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One difference between a treadmill designed for walkers and one made for runners is the maximum speed they attain. Runners need treadmills that reach at least 12 miles per hour. Runners who train for races may want to look for even higher speeds

What Runners Need In A Treadmill

Treadmills are an excellent training tool for runners who don't want to miss a run due to bad weather. With the right features, treadmills can even provide better, more focused training than a runner can get on the road. Having a treadmill at home is not only a convenience; it also saves money in the long run compared with a gym membership. However, it's important to choose the a treadmill that is designed specifically for runners. The following are some tips for finding the best treadmills for runners.

High Speeds

One difference between a treadmill designed for walkers and one made for runners is the maximum speed they attain. Runners need treadmills that reach at least 12 miles per hour. Runners who train for races may want to look for even higher speeds, though home treadmills rarely if ever exceed 14 mph. Non-motorized treadmills are another option. They have no maximum speed because they are powered completely by the runner's legs.

Long Decks

Another distinct feature of a treadmill for runners is a comparatively long deck. Runners take longer strides than walkers, especially at higher speeds, so it's important that the deck is long enough to accommodate those strides. Experts recommend a minimum of 58 inches in length. The width measurement is also something to consider. Many people feel constrained if the width is less than 20 inches. Several of the top treadmills for runners measure 60 inches in length by 22 inches in width.

High Horsepower

Runners also need more horsepower than walkers. In general, walkers need a 2.0 horsepower (hp) motor, while joggers need a minimum of 2.5 hp and runners need at least 3 hp. However, runners who weigh more than 200 pounds should add .5 hp to the minimum requirement. When runners choose larger motors, they will get longer and better service from their machine.

Incline

One of the advantages of training on a treadmill is the ability to vary the workout, especially for runners who live in a relatively flat area. Running up and down hills is a great way to increase cardiovascular fitness, strength, and endurance, so having the right amount of incline on a treadmill is important. Runners should look for an incline of at least 30%. Many prefer a treadmill that offers a negative decline as well.

These are a few of the factors that runners should consider when shopping for a treadmill. They may also want to think about extras, like a screen that provides an interactive video course, or a TV, or a fan. These things don't necessarily improve a runner's time, but they make the workout much more pleasant. Visit Unison Fitness to view treadmills for runners and find out more information about them.