Treadmill running

I'm new here and just completed W4 R1 at the weekend. I tried doing the Couch to 5K before and never completed it , but hopefully I will this time! I've roped my partner into doing it too - we're both gym members (although our attendance left a lot to be desired!!!) so our Couch to 5K is being done on the treadmill. Will my stamina differ greatly between treadmill running and going out pounding the streets?


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9 Replies

  • There are some differences between running on the street and treadmill running. One thing to do with a treadmill is to set the incline to 1% to simulate outdoor running. The treadmill should provide a degree of cushioning unlike hard surfaces outside. One thing that I found difficult is translating my pace to outside and you can only get the sense of how you are pacing yourself by actually running outside. That aside treadmill running can get you in shape

  • Thank you for your reply! I have set the treadmill with an incline so hopefully when i do eventually venture outdoors it shouldn't be too bad. Just need to get through the next few weeks to completion of the programme! :)

  • I started C25K on my home treadmill but I was so bored that after a couple of weeks, I ran outside. I felt a bit scared that everyone would point and stare but discovered no one was interested enough to even see me! I have been running outside now for a year, love the variety - woods and fields, town and planning different routes too. I find pavements relatively similar to a treadmill, trails make my legs work harder. I tried to run on the treadmill on a bad weather day and found it was still pretty challenging though

  • Welcome back to the program and well done for getting this far! Use the forum as much as possible to keep motivated. Post after your runs and let everyone encourage you through the programme. If you tell us you're going to run, we'll be expecting your post so there'll be no excuse not to go and do it! :)

    As for the treadmill, I totally understand anyone wanting to complete the programme this way. I completed the first 6 weeks on the treadmill as I was so self conscious about being outside and being seen by anybody (the idea of being seen by someone I knew was mortifying!)! I loved the idea of running outside and everyone kept telling me too but I just didn't have the confidence. The first time I did an outdoor run I went at 10pm at night dressed all in black so no one would see me and I was still shaking like a leaf! Once I'd done it I LOVED it and haven't run on the treadmill since! A lot of people say treadmill running is easier but I found running outside SO much easier because it was so interesting with all of the distractions. Barely anyone noticed me and even if they did I now couldn't care less! I understand you might not want to go outside to start with (especially in this cold weather) but if you ever get the urge I would completely suggest giving it a go! Running for 30 minutes is running for 30 minutes no matter how you complete it so don't worry if that's how you want to do it.

    Good luck, keep us updated on your progress! Remember - if we've all managed it, you can too! :)

  • Thank you for the encouragement and I will keep you all updated as to how I get on! I will, no doubt, progress to running outdoors at some point, but as for now due to the unpredictable weather and also as I am trying to encourage my partner in to completing this (he is rather more self-conscious than I am) I think it will have to be the indoor treadmill! :)

  • HI there,

    I did the whole of programme on the treadmill before progressing to outdoors. Even after nearly 2 years, I still do a mix of outdoor and treadmill running.

    Have no fear - just go for it! You';ll be fine

    Good luck!


  • Thank you John. I'll do my best :)

  • Either or both. Whatever works for you. I used the treadmill quite a bit while I was on the C25k program and i think it's quite helpful as you get used to running. In my case graduation coincided with spring and it was lovely to be outdoors. I have a gym membership so should go back to the treadmill over the winter but I find it boring now after running outside!

    I dealt with the self-consciousness by convincing myself that I was invisible. I did such a good job of that that I'm surprised whenever a friend says "I saw you out running the other day"!

  • I use my treadmill more now that the weather is cold. Yes it's more boring than sightseeing outside but if you put some good music on then the time can pass quickly.

    The other benefits are that you can increase the incline as much as you like (it's like having a permanent hill in your pocket :-) ) and run at a constant speed without having to slow down to cross roads, avoid dogs and other hazards.

    You have a choice of jogging at a slow pace or really ramping up the speed for as long as you want (yes I know you can just speed up outside) and it's easier on the knees than the pavements.

    The other main benefit is that if you have had enough of running but still want to exercise then you can have a much longer cool down walk.

    It's good sometimes to put the incline on 4-8 and walk slowly for another ten to twenty minutes, the workout isn't as hard and you are still getting the benefits of exercise.

    Oh and then stretch and get off and go into the kitchen for a nice glass of milk and a banana :-)

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