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The ease of running inside comes with a price
Listen, we get the appeal of a treadmill. It’ll never be too hot or rainy inside your gym, and watching sports highlights while you work out is not only entertaining, it makes you feel more athletic. (Or is that just me?) Plus, who wants to make separate geographic trips to run and workout? This comfort comes with a price, though, as a new study says you may need to run 15 percent faster on a treadmill to reach the same level of exertion you’d achieve while running outside.
A team of French and Italian researchers measured the physiological responses of 15 university-aged males doing interval training on both a track and a treadmill, as Real Clear Science reports. Each did fifteen rounds of running for 30 seconds at high intensity and resting for another 30 seconds on a track, a treadmill with a 1-percent grade, and a treadmill with a 1-percent grade and 15-percent increased velocity.
The data found that the runners exerted themselves more on the track than the treadmill with just a 1-percent grade. And to equal the exertion of the track, they had to run on the treadmill 15 percent faster.
But why? The researchers believe the flimsy board underneath the belt of treadmill returns elastic energy to the runner, giving them a little boost.
Don’t feel bad if you still choose to run on the treadmill. Just run a little faster—15 percent, to be exact.
Article originally published on menshealth.com