A sad article about treadmills.

3 random items of business to cover first:

1.  You know you go to Yogurltand too much when the last time you went in the employees were so excited to see Brooke and tell you that they had been waiting to give her this adorable stuffed animal.  She really does love it already and I caught her mid-cooing over how excited she was over it.  

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2. I LOVE looking at the random produce at the store and trying to find things I have never seen before.  Anyone ever seen this veggie (I think it is a vegetable at least)?  Anyone know the name of it?

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3.  I hope all of you running the RNR Vegas Half-Marathon or Marathon have a great time running tonight.  I loved it so very much last year (minus the fact I thought I was going to die because I felt so sick because I was pregnant and didn’t know it). 

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Have you read THIS article yet?

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The title alone made my heart sink.

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WHAT!?!?! According to their study they are saying that in order to replicate running outdoors you need to have your treadmill set at a THREE PERCENT INCLINE.  I don’t know how I feel about that.  

I don’t know if you know about this but I kind of like the treadmill and actually do most of my training on it.  I usually set it to a 1% or 1.5% incline and for me personally I feel like I get a pretty equal workout (obviously not compared to if I am running into a headwind and running hills outside but I am comparing it to running on a flat road).  

I was talking to my sub-3 marathoner friend about this and we both agree that our natural/feel good pace is actually slower on the treadmill than running outdoors.  It is harder for us to hit the same pace on the treadmill than it is outside.  I did my entire training for my first marathon on a treadmill at around a 7.2 (8:20 mile) and ran that marathon at a 7:40 minute mile pace.  I feel like the treadmill actually really trained me well for that race.  Added bonus… if you can mentally get through a long run on a treadmill you can pretty much do anything right?

What do you think… do you think that 3% incline on the treadmill is = to running outside?  

Do you go faster outside or on the treadmill?  Do you usually set your treadmill on an incline?  Ever done the majority of your training for a race on the treadmill?

What races in the Rock ‘n’ Roll series have you ran?  Has anyone done the Vegas one?  HOW DID CIM GO?!?!?

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130 comments

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So stinking cute!!
The odd looking veggie is normally called Budda’s hand at my local asian market. Don’t know much else about it, though…
I’m not a runner, but will do a 3.7 mph on a 15% incline for 30 or so for good cardio.

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Thanks Lori! That is awesome that you knew about the Budda’s hand!!! holy cow… 15% incline, that is hardcore!

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How cute is Brooke! My daughter is obsessed with Hello Kitty. Christmas shopping was easy peasy for her.

I read that article a few days ago and thought it was silly. Of course treadmill running is different than running outside but a an upgrade of 3 is way too much. Even the elite coaches say use .5 or 1. I think people read too much into things. I also trained mostly on the treadmill for my first marathon and loved it.

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I was really hoping you would leave a comment about this because I take your opinion really seriously so thank you!

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You both made me feel better because I’m signed up for the SLC half this spring and I’m pretty sure most of my training will be downstairs on my treadmill :/

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I would steer clear of Men’s Health articles in general. They’re notorious for getting things completely wrong (especially when it comes to their dating/relationship/sex articles, but that’s another issue entirely). I tried to bump up my treadmill workouts with inclines, and I find anything over 1.5% to be really hard to keep up with for very long – how often do you really run multiple mile long up hills?

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And seriously, 14 people? That is a ridiculously small sample size. I’m with you – I always feel like I have to put more effort to run the same pace on a treadmill as I do outside.
I did the R’n’R Arizona last January and PR’ed! Woohoo! My only complaint was that they delayed the start almost 30 minutes so elites could get there.
That is so cute that the employees gave Brooke the Hello Kitty! Your whole family is so adorable!

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I give the same advise to men as you do to whomever you were addressing. Women are much more emotional than men are and tend to base their evidence on feelings as men use more objective FACTS and science.

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I usually set my treadmill to 1.0% or 1.5% – I think 3% is a little steep!

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That’s a total crock of poo. I can’t run anywhere nearly as fast on a treadmill as I do outside.

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First…Love the Brooke photo.

2nd. That article is crap. Says me.
I do all my runs @ a 2% incline. 3%….no way.
Seriously think that article is BOGUS!

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I seriously wanted to call you up and talk to you about this article ha… so glad you told me what you thought because you are such an incredible runner!

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It was a legitimate study, their conclusion was based on the people in the group. Why would they make up false results?
It is much more difficult and requires much more energy and the use of many more muscles to walk up hill outside than it is on an inclined treadmill while watching Opra, any 5th grader will tell you that.

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I trained for my last marathon on the treadmill and PR’d by 16 minutes. I think it’s a load of crap too. I also did workouts that I get from here http://www.gppfit.com and I think the strength training really helped. I love my treadmill. So I guess I am a little biased.
Brooke is adorable!

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EMILY!!! Thank you so much for linking that… I have been looking for some strength training to do. CONGRATS on your killer 16 minute pr!

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Omg! I am dying on the treadmill when running the same speed outside! I just ran a 10K last month and finished in 41 minutes..a 6:40 pace..when I run a 6:40 pace on the treadmill (9.0), I can’t hold it for very long! I don’t know! The whole treadmill vs. outdoor running confuses me!

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DANG MEGAN!!! Congrats on your killer 10k…you are amazing!

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I. WOULD. DIE if my treadmill incline was set to 3.0 all the time. NO WAY! I definitely notice a difference with hills when I run outside after being on the TM a lot… but my speed is a lot better. Running on the TM is way harder!

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NO clue what those veggies are, but I am curious to find out!

I think 1.5% is accurate – definitely not 3%. Yesterday I ran 11 miles and while I wore my Garmin, I did not look at it once until the end and my average pace was 7:38min/mile. While that is nothing super fast, the run felt easy and comfortable…I wasn’t trying to push myself. I know if I wanted to run 11 miles at that pace on the treadmill, it wouldn’t have felt comfortable or easy. So I agree with you and Rachelle 100%

I have never done and RnR race. I think they look like a lot of fun though – so hopefully one day!

Love the mid-coo picture of Brook. Those baby noises are so dang cute! She will have sweet dreams of Yogurtland now. As all people, including babies, should have. That place is magical.

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Yup, it’s a Budda’s hand. It’s a citrus, but I’ve only used the peel for zesting before. Just like a lemon!

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I actually read an article in Runners World awhile back that stated running on a treadmill is actually tougher mentally and people typically run slower on treadmills because they are aware of how fast they are going. I say keep running treadmill/ outside and stay happy:)

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omg that is so cute that they gave brooke the stuffed animal!!

i really have to disagree with the article. i run one day a week outside and the rest inside on a treadmill. i always run faster outside than i do on the treadmill. and always PR in my races. and running outside really isn’t hard, so i don’t think 3% incline matches outdoors lol

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Lol…lol…the reason you run faster outside is you are using more muscles which is critical to maintain the female bone structure. A bit of common sense and research, which this article has done, goes a long way. You girls can deny all you want to but you will burn more calories running outside than you will on a treadmill and build more lower body strength.

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This may be a silly question but the article says to ramp it up to 3% for walking. Do you think it would be different for running? Everything I’ve ever read says that a 1-2% incline mimics running outdoors. I personally fun the treadmill harder but it may just be that I rarely use the treadmill and I think it uses some of your muscles differently.

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That article makes me so sad. I mostly run outside but every once and a while I’ll leap on the treadmill, and I always think running on the treadmill is SO much harder!! I can run a lot faster for longer when it’s just me and the pavement. 3% incline would be the death of me.

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I think the treadmill is harder! I had to do my week day training runs on the treadmill for my last marathon and the weekend long runs felt easier and faster!
Hmmmm. I don’t know if I agree with the article!

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i run SO much slower on the treadmill as opposed to outside. in my opinion treadmill running is harder.

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You are correct, it is harder on a treadmill because you are not using all your lower body muscles. When running outside you use a variety of muscle groups which are not used on a treadmill. If you want an optimum workout of all the lower body muscles running outside is more effective, however better to use a treadmill than to not run at all.

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BOOO!! That article stinks. I love my treadmill when the weather’s bad (all winter since I live in Southeast Idaho). I can’t turn the treadmill up as fast as I run outside and I usually set the incline at around 1% – unless I’m doing a hill workout. I figure if you can run for an hour or two looking at a wall you can run through anything!! Seriously, even if the workout is different it’s better than not running at all.

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True, using a treadmill is better than not running at all. But if you can run outside you will use more and different muscles than if you use only the treadmill, so I would run outside when you are able.

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I have to say that training long runs on a treadmill is actually harder for me than running outdoors. Outside I run much faster and farther and it feels so much better. If I’m training on a treadmill I know for sure if I go 6 miles that I can go outside and do ten at the same pace.

Just for my experience, I’m going yo disregard that study just because I’m stubborn and do y want to run on a 3 grade incline! :) plus what I’m doing seems to be working okay.

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How appropriate that I am reading this while at Yogurtland! BTW, the peppermint hot chocolate is my new favorite flavor & I think I run much faster outside than on the treadmill.

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Seriously, that flavor is the best!

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While I can’t access the full text of the article, I think it *may* be referring to trail (not road) running. The context of the article refers to running over and around uneven terrain and obstacles. And, if that is the case, then I agree that 3% is probably a far better replica than 1%, considering there are no added challenges.
I’m also a pretty big fan of treadmills because of the huge amounts of snow and ice we get here and I’m currently waiting on the delivery of my VERY FIRST TREADMILL!!! Woo hoooo!!!! I’ve been running over 20 years now, and I’m so freaking excited!
So, I won’t get too down about the article and continue to use 1% grade for training for road races and amp up the incline (or rather, vary it quite a bit) for trail races.

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I guess I have never done trail running so I can’t really have an opinion about how treadmill running is compared to trail running!
AHHHHH SO SO HAPPY you are getting your first treadmill! What kind are you getting?

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A Landice L7….yay! You’re in a great area now for trail running–definitely give it a try!

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Ooo, I found the article and it’s completely off from what Men’s Health reported–
http://journals.lww.com/nsca-jscr/Abstract/2012/10000/Workload_Comparison_Between_Hiking_and_Indoor.36.aspx
They compared hiking on rocky trails in hiking boots with walking on a treadmill. Well, duh, of course that would be harder! Now we can go back to enjoying our treadmills. =)

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I am really glad to read that you don’t run as fast on the treadmill as you do outside. I feel like I can NEVER go as fast on a treadmill. Granted I don’t run near as fast as you but still, I thought it was odd because people say treadmills are easier than roads? Anyways I hate the treadmill and avoid it as much as possible.

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Good advise, the best comment on this site yet.

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I’m with you guys…3.0 would be crazy! I actually run faster on the treadmill on a typical day….I think it’s because I have to play with my speed to mentally get through treadmill runs AND I know if I am pushing myself on the ‘mill I don’t have to crawl back if I get stuck a few miles out on a trail ;-)

I ran Rock n’ Roll DC last year! They’re changing the course for 2013, so I’m excited to see what it has in store.

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I actually came to this conclusion on my own earlier this year…

http://www.notsofitgirl.com/2012/07/if-you-want-to-be-runner-then-be-runner.html

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I figure, you’re so fast and you run on the treadmill a lot, so it must be having a good influence on your training. Official testing not needed! Brooke and Hello Kitty are too cute :)

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I have been loving my treadmill runs lately and do not want this to be true. I can not go as fast on a treadmill as I can outside but I still think I get a great workout…even without a 3% incline (honestly that just seems crazy to me). I can see that the treadmill is definitely easier than outside running, but have a hard time believing the difference is as drastic as the study shows.

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Running on the treadmill for more than 3 miles really gets to me. I would much rather run 10 miles outside than 4 on the treadmill. It’s beyond boring in my opinion and feels so much harder. I always end up running way slower on the treadmill than outside. I fear the winter weather and me being forced to turn to the treadmill…

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oyyyy…treadmills. I definitely do not think running on a treadmill is easier. I never run on treadmills because running a certain pace on a treadmill always feels so much faster and harder then running that same pace outdoors. And I start to go crazy after the 1st two miles. I don’t know how you do it!!!

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3% Pft! That’s kind of crazy. All this time I’ve been walking at 1-1.5 and figuring that was good enough. I definitely notice that the treadmill cramps my style though. I have this subconscious fear of tripping and flying off the treadmill so my stride definitely gets affected. If only I didn’t live in the land of ice and snow and could spend more time being outside…

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janae, that first pic of brooke is SO CUTE!!! thank you for sharing!
i agree with you – i set my pace slower on the TM than i run outside. i like 1% incline. i always think back to the woman from alaska who won the US olympic trials a few years back (sorry, i forget her name) and she trained majorly on a treadmill. i definitely think the TM has its positives!
have a great rest of sunday! a few friends of mine from up here in ontario/canada are running the vegas marathon tonight! oh – i have no clue about that veggie?!

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When I first started running in 2007, I had no idea what I was doing on the treadmill. I’d run at a 4.0 incline and wonder A. Why is this soooooo hard?! B. Why does my face turn purple?!

Since then I’ve stuck to a 1.0 incline. 3.0 seems to be a bit much. The researchers factor in uneven terrain and wind, but don’t count the boredom factor that treadmill runners have to endure.

I did RnR Portland and Seattle in May/June (Seattle on my birthday!!)

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I do pretty much all of my daily running on my treadmill. With 2 kids, it is just more practical until they are both in school full time. And I have to admit, I’ve been on the treadmill for so long, I prefer it at this point because it’s where my comfort zone is. I have heard you need to keep it at 1% at least to mimic a flat run outside, that no incline is like running a slight downhill. Now I had mine at 4% for all my runs for the longest time (like a year) but just went down to 2% because I was having so many aches and pains and was trying to run through them (which I was able to do). I know it is not the same as outside and I can run faster on the treadmill because it paces me. I did 7.75 in 65 min the other day on the treadmill but my last 10k was 59:45 outside because of all the outside factors. They way I look at it through, calories burned are calories burned no matter how I have to get it done!

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First of all I love that Brooke now has a hello kitty yogurt land doll. Too cute.

I agree that a 3 percent incline is very high. I am always slower on the treadmill and use a 1 percent incline. I used to use 2.0 and was about 45 seconds slower per mile and it was hard! I don’t understand how 3 percent would be equal to running outside even in hilly terrain. At least outside if there are uphills there are also downhills.

Regardless of your incline, I know you will be running a sub 3 marathon very soon :)

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The TM is the best thing to ever happen to my training and I stand by that!!!! I can run a whole minute faster outside for the same effort on the TM.

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That is because you are using more of your muscles while running outside. Since you use more muscles outside you are limiting yourself to the few muscle groups a treadmill demands of you. Running outside will build the proper muscles you need to sustain running a long run without being injured as a result of solely training on a treadmill, in other words you are placing yourself in a position to get injured if you only workout on a treadmill then transition to a long run outside.

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3% incline seems like a little much…..I mean, does that equate to outside PLUS a 20 mph headwind?? ;)

I usually set my treadmill at a 1% incline.

I ran the Seattle RnR marathon….it was awesome at mile 16 – they had pictures of military that had been killed in action, held by family members of those who had died. American flags, military flags and the overwhelming emotion of that point in the race was truly something special.

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Walking on a treadmill is NOT the same as running on one. I am sure 3% is appropriate at a walking pace but I run a 1.5% and that just about replicates my outdoor pace. I hate the TM though and will literally run at midnight if I have to to avoid it. I’m dreading the snow coming to the UK because I know I won’t run on the TM and will probably eat my weight in crappy food because I’m depressed about not running outside :( I don’t know how you do it!

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I love that they know you at yogurtland! I’m pretty well known at all of my favorite haunts… I feel like a VIP!

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I completely disagree with the article. I have three kids (one who is a three 1/2 mo old) and running outside is completely unrealistic for me. I LOVE my treadmill and use it for all my daily runs. When I do a race I always always beat my treadmill pace by at least 30sec/mi. Running outside is much easier for me too!

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I run differently on the treadmill than I do outside. On the treadmill, my stride is shorter and I’m forced into a faster turn-over. I’m not very tall (5’3 at most) but my stride is long for my height. I find that on the treadmill, I’m more out of breath because my legs are moving faster, but I’m not using my strength to propel me forward as much. I can coast without effort outside at a pace that I find hard to hold on the treadmill for an equal amount of time. If I use a treadmill, it’s for incline work or short tabata sprints only (for my sanity, for the most part, because a droning middle to long distance pace run on the dreadmill kills my soul). I’d much rather run outside through Canadian snow drifts than hit that thing. That being said, I don’t think a 3% incline is equivalent, but I think that a 1-1.5 % with some hills tossed in (up to 4-5.5% for 30 sec, maybe 3 times in a workout) would be a pretty safe bet for making it even.
Just my two cents from personal experience. :D
Ps. The Hello Kitty is TOO CUTE!! ;)

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I do many of my training runs on the treadmill. Now, I am not a super fast runner (about a 9 minute mile for a half), but it all evens out as long as I stay on a 1% incline. I do however, put it up to a 3 or a 4% incline every 10 or so minutes to imitate a hill, but I only keep it at that for about half a mile or less, and then I go back down to a normal incline for another 10 minutes. I can’t imagine running an hour straight on a 3% incline. My calves hurt just thinking about it.

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I disagree with this article. A colleague of mine actually sent me this article a few days ago because he knows my love of the TM. I think the 3% is comparable to trail running, specifically. I think 1% accurately mimics running on the road.

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First of all I have been reading your blog for a few weeks now and I LOVE IT! You are so fun, and soooo motivational! In my personal experience running on the treadmill vs. running outside doesn’t make a huge difference. I actually feel like it is much easier to run outside a lot of the time, but that’s just me :) I have trained for a half marathon on the treadmill, and when race time came it was easy and fun to run outside!

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3% incline seems like way too much! I’ll set it up that high (or higher) sometimes, but just for a little while to train for hills….I did a lot of my training for both of the half marathons I’ve run and I was extremely happy with how they went.
When I run on the treadmill I set it at an incline of either .5 or 1.0. I run slower than outside too but like I said, it hasn’t seemed to be a problem for my race training!

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I try to avoid the treadmill whenever possible. Running outside is the best way to adapt to changing conditions, any of which you might encounter on race day.
I have done Vegas (when it was in the morning), Nashville and Phoenix.

The Kidless Kronicles

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I prefer to run outside and agree that its a better workout, but don’t feel too safe getting up and running outdoors at 5 am so I head to the gym instead. I set the treadmill on a 1.5% incline, apparently I will have to move that up a tad! I have noticed when I run outside I tend to run way faster than I do on the treadmill….which makes me feel better too!

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It’s harder for me to hit my pace on a treadmill as well. I’m guessing my pace fluctuates quite a bit when I am running outside so it’s more of a challenge for me to stay at the same pace. I am usually extremely sweaty by the end of it! So, I don’t agree with that article!

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For me running on a treadmill just doesn’t replicate outdoors.
I stared running on a treadmill and when I began to run outdoors, it almost felt like I had never run before!

Currently I am coming back from a stress fracture mostly on a treadmill. I ran outside this weekend when I had daylight and dang my calves hurt so good :)

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I’ve always thought running at a 2% incline on the old treddy made up for not running outside. 3% sounds a little hasty if you ask me.

I do think running outside is harder, though, since with a treadmill the belt is actually pulling the ground underneath you and outside you have to use the extra umph to do it yourself.

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I feel like it is ten times HARDER to run on the treadmill. The treadmill is a necessity for me during the winter when I don’t want to run in the 10degree or colder temps at 5am.

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I completely agree that treadmills are harder for me than the equivalent pace outdoors. And hard treadmill workers kick me into race shape better than the track, in my experience. You and your treadmill shall remain best friends ;)

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I have been wondering about this because unlike most of you, I can go WAY faster on a treadmill than outside. When i go for outdoors, I feel like I’ve not been properly trained for it, like someone else wrote here (almost like I’d never run before!)
For me, training on the treadmill makes me faster and more efficient on the treadmill, and only there. Running outdoors makes me faster and more fit for outdoor running, but nothing else. Sport specificity, to the max for me

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CIM was so wet and pretty windy but still amazingly awesome. The drenched clothes led to some pretty horrific chafing for me though.

The hello kitty pic is classic.

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Interesting article! I go back and forth with treadmill vs outside running. Some days it seems like running on the treadmill is such a challenge when other days it feels like a breeze. I think 90% of it is mental. That’s why I try to get a good mix of both. I usually do my shorter runs during the work week on the treadmill and do the long runs outside on trails. That way I feel like I’m getting good exposure and practice both ways.

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I have to agree with you. I feel like I run so much slower on the treadmill than I do outside. And it’s always more challenging for me. I never really understood why people say it’s not either. I’m with you on this one.

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I don’t agree completely with the article but I do feel like I run slower on the treadmill than I do outdoors. But I also only like the 1% incline, 3% incline seems like a lot!

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I’ve been trying to keep my treadmill at 2% because I feel like it’s 1% wasn’t equivalent to that of another treadmill is used sometimes. Do you think that is possible?!!! Treadmill manufacturers are out to get me by having inconsistent inclines for each percentage?! I do think my incline and treadmill running overall had helped me to get faster. I find it SO much easier to do speed workouts on the ‘mill then on the road or a track. –Then again, they did mention wearing the same shoes to plan on racing in, t train in and not use hiking boots…Incase you were planning on hiking boots for a run!

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I’m just completely addicted to your blog! As a Brazilian who recently move to PHL you really give a daily inspiration to continuous my work-out while in north hemisphere,….and Brook is a piece of heaven! How cute and adorable…..it’s kind of wake our maternity spirit ;)
xoxo Mari

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I PRed at CIM by 33 minutes! I have never ever felt so good and strong (physically and mentally) in a race before… and I’ve been running for 8 years! The rain and wind was super crazy, but it just added to the adventure of the race. Such an awesome day :)

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Ahhhhhhh wow!!! Congratulations!!!! You are incredible! Way to go!

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My comfort pace is slower on the treadmill too! I also did most of my training for my first race on the treadmill, and I was super surprised when I finished much quicker than I thought…that was before I became a “sophisticated” runner and invested in a GPS and actually paid attention to splits. I’ve noticed that the % incline depends on the treadmill…sometimes .5% is good, and then on another treadmill I can go up to 3% just fine! This running stuff is confusing! :)

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I am the same way! It is so much easier for me to run fast outside than on the treadmill. This weekend, my husband, two dogs and I did a three mile trail run, and while I love zoning out on the treadmill and watching tv, there’s nothing better than exercising outside with my family :)

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Don’t listen to those dreadmill haters. Do what you want and LOVE it!

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WHAT is that vegetable..or thing.. whatever it is. !??

Whoa, 3 percent incline. That’s too much!
I actually find that I run much faster outside and it’s a struggle on the treadmill sometimes(even if it’s at 0 incline!)

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I personally find running on a treadmill easier than running outside but a 3% incline seems a bit extreme. I think the 1-1.5 incline is enough.
I’d love to run the RNR Vegas half. It’s on my bucket list :)

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So completely cute they gave Brooke a Hello Kitty! And she seriously looks happy to have it! :)

I can’t imagine training at 3% incline!

I do the majority of my runs on my treadmill due to daily time constraints and how early it gets dark here.

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I highly dislike the treadmill … I know I am sorry … :)

I only hit the treadmill when I am at a hotel traveling in a city where I am not supposed to risk running outside …

So for me it is the pavement all the way …. and yes … 3% incline … no thank you!

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I do not agree with the 3% thing. I also do most of my runs on my lovely treadmill…I am always slower on it, and find it much more difficult to run at the same speed as I run outside. I usually have my treadmill set at 1%-1.5%. My heart rate is usually higher on my treadmill runs as well, even though I am going a bit slower. I definitely get a GREAT workout on it!
I also think it makes me a better runner…especially mentally. I do 1 1/2 hours or more on it on a regular basis, and when I do run outside, the time goes so fast :)

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I keep my treadmill at a 1% incline and that’s about what I had always read was equivalent to running outdoors. 3% seems crazy steep. I do struggle to run the same sort of pace on the treadmill that I would naturally run outside, so I fee like it’s a pretty good workout.

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I must be an exception to that study- I don’t even set an incline on the treadmill yet run faster outdoors!!

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I think i am an interesting case study for treadmill running. I found myself gaining speed by using the treadmill only and i ran my first half mary after solely using the treadmill. Trying to be a better runner i started running outside most of the time this past spring and summer. About a month ago bc of the weather i decided to bring it back to the treadnill. To my dismay i cant keep up with the same pace as i was a few months ago ( my easy treadmill pace was 7.5 a few month ago and now its 7.2ish) so i think running outside made me SLOWER bc i had no motivation to keep up witha certain speed. Im now back to 100 percent treadmill running and cant wait to get my speed up for my next race!

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Suzie! The exact same thing happened to me! Let me know how your next race goes!

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Brooke is so cute!!

I hate the deathmill! I think I would die if I had to put the incline on 3%. But I think its so much more mental then running outside!!

I’ve done a ton of RNR races. a mix of fulls and halfs. Arizona, DC, Dallas, Portland, Seattle, Chicago, LA, Denver, Las Vegas

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I’ve been reading your blog for probably about a month or so now and love it!! I think Brooke is the cutest this ever and I absolutely love her crazy hair :)

I’m not even going to mention my pace because frankly it’s quite embarrassing compared to all of you super fast runners! I am training for my first half (I only started running this February and was never is sports growing up) and use the treadmill for my short runs then long runs outside. I can keep my pace better on the treadmill. Maybe it’s because I don’t incline at all!! Yikes! I didn’t know I was supposed to. Plus, when I run outside I find I stop to walk more (another embarrassing fact among all you elite runners :) ).

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congrats on training for your first 1/2!

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Whoa! Interesting what they’re saying. I usually only do 1% incline, too.
CIM was insane! It was raining sideways!! But I’m glad I survived it and just had fun with it since I knew I was in no condition to PR. Maybe next time when the weather is more in our favor.

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Oh Beavis, that is sad. I never run at a 3% incline and run on the treadmill all the time. Not good at all. Not sure if I agree either. Um… too cute that Brooke got a stuffed animal from Yogurtland friends. :) HUGS!!!

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Sounds like everyone agrees, it is harder to run the same pace on a treadmill than outside, this is great to hear because I thought there was something wrong with me :P
I have done 99% of my training outdoors since I started running a year ago, but for the last two weeks or so it has mostly been on the treadmill. I ran a half recently and I couldn’t believe how much easier it felt and also how quick those 13.1 miles went by compared to the treadmill. I think treadmill training is great because it makes running outside feel easier especially mentally.

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I have a hard time believing this article!
On the treadmill I usually feel as if I’m going significantly faster than I do on the road, even if it tells me it’s an equal pace to what I usually run outside…

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I am with you on this one. Lately, I have been doing all of my runs on the treadmill, b/c my runner’s knee feels much better here. I read an article that stated the incline should be set on 1, or it is slightly downhill. I run slower on the treadmill than outside too. I run easy 8 min. miles outside but cannot maintain that for long treadmill runs. I wasn’t sure if it was just me or not. Glad to hear that you experience this too. And I treadmill trained the majority of last winter with an occasional outside run-but my spring races were awesome for me-I PR’d in a 5k, 10k and a half marathon. We’ll have to investigate more:)!

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I usually set my incline on the treadmill at 1%. I think my quads would be burning the whole time if it were set to 3%. I train mostly on the treadmill just out of pure convenience. I don’t live in a neighborhood so when I do run outside I drive to a neighborhood down the road from me. To me running on the treadmill is so much easier than road running. It saddens me to see my pace get so much slower when I hit the roads but I know it’s good training (allegedly!). I’m happy to know that you love your treadmill just as much as I do. You are a great example that it is possible to train on a treadmill and perform amazingly in races!

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I use .5 on every run on the treadmill and feel that it trains me pretty well. I couldn’t agree more with what you said – training for a marathon (and doing long runs on a TM) teach you so much and pay dividends on race day.
I’m no expert, but I don’t agree with this article and will NOT start running on a 3% incline anytime soon. I’ve heard of runners becoming injured b/c of running at a high incline on the treadmill all the time. And I’m a believer in the “if it’s not broke, don’t fix it” mentality – the .5% has worked for me, so that’s what I will stick with =)
Miss you!! xoxo

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She is so adorable! :) I too do most of my training (if not all of) on the treadmill and put my incline at 1.0 or 1.5.
One of the first things that I noticed was that my pace was a lot faster on the ground after running so long on the treadmill.
Interesting article! :)

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Um I’m sorry, 3%??!!? Honestly I thinking running outdoors is easier than setting the treadmill to 1 or 1.5%!

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I ran the RNR in San Antonio three weeks ago (?). Early November, anyway. It was ROUGH. For starters, it was super-hot — I think the high ended up being 82 — and the course was hilly. I live in the Gulf Coast of Texas where we are below sea level. They SA course wasn’t super-hilly, but for someone coming from where I do…it was rough. But I finished! :-) Houston is next on my list!

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I’m definitely fast outside than on a treadmill. I think I would die if I had to run every TM run at a 3% incline. That sounds completely miserable. I’m going to pretend I never read this post and continue to live in my bubble.

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For some reason, I always go slower on the treadmill.

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This is such an interesting post. I enjoy both running outside and on the treadmill, but for me it is more mental than physical. I think I can keep track of my pace a little better when the treadmill does it for me which to me is mentally easier, but running outside is the best! Sometimes I think running outside is harder, but maybe it is just my brain telling me that and not really my muscles. haha! I think 3% incline to run at on the treadmill is crazy hard! I have done sprints on the treadmill at 1.5% incline and more than a half mile is hard for me to keep the pace up when going fast.

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I just saw that thing for the first time last weekend. It’s called the cobblen’s claw (or something like that). It smells like a lemon. I’m not sure how you eat it, but it looks really cool!

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I don’t know if it’s because your stride is different or what, but I definitely think running on the treadmill harder.

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That is actually a citrus fruit often called a Buddha’s hand. I have seen it on Iron Chef a few times!

If that treadmill story is true, how do they explain the lady that trained for an Olympic marathon using only her treadmill?

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Buddha’s hand? I think – I’ve had a drink made with it before, it was v. sour haha.

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i’m definitely a treadmill weirdo in that even at a 0% incline, i feel like running on the treadmill is SO much harder than running outside. i ran 5 miles at a 9:50 pace on the treadmill a few weeks ago and it was HARD towards the end, yet i ran a 9 minute mile paced 10k race outside a few weeks before and it wasn’t really that taxing, other than being tired. the treadmill just sucks the life out of me!

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I LOVE the treadmill!

There’s nothing wrong with it, I’m sure of it. I run slower on a treadmill than outside.

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I read that same article about treadmills and I disagree with it. My first 2 marathons I trained 95% on the treadmill. I didn’t put an incline on it and I BQ’d on my second marathon. I run slower on the treadmill at home but I think its off because it feels like I am running super fast. After running on the treadmill for a couple days I head out side and crush my times.
I hate when people hate on the treadmill. I feel like people think your more badass if you run outside. I disagree, I think you are more badass on the treadmill.

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Oh my gosh, this article makes me want to scream with fear! I have been reading your blog for over a year and have never commented, but this news pushed me into commenting. I’m thinking/hoping it must not be true since I do most of my runs inside on the treadmill now since it’s so dark this time of year… I run on a 1% incline and there is not way I could run on a 3% incline for the entire run. When I go outside I ALWAYS run faster and the outside effort doesn’t really seem to feel harder, infact, it usually feels a bit easier and faster. -Then again maybe the outside seeming a bit easier has more to do with the fact that my treadmill runs start at 4:30AM and my outside runs are always after 8AM :)

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I’ll echo pretty much everyone else in saying that OF COURSE it’s different!

I usually set my treadmill to a 2% incline and often use those runs to do speed work and/or intervals to keep me motivated.

…Or I just zone out and watch Real Housewives and keep ramping up the speed by .2 until I’m done :)

Either way, it’s still training and better than sitting on the couch, right?

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Oh thank goodness, I thought I was the only one who ran slower on the treadmill! My pace on the treadmill is often times about 1 minute slower per mile than it is outdoors.

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My mom sent me this article; if it is specifically referring to trail running, 4% would be right. Trail runs are done much slower than road races – I know some trail runners on dailymile and they have points where you have to walk because of the terrain. So I could see 4% for that. I actually run MUCH faster on a treadmill than outside – about a full minute per mile faster, even more sometimes. Running outside, for me, is harder . I’ve been running on my Precor mill for 10 years – I love mill runs. However, when I switch my runs (10 miles a day) outside in the summer, I get more toned running outside than on the TM. I know a gal on dailymile who runs almost 20 miles every day on her treadmill at home, and it does her just fine (she’s amazing!). I have read that sports doctors see more injuries (stress/impact) from TM running than outdoors because with TM running, your legs are literally slamming down on the same spot day after day, step after step, versus a natural curve of the ground that gives you variation for your knees/joints. Outside running, for me, gives me the best workout; hills, wind resistance, temp change, all things you can’t replicate the same on the TM! To each their own, I guess. But for me, after 10 years of running every day on a TM, to then running summers outside? I saw the most improvement in my body from outside.

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