I know many people don’t like the treadmill.  In fact, many people HATE it and call it the dreamill.

Dear Treadmill

While I do like my gym and have enjoyed most of my runs outside, there have been times that I wished I had a treadmill at home.  On many occasions I have questioned my sanity because it would be freezing or snowing and yet I was outside.  Also, the snow and ice makes a run or driving challenging so ideally it would be best to run indoors.  Other times it takes me longer to motivate myself and get ready for a run than the actual run (especially for my runs of 30-45 minutes).  🙂

However, I have also done a lot of runs on the treadmill.  I think the longest run I’ve done is either 14 or 16 miles.  During my summer break I would wake up later than usual and by then it would be too hot to run outside.  I remember one day running in the middle of the day and I almost passed out.  Not sure what I was thinking.  Or I guess I wasn’t thinking at all.  🙂

Here is what helped me make my runs more bearable:

 Listen to fun music.  I rarely listen to music while on a run but on the treadmill it is a MUST.  I have a variety of Spanish and English music and various playlists.  Depending on how I was feeling is the music I would pick.  However, my favorites are:

• Watch TV.  Sometimes music gets on my nerves so I prefer to watch TV.  I’ve watched whatever is playing on the television or a show on my iPad.


• Change incline and/or pace.  I did my runs at 0% incline but made sure to change the pace.  I would set a timer for 1:30/2:00 minutes or 3:00/4:00 minutes and then change the pace (I would have 3 different paces) at the sound of the buzzer.  Or I would change it after each song.  This would make the run a bit more exciting and made the time go by faster.

• Reward myself.  For me it would be a coffee, food, beer, or a new piece of gear.  Of course I wouldn’t do this for every single run but mainly on days when I had ZERO desire to run and needed some motivation.


• Thinking of that wonderful feeling after a run.  The most difficult part of a run is starting said run.  Once that happens then you get all of these good feelings and the result is a wonderful sense of accomplishment.  And then be ready to do it all over again.

• Break up the run into parts.  I never did a run without stopping.  Who wants to run 10 miles without stopping?  Not me.  For a run of that distance, I would run 2.5 miles, take a quick break, and run again 2.5 miles.  Then I would use the bathroom and/or get more water and repeat for the rest of the 5 miles.  Something similar could be done for 12, 14, or 16 miles.  The key is to not think of it as a LONG run of 12, 14, 16 miles but instead as short and quick runs with breaks in between.

So yes/no to treadmill?  What’s the longest you’ve run on the treadmill?

Linking up with MarciaPatti, and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.


20 Comments on My love relationship with the treadmill.

  1. I agree with you that you really can’t beat the convenience of the mill. Sure it’s not optimal but especially here in Chicago there are days that are really tough to get out. Especially if you’re aiming for a specific pace. My treadmill PR is 22 miles. It was the last long run before Boston and we had 8″ of snow with freezing rain on top. No way that run could have happened outside.

    • Wow, cannot imagine running 22 miles! But I agree that with those weather conditions, it had to be done.

  2. I really don’t love running on the treadmill but it’s always been a necessary evil if I want to get all my miles in. The longest I’ve ever done on a treadmill is 11 miles. I was training for a winter half (WDW) and it was icy and cold. It was the worst.

    • I agree it is the last resort to get your miles in. This crazy weather we have doesn’t help. I remember training for Goofy Challenge and questioned my decision during the winter.

  3. I am in the middle. While I often prefer to be outside running, during the winter I get so chilled after a run it can feel like it takes days to warm back up. And I do like speed work on the mill.

    I think my longest treadmill run was 8 miles — which was quite a few years ago — but last year there were a lot of painful 6 mile tempo runs on it due to weather. Mine shuts down after 90 minutes so the engine doesn’t overheat (and because it’s so old, sometimes blows up about that time — well, it happened once. )

    • Speed work is awesome on the treadmill too! Haha I know what you mean about being cold.

  4. I’m so lame. I have a really nice treadmill at home that I barely use, but still use the excuse that it’s too cold or snowy outside to run and then sit on my couch instead of heading to my home gym! We do have a TV in the room with it, so I usually watch the news (boring I know, but I’m a news hound) or whatever else is on. It’s been a while, but I think my longest treadmill run was 15 or 16 miles, but I broke it up like you do.

    • I am jealous that you have a treadmill! Hopefully now it will be warmer and you won’t have an excuse. 😜

  5. I would never be able to run double digits on the treadmill. I usually have to do interval training on it and mostly in the winter months. I would be the one that run outside when it is 90 degrees out. I’d take heat over cold any day.

  6. I agree that while I prefer to run outside, I am so glad that the treadmill is an option. We get such extreme weather where we both live that a treadmill is key, especially when training. I would rather run on a treadmill than skip a run because of bad weather.

    • I agree! I’ve missed a few runs because of the weather and wouldn’t have been a problem if I had a treadmill at home.

  7. The longest I’ve done is 11 miles, and I was done at that point. I was tired mentally and physically. I don’t know how you could do 14.

  8. I run on the treadmill at my gym pretty often because I can take my kids to the child care there. I don’t usually do more than 6 miles but I think the longest I’ve done is 10. I agree that changing up the incline/pace frequently and listening to good music is crucial. I never listen to music when I’m running outside either.

    • Kudos for child are! I don’t have kids but love it when gyms offer this service to parents.

  9. Great tips!! I agree…I have to break up the runs into several short runs or I will go ape-sh7t-bat-crazy. I can make it as far as 2-3 miles nonstop sometimes, but that’s about it. Switching speeds for intervals also helps a lot. I usually have to up the speed for the final mile (every 1/4 mile) to get it DONE.

  10. I think 7 miles is the longest I’ve run on a treadmill? Anything longer is just an incredible feat in my view, lol! It has to be great to have a treadmill at home. I’d really like to build a home gym in the next year or so and have a dedicated space when I need the motivation!

Thank you for your comment!