The benefits of treadmill running

During the wet weather season in Singapore, the inconsistency of the weather may make it hard to plan for your outdoor runs. But if you can’t run outdoors, you can always fall back on the treadmill.

1. It is convenient

Treadmill running is a decent substitute for the outdoor version. [Photo from CDC/ Amanda Mills]

Treadmill running is a decent substitute for the times when you can’t run outdoors. [Photo from CDC/ Amanda Mills]

You are less likely to miss out on a workout if you run on the treadmill during wet days or when it’s too hot or too late at nights. Otherwise you are more likely to make excuses i.e. too hot, too wet or too dark to run, and are more likely to miss out on workout sessions, which your body needs.

2. It is efficient

Running on the treadmill can also be more efficient if the weather is not suitable for running during your allocated running time.

For example, if you run in the rain, you may be putting yourself at a higher risk of catching a cold. At the same time you will be exerting more energy to try and battle possible strong winds during the run. This will waste energy and require more recovery time after the run.

And should you catch a cold, then you will require days off to get well which can also be less than productive, as you will end up skipping a prolonged period of training.

Alternatively if you run in the Singapore heat, it will lengthen your recovery time and you may feel more tired than usual after your run.

So treadmill training could be more productive.

3. Can be safer

Running on a treadmill may also be safer than running on the roads.

This is because when you are running on the roads, you may be susceptible to elements such as the heavy peak hour traffic.

Even if you run through the Singapore park connectors where there is no traffic, you may never know what will happen especially if you are a female and you often run alone in the dark. In such situations it may be safer to run on a treadmill rather in a place that is dimly lit.

Singapore is considered pretty safe compared to some other places, but there have still been cases of robberies and pickpockets. It is better to be safe than sorry.

4. You can simulate the race you are running

Some of the more famous races have the elevation throughout the full race route loaded into a treadmill and these can easily be selected by runners. These may include the Boston Marathon and the New York Marathon.

So if you are fortunate enough to be training for one of these races, then using a treadmill to do a full dress rehearsal of the race elevation will help you out on race day – rather than running anyhow and turning up at the race not as prepared as you  could be.

It can be safer than road running. [Photo from CDC/ Amanda Mills]

It can be safer than road running.
[Photo from CDC/ Amanda Mills]

5. It may improve your form

Studies have shown that running on a treadmill can reduce stride length and improve stride frequency. So this may benefit your running form in the long term – as compared to training on your normal running route.


Despite the benefit of treadmill running though, it must be noted that running on the treadmill cannot fully replace outdoor running.

For example the lack of wind resistance on the treadmill, may result in you struggling more, during an outdoor road race. So try and combine treadmill training with outdoor running to reap the best of both worlds.

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