Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Greater nemesis: Treadmill or Ol' Man Winter??

Tue, 1/3/06

I've been reading a number of blogs related to the trials and tribulations of braving this week's Noreaster that hit a large part of the country. This was not a landmark storm by any stretch, but it was enough to throw most of our schedules out of whack.

I had Monday off and spent most of the day preparing the house for our upcoming sale. Unfortunately, my plan to have a short 3-mile run a 4PM was dashed by the pissy, cold rain. So, I wanted to have a good run Tues AM.

Here in CT, we had slushy, wet, disgusting mess of a storm. Tuesday morning, I debated for several minutes if I should try to get out there. I said "screw it" and threw on all my clothes and hit the road. Well, approximately, 500 feet into my run, I was soaking wet to the knee and miserable. I turned around and resorted to Plan B -- go to work and make a date with the treadmill over lunch.

Let me just say that my 5 miles on the treadmill felt like 20 psychologically. My pace was slower, I fatigued more rapidly and I was checking the distance monitor more frequently than ever. It sucked. How could I run 10 miles straight on Sunday outside with a pace of 7:16 -- and then barely muscle through 5 on a treadmill at a 30 sec slower pace?

TIME: 38:45 - DIST: 5.0 M - PACE: 7:43

So, I open the question to all who read this... how bad does it have to be to force you onto the 'mill? Can you brave the 20+ MPH winds? Or even if it's not that cold, are you willing to deal with 18 inches of snow? What are your limits?

Wed, 1/4/06

After yesterday's 'mill run, I did several sets of leg presses and lifts. Well, this caught up with me, I think, because my legs were a bit slow today. That's all right, I got the 7 miles in that I wanted.

TIME: 53:15 - DIST: 7.0 - PACE: 7:36


Liv said...

Thanks for visiting my blog! :)
I agree, the treadmill is onerous - I would far rather run outside or even do laps on a track, because at least that way you can judge your progress by visual cues instead of numbers on a screen! But if you have no choice, the best thing by far is to bring along some music - it provides a much needed distraction.
I wonder if it is just the monotony that makes treadmill running seem so much harder, or is there something about it that taxes our bodies further than a regular run?

olga said...

I always find treadmill dredful - the efoort that goes into keeping the pace, despite easy set up on computer, is far greater than same pace outside. I get discouraged when I see how hard those "fast" intervals are. Yet on the ttack, it all comes to normal...But winter gives sometimes little option, so hang in there.

DawnB said...

Ryan only 20secs not bad at all. I had no choice but to go to the Gym on tues also. I have the opposite i stick to a faster pace on the treadmill than my training runs(of late) If I could only learn to love the treadmill it could do wonders. I've heard of people doing all their marathon training on a treadmill and do pretty well when they do the marathon. Try putting it on a slight incline seems to always help me. Its a great alternative to no run at all.

runninturnip said...

My limits would probably be:

ice and sleet (just to dangerous and asking for injury or getting hit by a car)

thunder and lightning (although this has happened a couple of times by accident...storms can sneak up on you in the south during summer!)

when the weatherman gives Tornado warnings for the area

Extreme heat in the upper 90's with humidity, commonplace in the South which is why I run very early or very late in the summer.

Hurricanes above Category 4 (just kidding, I would probably stop at a 3...snicker snicker)

robtherunner said...

I am not sure how bad the weather has to be for me to get on the treadmill. I don't do much treadmill running anymore since the Y I go to has a inside track that I would rather run on, but I think the treadmill can be an excellent place to get some good speed progression work done. I used to start at a slow pace and then increase the speed every minute or two to keep things interesting. I would finish the workout at a fast pace and it helped break up the monotony.