Here are a few tips for maximizing the benefits of running on a treadmill with special emphasis on using a home treadmill.
If you mix outdoor running with treadmill workouts, make sure to clean your shoes. You do not want road dirt and the small pebbles stuck in the threads of your shoes to end up in the treadmill.
Without generating your own headwind, you will also sweat more on a treadmill. Bring a towel and use it often, remember the sweat dropping off you will stick to the treadmill. Even more important if this is a home treadmill. Lets be honest, when did you last clean off your treadmill.
Contrary to popular opinion, running on a treadmill is not easier due to the movement of the belt. However, it is easier since there is no wind resistance to overcome. You can compensate by using a 1pct incline as your standard setting.
When you run outside, you gradually work your way up to your preferred pace. On a treadmill, the tendency is to plug in that pace right from the outset. Instead, start a slower pace for a few minutes before you crank it up.
Excepting running on the track, running outdoors is never without running up and downhill, even the flattest course has some undulations. This engages a variety of muscle groups. To simulate this on a treadmill, change the incline on a regular basis.
If your treadmill has programs that include incline changes, use this once a week. When interval training, mix a change in speed with a change in treadmill incline for greater variety and effect.