Normally, I like to run outside year-’round. A couple of years ago we had a horrible winter and the streets and sidewalks were frozen with ice under the snow, which made it impossible to enjoy a winter run.
It was a struggle for me to run relaxed for fear of slipping on the ice and hitting my head.
I had a girlfriend who did just that when she was out running by the Comal River and she’s lucky she’s alive.
So for Christmas that year, my husband and I bought a treadmill for our gift to each other. The treadmill was a pretty high dollar unit and has been great having this to fall back on. It’s got:
- up to 10% incline
- a top speed of 12 miles per hour
- some shock absorption-thingy that makes for a really comfortable stride
- iPhone connectivity
- water bottle holders
- heart rate monitor
- 10 different workout types
- and all sorts of other bells and whistles
However, I still struggle running on a treadmill.
I spend too much time looking at the mileage and it just doesn’t seem like I’m getting anywhere. I’m sure you can relate if you’ve put in some hours on a treadmill yourself.
We did finally move a TV in front of the treadmill which did help.
I always listen to music so I could turn a ball game on and listen to my music.
But my treadmill runs are limited. I read Runners World and they suggest utilizing the treadmill for speed workouts or altering the incline for a great workout.
But if I’m going to go for a run, it is outside the majority of the time. My husband is really not a runner and he likes the treadmill to do a run/walk workout and be able to watch his TV at the same time.
Running in the snow is awesome and just beautiful with the trees full of snow. The worst part for me is just getting out the door.
I’m cold in the house — now I’ve got to put on just a light jacket, headband and light gloves and head outside into freezing temperatures. Brrr!
I focus on the actual temperature and what the wind speed is.
To catch a winter day without wind is hard to come by, especially in the Midwest.
The coldest temperature I have ever run in was three below zero, but a sunny day with no wind.
It is amazing how comfortable I actually am once I get a half mile or so into the run.
My husband gives me great encouragement.
He knows how good I feel when I come back from a run.
Many times I say, “Oh, I’m not sure I can run outside as it’s too cold.”
He’ll tell me, “It’s not that bad and that I’ll be so frustrated with myself if I don’t get out for a run.”
And he’s absolutely right.
Whenever possible, I’ll brave the outdoors before resorting to a treadmill, but it’s nice in a pinch.
How about you? Are you an outdoors runner as well? (I know some gym rats actually prefer the treadmill — but not me!) Let me know in the comments section below this article.