Outdoor Running Or Treadmill Running-Which Is Better?
Have there been times when you felt bored while running on the treadmill? Have you ever felt that you could enjoy the weather outside instead of the mundane run on the treadmill?
Outdoor running or treadmill running, which is better? If you are a nature love you will automatically love getting outdoors but if seen from a physiological point of view, both stand at the same pedestal.
Advantages of the treadmill
The modern treadmills come with all kinds of settings. You are able to totally customize your workout. You can manually adjust the incline and speed of the treadmill, choose a particular workout program, listen to music or just track your heart rate. The treadmills have an improved shock absorption, that can reduce the impact on one’s joints. One treadmill manufacturer claims that his technology can reduce impact by about 30%.
Training on custom hills
Treadmill running being a highly controlled environment where you need not worry about rain or wind when you want to run. The terrain you want to run on can also be chosen. You can run hills on your treadmill. You can easily do speed training too.
Avoiding unfavourable weather
If you are asked to run in the middle of the day under the hot sun, what will you do? You would naturally prefer running on a treadmill in an air-conditioned enclosure. If it is too stormy, cold and dark outside you would take refuge indoors and run on your treadmill.
Reduced impact for injury treatment
If you have suffered an injury, you will be extra careful in zeroing in on your running surface. Running on the treadmill provides a controlled environment with most machines offering shock absorption. But if you recover and your doctor gives you a green signal then you can run on a grassy field. The grass puts less stress on the body when compared to the hard pavement.
Advantages of outdoor running
Variety of surfaces
Running outside has a lot to offer. You can run on the pavement, sandy beaches or on mountain trails! Such a wide variety will definitely stimulate your senses. As you can run on different surfaces there is less risk of having overuse injuries that happen when you run on just one surface.
Avoiding the boredom factor
Bored of running on your treadmill? Do you sometimes skip your workout? It is time to get outdoors. Running outdoors can stimulate your senses. The little birds chirping, hustle-bustle around you, the feeling of the wind blowing on your skin…there are so many things around you that you would love to experience.
Experiencing a wide variety of outdoor terrains
You may start experiencing overuse injuries if you happen to run only on the treadmill as your feet and legs move the same way always. When you are running outdoors you will have a variety of terrains and this ensures that certain muscles of your body don’t become overused. If you happen to run on a hill, your hamstrings and glutes have to work harder. While going downhill your quadriceps get fired.
The importance of outdoor pacing
When you run on a treadmill, you set the pace and you are forced to run at that speed unless you slow down the belt. Things are different when you head outdoors. You won’t be learning to regulate your pace outdoors if you run only on the machine.
If you happen to find the treadmill boring but cannot head outside due to bad weather then here is a way out to make the treadmill more bearable:
Try doing interval workouts alternating with periods of walking, running or jogging. This helps in alleviating the boredom and also in building cardiovascular fitness!
What do you think? Outdoor running or treadmill running, which is better?
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