Surviving a Long Run on the Treadmill

treadmillI signed up to run a 10 miler last weekend. Even as I signed up for it I wondered what I was getting myself into. On the other hand I had to train anyway, I hate to run indoors and a lot of my friends also signed up This race promised to be held no matter what the weather would be.

A few days prior to race day the weather predictions were grim: bitter cold temps, snow and heavy winds. Oh joy. The day before the race wasn’t too bad and I thought about running. I was committed to the race, though, so I decided to just bundle up and go for it.

I was out most of the day with my husband and didn’t see the email until 7 pm. The race was canceled. I was a little disappointed but also relieved. I really didn’t know how I would be able to run in 30+ mile an hour winds in 10 degree temps and now I wouldn’t have to.

Unfortunately I still had to do my long run, it was now after 7 pm and snowing out. There was no way I was getting a long run in and would have to run on the treadmill the next day. Blech, 12 miles on the treadmill did not sound fun at all. I recently read a blog post on how to survive a long run on the treadmill and decided to follow those tips.

I had music, movies, nutrition, sports drink and water. The benefit of running in your own home is the things you like are easily accessible and so is the bathroom! I couldn’t get the dvd player to work so I listened to music for the first 5 miles. After that I decided to grab my laptop and watch The Birdcage for the rest of my run.

The movie let me focus without thinking how many miles I had left or how much I dislike running in place for hours. I focused on the brilliance that was Robin Williams and made a plan to walk during my next nutrition break. (it’s very sad to think Robin Williams is no longer in this world).

Breaking the run into chunks also helped. it’s less daunting to think of the run as a 5 miler then a 12 miler. At mile 5 I walked a bit and had and half of my energy gel. Another 4 miles in I had the rest of my energy gel. (I will never buy Vega gels again, it was one of the most disgusting gels I’ve ever had). Then I only had 3 miles left, which didn’t seem daunting at all.

I finished up my run and felt like I really accomplished something. I may not want to repeat the experience any time soon but knowing I could do it was pretty empowering.

Do you run outdoors regardless of the weather?

How do you get through a long run on the treadmill?