Home > The Scene

Treadmill horror stories that are downright violent

Very literal knock-down-drag-out treadmill stories as told by our readers

Taylor Swift Treadmill

Treadmill running is an inevitable part of living in the north. While some runners love it and some hate, almost every runner has incorporated the treadmill into their training at least once. We asked our readers to tell us about their worst treadmill experiences and we got some great answers. 

RELATED: The 7 emotional stages of winter running

Peeing in public 


Arielle Fitzgerald is the Guinness World Record holder for both the 50K and 100K on a treadmill. She ran her 50K record on her way to the 100K record. But unfortunately, she jokes that she’s not remembered as the girl who broke the record, she’s remembered as the girl who peed on the treadmill. “Peeing on a treadmill is very challenging. I really had to go to the washroom but I knew if I got off the treadmill, I wouldn’t be able to get back on. So I just started peeing. My friend dumped water on me in an effort to clean up my mess, but then the treadmill got very slippery and I started losing my footing.”

Fitzgerald eventually switched treadmills and got the record, but she says that peeing on a treadmill is much more difficult than peeing on the road – and also requires a lot more clean up. 



Doug Leathem was running when is daughter told him that he had a phone call. “I should have known I wasn’t coordinated enough to talk and run at the same time. However, I attempted to answer it, and step on the rails, only to misstep, crash down, and go shooting backwards. As the treadmill was very close to the wall at the rear, I didn’t go far. Both feet smashed through the drywall leaving two size 10 holes in the wall. 

Technical Difficulties 


Dan Clemo wrote that his treadmill cracked right down the middle mid-run. “The deck of my treadmill snapped right down the middle, shooting me off the back and out a set of French doors (luckily not a wall). Then in true Canadian fashion I decided to finish the last three kilometres outside jumping snowdrifts, sliding down icy hills while limping from the injuries my adrenaline had hid from me earlier. This was for the build to Boston 2018, so in hindsight it definitely conditioned me for the typhoon of a race to come.”

Power outage 


The treadmill needs power to operate, something that Kath Pfk was reminded of mid-run. “It was storming outside so I decided to run indoors. I was having a good run and then the power goes out and I went down face first. It happened so fast that I couldn’t react.”

Unwanted training partner 


Liz Andrews reminded treadmill users that your cat doesn’t understand the dangers of the machine and is also very intrigued by it. “I was running on my treadmill in the living room when I noticed my cat watching the belt from her perch nearby. Next thing I knew, she jumped onto the belt, shot between my legs and off the end, and crashed into the TV cabinet. It’s a good thing I was paying attention and was able to jump onto the rails or she would have taken me out too.”

Check out the latest buyer's guide:

Father’s Day gift ideas for your favourite running dad

These apparel items, shoes and accessories make great gifts for the running dad in your life