About eight years ago, we bought an exercise bike. I was running regularly, but with Maine winters being what they are, I thought the exercise bike would suffice on those days when the weather or the temperature made it too awful to be exercising outside. And we found a cheap one for just over $100. No such thing as a decent treadmill anywhere near that price.
I rode that bike maybe a dozen times before I remembered how much I hate riding a bike. When you're not into bike riding, choosing a stationary bike for exercise is not the best idea. Before long, it became a clothing rack. Then it finds a new home in the garage. Now it lives with my in-laws.
I've always wanted a treadmill, but I wanted a good one (read that: one we can't afford) and I've been afraid to spend the money only to find that it turns out just like the exercise bike. So instead, I've spent money on outdoor weather gear such as Under Armor and Smart Wool socks Still, when there is ice on the street or it's windy and snowing or if the temperature is more than 10 below... there are simply times during Maine winters when it's not safe to be exercising outdoors.
So earlier this year when we were surprised by a decent tax return, we took the plunge and bought a good treadmill. Not a professional treadmill, like one would find in a gym, but a very nice home treadmill. Part of the agreement for getting it was that my husband would finally start exercising regularly.
Since then, I've been walking and running way more than I ever did before. We put the treadmill in our basement where it's nice and cool, and all summer while I was training for the marathon, if it rained or was too hot and humid to go out, I used the treadmill and watched TV.
That's key - you do need music or TV with the treadmill, or it's boring as hell.
Now I've gotten addicted to knowing EXACTLY how fast I'm walking or running at any given moment, and I love that it tells me how many calories I've burned. Not only that, I am a morning exerciser. With the treadmill, on the days I work early, I can start running not long after 4:00am without worrying about darkness, ice, or wild animals. (Ok, there aren't many wild animals in our area other than squirrels, but you never know.)
And guess what. My husband is exercising regularly for THE FIRST TIME in all the years that we've been married. That's nearly 20 years.
I have a feeling that this year the winter won't be quite so horrible for me. Of course, that's just a hunch.
In any event, I am very thankful for my treadmill on oh so many levels!
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