Is It Better To Walk Outdoors Or On A Treadmill? – For hundreds of thousands of years, our ancestors walked miles and miles a day to get food. This activity is “wired” into our body, and, to this day, we continue to require our dose of walking frequently. But with our modern cubic Leland lifestyle, it’s getting harder and harder to find the right time to do it. For this reason, several people choose not to go for a walk outside but buy a treadmill to be able to walk at home.
Which of the two options is better, walking outside or on the treadmill?
In this article, I show you the pros and cons of each option. Thus, you can make a better decision when buying a treadmill. If you are in this buying process, it is worth mentioning that at Gymcompany, you can find the best treadmills at the best price.
Table of Contents
Let’s start with the most important of all: health. Walking is highly healthy for the vast majority of people. It is so important that it has that it can lower the risk of death from any cause.
In addition to gaining health, it is also an efficient method to reduce your percentage of body fat and maintain it after losing weight since it can double your energy expenditure per day (if you are sedentary).
And even for experienced athletes, adding regular walks can improve your body composition. Knowing this, now we will analyze if it is better to do it outside or from home on a treadmill.
Is It Healthier To Walk Outside Or On A Treadmill?
Walking outside has its advantages, like breathing cleaner air (as you don’t live in a city with too much pollution). Walking in the forest has even more benefits because the activity is known as Shinrin-yoku (“forest bathing“) has been found in studies to affect the human nervous system and psychology positively.
Walk On A Treadmill
Walking on the treadmill at home or the gym doesn’t have the same psychological benefits as walking outside in the woods. But this doesn’t mean that walking on a treadmill is any less healthy; it’s a great way to increase your physical activity throughout the day. If you decide to exercise with a treadmill, choose one that you can monitor your results with, such as the Nordictrack T10.
Here the winner would be walking outside (especially surrounded by nature). However, health is not the only aspect that must since our lives have different components, and we must consider and see what is most convenient.
By “convenience”, I mean the ease and practicality of doing the activity. For example, doing yoga at home is much more convenient than training in water skiing. You only need a mat and 20-30 minutes a day with yoga. With that said, we will now look at the convenience of walking outside or on a treadmill.
Is It More Convenient To Walk Outside Or On A Treadmill?
Here the convenience is more significant because you don’t need anything else, you go for a walk, and that’s it.
Walk On A Treadmill
Although it may seem counterintuitive, walking on a treadmill can be more convenient than walking outside. I mention this because you need to pause everything and schedule these walking sessions out to go for a walk.
When you walk on a treadmill, you can do it whenever and as many times as you want during the day. And you can even take advantage of that time to work on the computer while you walk or advance your favourite Netflix series (which would be much healthier than watching it lying down on the couch eating popcorn). There are desktop treadmills, special for these cases.
Here it would be a tie. Walking outside is more convenient because you don’t have to purchase any extra equipment. But, if you have access to a treadmill, it’s much more convenient because you can take advantage of the time in many ways and use it without restrictions or schedules
One of the factors has the most weight in deciding whether to walk outside or on a treadmill.
Is it more expensive to walk outside or on a treadmill?
Walking outside is much less expensive than walking on a treadmill—point in favour to step out.
Walk on a Treadmill
Walking on a treadmill is more expensive, no doubt. But, if you want to invest in your health, the cost of a treadmill is worth every penny price. Our model is not healthy. Ern life has chained us to a chair and computer to spend hours a day sitting, motionless. It is n
Having a tape at home is like investing in a device that gives you more years of life. It has by studies where revealed that participants who walked frequently had more longevity.
Being completely objective, walking outside is the apparent option for the lowest cost. But, if we include the convenience and accessibility of the taping schedule, we can realize that it is an investment that can be very healthy.
In this category, we will analyze the different dangers that can exist when we walk.
Is it Safer to Walk Outside or on a Treadmill?
Doing it outside is riskier than doing it on tape.
Especially on the street, walking means paying attention to:
- Car traffic
- Do not disturb other people
- Avoid people who go slower
- Plot a route to make sure you don’t take too long
- prevent something from being stolen
- Among many.
Walk on a Treadmill
On the other hand, walking on a treadmill is safer because you don’t have to worry about anything other than walking.
Ultimately, walking on a treadmill is safer.
The general recommendation is to walk 10,000 steps a day. Going for a walk to achieve this number of steps a day can take you between 70-100 minutes a day.
The time that many of us do not have.
But, if we review what the studies say, in reality, the deficit of steps is 4,000 (on average) if we subtract the daily activity of most people.
Walking this many steps would take you between 28-40 minutes, a much more convenient time.
Although, according to some research, achieving 8,500 steps a day is better for people who train in another sport and want to improve their cardiovascular and metabolic health16.
The time required for this goal is between60-85 minutes a day.
Knowing these times, we can better analyze the two aspects:
Does it take longer to walk outside or on a treadmill?
If we try to go for a walk to achieve any of the above goals, we will soon realize how uncomfortable it can be. On the street, there are more people, traffic, and many “obstacles” that you must avoid to maintain a continuous pace.
These obstacles add time to your walk, and you may not achieve your daily goal.
walk on a treadmill
On the other hand, walking on a treadmill is more convenient as you can get on it and walk steadily, without obstacles, without worrying about the traffic light changing colour. If you walk on the treadmill, you are much more likely to achieve the target number of steps in the mentioned time.
Another advantage of the treadmill is that you can divide the walking sessions: you can have two sessions of 20-30 minutes a day to achieve the goal of daily steps. We recommend buying a treadmill that makes interval training easy, like the Life Fitness FR Go.
Productivity is often a pretext for sacrificing health. In other words, we often lie to ourselves, saying, “I don’t have time to exercise because I work a lot”.
We may work a lot, but that does not mean that health has to sacrifice. In this category, we will see if health and productivity are compatible.
Is it more productive to walk outside or on a treadmill?
Walking outside is not productive.
When walking in the street or forest, you cannot do anything but walk and pay attention to your surroundings. If anything, you’ll be able to listen to a podcast or audiobook, but there won’t be much else you can do.
walk on a treadmill
By walking on a treadmill, on the other hand, you have the opportunity to do another activity while you are on your walk.
For example, you can set down your laptop to work on that assignment you’re behind on, watch that online class you haven’t been able to study, or even learn a new skill with an online course.
The winner in this category is hands down treadmill walking.
Walking is very healthy for human beings. We should not skimp on its ability to increase our life expectancy. The options of walking outside or on a treadmill are valid, and both have their pros and cons.
Although, if we can designate a winner, it would be walking on a treadmill. Walking on a treadmill is much more convenient, practical, safe, efficient, and productive than walking. In addition, it is an investment that can give you more years of life.
If you want to get the best of both worlds, you don’t have to choose one or the other; you can walk on the treadmill for 20-45 minutes a day and go for a walk in nature on the weekends.