Category Archives: Speed Work

Surviving The Treadmill Run

The ice storm that was dumped on Tennessee last week pretty much shut the state down.  Schools closed, businesses closed, government offices closed – mail delivery even stopped.  Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night  apparently didn’t include ice storms!  Luckily, as the roads began to thaw, many gyms offered limited hours.  We all have had cabin fever but I was luckily enough to hit the Y during its four hour open window to get in a run.  I hate running on the dreadmill but unfortunately when faced with treadmill vs. fall on the ice and possibly break a hip, I will take the dreaded treadmill every time.

The trick to surviving a treadmill run is to avoid boredom.  I know, I know, much easier said than done but hopefully these tips will help!


Have some good running tunes

Cranking up the tunes can help drown out the sounds of the gym and possibly pump you up to run faster.  Running faster = less time on the dreadmill.


Mix up the workout

I find running on the treadmill is much more enjoyable if I have something to keep my brain active.  I use my dreadmill time to do hill repeats, ladder workouts, or speed intervals.  Thinking about what is coming next keeps me from thinking about how long I have been running nowhere.


The dreaded long run

I have a friend who ran 16 miles on a treadmill this weekend because outside conditions were too dangerous to run in (running on an inch of solid ice is more ice skating than running anyway).  First of all, she is way cooler than me!  I could never make it that far.  8 miles has been my limit so far, but if you must go long, have a plan to keep you from going completely nutso!  If you can read on the treadmill, try a good book (or audiobook if you can’t), put on a movie, or my favorite (and the plan that got me through 8 miles) is make a game of it.  If you have to do 15 miles at the gym, do five miles and switch to another treadmill.  Do 5 more and then switch again.  This technique gives you both a change of scenery and a sneaky way to bypass the gym’s time limit rule!


When all else fails, suck it up and know that in a few months it will be sunny and warm, and we will be complaining about the heat – Hey! You gotta have something to complain about!


How do you survive the dreadmill?

What is the longest distance you have ever done?

Speed Work – Week 1

Since I am trying to get my running fitness back after my epic two month break, I am incorporating 1 weekly speed workout in each week.


This week was a tough one because I had several extra appointments scheduled into my week and the only time I could squeeze in a little speed work was at 6:00 am (because let’s face it, I won’t do it after work). It’s still pitch black outside that early so I sucked it up and hit the dreadmill.


I had just over an hour to get in and out of the gym so I planned out a 35 minute workout and tried to make it really count. The workout was a fartlek run with progressive 2 minute intervals. The workout below is my current pace but it can easily be adjusted to be slower or faster.




It seriously kicked my butt – but in a good way. I left the gym feeling energized and accomplished. The best part – after work, I can collapse onto the couch because I already got my workout out of the way.


Do you prefer to workout in the morning or the evening?


What is your favorite speed workout?