Every year, all over the world, marathons are organized for various purposes. Some help to support charities through entrance fees, some are major televised events, and some are rugged challenges through harsh environments to test the endurance of the athletes.
If you’re a serious runner, then you’ve probably considered running at least a half-marathon at least once in your life. They’re fun, competitive, usually support a good cause, and give you a chance to meet personal goals and exceed the limitations of your body and mind.
Recently, however, there’s been a growing trend of running a marathon or at least training for a marathon on a treadmill. This unconventional method has lots of great benefits, and today we’re going to be looking at some of them.
A marathon is 26.2 miles long. While that number is easy to look at, once you start thinking about actually running it, you’ll realize just how much of a challenge that it is. Most daily runners are happy to run their daily two or three miles around the block or at the gym, but a marathon will test you like you’ve never been before.
If you're still on the fence about starting to train for a marathon on a treadmill or about doing it in the first place, here are three great reasons to start.
If you want to take your running game to the next level, then training for a marathon will improve almost all aspects of your running. While it may take away from some of your explosive sprinting power, it will train you to push your body like it’s never been pushed before.
You’ll build endurance that you never thought possible, increase your lactate threshold, and slowly build up the strength of your joints and tendons over time.
If you were to ask most people to run a marathon, they would probably answer with a resounding, “No.” The very idea of running 26.2 miles in one sitting is enough to scare most people away. Day-by-day, mile-by-mile, you’ll get better. Every day, you’ll prove to yourself that you’re tougher than you were the day before.
Anybody who has ever run a marathon will tell you about how they felt after they completed their first one. It’s something to brag about and something that proves that you’re capable of whatever you set your mind to.
The short answer is yes. You can definitely run a marathon on a treadmill. Most people prefer to use the treadmill as their training method though. Running 26.2 miles on a treadmill just for the sake of it isn’t very common.
However, training for a marathon on a treadmill is a great way to prepare your body and mind for an upcoming marathon that you’re trying to participate in.
Whether you’re training for a half marathon on a treadmill or the full 26.2 miles, the controlled indoor environment has several great perks when it comes to your training process. Let’s take a look.
When you're training for a marathon, it's important to hit the track almost every single day. If you're limited to running outside all of the time, then your training routine will be at the mercy of the weather. Unless you're a fan of running in the pouring rain, snow, or the hot humidity of the summer, then you're going to need a solution to keep up your training.
This is where a treadmill really comes in handy. No matter what the weather happens to be, you can still keep up with your daily training routine.
The one thing that can put an end to all of your hopes and dreams of running a marathon is sustaining a severe injury such as a sprained or twisted ankle, hyperextension, or swollen joints. When you’re running outside on the concrete, or on uneven terrain, the likelihood of you twisting your ankle or tripping are a lot higher.
Training for a marathon on a treadmill allows you to practice in a controlled environment where you don’t have to worry about hard ground or uneven terrain. Everything is flat, uniform, and predictable.
Although you can track your progress outside with some type of GPS phone application and a stopwatch, it's a lot easier to do the numbers while you're running on a treadmill. You can see exactly how far you're running, your average speed, calories burned, etc.
If you’re really serious about beating your record and being a significant competitor, then training for a marathon on a treadmill is a great way to keep track of landmarks. Make sure that you take down your numbers at least once a week so that you can mark your progress and ensure that you’re meeting your goals.
As great as marathon training on a treadmill is, it’s still important to include outdoor running in your routine. The actual marathon that you intend on running will be outside, so you need to be sure that your body can handle the challenges that come with the outdoors.
The ground you’re running on will be harder, you might have some small inclines, and you’ll be surrounded by other people. In addition to this, the air may be cooler, warmer, arid, or more humid. All of these factors can greatly increase or decrease your overall endurance, and you need to get your body acclimated to the environment that you plan on running in.
Training for a marathon on a treadmill is a great addition to your outdoor routine, though, as it allows you to keep track of your progress, prevents you from injury, and gives you a way to train no matter what the weather is. The key to getting your body into top shape is to keep everything balanced.