Kelly the Culinarian: How to Not Lose Your Mind on the Treadmill

Saturday, December 14, 2013

How to Not Lose Your Mind on the Treadmill

Sometimes, you have to do your long run on a treadmill. Here's how to not make it suck. Or suck less.
Today, I ran 11 miles indoors, on the treadmill, without television. That brings my total to 24 miles on the treadmill this week. Why? Well, here's exhibit A:
Ever since I lost feeling in my hands, I'm a wimp when it comes to cold weather. I'm afraid that if I were to get frostbite, I'd never know it and cause some real damage. Instead of meeting a run group this morning, I slept in, then hit the gym for my long run.

I didn't know until I was already there that the satellite TV at the gym wasn't working. But hey, this is the mental toughness I need to running a marathon that's 26 one-mile loops. Or something.
The first step is to know your treadmill - the models at my closest gym have a 60-minute limit. They also have iPod hookups, which would be great if I had one of those. 

The next step is to have an entertainment plan. You don't have the luxury of scenery, so think ahead to what you want to stare at for a few hours. Typically my gym has 12 channels of news and trashy programming to choose from, but I also find out in advance if there is WiFi at the gym. I have Amazon Prime, which means I can watch movie or television if WiFi exists. As a total last resort, I bring my phone, where I can purchase a movie if need be. A $4 movie is a small price to pay for sanity.

You'll want to start your workout session my setting up your machine. Ensure you have your hydration, nutrition, headphones, entertainment and hair ties. 

The easiest way to hold on to your sanity mile after mile is to break up your long run. Think about it in 15-minute chunks or 5k segments. Because my treadmill quit at 60 minutes, I ran until the six-mile mark, stopped the machine and then started again.

The second half of my run

Another way to break up the run is by nutrition. Give yourself a shot blok or sports bean as a reward at certain intervals, or make it a goal to consume so much water every third mile.

What the furthest you've ever run on a treadmill?


Losing Lindy said...

mine is 11 miles...but mine are so much slower..

Zenaida Arroyo said...

I think mine is 16 miles.

I also have Amazon Prime but for some reason the WiFi doesn't work at my gym. Boo. So instead I listen to music on my iPod.

I also break up my "runs" into 2.5 miles increments which helps out a lot. I don't mind running on the treadmill. I mean, I do like running outside but when we have that great Chicago weather then I do welcome the treadmill.

Nicole Kesten said...

this is a great post. i recently got a gym quality treadmill in my condo and TV is my only saving grace.... why does it always come back to tv

KellytheCulinarian said...

It distracts us from the terribleness of it all.