Running on a Treadmill vs. Running Outdoors

 In Blog, The Great Outdoors

Treadmills are super popular and, of course, there are some benefits to running on them. However, there are even more great reasons why you should take your workout outdoors.

The Difference Between Running on a Treadmill and Running Outdoors

Running on a treadmill is a good cardiovascular exercise and it’s convenient because it’s indoors, and that comes with its own set of benefits, but there is no denying that going for a run outside – hopefully surrounded by nature – has a different feel to it. Plus, it has several benefits you might want to consider.

Energy

Research shows that runners exert more energy when running outdoors. It is similar to running on a treadmill with a 1% incline. The extra energy you exert outside is from air resistance and the conditions you run in.

Speed

Runners tend to overestimate their speed on a treadmill, though it actually slows them down. One study showed that runners could run faster outdoors for just as long as indoors. Seeing objects pass affects the perception of speed, which might be the reason why they pick up the pace.

Injury

Although running in the Great Outdoors is not guaranteed to be an injury-free activity, running on a treadmill involves higher risk for joint and ligament damage. This happens when you run at the same speed and even the same incline for extended periods of time, whereas outdoor runners vary their steps constantly to adjust to whatever terrain they’re running on.

Benefits Of Running Outdoors

Adaptability

Running outdoors allows your to adapt to different scenarios, which is key if you plan to become a competitive runner. Besides becoming more aware of how to move your body when running on different terrains, you’ll also be able to adapt to different weather conditions. These experiences you cannot emulate on a treadmill, just like you can’t simulate downhill running.

Mental Well-Being

As you might already know, nature has a positive impact on our mood. It can reduce “mental fatigue,” stress, depression, and anxiety. Studies show that exposing your mind to restorative environments helps ease your mind, and running outdoors allows you to experience a mental boost and gives you a feeling of well-being.

With all these benefits, aren’t you tempted to take your workout outside? Explore Colorado and if you’re in the mood for more exciting outdoor activities get in touch with us and we’ll make it happen.