On Friday morning, the thermometer read about 60 degrees Fahrenheit and outside it looked like this:
Since rain and cool temperatures were predicted for this weekend (and the prediction unfortunately came true), I couldn’t bring myself to hop in the car and drive the 25 minutes to run on a treadmill inside the dark confines of the gym. I knew that if I did, when I was watching the rain stream down my windows the next day, I would regret the missed opportunity to spend an hour in the sweet, sunshiney bliss that permeated Bavaria on Friday. And, since, in my last post, I claimed that running outside made me slower and was more work, I thought it would also be a good opportunity to test my theory out.
On Tuesday, I ran on the treadmill in the gym and went about 3.6 miles in 37 minutes. Not an impressive distance or speed for most people, but I’m not most people and, honestly, the fact that my heart didn’t explode or my lungs spontaneously burst into flames is the more impressive achievement. I don’t want you to think I maintained a constant speed throughout the entire 37 minutes- that would actually be impressive, instead, I did a slow lap followed by three fast laps and continued on in that pattern until I reached the bottom of my gas tank and couldn’t go on.
On Friday, with the sun shining on my legs and the wind in my hair, I did 2.5 miles in about 40 minutes and maintained a consistent (slow) speed. Now, accounting for the two crosswalks I had to wait at and the one time I tripped both my dog and myself when I got his leash stuck on my shoe, we can say that in the same amount of time it took me to run 3.6 miles on the treadmill I ran 2.5 miles on varied terrain. I’m glad to know that it doesn’t just FEEL like I’m moving in slow motion when I’m running on sidewalks and dirt trails. I really enjoyed the beautiful Spring weather, but I’m still standing by my treadmill- while it probably took the same amount of effort, I feel much better about the 3.6 miles than I do the 2.5 miles; it’s a point of pride! And also, the treadmill is so convenient: there is a nice little cubby for my water bottle, a bar on which I can hang my sweat-mopping towel, a shelf for my iPod when the armband gets too sweaty and sticky, and, most importantly, if nature calls in the middle of a run, I can simply hit ‘pause’ and make my way to the rest room instead of doing the ‘gotta go, gotta go, gotta go right now’ shuffle for the last mile back home.
Looking for ways to spice up your treadmill routine? My good friend Amy sent me this link the other day (thanks, lady!) for ten treadmill workouts that keep boredom at bay- I’m going to need a FFF to demonstrate the Gauntlet Workout for me, but I’m psyched to try the others!