The Treadmill is a Dream Squasher

In December I envisioned myself as a warrior on the treadmill this winter. I was going to run all the intervals, do speed work, inclines, etc and not hate it. I prepared by finding podcasts to listen to, downloaded Netflix on my iPhone, and bought new earbuds to endure winter training. I was so armed with determination.

Here’s what’s actually happening:

When I arrive at the gym the should-be simple act of finding a treadmill that functions is unbelievably frustrating. I’ll pick a treadmill and the touch-screen doesn’t work. If the touch-screen doesn’t work, I have to hit “Quick Start”, and it will turn off in 20 minutes on me, which interrupts my speed work & intervals, and I have to keep track of my distances each 20 minutes instead of having one simple mileage number summed up at the end for me.

Some treadmills don’t even have functioning increase/decrease speed or incline buttons. I can pick one speed and that’s where it’ll stay. There are other treadmills that don’t even power on. I’ve also had times when the treadmill powers off spontaneously in the middle of an all-out fast interval.

Yes, I have complained to gym management.

No, finding another gym is not an option.

Oh, wait, there’s more. When I finally find a treadmill that will actually start and I can change my speed, I get a static shock into my earbuds. Violent enough I feel my balance is thrown off, and it’s painful.

I have tried different brands of earbuds. I have tried all of the treadmill types. I have tried earbuds in the treadmill and in my iPhone. The only way to not get zapped is if I hang onto the metal heart rate monitor, if that particular treadmill has one.

So, instead of being the patient, winter treadmill warrior I had envisioned…. I am on the verge of defeat. That sub four marathon goal is beginning to feel less attainable with the running conditions I have access to. Running outside is out of the question right now with ice, black ice, slush, snow, sleet, and no daylight during the times I can run. Speed work would not work on ice.

On the bright side, daylight saving time is just a month away.


One comment

  1. I feel your pain. Another part I hate about the treadmill (at the gym) is that it automatically goes into cool down mode after an hour…restarting the treadmill is such a drag! I’m seriously ready to invest in my own treadmill to have at home. Now to find an affordable one that works well and will withstand the test of time + lots of use!


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