On the day that was to be my fourth treadmill run in a row, I couldn’t bear the thought of getting on that dreaded machine for another 80-ish minutes. Yes, I had eight miles on the training plan for the day… and I wanted more than anything to run outside. However, with ice, sleet, and snow falling from the sky, and with those conditions forecasted to last for at least 36 hours, I knew I needed to buck up.
I made that run more bearable by working my miles into a circuit that day. Here’s what I did:
I alternated running my miles on the treadmill and on the track. The kettlebell swings are an easier lower-body exercise meant to recruit all leg and core muscles, revving you up for the mini-strength session that is to follow. The reps are low and the weights light so as not to exhaust the muscles, since running is really the key component of this workout. In the first hour of my workout, I ended up completing this circuit five times. The time flew by, and I finished off the session with a three mile jog on the treadmill.
If you’re not training for a marathon, then I suggest shortening the run portion to half or even one-quarter of a mile. I’m not going to lie–it was a tough workout. And, yes, I would have spent less time at the gym that day if I’d just sucked it up and run eight straight treadmill miles. But that just wasn’t going to happen. It felt good to move my body in a new and different way. Plus, I knew that if I didn’t make it to the gym the next day (with 10 more inches of snow on the ground, on top of the 13 we still had from the previous week), it’d be okay!
Do you ever break up your running workouts with strength training? How do you keep yourself motivated through countless treadmill runs?