less force may be exerted with each foot fall, that force is being felt on the same points of your body EVERY. SINGLE. STEP. When you’re running outside, there’s the natural undulation of the road, the slant of the sidewalk, and a variety of other very slight but very important changes to the contact point between your foot and the ground. And that means that with each step, the force is being focused on a different part of your foot/ankle/shin/knee/hip.
  2. You’ll Never Learn to Run by Effort: When you’re running on a treadmill, you set the pace and then you go. The problem is, when you’re running a race, or just when you do finally take yourself outside for a run, you have to control the pace you’re going to run. If you’re mostly running on a treadmill, that means you’ll never learn to run by pace. Sure, you can make a very reasoned argument that because of Garmins and other GPS devices/apps we rarely ever learn to run by effort/feel, but even if you’re glued to your watch you still have to figure out the pace and figure out how to keep it there as opposed to just setting the speed on the treadmill and keeping up with the belt. And you can always run naked when you’re outside too, if you really want to focus entirely on feel/effort.
  3. Most Races are Outside: And by most, I mean pretty much all. So why wouldn’t you run outside to help you get a feel for the conditions? By running outside on a regular basis, my body adapts to the heat and humidity and I’ve found that I have way less allergy issues to deal with when the pollen is at it’s worst. If I stayed inside and only came out for the races, I’d be an overheated and snotty mess for most races down here in Central FL.

As if those weren’t enough reasons to kick the treadmill to the curb, press play below where I share a few more reasons you should never run on a treadmill again!

Do You Ever Run on the Treadmill? Why?

4 replies
  1. Stephen
    Stephen says:

    I agree with you that the dreadmill is sentence in hell.However in the spirit of fairness let’s look at some of the (gulp) positive aspects of the dreadmill.
    1. It’s better then no run at all. I’ll run in just about any weather but there are some conditions it would be just foolish to step outside.

    2. Mental discipline, if you can learn to keep your sanity on a treadmill then keeping it together on a long road or trail run is a breeze.

    3. Learning a pace, when I move up to a faster sustained pace, I find the treadmill helps me learn what that feels like.

    okay, that is about all i can think of. LOL

    • Denny
      Denny says:

      I’ll agree with you about #2 for sure. If you can gut out a long treadmill run, running in the real world won’t be a problem.

      On #3, I see your logic but for me I never “learn what a pace feels like” on the treadmill because I’m just doing it. I need to actually run it in order to learn it, and even then I REALLY suck at keeping a stead pace.

      And as for #1, I can’t agree with that. I’m at a point where no run is better than a TM run, and I’d rather get outside in some nasty conditions (or just skip the run altogether) than push through it on the treadmill.

      But to each their own. I mean, whatever you need to tell yourself to justify a dread mill run on occasion is fine with me my man!

  2. Puririam
    Puririam says:

    Totally hate running on TM but pollution level makes running outside very unhealthy … sometimes hazardous in the place where I live. So stay inside with an air-purifier on is the only option. This sucks… and it could get worse. On some days we have clear sky and I always make sure I won’t miss the chance. Thanks!

    • Denny
      Denny says:

      No doubt I’m very fortunate that I rarely have to worry about dangerous levels of pollution outside. You’re right, in those situations there’s not much you can do but stay inside. Hopefully you’ll have more days with clear skies and safe air to breathe so you can get outside more frequently!


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *