When Arielle Fitzgerald claimed the 50K and 100K world record on a treadmill, it wasn’t glamorous. Despite flashy pink sunglasses, the athlete dug deep in Calgary Alta. as a fundraising initiative for Mito Canada. 50 mile (80K) treadmill world record holder, Jacob Puzey is grateful for the opportunities of treadmill running, especially when balancing family, work, and training commitments.
Flashy pink sunglasses or not, training on the treadmill can mean breakthroughs for runners. Hopping on a treadmill isn’t always a runner’s first choice. But it is an opportunity for structure, control, and focus in key workouts. Fitzgerald says, “Sometimes I love running a pace way faster than something I’d ever be able to hold. Just to show my legs what it feels like. It’s you against you. There’s no better place to just compete against yourself.”
Arielle Fitzgerald’s treadmill workout
10-25 minute warm up
6 minutes at 10K effort, 1 minute easy at 1 percent incline.
6 minutes at 10K effort, 1 minute easy at 2 percent incline.
6 minutes at 10K effort, 1 minute easy at 3 percent incline.
6 minutes at 10K effort, 1 minute easy at 4 perfect incline (optional).
10-20 minute cool down
For Puzey, training on the treadmill is enjoyable, as “it removes some of the other variables and distractions of running outside and allows me to better connect with what my body is doing,”
Jacob Puzey’s treadmill workout
When Puzey ran 50 miles (80K) on the treadmill, he started easy and increased the pace as he went.
“I personally think the most underrated workout on the treadmill is an organic cut down, in which you start easy and simply increase the pace as you warm up. You can do it at precise intervals (increase 0.1 kmph every 0.1K), or you can simply increase as you go. That’s usually what I do when I run on a treadmill and often surprise myself with how much quality I am able to get in by the end.”
For treadmill running, and focused workouts in general, Fitzgerald recommends embracing the suck. “It’s gonna suck at some point. Have a place for how you will embrace it.”