I genuinely love treadmill running: winter, spring, summer or fall you can always find me on my treadmill. I will admit, my treadmill running does decrease during the warmer months. But I still make time for a good treadmill run at least twice a week during the summer months. These runs are usually designed as a workout, something to elevate my heart rate to at least 80% max and even though I'm inside, I am usually drenched in sweat. For me there is something about running on the treadmill that I can't get outdoors.
When I was younger, running was just something I did. I ran to get faster, win races, and set personal bests. It wasn't until I was older that I realized running is so much more than fast times and first place finishes. I was about 25 when I knew running wasn't going to be something I did for a living. Up until then, I had made all right money running road races and my expenses were low so I thought I could do that forever. I remember the exact race and exact moment when I knew it was over.
Running has taught me many useful skills - like always being aware of where the next bathroom is or how to dodge traffic while running a speed workout. I have learned that people will yell weird things at you when you run so it's best to just ignore them and that no matter how cute a dude is, he doesn't look good in running shorts. But beyond these brilliant takeaways I have learned from the sport of running, I have also learned some very valuable life lessons that I apply to my everyday life. Below is the list of the top things I have learned from running.
If there is one thing I have learned over the last 25+ years of running is that it is never easy. Sure there may be some days that feel a little better than others, but let's be honest, running is hard. And while running on a treadmill is awesome, it still doesn't solve the problem that running is difficult. But...watching a great show or movie can take the sting out of running (slightly). Here are my top 5 favorite movies to watch while running on the treadmill:
It has probably happened to all of us treadmill runners. For some of us, it may have happened in the solitude of our home, but for others, it may have happened in a crowded gym. I'm talking about the dreaded fall from the treadmill. Whether we are going a bit too fast or just momentarily distracted, a slight misstep is all it takes to shoot you off the back of the treadmill! For me, it happened in a crowded college gym. Everything was going great until one slight step off the side of the belt sent my shooting in the concrete wall behind me. It happened in less than a tenth of a second but I swear it seemed to last for an hour. There is no better cure for ego then flying off the back of a treadmill in front of 150 twenty year old college kids.
I have completed over four thousand different treadmill workouts and almost completed probably 100 more. But time and again I seem to come back to a core group of treadmill workouts. I'm not sure what the draw is to these workouts. Even now, when my mileage is about 10% of what it was at it's peak, I still am drawn to these few workouts. Quite possibly its the familiarity these workouts provide. I know how I'm going to feel and for the most part, I know I am going to finish the workout. While my paces may slow over time, the challenge treadmill workouts provide are affirming both physically and mentally.
Here we go - my top three favorite treadmill workouts in order:
I ran on my first treadmill when I was 12 years old. I remember going with my dad to a neighbors house and he said I could have their treadmill if I was interested. I ran about 400 meters on the treadmill and told my dad I would love to have it. I was so excited. Everyday after school I would lace up my running shoes and run 1 - 2 miles on the treadmill. It went up to 6mph and in order to adjust the speed, you had to turn a dial. That treadmill lasted until I was a sophomore in college. My last time running on it was during a blizzard when I was home with two friends during winter break. We ran on our college team and really needed to get our run in. So I showed them the treadmill - they had never ran on a treadmill and the poor machine looked like it had traveled to our house from the very distant past. Nonetheless, we each started running. Each of us ran for one hour, incline and dial turned as high as it would go, while the other two played games, watched TV, took naps. We each did this twice. 6 total hours on the treadmill. The next day it wouldn't start.
This is not my treadmill, but it looked just like this!