a man running on a treadmill

Running on a Treadmill or Outside – Which is Better?

It’s the age-old debate. Should you run outdoors, or should you use a treadmill? Both are valid options, and each has its fair share of pros and cons. So, how do you decide which running method is best for you?

That’s what this blog is about. Let’s look at the difference between running on a treadmill and participating in an outdoor virtual running challenge.

Are Treadmills the Way to Go?

Running on a treadmill has transformed the way people view running. You no longer require a vast, empty space to run a couple of kilometers. Instead, you can get your mileage inside a room by using a treadmill.

Naturally, this has various advantages. For instance, it’s highly convenient. You can visit a gym nearby or even get a treadmill machine for your house to run whenever you want to. Using a treadmill means no more worrying about road traffic and inclement weather or being extra vigilant of your surroundings. You can crank up the volume on your headphones and make the most of your run.

Treadmills also provide runners greater control over their run. You can adjust the machine’s settings and track your run more accurately. Additionally, running on a treadmill also has less impact on your knee joints and helps absorb shock.  

Why Running Outdoors Isn’t Getting Old Anytime Soon

As beneficial as running on a treadmill is, the experience just doesn’t compare to how you feel when you run outside. Participating in physical activity in natural surroundings has several physical and mental health benefits. Many runners enjoy absorbing the scenery and feel refreshed by their time outdoors while running.

Running outside also allows you to be more adventurous. When you participate in a running challenge, you don’t have to stick to a single route. You can make turns along the way, run downhill, and run on different terrains, improving bone health and making it easier to train for marathons. This isn’t possible when you use a treadmill.  

a person running outdoors

Finally, running outdoors is inexpensive. You don’t need to invest in anything other than a good pair of running shoes!

The Verdict

While treadmills may seem more convenient options, they shouldn’t become substitutes for running long-term. If running outdoors regularly is challenging for you, we suggest you use a hybrid approach. Running on a treadmill is great, but it doesn’t beat the thrill and contentment of running outside!

You can also participate in the virtual marathon challenges offered by us at The Running Bug. Check out our 5k and 10k run challenges here, and sign up for a virtual racing challenge today! We also offer kids’ challenges.

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