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> How to start running on a treadmill? – 13 tips for every runner

How to start running on a treadmill? – 13 tips for every runner

Publish date 09.01.2023

You can read it in 9 minut

How to start running on a treadmill? – 13 tips for every runner

Sometimes it’s difficult to run outside – too much pollution, bad weather or just you are in the bad mood to go outside. Whatever the reason, you may be tempted to run on a treadmill. This is an excellent alternative to running outside. As a result, you will not have to give up your workouts.

However, for these workouts to be effective and have the desired effect you need to prepare well. How to do it? I have 13 tips for running on a treadmill. See how to run pleasantly and effectively on a treadmill without going outside – whether it’s a treadmill at home or the gym. 

13 Tips for running on a treadmill

1. Choose the right equipment – the width of the running surface

If you want to buy your treadmill then you need to think about choosing the right one. Here one of the important elements is the width of the running surface. If you go to a gym or a fitness club then you will find wide and comfortable sports equipment. However, what about the equipment for your house? 

At home, everything depends on the amount of space and… on your height. I’ll tell you right now that the wider the surface, the more comfortable and convenient it is to run. However, let’s go back to height:

  • Short stature – treadmill running surface 40 cm.
  • Above 165 cm – 45 cm 
  • Above 175 cm – a minimum of 50 cm. 

It is better to choose a wider running surface than one too narrow. If it’s too narrow then you won’t be able to move comfortably and freely on it. All the fun that the treadmill gives you will be nullified. What’s more, you’ll have to put your feet very close to each other, which will affect your running comfort. Choose a wider surface and enjoy running inside. 

2. Proper running shoes 

You certainly know how important shoes are for any runner. You also need to pay attention to them when you want to run on a treadmill.

Treadmill running shoes should be:

  • Lightweight, 
  • Airy, 
  • Have low to medium cushioning – to absorb shock while running,
  • Reduce sweating of the foot – pay attention to what material the upper of the shoes are made of,
  • Choose a properly contoured insole – that absorbs moisture, enhances cushioning,
  • Flat sole – this will keep the toes and heels on the same level. 

Low or medium cushioning? You’re probably wondering what it depends on. Well, if you are slim and train on a modern treadmill then you should buy low cushioning. On the other hand, heavier people who have more weight should choose medium cushioning. 

“But do I need to run on a treadmill in athletic shoes?”

Yes, that way your foot is stable and won’t be greatly overloaded. Don’t think about running barefoot or in just socks. This is not a good solution not only for your feet but also for your joints and muscles. 

It’s true that when running on a treadmill your foot needs less cushioning than in the field, but provides some cushioning. 

3. Airing out the apartment before training 

Training outdoors means a cool breeze on your face and in your hair. Thanks to that you can cool down a bit while running. Unfortunately, indoors this is not possible – okay, maybe if you turn on a fan and pretend it’s the wind – but with this, you have to be careful because you can even catch a cold if the wind is too strong and too cold. 

What to do about it? The best thing to do before your workout is to open a window and ventilate your apartment. Open the window for about 15-20 minutes. Let the fresh air in. Fresh and cool air is better not only for the whole body and your mood but also for faster recovery. 

If the air outside is cool and crisp and not too cold, you can leave the window open even while you work out. 

4. Remember to warm up and stretch 

Before you start running outdoors you do DYNAMIC stretching. If you don’t then you are making a very big mistake that can lead to injury. If you choose to train on a treadmill then you should also remember this basic point in every runner’s routine. It doesn’t matter if your legs are hitting the asphalt or the treadmill surface – a warm-up is a must. 

Perform it for 10 minutes – that’s not much right? That’s enough for your body to be prepared for exercise. Once you get on the running surface, march for 5 minutes. Don’t run at full speed right away. 

At the end of your workout, spend 5 minutes marching again – this will cool down your body after the workout. It doesn’t matter if it was intense or recreational. Do it! In addition, do stretching exercises – arms, and legs. Do the exercises slowly, do not rush. Let your body cool down. That way you won’t suffer the next day from terrible soreness, which can ruin your whole day and your plans. 

5. How to start running on the treadmill – first training 

Have you trained outside all the time and this is your first run on a treadmill? At the very beginning, learn how to move and run on it. At the very beginning, you need to get used to the surface moving under your feet at a different pace (depending on how you set up the sports equipment). 

Start slowly – don’t impose a high pace on yourself and keep yourself on the running surface. Even professional runners have trouble when they first step on a treadmill. It’s a completely different experience than running on asphalt or any other surface. 

Start with walking, then move on to marching and trotting. Only then start running normally. This will help your body prepare and adapt to this change. 

6. Running technique – important not only on the running path 

How to start running on a treadmill to make training fruitful and prevent injury? 

  • straight back, 
  • short step, 
  • landing on the midfoot, 
  • tight abdomen, 
  • strong shoulder work, arms bent at a maximum angle of 90 degrees, 
  • open palms, deep breathing with a steady rhythm, 
  • a gentle tilt of the figure coming out of the pelvis. 

By the treadmill, you may notice handles that help beginners run and maintain balance. However, if you can, avoid holding them. By doing so, you will spoil your ideal running posture. Help yourself with handles when it’s really necessary. 

7. Train regularly 

During treadmill training, as in outdoor training, regularity is important. Get on the treadmill 3-4 times a week. If you want to achieve some results – for example, to have a better figure, to lose pounds-then you need to take care of regularity. One workout a week won’t do anything. You have to commit to the sport. Think about what kind of figure and fitness running on a treadmill can bring you in the future.

8. Use the incline 

Use the incline on the treadmill during your workouts. 

This will allow you to train in more “natural” conditions. What does this mean? 

In the field you don’t run on a flat surface alone, you have hills and other obstacles. Therefore, when you use the incline you will be able to practice running uphill or mountain trekking. This is a very useful option when you don’t have a training area nearby, but need to prepare for a tournament or competition. 

Such training helps strengthen calves, glutes, and tendons. Moreover, it reduces the risk of injury. 

9. Diversify your treadmill workouts 

Don’t want to experience sports burnout? Then think about diversifying your treadmill workouts. Play with the tempo, change the incline of the treadmill, and do easy runs, long runs, and speed workouts. 

There are many options you can do with this sports equipment. Also, vary the length and intensity of your workouts – but be sure not to make changes abruptly. This can backfire on your health and desire to run. 

10. Treadmill functions 

Before you choose the perfect treadmill, familiarize yourself with its features. Modern training equipment has a lot of functions – training plans, the voice of a personal trainer, graphs, and summaries of results from previous workouts. All this makes running easier and more enjoyable. 

Find out what options your treadmill has and use them. They are there to make running comfortable. Use the full potential of the machine. What’s more, you can customize your settings on the treadmill according to your ability and sophistication.

11. Tips for running on a treadmill – keep yourself entertained 

If you run outside it can be interesting. You’re constantly passing someone, enjoying the view. There’s always something going on. That can’t be said about running on a treadmill. You’re in a room by yourself or with other runners who are also running. Nothing interesting. That’s why you should provide yourself with entertainment that will make indoor running interesting and not bore you.

Therefore, prepare a running playlist. Music will make your workout time more enjoyable. You can also put the treadmill in a room with a TV, or choose a laptop or tablet and put them close to the treadmill – you will be able to watch a series or a movie. This will certainly make your time more enjoyable, plus you won’t be constantly looking at your watch at how much time is left to finish the training. 

Choose a light and enjoyable production so you can focus on your workout. Choose a sitcom or TV series that you have already watched before. ie Choose very demanding series and movies. A show that is too engaging wouldn’t let him focus on his running technique.

Commonly, treadmills are noisy. Therefore, to hear something you must have headphones – preferably wireless ones. Connect to your phone, laptop, or TV – watch, listen and enjoy your run. 

12. Eat and drink 

Treadmill workouts can be very intense and therefore exhausting. Therefore, it is important to eat a nutritious, full, and balanced meal. However, you must remember to eat 3-4 hours before your workout. It is not recommended to run immediately after eating – you may feel sick, you may feel nauseous and your stomach hurts. Eat a meal that is rich in complex carbohydrates to have the strength for a long workout. 

You also need to remember to hydrate properly. Dehydration weakens your body and a run on the treadmill will no longer be as fruitful as you would like it to be. Pay attention to how much you drink during the day. 

To see if you need more fluids you can look at your urine color; light yellow? Good. Dark yellow? Reach for a bottle of water. 

13. Download treadmill running apps 

Many apps will make your workouts easier, motivate you and, most importantly, you will have all the data and results close. This will help you analyze your progress. 

Many apps have a voice of a personal trainer to motivate you. What’s more, you can share your achievements with your friends. Such an app can accompany you during workouts outdoors or indoors. 

How to start running on a treadmill? Now you know. All the presented tips for running on a treadmill are to help you train well on a treadmill. Remember to start slowly, choose the right shoes, function on a treadmill, and work on a good figure while running. This kind of sports equipment is a great convenience for people who want to exercise, but the weather is ugly or they come back late and are afraid to run in the dark. Take advantage of this sports equipment!

Want to know when it’s best to choose treadmill training over outdoor training? Read: Is it worth it to run on a treadmill? 11 situations when it is a perfect choice

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