Benefits of Race Training on the Treadmill

Running on a TreadmillWith these colder months approaching many come to to invest in a treadmill to help them continue to get their runs in even when the weather outside wouldn’t allow otherwise. The cold season can become especially troublesome for one training for spring time race, yet treadmills can be a great alternative to get in your training without having to risk the icy conditions and freezing temperatures.

While race training on a treadmill is not the same as training outside, it is still better than having to skip your runs due to weather conditions and can actually offer benefits over running outdoors. In fact Treadmill Training from Runner’s World stated that, “done right, treadmill training will help you maintain and improve your fitness throughout the winter so you’re ready to race – or just outpace- your running buddies come spring.”

Benefits of Race Training on the Treadmill

Treadmills offer display screens to tell you just how far you’ve gone, your exact time, your exact pace, your inclines, your heart rate, and how many calories you’ve burned. This information can be incredibly useful when it comes to training, some of which is not as easy to obtain when you run outside and are unsure of your mileage or pace.

According to an article Can I Train for a Race on a Treadmill? “your training treadmill may better prepare you for race conditions than outdoor running because your marathon will most likely be in warm weather. Running at room temperature will help you get acclimated to race-like conditions.”
Running on an Incline

You can control your course when running on a treadmill. Many races have hills yet finding hills outdoors similar to the exact one of your scheduled race trail can be hard. Now days many treadmills, such as the NordicTrack Commercial 1750, come equipped with iFit Live and Google Maps so you can actually pull up your exact race trail and run it right there on your treadmill! Even if your treadmill does not have this feature, you can still adjust your incline to match that of your race trail or you can try this Treadmill Hill Training workout to help get you prepared.

Because you control your speed, you are forced to stick to a set pace. When running outdoors you can start to slow down and slack on your speed without even realizing it. When you are forced to keep up or risk flying off the back of the ongoing machine it keeps you more honest with your pace helping you to improve your speed and time.

Running on a cushioned treadbelt is a lot easier on the joints then slamming the pavement every day. An article from stated that when you run on the treadmill it is actually “absorbing shock when your feet hit the belt.” Treadmills decrease the impact so they are especially better for those overweight or injury-prone.


While training for a race on a treadmill has many benefits, to ensure you are race ready and fully prepared it’s still a good idea to do at least one run a week or bi-weekly outdoors. Come spring time you want to be sure you are fully prepared for your race and running the exact trail, pavement, and weather conditions is going to ensure that you are.


Other interesting reads:

Julie is the blogger over at and she shares a story where she trained for her first half marathon solely on the treadmill, read her story here!

Janae who blogs over at actually ran a whole marathon on the treadmill, click here to check out here story!