Monday, December 20, 2010

Making the treadmill work for you.

I hate the treadmill.
I do.
Hate. It is a strong word- but applicable here.

Mostly because of it's hamster wheel like properties which initiate my "you can't do it" internal dialogue.

However, it's snowy, icy and just not ideal for running outside right now, and I don't wish to risk injury considering my planned race schedule for 2011.

I'm very lucky to have this entire week before Christmas off from work and able to really get a lot of great workouts and cleaning and just ME time in. So after dropping my oldest at preschool this morning, I headed straight for the gym- with a "I'm going to CONQUER the treadmill" mindset.
The funny thing is- I used the treadmill to get into running in the first place. I am lucky enough to have a really nice one here at home- and I was really self-conscious about running in public at first. I started and completed Couch-to-5k on that treadmill. . .but then I converted to outdoor running and found a love like I'd never known.

I had a plan too- and that always helps. Lately, one of my blog friends - Beth at C.Beth Blog or C.Beth Run has been talking about doing interval runs lately where she runs fast for 4 minutes and then walks for 1; she's loving it and able to increase her overall pace because of it. I said "that won't work for me" right away- because when I run OUTSIDE, I prefer to not stop running once I start because I find it difficult to start again. However, considering how difficult I find it to run for even 10 minutes straight (not difficult in effort- but more mental really) on the treadmill- I decided to really give it a go with the intervals. I wanted to give the intervals a shot- I thought maybe mixing it up would keep me focused, challenged and keep the runs to very manageable parts. You know what? It WORKED!
I decided to do 2x1 intervals, starting with a 3 minute warm up walk, then running 2 minutes and walking 1; repeat to finish. I went a total of 45 minutes and ran 3.85 miles at a pace of about 11:40mm; that's: 28 running, 17 walking and I haven't sweat like that in a long time.

The treadmill and I might learn to be winter friends afterall.

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