12 More Treadmill Myths… Busted!

Runners World
By Mark Remy (Google+)
February 5, 2014


Do you adjust your treadmill’s incline to 1% or 2%, to better mimic the effects of road running? If so, stop it immediately, because that whole notion is bunk and you’re only making yourself look foolish. Honestly, we’re sort of embarrassed for you.

This is the takeaway from a blog post published recently by a notable biomechanist named Casey Kerrigan. (Our own Amby Burfoot has a nice summary of her findings here, explaining why “the widely quoted 1% rule represents an oversimplification” of previous research.)

If you’re anything like us, you’re feeling pretty dumb right about now. Nobody likes to learn that he’s been following a bogus rule for years.

Well, we hope you’re sitting down. Because there’s more where that came from. Remy’s World has done some further investigating, and it turns out that we’ve all been buying into lots of “treadmill truths” that are, to borrow a word from Ms. Kerrigan, “garbage.”

Here are 12 of the most shocking.

1. If you have sex on a moving treadmill, you can’t get pregnant: MYTH. You can, and probably will. Trust me on this one.

2. The “Calories Burned” figure is accurate: MYTH. Your treadmill is lying to you. It also doesn’t really think you look “terrific” in that outfit. You should hear what it says to the other treadmills, after you’ve gone.

3. The Eskimos have 100 words for “treadmill”: MYTH. They have one word. It’s “treadmill.”

4. Calling the treadmill the “dreadmill” is clever: MYTH. It’s not. Stop it.

5. The guy next to you doesn’t know that you’re looking at his treadmill’s display, because you’re doing it all cool-like: MYTH. He knows, and honestly he’s sort of embarrassed for you.

6. Grasping the bar on the front of your treadmill, making a “revving” motion with your right hand, and saying “Vroom! Vroom!” isn’t cool: MYTH. It’s the coolest.

7. In the southern hemisphere, treadmills run in the opposite direction: MYTH. Treadmills run counterclockwise no matter where they are.

8. By law, treadmills must be a dull gray or black color: MYTH. There’s no reason your treadmill can’t be a brilliant yellow, blue, or pink. Just be sure to paint it when the trainers aren’t looking.

9. Falling on a treadmill is dangerous: MYTH. Falling on a treadmill is hilarious, as George Jetson and any number of YouTube videos demonstrate.

10. If you enter your PIN in reverse, a treadmill will summon the police: MYTH. That’s for ATMs, not treadmills. And even for ATMs it’s a myth.

11. The young woman on the adjacent treadmill is totally into you: MYTH. Eww. As if.

12. People smile while using treadmills: MYTH. That happens only in stock photos.

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