Ask-A-Salty: Treadmill Q&A Session

Got a question? Just ask!
Got a question? Just ask!

Today we’re doing a different kind of Ask-A-Salty and asking you, our readers, to help us with our Treadmill Tip of the Week series by bringing us your questions and suggestions in the comments.

Are you wondering if it’s normal to ______?

Have you always been confused by ______?

Here’s a chance to ask us your treadmill questions in an open forum! Whether it’s about one of our previous treadmill tips or you have a new question, we want to hear from you!

Click here to go through to the comments.

Salty Running boss and mother of 3 little ones with PRs of 3:10:15 (26.2), 1:25:59 (13.1) and 18:15 (5k). I love to write about running culture, mental training, and fitting in a serious running habit with the rest of a busy life.

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  1. Is it normal to run up on the console? Does anybody else run very close to the front of the treadmill? I’m not afraid of falling off the back, and usually I’m not even aware that I’m doing it. I’ll realized a few miles in that I creep up, and suddenly my stride feels very short. Is this a sign that I should increase my speed? I don’t feel like it is, because it happens even worse when I start to get tired, or when I’m already running nearly as fast as I can. Is it possible that this is related to my other terrible habit of “half-stepping” a running companion? (I tend to run half a step in front of the person I run with). In other words, is this just a psychological problem and how do I break it?

    1. Great question! Based on all the thuds I hear at the gym this is a very common problem. I used to do this myself and I think it can mean a couple of things. 1) like you mention, you might be warmed up and need to adjust the pace up a point or two to go the same effort. 2) I used to do it if I was trying to keep up a certain pace that might have been too fast for me. So it might also mean you need to either relax or slow down just a touch. And 3) it could be the treadmill console is weirdly positioned or the bed is short, but it doesn’t sound like that’s the case for you.

      Based on what you’re saying, I’d go with option 2 for you. It seems like this tends to happen when we’re trying to hard to run a certain pace. You might consider slowing it down a little if this happens and see if that helps. Remember, for many if not most runners, the treadmill feels harder than outside running. So while up you might be able to comfortably run a pace outside, that same pace might be horrendous for you on the treadmill. If you have to slow down it’s ok. Promise!

      Let us know if slowing it down a little helps! Thanks!

  2. What incline should I set my treadmill at to get a speed/interval workout similar to that on a flat road? Different sources say different things — so confusing! I’ve always set it at 1.0, but that actually feels way harder than running outside. I get plenty of hills on my outside routes, and only use the TM in extreme weather or to do speed work.

  3. Do you have any tips on what to look for when buying a treadmill? I’m considering getting one for myself, but tthe price range is huge and I don’t have gigantic amounts of money to spend… By the way, I’m training for my first half in february and I plan to do speedwork and shortish runs (less than 8 miles) on the mill.
    I love Salty running, you are doing a great job!