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Couch to 5K
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Week 2 - incline on the treadmil and trainers?

Well after a bit of a false start (had dental surgery after my first run, setting me back a week) I am now ending week two and feeling great, already I feel fitter with each run and have got into the habit of doing some weight training in between to support my joints and muscles - hooked on running again!

So pleased to be in a dedicated mindset again.

I just wondered if anyone here has thoughts on treadmill running and the incline settings? I have learned that when running on a treadmill it must be on, otherwise running outside will be much harder (due to natural incline) and the calf muscles aren't being worked properly, but what setting should I use? Right now I am on 1 but should I be increasing this each week?

Also feel that the trainers I have are a bit worn and not giving me the support I need, I am after a nike plus pair so I have the option to track my runs when I start going in the lovely park near my house but I don't want to pay £100+. I tried the sports direct website but it was rubbish, despite finding a pair I liked the website ended up charging me double - then after a few concerned emailed they just cancelled my order without replying to my query!

Does anyone have any thoughts on where I could get decent trainers for a good price?

Many thanks - the stories on here continue to inspire me!


5 Replies

I run a lot on the treadmill and coincidentally also run in Nike+ (LunarGlide+) which I purchased from Sportsdirect :) though I did not have the problems that you did.

Anyway I run normally with 1º of incline on the treadmill, I was told a while back that this helps emulate the wind resistance your body would feel if it was running, ie: moving. I'm not sure how much credence there is in this. I also run at different inclines when doing other training between run days, such as hill sprints, as this is one of the features of my treadmill.

As for trainers, most here I think would agree that if it's possible go get your gait analysis first, a lot of running/sports shops now offer this facility.

Good Luck with it all :)


Hi. The "one degree of incline to replicate wind resistance" is, I'm afraid an old wives tale. A study showed that you need to be running at something like 6 minute miles before it makes any measurable difference. That said, I use my mill throughout the winter and if I didn't use a bit of incline, I'd be in trouble when I hit the road again. But rather than set an incline at a fixed level (as most people would suggest), my thoughts are that it should be varied within a workout. After all, you would never do a whole outdoor run without going up and down a little (or a lot). So, if your mill has programs, choose one that raises and lowers the incline as you go - that's much more representative of "real life". Don't raise the incline every run - you'll run out of incline obviously, but you can get into injury problems too - Plantar Fasciitis is a distinct threat if you change too much too soon. Better to vary within a run or to find an incline you're comfortable with and stick at that. (If I'm doing a walk on the mill, I tend to set it to incline 6, which is a good compromise between effort and calorie burn).

Remember too that unless you have a fancy treadmill with a fan, you're getting hotter than you would outside (another reason for ignoring the one degree incline 'rule').

I honestly do find running outside a lot easier than on the mill - again, this is contrary to what most people will tell you. Maybe I'm just peculiar, or maybe "other people" are those that have only read about using a mill rather than having personally used one, I don't know which is true. Me being peculiar is quite likely (:->)

Re your shoes, I'd definitely support getting some that take the Nike+ sensor (in my experience it's much more accurate than GPS-based systems) . But this is a big investment (especially in terms of comfort and protection from injury) so I would go along to a local sports shop and try on a few pairs. Even better, go to a running specialist who can do a gait analysis (measure your running style) and who can recommend almost a tailored fit. (Having said that, there was a study recently which suggested that gait analysis is largely a waste of time. But personally I can't see that it can do any actual harm.)

Hope that helps, and good luck.


Ah thanks both, this is really helpful and the incline thing is much clearer to me now :)

A gait analysis sounds like the best approach, will look into that asap!


I run on a treadmill set at 1- thank you malcy fir addutional info. i also went to a local running shop for my trainers- they videod me running and assessed my style- there was no charge and they offered me a range of trainers that were suitable at a range if prices.


Ah that's a great idea - will do this next weekend I think!


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