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Adjusting Treadmill Incline for Real Road Pace
Hazen Kent - Tri-Newbies Online

The Winter season always means readjusting your training regimen. Especially for those living in harsher climates. This usually means indoor cycling on a stationary trainer, indoor swimming for most and on those really harsh days, indoor running on the treadmill.  Unlike the stationary bike trainer, however, a treadmill can provide the necessary gravitational resistance by simply adjusting the incline of the machine. And the more you adjust the incline, the closer you come to real road pace.

Each winter, discussion and questions arise based on the differences between running on a treadmill and running on the roads (excluding the obvious environmental factors). And I refer specifically to running speeds on a treadmill compared to those on the road. In fact, running speeds on a treadmill are not equal to those running speeds on the road. Because you are not moving forward on a treadmill, your effort at any comparable pace to that on the roads, is easier because you do not have to overcome air resistance regardless of how calm the day may be outside.

Therefore, if you want to achieve a truer “road pace” on the treadmill, you must adjust the incline. Click here and you will see a chart that gives the various inclines and how each is compared to real “road pace.” And the next eleven columns represent actual pace based on percent of incline.

Remember, when running on a treadmill, warm-up properly. The wonderful thing about a treadmill is, you can adjust as you move, both speed and incline. I hope you find this chart helpful for those heading indoors for the winter.

** Effort Based Treadmill Running. Peak Running Performance. January/February 1996. Volume 5, Number 1.



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