Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Pounding On (and on and on and on..)

 Ok Go  : Made treadmills look fun ( you liar)

From The Runner’s Rule Book by Mark Remy there's a part on the book that focuses on Runner’s Glossary which explains some common running terms and how to use them properly. I got a kick out of reading this one:

Treadmill (n.)

A primitive torture device first imagined by medieval jailers and perfected in the late 20th century, designed to destroy one’s mind through sensory deprivation and monotony.

e.g ,

Correct: “ I would rather die of hypothermia than run on a treadmill”

Incorrect: “Treadmills aren’t so bad.”


I have this love hate relationship with the dreadmill. When I’m not on it, I admire its sleek ebony surface, it’s shock absorbent belt, its gradual incline program ( okay, I don’t use that one), its incredible durability to withstand constant pounding, its heart rate monitor (that I also don’t use), its ability to fold up despite its mass bulk, so that my kids won’t mess about on it. But when it’s time to do some indoor running, I have to drag myself to get it on, I sigh deeply and sometimes I try to stall, checking emails and FB when I should be pounding away.

When we first got it 3 years ago, we stationed it near the TV in the living room so that I can watch Oprah while doing my lunch break running. Wasn’t a very good idea. We kept getting weird ( not to mention nervous) looks from people who came by. Plus, kids ( and sometimes adults) would ask us to turn it on to have a go at it just for fun ( It’s NOT that fun). After that, Dreadmill was placed somewhere more secluded, between the kitchen and the dining table. It’s a bit cramped there but if you get too claustrophobic, you can always open the window and imagine yourself doing some outdoor running ( iyo la tu).

But no matter how boring it gets on the dreadmill, it’s my only chance to escape with my weekday running. Even when I don’t have time to do a few miles during lunch break, I can always squeeze in that run in the evenings. My kids know better not to come close ( we trained them well) and I can always monitor them while running. Plus, with the kitchen nearby, I could always replenish easily after each run.

I have tried everything I could to make dreadmill running less, uh, dreadful. I’ve tried the iPod, I’ve tried visualizing myself in an actual race, I’ve tried running in different styles, I’ve tried the programmed runs, everything. Sure, it worked for a day or two, after that it’s back to the same old constant monotonous pounding. All I have left is sheer determination to get it over with. It’s either stay on or fall off (wouldn’t want to touch the stop button now, would we?)

And today, I got through 52 minutes of 8K at 6mph on the dreadmill. I could’ve have gone out to have a huge lunch, I could’ve watch Oprah, I could’ve slept. But I chose to follow my training regime; I chose to suck it up.
After it’s all over, I find that it’s so true: You almost never regret the runs that you do; you almost always regret the runs that you skip.
Now for that 9.6 K next week..Sigh.

P/s I read somewhere, some people could run 4 hours straight on the dreadmill. Well that’s just plain sick.
Or warrior-like.


  1. Here's a great treadmill workout.
    1. Set it to the fastest you can go. Try 12, run for 2 mins then jog 1 min. Repeat 5 times.

    2. Set it to an incline about 6%. Run as fast as you can for 2 mins non stop. Walk down. Repeat 5 times.

    There, you have a great workout without even have time to feel bored. Keep the fun to the outdoors.

  2. "You almost never regret the runs that you do; you almost always regret the runs that you skip." <----i love the quote! and it's soo true, except in my case, I'd replace the run with exercise snce I do many jumbled up things right now.

    When I got suckered into joining a gym, running on the treadmill was torture, but it was the only way for me to keep running. I agree with kash, the only way I managed to last about an hour or so is by setting the incline to be like, 10% and try to vary my speed from fast to slow. it wroked a little bit.

  3. my relationship with the dreadmill has ended many moons ago. I would rather run in the rain than be glued to the conveyor belt not going anywhere. The period when I spent 90 minutes on that machine has long dissipated, but I agree that it has so many functions that helps, especially doing the interval trainings, but just couldn't bring myself to it.

    you lunch break at home? waaaaa bestnye jadi doktor!

  4. i dont do treadmills either but kooky's workout sounds good for stamina build up .. might do just that .. love the video, if i were to step on moving treadmill like that dah tergolek dog lol

  5. I only do treadmill only when I have to. Kooky Kash is right, mix it. I usually do gradual increase to the speed...5mins on 7.5mph, and after increase it by 0.5 until you feel like you cant increase anymore. So whenever it almost reach the final 5 minutes you will be excited to try higher speed. Heheheh...Maybe you can give it a try

  6. Kak Kash : Yep, keep the fun outdoors. I only do speedwork on the machine. So it's a case of been there, done that. But the incline thing looks interesting, maybe I'll try that next time.
    tolldoll : 'it worked a little bit'..haha..I like that one..dead on.
    amsyah : I'm one of those lucky people whose workplace is a walking distance can afford la all the break time runs..taktau la if I transfer nanti macamana.
    June : Ain't the choreography cool? You should see their other video.
    mclarenna: Hehe, like I said, been there, done that but you gotta do what you gotta do I guess.

  7. "..I’ve tried running in different styles.."
    Have you tried running backwards? I heard people say it's fun!