Member Comments for the Article:

Are You Cheating Yourself by Choosing the Treadmill?

What's Better: the Treadmill or the Open Road?


  • I'm not thrilled to see a "why the great outdoors beats your treadmill" article in the middle of miserable freezing winter and cold and flu season. Spring is too far away; don't taunt me, Sparkpeople! - 1/31/2011 1:58:46 PM
  • Like most, I prefer the open road for my long or tempo runs, and probably even for speedwork. There is something to be said for using the treadmill for intervals though--you know exactly what pace you're running and it's easier for me to shift out of the times properly.

    I do find myself using the treadmill more during winter, not because of conditions outside (not a problem here) but Daylight Savings. I used to really hate it but now I just treat it like a different beast and try and take advantage of whatever bells and whistles (inclines, fans, monitors, television, Nike + iPod) the machine I'm using at the Y has. - 1/31/2011 1:11:11 PM
    This is a great and comprehensive article. Thanks for sharing it. - 1/31/2011 9:42:43 AM
  • The treadmill definitely has its advantages, but when it comes to fitness there is no comparison-- outdoor running wins hands-down. After three years of treadmill running for almost hour-long sessions, I couldn't run a half-hour outdoors.

    Another benefit of outdoor running is the social potential. Last year I joined a running group and it was very rewarding. - 1/31/2011 9:09:45 AM
  • I'm an outdoor runner. I don't have room for a treadmill but I wouldn't own one even if I did. Many of us refer to it as a dreadmill. I just make sure that I run in an area that gets very little traffic. But yes, you do need to be careful when running outside during the winter. - 1/31/2011 8:26:25 AM
  • After I started running on a treadmill, my knees gave out - the doctor who finally was able to explain it told me that there were a few factors: 1) I'm a woman - which means that my hips are wider than my knees; 2) I'm at the age when my ligaments are not as resilient as they used to be; 3) with a treadmill, the mechanics are different than on the road (or track) - when we walk/run, our body pretty much goes with our feet. When we walk/run on a treadmill, we put our feet out in front of our body, and it gets moved back to us by the machine - which means that with the treadmill, our foot arch gets pulled down more than when we normally walk/run - which in turn pulls on the ligaments in the leg, and because of the angle from the knee to my hip, this put an abnormal strain on my knees, and I now cannot use the treadmill (and some other things as well). So - telling people that if they have bad knees they should use a treadmill is not a good thing - tell them to go to a good sports doctor first and get their recommendation. - 1/31/2011 7:54:57 AM
  • I like more outdoor walking coz it makes me feel attached to the nature while enjoying the fun of doing it with friends around. Likewise ,, it serves as a good opportunity for meeting people from all walks of life.. and that includes having to meet people from the business world too... So ALL in One... hehehe - 1/31/2011 7:50:03 AM
  • I HATE treadmills!! In the past I have owned two of them and gave one of them away and sold the other one. My steps are uneven and I could never get a comfortable walking gait on the treadmill. I was unable to go as far on the treadmill as I do outside, so I do most of my walking outside. I have some of Leslie Sansone's Walk at Home DVDs which I use to "walk" inside when the weather isn't condusive to being outside. - 12/12/2010 10:50:42 PM
    The treadmill beats outdoors every time for me because I can read while I walk. I just prop up whatever I want to catch up on -- The Economist, one of those classics I always meant to get around to, fat airport novel, you name it -- and walk. I feel like I'm doing two things I need to be doing in half the time it might normally take. - 10/19/2010 3:38:15 PM
    I use the treadmill and I walk outside when I can. I have health concerns and when the weather doesn't permit I use my treadmill and my stationary bicycle! I cannot run and just walk. I usuallu try for 4 times a week. - 9/28/2010 5:10:28 PM
  • i would rather be outside any time, i hate the treadmill with a passion...i feel like im being punished, as where, when im outside, i get to enjoy the sun or the cool breeze, i feel like im doing something healthy and good for me - 7/25/2010 10:44:13 AM
  • I have a treadmill, but I can run a lot farther outside. I can set myself mini-goals (one more lamppost, two more driveways). I have less motivation when it comes to sticking with the treadmill--sometimes the minutes seem to drag by. But, I just moved across country and don't have a good running route figured out without driving somewhere first. It's hot here, so I'd have to do that bright and early! I miss jogging around my neighborhood, but the treadmill serves its purpose. - 7/8/2010 11:20:42 PM
  • NJ_HOU
    For Anyone going through the rehab after arthroscopic knee surgery --- I was told don't use the treadmill as it pulls you along .... you want to strenghten your quads, muscle above your knee, and the treadmill does not work as well as walking. - 5/20/2010 1:59:01 PM
  • I enjoy both, but normally take advantage of the use of the treadmill more so due to the convenience of it being in the home. - 3/21/2010 11:46:11 PM
  • I think this article is pretty biased.
    I think it makes sense to to both and to do what is easier for you to maintain motivation for, but this disregards the unbiased results of the treadmill. I was constantly overestimating my exertion outdoors. The treadmill allowed me to access what my output was.
    - 3/11/2010 4:07:34 PM

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