Treadmill Baby

That could be read two ways… The Austin Powers way… as in,
Treadmill Baby, YEAH… I’m running on the treadmill!!

OR

Treadmill Baby. (Meaning born on the treadmill.)

In my case, it’s actually both.

A Runner is Born.
April 12, 2009. 123 pounds. 66″

I am a treadmill baby. My running was born right on the circulating platform belt most folks like to refer to as the dreadmill. I, personally, don’t feel that way. I, LOVE my treadmill. I do! It’s my mom, my dad, my therapist and my running partner. My treadmill has always been there for me… from day one, which makes my love for it like that of a parent, unconditional. You can read about my treadmill birth here.

I have never been let down by my treadmill (except once when the belt was slipping, a hint that it needed some TLC in return, so I replaced it.) Plus, running on the treadmill allows me to do a few things I can’t do outside.

For one, I can wear next to nothing on a cold winter day (it’s 48 degrees outside this morning) and get in my workout. I hate all the winter gear I need to wear on cold days: arm warmers, headband, gloves, long sleeve pullover, capri or full length pants. Did I mention I hate being cold? My ideal running attire, would be, as little as possible, like the pic below. I would run half naked if I could. Well… almost. That only works on hot days. And most importantly, I would never, never run outside as skimpily dressed as I do in the house. Not even in the gym. But in the privacy of my home (and now the entire internet world I guess–except no one is seeing me run and body parts jiggling,) I am running half naked.

skimpy attire
skimpy attire

Secondly, I am quite entertained while I run the never ending belt. I have music cranking in my ears. Sometimes it is so loud I don’t even hear the motor or my slapping footfalls. I also have (and am fortunate to have) my 52″ TV  (sound off) just a few feet in front of me. I typically choose a movie that is action packed (somehow seeing action movies makes me work harder), but sometimes I will pick a drama if I’ve seen it a few times. Most the movies I watch I have seen and that helps with not hearing the dialog. If I play a DVD, I  put on subtitles.

today's flick: the mummy returns
today’s flick: the mummy returns

I don’t get overheated. I have a fan set up to the left of the TV and I have my slider door opened fully. Not only does this give me fresh air, but I get a view of my lush garden, to mimic being outside. Again, I am fortunate to have this set up. I could be in a dingy garage… and then it would be the ‘dreadmill.’

great view
great view of my garden
open window = fresh air
open window = fresh air… right?

Another great aspect about running on my treadmill is I have everything I need at my disposal. I have the TV remote. I sometimes have my cell phone (in case there is a juicy text!) and I have small necessities, like chap stick, water, GU (for those long runs–yes, I’ve done them, as much as 14 miles!) a towel and a box of tissue, because my nose runs almost more than I do! (when I’m running.) I multitask well… watching TV and reading subtitles, listening to music, checking emails or FB, and running all at the same time!! Not to mention all the thoughts that still manage to stream through my head while all this is going on. No wonder I’m tired afterwards!

Most importantly, if I need to make an emergency pit stop–you know the kind, it’s just a few steps away in the next room! No need to worry about that!

fan, tissue, remote, towel, chapstick, I'm set!!
fan, tissue, remote, towel, chapstick, I’m set!!

One more awesome feature about running on the treadmill is, if you feel tired and you want to quit… you can. Personally I like to accomplish whatever mileage I have planned, but sometimes it’s just not working. No long walk home or back to the car if I decided to stop. I can also just pick the speed I want to run and stay there without having to strain my old eyes trying to read my pace on a Garmin. It is self regulating. I can also set the mill on an incline if I really want to challenge myself. (Truthfully, this is something I have never done, but the option is there! I do have it set always on a 1% incline.)

I also know that if I can plug out a 14 mile run on the treadmill, I can pretty much do anything I set my mind to. That, to me, is some amazing mental training! Secretly, I’ve always been interested to see if I could do a 20 mile run on it. I would need a really entertaining and L-O-N-G movie to watch, with subtitles. Maybe I will sometime on a rainy day when I need to do a long run.

slow and steady still burns calories!
slow and steady still burns calories!

Outside Hazards
I also like the treadmill because it is softer on your joints than running the pavement and there is no worry of rocks or branches to step on like on a dirt trail. You also don’t have to dodge any dog crap that seems to be littered everywhere on the paths these days (owners… what is your deal?)

Running on the treadmill is virtually worry free! Did I mention too that your shoes stay almost brand new looking? No dirty trails, no grimy pavement = pristine shoes. That I really like!

Sometimes, okay, quite often (Michele doesn’t always play nice with others I guess), when I run outside I get irritated with the other folks on the path.  You know, THAT dog walker walking 5 dogs outstretched on their leashes all across the path while they are talking on their cell phones. Not to mention the ones that neglect picking up after their pooch-yes, I’ve mentioned this already, but it is a HUGE pet peeve of mine. Or the cyclist who comes blaring past you from behind just inches to your left just grazing the side of your body, for what reason I am still unclear as the path is usually 6-8 feet wide.

And lasty, there’s rain, or inclement weather. I am still scarred from CIM last December and the idea of running in the rain. The treadmill lets me get my run done while keeping dry (except for the awesome sweat).

All in all, I would say the treadmill, or at least mine, is a a Godsend. It provides me with a workout I might opt out doing for various reasons I have mentioned.

Do I still like to run outside? Of course!! I live in a beautiful area full of gorgeous views. On a sunny day, I’m out there, even if it’s cold! But, I like having the option to run inside. I don’t get how people don’t like running on the treadmill. It’s doing the same thing, just differently. I certainly don’t mind.

When it’s time for a workout… I say… treadmill baby… yeah!!

How do you feel about the treadmill? Or is it the dreadmill for you?

(Note: I wrote this a month ago when I was  running… the day before the plantar fasciitis flared up again. Figured I’d better post it before too much time passed. In a few weeks, I plan to start up running again right there, on the treadmill.)

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11 thoughts on “Treadmill Baby

  1. Wow. I thought I was spoiled just having a widescreen TV set up right in front of my mill. Now I realize I need to step it up a little. Maybe knock down a basement wall or two for a view of the Chicagoland frozen tundra. Maybe a fridge next to the mill to keep some Gatorade or post-run milk cold…the possibilities are endless. And I totally agree, action/thriller movies make the miles melt away. In fact, I started listing out all the movies I’ve watched on the mill this year. I haven’t done movie reviews yet…

  2. I much prefer running outside to the treadmill. In fact, I absolutely hated running on the treadmill until recently when I had no choice due to the snowy winter. I even thought I started to like it (for a lot of the reasons you listed above!). However, now that I have been able to go back outside, I want nothing to do with the treadmill!..outside is definitely harder on the body though. I am feeling it this week;

    1. I can’t imagine braving a snowy winter and running outside like you do! On one hand I bet it’s really gorgeous (on a clear, sunny day, no wind 😉 ), but on the other, it’s nice to have the option to go inside if it’s blizzard-like conditions.
      There is nothing like enjoying the outdoors, especially on a run. I love both, really.

  3. I’m not a treadmill fan, but your post, (and your particular set up), made me reconsider my position. I had a treadmill, but I sold it because it just seemed such a painful way to run. Two miles on a treadmill was so much more brutal (to me) than 20 miles outside. I actually like the incliment weather, prefer the cold and love to run outside. I run pre-dawn (4:30 a.m. I try to be out of my house) so its usually always cold, except in the summer, and I really like it that way — probably because I heat up really quickly and the cold air is refreshing to me. I will admit however, that your particular set up, if I had to run on a treadmill, would be ideal. I hope you’re able to get back to running soon!

    1. I actually like running in temperatures that range in the 60’s and low 70’s. I too heat up pretty quick, so it’s nice to be in comfortable weather. But, I also get cold really easily. I do love to run outside, there is nothing like it. But I don’t mind running on the mill when need be. And yes, I do have a cushy set up!

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