If you’re considering investing in a treadmill to add to your home gym or use in your workout routine, you may have some questions.
Is a treadmill actually a worthy investment? Once you get it, what do you do with it?
When you think about it, it almost seems strange to invest in a running machine. In truth, a treadmill is a great investment for a multitude of reasons.
Having one can simplify your life by providing you with a regular exercise routine that offers you optimum control.
It may seem on the surface that all treadmills are created equally, but looks can be deceiving.
There’s definitely a difference between a good treadmill and a bad treadmill, and there are a lot of things you’ll need to consider relating to your preferences before you decide which treadmill would be most advantageous for you to invest it.
Treadmill Running over Outdoor Running
One of the biggest advantages a treadmill will offer you is that you can use it in any weather condition. When you’re running outside, you’re exposed to the elements.
This means high heat, rain, or snow can prevent you from running whenever you want to. You may only have time to run at night, and doing so outside is slightly dangerous.
With a treadmill, you’re able to keep track of your results. Many feature digital apps that show you the amount of calories you’ve burned, the distance you’ve gone, and the improvement of your performance over time.
You’re also able to set your speed, so you’ll know how fast you’re going rather than having to estimate.
Since treadmill belts are level, you won’t have to worry about running on uneven terrain. Many treadmills will cushion your walk, reducing the impact on your joints.
Your run is free from obstacles and it isn’t putting any wear and tear on your body that could have otherwise been avoided.
Are Treadmills Safer Than Running Outdoors?
Yes and no. They eliminate some of the risk factors you may experience running outdoors, especially if you run near traffic or in a place where wild animals live.
Obviously, you won’t encounter any traffic or bears in your home gym. You’ll need to exercise caution when using your treadmill. Never set it up too close to walls or furniture you might collide with if you lose your footing.
Always use the handrail, and set the speed to a pace you can reasonably keep up with.
Are Treadmills Boring?
Treadmills can be boring if you run in silence, staring at a wall.
Treadmill manufacturers understand that, and because treadmills seem less than exciting, many of them have included on-board sound systems that connect to your phone so you can play music as you run.
Some treadmills even come with screens that simulate the view of walking around different landmarks, providing you with an experience similar to a virtual reality tour.
Outside of that, you can always set your computer or tablet up in front of your treadmill and watch an episode of your favorite show on Netflix when you run. Treadmills are a great way to multitask.
What Kind of Shoes Should You Wear?
Running on a treadmill barefoot or in the wrong shoes is a huge mistake. First of all, it’s dangerous, and second of all, you won’t be able to get very far if you can’t grip the belt.
On a treadmill, you should always wear running shoes. Sandals, flip flops, slide-ons, or shoes without proper tread are a downright terrible idea.
How Much Should I Spend on a Treadmill?
How much you spend on a treadmill depends on a variety of factors. You’ll have to consider the value for money, your desired price range, and what additional features you’ll use.
Manual treadmills are the least expensive, but they’re a complete waste of money.
If you’re considering purchasing a manual treadmill, save yourself the cash and simply run in place on the ground.
It’s possible to find a good treadmill for a few hundred dollars, but a great treadmill is going to cost you a pretty penny. With a more expensive treadmill, you’re likely getting more options and a very durable machine.
If you intend to use the treadmill for a long time, it may be worth spending some extra money to make sure the machine will last as long as you need it to while providing you with adequate workout support.
What Should I Look For In a Treadmill?
Ideally, you want a treadmill that will last a long time, and offer you a wide variety of customization options. This will allow you to up the intensity of your running workout once you’re comfortable with the level you’re at.
A treadmill with lower speeds and no incline will get old very fast.
Once you outgrow it, your workouts will become less effective. You’ll then have to purchase a new treadmill, and that’s less economically feasible.
Some treadmills come without fancy features, and others are fully stocked with things to make your life easier. Many of them offer LCD displays that help you chart and track your movement, calorie loss, heart rate, speed, and distance.
Some of them will allow you to save your stats to check them later, giving you a clearer vision of the athletic progress you have made.
If you need a little help, many treadmills come with pre-programmed workouts. If you don’t require a ton of variety, less expensive models will generally provide 3 to 5 different routines.
Nobody knows your needs better than you do, and you probably have an idea of what kind of treadmill offers everything you need.
Always remember that it’s better to spend a little more on a treadmill and get more than the minimum than it is to spend less and have to buy a whole new one.