Running on the Treadmill Without Losing Your Mind

I have a love/hate relationship with the treadmill. I tend to go through phases, and luckily for me I am currently in a “love” phase. Maybe it’s because it’s warmer outside, or maybe because I am finally seeing some speed and progress because of my indoor adventures, but whatever the reason, it has been working for me lately.

running on the treadmill

I really don’t run well in hot humid weather (but really, who does?), and Bobby doesn’t like me running out on the highway alone, so I have been logging a lot more gym miles this year. Here you will find my best tips for treadmill running without losing your mind. Trust me, it can be done without you wanting to throw a kettlebell through the gym window, and the results will be well worth it.

1.) Watch TV: I know this is not possible in all cases, but if you have a treadmill at home and can position it in front of a TV, or watch one at the gym, it can really help pass the time. I am lucky in that each treadmill at my gym has their own TV, so I can plug my headphones in and watch whatever I want. I tend to long-run best when a good movie is on, so I try to schedule my time when I know something worth watching is going to be on. Also, streaming movies on Hulu or Netflix can help pass the time, and you may not WANT to stop running! No TV? Just use your phone or tablet and binge watch something really exciting!

2.) Intervals: The great thing about a treadmill is controlled speed. I sometimes spend my time playing games with intervals. For example, warm up, run five minutes at a 6.0, the 2 minutes at a 7.0, etc. etc. It makes the time go by a lot faster constantly changing up your speed and keeping your mind off of the drudgery. Set mini goals for yourself or try to run the next interval faster than the last.

3.) Race the person next to you: Come on, you know you do it too. If there is someone next to me going just a little faster or farther than me, I pretend like we are racing. I tell no lies. My gym stays pretty busy so there is always someone new to “race!” It pushes me and makes things interesting, even though they have no idea we are competing!

4.) Distract yourself: This could mean a lot of things. I sometimes start thinking about all the things I have coming up that I need to do, things to get at the store, planning a vacation etc. I have heard of people planning meals for the week, coming up with business proposals, or drafting e-mails in their head while they run to pass the time. I also like to pray when I run. Multitasking for the win!

5.) Work on your form: When I get tired, I tend to lose my running form. My shoulders slump, my feet drag, my breathing is erratic, and I expend more energy than necessary. Treadmill running is a great time to focus hard and work on your form and tweak those minor issues that can make a big difference in time and injury prevention.

6.) Hills, hills, hills: This is especially good if you live in a flat area. Being able to raise and lower your incline on command is a great way to train for a hilly race or to work on your endurance and leg strength. It will make flat running seem like a piece of cake!

QOTD: What do you do to pass the time on the treadmill? What is the longest you have ever run on a treadmill, I have run 16 miles!

Related: 8 Tips for running in the rain

Ten Treadmill Miles


Greetings from the drenched South! Hope everyone is having a great labor day holiday! Catching up from the weekend?

September Goals

August: Month in Review

Game day and Lee

Saturday night, the tornado warnings were so non stop, we decided to sleep downstairs in the guest room (our master is upstairs) just to be safe. it was weird being in my house but sleeping in the guest room!

We survived the night, woke up and cleaned up and prepared for my parents to visit for the afternoon (more on that tomorrow.) We are still getting on and off rain and wind, hoping Lee pushes through and gets the heck on out of here soon!

So Saturday, we were supposed to run ten miles at the beach with our team in training group. Yeah….that didn’t happen! It was flooding and the wind was going crazy down there. Here is a news picture from the beach where we were supposed to run. HAHA!



We really wanted to get our miles in though, So Saturday morning Bobby and I headed to the gym to run on the treadmill. It was a little bit easier having Bobby on the treadmill with me….wait…that’s a lie. It was SO BORING! But, knowing Bobby was suffering in boredom right along with me made it not so bad.

In case you didn’t know, the treadmills will only let you run for 60 minutes at a time. Fact I would NOT have known considering I have never run more than 5-6 miles at once on a treadmill. (I don’t think…) Luckily, College game day was on, so I was able to put in my headphones and somewhat zone out and not think about running. I actually watched almost the entire first half of a game I could have cared less about…but, what else was I going to do?


I was actually pretty proud, I wanted to quit several times, my legs started to hurt, and it would be So easy to hit that little red “stop” button, but I Kept running, telling myself I am stronger than I think and to have confidence in my mental strength to get through it. It was finally OVER, and we celebrated by…uh…going to the grocery store….very exciting stuff here on RWS!

We relaxed the rest of the day, napped, watched football, and recovered. I wore my awesome new CWX tights, but more on those later. I was SO GLAD that we decided to stick it out and get the 10 miles out of the way. it feels so good to be done with a hard workout like that!


Bobby on the floor asleep Saturday afternoon. poor baby.

What is my point in telling you all about this? Well, basically just suck it up, get out there and do it! I could have easily blamed my lack of a long run on tropical storm Lee, but that would have been the sad excuse way out. I could have fooled a lot of people with that one, but not myself. I would have known deep down that I should have, could have run.

Hear me out…if you are injured or sick, stay home, stay in bed. But if the only reason you aren’t out being active is because you don’t feel like putting in the effort, you need to re-evaluate your goals. I mean, it’s just a little tropical storm, right? (I have used FAR lamer excuses for bailing on a workout, trust me!) Find your strength, find a mantra that works for you, and think of how AWESOME you will feel after you have accomplished your workout. So go, get out there and do it!

QOTD: What mantra do you use to motivate you through a tough workout? (or to get you out the door?)