What Is The Difference Between Treadmill And Outdoor Running

What Is The Difference Between Treadmill And Outdoor Running?


Running is one of the most efficient forms of exercise. Millions of knowledgeable and passionate fitness enthusiasts run to maintain their fitness. But a major question prompts in the mind of fitness enthusiasts that which form of running is better among running on a treadmill or running outside.

Both forms of running are popular among runners. One party of runners prefer to run outside as they find running on the treadmill is a boring and monotonous fitness routine. On the other hand, treadmill runners prefer to run indoors in a comfortable and controlled environment. Fortuitously, you can gain profits from both forms of running.

In this article, we are going to analyze the pros and cons of both types of running so that you can decide which one will suit you most.

Treadmill Running


The treadmill is a fitness gear that comes with a manageable rotating belt to run or walk on. It is easily available in most gyms and workout places.

However, you can also purchase one to use at your home and for your personal use. The treadmill is available in both the stores and online.

Pros Of Treadmill Running


  • Accessibility is one of the major rewards of running on a treadmill. As it is an indoor exercise machine, you can run on it at any time of the day in any weather. Whether it is daytime or nighttime, winter or summer or rainy season, you will be able to work out in any of these situations. Also, the people who do not have a fixed time of working out can have the access to this fitness gear at any time of their convenience.
  • Also, if you are on a vacation and cannot use the machine of your home, you can find a treadmill anywhere near you. It is a very easily available fitness gear. It is very rare to find a gym that will not possess a treadmill. Most of the hotels and even some office gyms have treadmills. So, wherever you go, it is almost impossible to miss out on your workout session on this fitness gear.
  • Most users of treadmill running can enjoy so many functions and have meticulous control over the incline, decline, pace, and intervals. Therefore, the users can do exercise as per their preference and the requirement of their body. The customized versions of the workout for each user make the exercise more effective and bring out the outcome from their fitness sessions.
  • Treadmill exercise is also beneficial for people who are recovering from injuries. Because a treadmill allows a user to work out in a more comfortable and controlled environment. For example, if you are recovering from an injury of the ankle and you are running outside, you are prone to a bigger risk to get injured again. This time the injury may get worse. The treadmill running will refrain you from such risks. The probability of happening hazards, associated with slippery sidewalks and uneven ground, is zero in the case of a treadmill running.
  • Finally, the treadmill running not only keeps you away from the potential risks of injury but also helps you to heal from your previous injuries. According to experts’ suggestions, running on a treadmill can be helpful for the joints as most of this machine comes with cushioned belts. These belts absorb the jerks causing by hard ground and impact intense running so that the other body parts do not stay in danger.

Cons Of Treadmill Running


  • Unlike running outdoors, treadmill running feels boring to some people as the runner feels the lack of outdoor scenery, greenery and forests in the case of a treadmill running session. Working out in a closed-door and at a fixed place makes the fitness journey monotonous to some users over time.
  • To beat this con, nowadays modern treadmills come with advanced screens which simulate outdoor running. It tries to give the feel and experience of an outdoor running session by making it more enjoyable. Nevertheless, many argue that such a feature can never match the level of outdoor running and one cannot experience the feeling of running outdoor while staying indoor.
  • Furthermore, treadmill running involves fewer groups of muscle like the glutes and the hamstrings in comparison to outdoor running. It happens because while running indoor on a treadmill, the usertend to walk or run in a steady and persistent linear motion as the belt of the treadmill propels the user forward.
  • An uncomplicated solution to this issue is to include resistance training in the fitness routine. The frequency can be a few times a week. It can help the user to cover and work on the groups of muscles can miss in the treadmill training sessions.
  • Some runners report that they can have shorter and less natural strides while running on the treadmill because of the limited parameters. Though it is a controversial statement. A study from 2020 found that no considerable differences are there between treadmill running and outdoor running.
  • And last but not the least, one of the major drawbacks of running on a treadmill is the cost of the machine itself. Unlike outdoor running, you have to pay for running on a treadmill or any other piece of fitness machinery. Usually, while purchasing a treadmill, you will have to pay 10 or more dollars per month. And if you want to purchase a treadmill of your own, you may require to pay in the range of hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on the quality and features added to the gear.

Outdoor Running


It is a form of running that means running outdoors on the path, sidewalk, trail, or any other type of outdoor terrain.

Pros Of Outdoor Running


  • According to most runners, outdoor running is way more entertaining and enjoyable than treadmill running. The greenery, fresh air, changing scenery, rough ground, and infinite alternatives for running lanes make the groundbreaking difference between these two types of running.
  • The varieties of paths and surrounding scenarios raise the motivation level of a runner. So, he can run for a longer period with intact enthusiasm.
  • Both forms of running reward us with huge health benefits like increased endurance decreased blood pressure and decreased threat of depression. But outdoor running additionally may bring benefits by connecting the runner to nature. Remarkably, a study from 2016 revealed that if someone spends a minimum of 30 minutes a week around the open-air greenery like forests and parks, the probability rate of their depression and blood pressure will fall by 7% and 9% respectively.
  • Also, the variety of barriers and outdoor environment help you to activate other groups of muscles you will not be able to cover in a treadmill running. The balancing capability will be better as well.
  • Furthermore, according to research, outdoor running on harder surfaces makes the bones stronger and increases the metabolism of the bone.
  • And lastly, unlike treadmill running, outdoor running is free of cost. Though you may have to consider the cost of running shoes and performance tracking gear, you will not need to pay a penny for purchasing any extravagant machinery. Therefore, outdoor running is accessible to people of each income class.

Cons Of Outdoor Running


  • Weather can be a constraint for most runners and beginners. Moderately warm and dry weather is suitable for outdoor running, whereas rainy, snowy, and extremely hot and cold temperatures are the biggest barriers. Also, if you run in extreme hot or cold weather, you may face the risk of life-threatening dehydration. With proper training, you can learn how to run in such adverse situations.
  • Finally, outdoor running at nighttime is not safe for all. It may invite many unwanted dangers.So, if someone chooses to run at nighttime, he has to ensure about wearing reflective clothing and a headlamp for making him visible. Also, he needs to inform a family member or friend of your route or bring a running partner.

As we have seen throughout the discussion, both the form of running have some merits and demerits. The perspective of these points varies from person to person. Some aspects may seem acceptable to a group of people and unacceptable to the other group of people and vice versa.

However, both types will bring health benefits. So, depending on your preference and convenience you need to choose the best-suited form of running for you.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.