Well, for starters, scientific research has proven that setting the treadmill to a 1% gradient accurately simulates outdoor running and how much energy you’d use on a standard run outdoors.
Now, as we’ve established that running outside and on the treadmill are basically the same at a 1% gradient, we show you when running on a treadmill is actually more beneficial to you than running on the road.
Your immediate thought might be “Surely the great outdoors is better for us?” and we wouldn’t blame you for thinking so. For instance, fresh air is great for stimulation and the scenery can be great for motivation too. Furthermore, you don’t have to pay to go running around the local park, do you? However, that doesn’t paint the whole picture as there are loads of benefits to running on a treadmill too.
It may be ostensibly cheaper in financial terms, but it does come at a cost to your body. Outdoor running puts far more pressure on your muscles and joints, mainly the knees. That hard asphalt under your feet doesn’t have the same ‘give’ that treadmills do. To combat this, you’ll need a fairly good pair of purpose built running shoes, which don’t come cheap.
Good for your (shoe) sole
Obviously, you can’t run on a treadmill bare foot (comfortably, or without risk of injury). So either course will set you back a pair of shoes, but the treadmill’s grippy belt will wear your shoes down less quickly than abrasive and slippery pavements, muddy tracks and rugged nature trails, so you’ll save money on shoes in the long run.
Whatever the weather
The most obvious benefit of the treadmill that you don’t have to endure the cold, the wet and the wind, keeping you warm and dry and making you more likely to keep up with your exercise regime. Getting a good workout on the treadmill is better than suffering through a bad run, getting hurt or, worst of all, not going for a run at all.
Variety of training
Whatever you’re training for, be it a 5km run, a marathon or just some interval training, most modern treadmills have a setting to simulate exactly what you are training for, in more comfortable conditions, with less chance of hurting yourself and at less of a financial outlay than you’d think. Simply select a program, or if you don’t have that option, manually adjust the incline levels, and you can train in the same simulated conditions as you’d find out in the real world.
So with that in mind, why not come and give one of the treadmills at our gyms a go. You can find your nearest centre by clicking here.