OBA Blog Swap : Transitioning from Treadmill to Road

As a part of today’s Ohio Blogging Association‘s All State Blog Swap, I’m happy to introduce you to Julie from Am I There Yet. On this day, bloggers from around the great state of Ohio are guest posting for each other as a way to get to know each other and spread the world about our blogging community. For a full listing of blog swap participants,
please visit Poise in Parma.

Thank you ROJ Running for letting share your space on the blogosphere! I am Julie from over at Am I There Yet and you can find me at aityblog.com. I am still new to the world of running and have trained for races both indoors and out.

With the spring race season wrapping up, many people have found themselves running their first marathon or half marathon, or even 10 or 5k. Sometimes newbie runners find it easy to start their running career on the treadmill. Even seasoned runners who hate running in the cold winter temps while training for a spring race will choose a treadmill over outdoor running. And sometimes, the transition from the treadmill to road running can be an intimidating one.

For an avid runner, they might be itching to get back outside as soon as the weather warms up, but for some people it can be scary. You might think, “Running outside will be harder,” “I hate hills,” or “The road will kill my joints.” But there are many ways to ease into the world of running your neighborhood streets that could make the whole thing a little bit easier.

Information on some easy tips can be found all over the Internet with a little bit of Googling.

Make the switch a gradual one. Ease into it. Take it slow. Try adding one outdoor run a week to your regime and take it from there. You’re first long run doesn’t have to be outside. Keep it simple. Then you’ll have plenty of time to acclimate to the terrain or to any temperature changes.
Take it easy on the hills. I always feel so awesome when I conquer a huge hill. But for your first time out, charge those hills at a walk. There are enough changes in elevation that you may not notice just running up the curb and you might not love running that hill as much as you think. Your body might not either. Take the hills slow. There is plenty of time for hill repeats later.
Try and find a softer surface. If wear and tear on your joints is a fear, try your first outdoor runs on the trails or even a soft track at the neighborhood high school. If worse comes to worst choose the asphalt first over concrete sidewalks, it has a little bit more give.

Map out a route. Coming off your love for the treadmill you might not have dabbled in the world of the Garmin or Nike Plus. But even if you have, map out a couple routes first. This way you can see how far away from your house you’re going and can adjust if you need to for any reason. There are a ton of site out there like Map My Run and Gmap-pedometer. I prefer Gmap, just sayin.
Forget about your speed! It’s easy to think it will be harder or that you will run slower. And you may feel sluggish at first with wind resistance and different road surfaces like gravel, grass, or jumping up that curb. It might feel harder to propel yourself forward without the help of the treadmill pulling your feet beneath you. But it’s likely you won’t notice your pace with the new scenery. In fact, I personally found when I made the switch, I ran faster outside given that my body would adjust my pace based on how I felt. Rather than setting the treadmill to a speed that’s constant.

As the running bug grabs hold of more of my friends, the fear of moving from the treadmill to the street seems to be a big concern. And that’s ok, I totally get it. I learned literally, I had to learn) to run on a treadmill. But once I experienced the freedom of running outside, I will skip the treadmill at all costs. There are people out there that prefer the treadmill over outdoor running for its ease and joint friendly jogging. And that’s ok too. But making the switch doesn’t have to be a hard one, it can be challenging but it can also give a whole new outlook on your afternoon training run. So don’t knock it till you try it!

Thanks Julie for a great post! Always fun to show different perspectives and share passion with the world. Don’t forget to keep following Julie over at her blog
Am I There Yet.

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