Ever wondered whether running on a treadmill is the equivalent of running outdoors? Read on, to discover the differences.
Do you run to keep fit? Or is it because you like working out outdoors? Either way, you can’t avoid facing the question of whether running on a treadmill is better or worse than running on a track in the park?
The debate about running at the gym versus outdoors, is ongoing. There are pros and cons to both, although research has indicated that a few adjustments can make the former equivalent to the latter.
So, to get the best of both options, you can mix running outdoors with running indoors, based on your convenience and mood.
Pros of treadmill
#1 Running on treadmills is easier, due to the absence of wind resistance. Outside, your body tends to propel itself forward against the wind. But you can simulate these conditions on a treadmill, by increasing the gradient by 1%.
#2 The weather is critical to running. So if its too cold, hot, rainy or slushy outside, then the treadmill is your best bet. No puddles to make you slip, no humidity or blazing sunshine to drain your energy!
#3 You can simulate race courses on the treadmill by adjusting the pace and gradient. In some cases, you can practice downhill running on the back of the treadmill.
#4 You don’t have to moderate your fluid intake too much on a treadmill. This is useful, if you are preparing for a marathon, since you don’t need to stop for a sip.
If you’re already hooked to indoor running at the gym, check out these ways to improve your run!
Pros of outdoors running
#1 Running outdoors is helpful when it comes to maintaining a pace, since visual cues provide an impetus. And it’s harder work to run outside, says research. Though you may imagine that running on a treadmill is faster paced, this isn’t so.
#2 On a treadmill, it’s typical to settle into a moderate running pace if you forget to adjust the speed. However, running outside calls for you to moderate your own speed more naturally: push yourself at the right time, and slow down when the levels of the ground change or when your energy drops.
#3 Running outside has many health benefits. A variation in the terrain increases the challenge to your body. This strengthens and tones your ligaments and muscles, and improves your sense of balance. But do bear in mind that running on a hard pavement is more damaging to the joints than running at the same speed, on the treadmill.
#4 Research proves that running amidst green spaces is both revitalising and energising. Aside from being an anxiety reliever, this boosts the optimism and reduces depression. Moreover, exposure to sunlight provides you with vital Vitamin D.