Treadmill Running Vs Outdoor: Runner’s Favourite

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Treadmill Running Vs Outdoor

The appearance of treadmills and gym centres has directed many runners from running outdoors to paying membership fees for gym centre sessions.

However, though some people can’t seem to find the energy to work out without the assistance of physical equipment like treadmills, some still prefer exercising outside. They prefer the comfortable, realistic feeling that the outdoor environment offers.

Then, which truly benefits runners, treadmill running vs outdoor? Is one superior to the other in terms of effectiveness? Let’s take a look at this post to find out the answer!

What Is The Difference Between Treadmill Running vs Outdoor?

Is treadmill better than running outside? They both are a form of exercise, running in particular. The differences between them tend to stick with their effectiveness. We will discuss this issue in several research topics to figure out exactly how they differ.

1 – Dissimilarities In Biomechanics

According to some studies, there is a clear biomechanical distinction between them. When running outside, runners might shorten or lengthen their steps or move side to side to handle uneven ground or unexpected obstacles. In contrast, Treadmill running does not, because the treadmill surface is flat and not as wide as the road.

Besides, running on hard surfaces like packed dirt or pavement causes the body’s bone density to increase.

2 – Differences In Metabolism

Running outside creates a higher metabolic demand than treadmill running. When you run outside, you must “grip” the ground with your foot to propel yourself forward. Therefore, if you burn more energy or move more when running, you’ll have a better metabolic rate that will aid your body’s internal functioning.

Whereas treadmills support users with a belt, so runners don’t need to use their muscles.

3 – Variations In Perceived Exertion Rates

For many runners, running on the ground feels like it takes more effort to complete the same distance. It might be due to the differences in constraints of winds and weather. Moreover, time often flies faster on a treadmill.

What Are The Benefits And Drawbacks Of Treadmill Running?

Treadmill Running

Treadmill Running

The machine, beyond doubt, appears for some reasons, and more importantly, is to meet the customer’s needs. That is why it comes with various benefits as below:


No Restrictions Of The Weather Or Temperature –  Both high and low temperatures bring about the hazard of hydration or even exhaustion. Luckily, indoor runners don’t have to worry about the weather under their home or the gym centre roof. Even if it’s raining heavily or there is a storm outside, they can always work out.

Better Control Over Your Speed – It’s hard to keep the same pace throughout your run, let alone saying it’s impossible. The treadmill offers users a wide range of speeds. You can maintain or increase the speed to motivate yourself.

Convenient – The indoor environment of treadmill running will prevent exterior influence factors such as terrible weather, bad lighting at nights, bad traffic, and even air pollution. Moreover, you can combine running with physical workouts or even enjoy the entertainment!

Combine others workout exercises

Combine others workout exercises


Tedious Sense — Continuously running without changing your view might create boredom. Sometimes, some music or your TV can’t save this situation. Hence, we can not deny that running on the treadmill is a better option than running outdoors at this point.

Unable To Change The Direction – Straight forward is the only direction to go if you don’t want to fall. Doing this would restrict your ability to build lateral flexibility.

What Are The Benefits And Drawbacks Of Outside Running?

Running Outdoor

Running Outdoor

Running outdoors also has its pros and cons:


Free For Everyone – Unlike gym centres, you don’t have to pay for running on the road or the park. Moreover, you don’t need support from equipment. You only need a nice pair of running trainers, which is necessary for both methods.

Anytime And Anywhere – Some gym centres open at certain periods, and they only have a limited number of treadmills. On the other hand, the road is a public property area available throughout the day and for everyone.

Burns Calories Faster – As mentioned above, there are obstacles outdoors that help you burn calories faster. When the rock or some power poles force you to dodge them, the wind resistance also causes you to work a little more to maintain your speed, resulting in a higher calorie burn.

Burning calories process

Burning calories process

Imitate Race Conditions – If you’re training for a race, you’ll need to do your kilometres outside because that’s the only way to effectively mimic a raceway.


Unsecured – Not everyone lives in safe areas. It’s hard for them to work out alone on the street. Or in some cases, some runners may not feel safe running at night or high-traffic hours so treadmill running might be a better option for them.

Not A Safe Running Area

Not A Safe Running Area

Risks Of Getting Hurt – Yet various and difficult surfaces promote the calorie-burning process, which may also increase risks of injury.

Wrapping It Up

One of the best exercises that help us gain the best out of it is running. The question of choosing between Treadmill running vs outdoor is surely hard to answer because it would depend on your own needs and conditions.

Running on the treadmill will be the best option for those who want high standards, a wide range of safety, and prefer to combine a run with more workout exercise. On the other hand, if you prefer some fresh air after a long day at work, or just because you don’t live near the gym centre, running outdoors will suit you well.

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