I thought about going for a run outside at lunch but with 3 days of rain in a row I figured that the trail would be pretty sloppy and slippery so I resigned to running on the treadmill. When I walked upstairs to the room where they keep them I saw that they replaced half of the old treadmills with a new style of treadmill that i'd never seen before. The basic shape was the same, control panel in front, rails on the side, but instead of a moving rubberband style belt these ones had what looked like a collection of tight-fitting rubber/plastic slats that rotated around the bottom of the machine. It worked the same as a belt but it was more like the tread of a tank.
The tank based tread was much firmer and more stable to run on than a floppy belt. There was less give when my feet landed. I'd say that it had more of a road-like feel than other treadmills. The two things I noticed most were that
1) Any change in speed or incline (which you could adjust in 0.1% increments) would cause a small stutter in the tread where I could feel a gap between the slats for a step or two. It wasn't annoying, just odd.
2) There was nothing at the front of the tread. If you ran too close to the front of the tread you might be able to step off the front. If you happened to do this, the belt would probably catch your foot and push it back where it should be. The control panel is still where it normally is and would likely preventing this from happening. It was more of a mental thing to have nothing in front of you.
My run wasn't all that great. I started out with a 2% incline and a 6:53 pace. I didn't feel good after a somewhat lazy holiday break so I was either lowering the incline or slowing down every mile. Eventually I set the treadmill down to a 1% decline and brought the pace back to 6:53 until I hit 5.5 miles. I was more than ready to be done so I started my cooldown and ended with 6 miles in 42:43 (7:07 pace)
It wasn't great but neither has sleep been lately. On the upside, I lost a pound over the holidays. I've never done that before. Usually I gain a few.
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