What can you do instead of running outside during winter? What about treadmill training?
How cold must you feel before you realize that you are much better off dealing with the tediousness of the treadmill rather than braving the cold?
Today, we are going to make that decision a little easier for you.
Here are excellent suggestions to stay encouraged throughout the winter, even if your training schedule is a demanding one.
Table of Contents
- 1 The fitness machine to solve your problems
- 2 When should you go on the treadmill instead of running outdoors?
- 3 What can I do instead of running outside during winter? 3 factors to consider about running inside during winter
- 4 Treadmill running suggestions during the colder season
The fitness machine to solve your problems
With the weather getting colder and wetter, more and more people embrace the treadmill as a safe (and warm) method to remain in shape and maintain their running fitness.
While operating on a treadmill can seem dull and repetitive, the treadmill is an excellent training tool when used to its full potential.
When should you go on the treadmill instead of running outdoors?
Well, that depends upon your exercise, the conditions outside, and your experience level with winter running.
If it’s unbearably cold, it’s a no-brainer; remain inside if the wind chill is below zero unless you’re confident that it’s not dangerous.
You should also think of staying indoors in the freezing rain or while encountering a brief thaw, followed by a cold snap.
It’s also not a good idea to run outside if the roads are dangerous for driving.
Suppose you’ve got a crucial exercise, like a long run interspersed with interval training.
In that case, it’s ideal for ditching your outdoor running gear for the comfort and safety of the treadmill.
What can I do instead of running outside during winter? 3 factors to consider about running inside during winter
Runners invariably fall into two categories when it comes to treadmill running: love it or hate it.
For people who want to control their environment and monitor their progress, the treadmill is essential. The same goes for people who lead a hectic lifestyle.
Others might think that treadmill running is too dull, potentially dangerous, and should be avoided at all costs.
Nevertheless, the treadmill is needed for every runner. Yes, there are even heavy-duty treadmills for the plus-size runners among us!
We recommend a healthy mix of both running choices.
However, we have to point out that treadmill running is a reliable partner in losing weight, particularly when Mother Nature is in a bad mood.
Use common sense when planning your running workouts: Better safe than sorry
First of all: stay safe.
If you have a really essential workout or need to strike a particular pace for a run, you must consider a treadmill.
Running outside when the weather is too cold, or the roads are too slippery is asking for trouble.
Research reveals that oxygen intake increases for a workout in cold conditions, meaning that your body is less efficient and the runner becomes tired more quickly.
Muscles become less efficient when it’s cold.
Using a treadmill means you don’t need to load up on your running wear to keep your muscles warm.
Statistics derived from popular marathons show us that the average finish time for leading runners is slower when it’s colder than 40 ° F.
That is the same temperature when most runners veer towards warmer clothes.
Sometimes, it’s acceptable to be slower. In fact, we encourage runners to not run at full throttle for around 80% of their run and concentrate instead on the effort made.
It’s freezing out there
Another reason to jump on a treadmill is the most obvious: sometimes, it’s just too cold.
With adequate modern running gear, it’s possible to run outside even when the temperature dips well below zero. Still, then you’re speaking about spending much more money.
Running outside in a subzero wind chill is downright hazardous if you do not have the ideal clothing.
The very best ideas and techniques for running outside throughout the winter season will only take you so far, particularly on those days the temperature level dips to life-threatening levels.
If the wind chill dips below about -15 ° F, you can get frostbite on exposed skin in less than half an hour.
Running inside your home on a treadmill can be healthy for your skin too!
Running does increase your body’s internal heat generation, so it can help in the cold weather.
Running on a treadmill, however, means you also create air movement.
Think of this: If the temperature level is five degrees with no wind, you successfully come across a -5 ° F wind chill simply by running!
Unless you’re highly experienced with running in the cold, getting on the treadmill is probably better when it’s close to freezing.
The roads have become an ice-skating rink
Finally, another seasonal winter running issue is traction.
When a cold wave follows warmer temperatures, puddles on the road can freeze into ultra-slick ice spots.
Worse, if these are covered by a layer of snow or some rainfall, they become an injury waiting to happen.
Be careful: Snow, rain, and ice throughout winter can end your running career before it has even started.
Suppose you slip while running outside? In that case, you are running the risk of tearing several muscles in your arms, hips, abdominal areas and legs.
Generally, snow isn’t a problem by itself (and many areas and cities do a pretty good job salting and raking bike courses in addition to roads).
If you’re not sure about road quality, running on the treadmill is much better, especially if you’re looking to increase your pace.
Treadmill running suggestions during the colder season
Your winter training might help you achieve your weight loss goals if you make an effort to plan your activity.
Something to remember about winter treadmill runs:
Throw in some other exercises (cross-training)
Cross-training does not imply throwing weights around or struggling through a high-intensity workout.
You can integrate numerous activities you currently take pleasure in on running off days.
Incorporating a standard weight regimen is an excellent method to ensure your legs keep their in-season strength through the winter season.
This does not need to be a bodybuilding regimen; Leg curls and extensions and calf exercises (15 to 20 repetitions each) are more than enough.
Alternate a set of leg weights with an upper-body workout (such as bench press or back extensions) to mix things up.
Likewise, you need to consider another excellent winter-friendly exercise: cross-nation skiing is a great low-impact, extremely aerobic exercise.
Set the treadmill at a slight incline
Use a minimum of 1% grade. Running at 0% is nothing more than working on a slight downward slope.
It’s also very challenging to preserve strong run form on a flat treadmill.
Increasing it by as little as 1% means that you’ll have a much better chance of entering your regular running design (foot strike, body lean, etc.).
Note: As you increase the grade for hill workouts, be sure to cut back a bit on the speed. We all slow down a bit as we head uphill, but the treadmill won’t unless you tell it to!
Fight the bore: Introduce some variation
Just as you have various weekly paths, so you must have different treadmill locations and regimens.
It’s a great strategy to combine more challenging exercises and a couple of fun/easy activities.
Likewise, do not hesitate to blend slope and pacing to promote various muscle groups.
Still try to run outdoors once a week
Admittedly, there is no replacement for the real thing. Even if you have to wait up until midday on the weekend for the temperature level to rise, do it.
Just one outdoor session a week will ensure you maintain your “feel” for the roadway.
Training through the winter season isn’t simple, even with treadmills.
If you change your regular training, it will help you stay fit and sharp and will have you prepared for next summer season in no time!
Watch your heart rate
Your heart rate varies on a treadmill. Without external stimuli like hills, wind, heat, etc., your heart rate will be lower.
There’s also the distinction that the treadmill is pressing your legs instead of you pulling your body forward.
As a result, you’ll see that your pulse is lower on a treadmill than on the open road at any given speed.
You can combat this impact by controlling the grade periodically to stimulate your aerobic system.