Beat Treadmill Boredom

8 Feb

As you know, I’m a runner. I’ve run a whole marathon, a 10 k, a couple of 5 k races, and am doing my first half marathon in May. I love running outside, especially when it’s warmer and the days are longer and I can run outside, into the country. But this time of year, runnign outside is less appealing. I still do it, but in winter, outdoor runs make up less of my weekly workout schedule. It’s cold, and it’s harder for me to make myslef run as far or as fast as I’m used to. So I turn to the treadmill….

Now, as much as I enjoy running, plain old treadmill runs just can’t compare to running outdoors. Even if there’s something really great on the tv at the gym, I’d still rather be outside. However, there is one treadmill workout that I really enjoy. This one ( from one of my favourite blogs, Carrots and Cake) makes 45 minutes fly by. And even though it’s been about a year since I started doing it, it still leaves me sweaty and winded at the end. What makes things really fly is that you’re constantly changing speeds and inclines. I never run at the same speed/incline for more than 5 minutes at a time. So, instead of counting down to the end of a 45 minute session, I’m counting down to the end of this interval of 5 minutes (or less), and before I know it, I’m already on the cool down. It is tough sometimes, but I always manage to push through it. I’ve now done this workout so many times that I have it memorized! Usually, I don’t do it more than once a week so my body won’t get too used to it.

Last weekend, I tried something new on the treadmill. I just wanted to 20 minutes before doing a class, so I hopped on the treadmill and warmed up for a minute walking at a speed of 3.5 mph, incline 1. Then I cranked the incline to 10 and kept the speed. Even though 3.5 isn’t fast, you can really feel the burn at such a high incline! After 10 minutes, I decreased the incline to 3 and bumped the speed up to 6 mph. After five minutes of that, I went back to incline 10 and 3.5 mph for the last 5 minutes. This was a great 20 minute cardio session. I’ll definitely do this again on the days when I don’t have time for a whole 45 minutes of cardio, or if I’m just warming up for a class. It challenged me, but didn’t become tedious as I was switching it up.

I will never be a treadmill junkie, but workouts like this are a great way to prevent treadmill boredom from setting in. In fact, I really do enjoy a treadmill session like this. What are your feelings about treadmills – love ’em, hate ’em? Any great workouts you use?

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2 Responses to “Beat Treadmill Boredom”

  1. Christina February 8, 2011 at 7:12 pm #

    Good luck with your training! I just started training for my half in May. I have ran a few half marathons and a full one last November…so I totally hear you on the treadmill! I love running outside…it always flies by! When I run on the treadmill I also change my speed/incline every mile or so..it makes it much more bearable! 🙂

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  1. Making the best « hungryhealthyhilary - March 18, 2011

    […] muffins with jam and butter. I knew I needed protein (after all, I had just completed a tough treadmill workout) so I opted for the ham and cheese eggs (plain scrambled eggs don’t really excite me), I took […]

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