It's nicknamed the "dreadmill" for a reason. Pounding out a few miles with nothing to look at but slowly-climbing digital numbers isn't my idea of a good time. But it doesn't have to be boring! There are plenty of awesome ways to distract yourself that don't include guesstimating how long it will take that drop of sweat on your nose to finally drip off.
If you find the right show, the miles will fly by—and you'll be all current with your pop culture—in what feels like no time. Need a suggestion or eight?
Friends2 of 10
"So no one told you life was gonna be this way..."
Are you singing it with me? Even if the volume is off, just watching the opening credits of Friends puts that song in your head. Let it put some pep in your step too! Fun, easy breezy comedies are a great option to pair with time on the treadmill. The plot is usually easy to follow and every half-hour that all-too-catchy jingle is back to provide another boost.
Law and Order SVU3 of 10
A good crime show can get your heart pumping a little faster as they grow ever-so-close to finding their suspect—but if you're already running, then you're ready to help fight some crime.
SVU and similar shows are a great way to pass the time on a treadmill because they usually wrap up neatly within the hour. So you're free to make an emotional investment in the story without fear of missing the conclusion.
Bonus: You won't be tempted to cut your run short because, after all, you need to find out who did it!
Planet Earth4 of 10
You can go anywhere with the Planet Earth documentary series. There are 11 episodes, each exploring a different area of the planet up close and personal. Pretend you're running through steamy rainforests or past penguins in Antarctica.
Need to do some speed work? Put on the "Great Plains" episode and imagine a pride of lions is stalking you. That should do the trick.
Forrest Gump5 of 10
You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll be yelling "Run Forrest!" at no one in particular.
Forrest Gump is a classic movie with a lot of running, but it's not about running. So you'll get a mix of serious, fun and run in one film.
Any movie that you love—and frequently quote—works well because it's entertaining, but you know it well enough to follow along without volume.
Any Singing or Dancing Competition Show6 of 10
Any competitive reality show featuring amazing singers or dancers is a great option for passing the time on a treadmill. You don't have to pay close attention to the plot and there's tons of great music. Bonus points if you pick up a few new dance moves while watching.
Plus, they're in such great shape it might motivate you to stay on the hamster wheel a little longer.
Food Network7 of 10
What are you going to do after you run? Well, hopefully wipe down that sweaty treadmill and take a shower. But also—eat!
Runners like food so the Food Network is a great option to pass the time while you're burning calories. It's like reading a recipe book but instead of reading you're listening—and instead of Pinning ideas for dinner you're drooling. Minor details. Luckily you have a sweat towel to help you out with that.
That Show Your Partner Hates8 of 10
As perfect as the love of your life is, they might hate your favorite show. The good news is you can catch up on whatever show you want far away from their judgmental stare while on the treadmill—assuming they're not on the 'mill right beside you, insisting you hold hands while logging miles. In that case, may I suggest a relationship therapy show?
Put on your favorite show and enjoy it while pounding away on the treadmill. You'll get exercise and full control of the remote at the same time.
Basketball (Editor's Choice)9 of 10
Whether you're a hoops head or not, the pace of the game provides a useful tool for persevering when fatigue begins to creep in. Try running until a shooting foul is committed, then walk while the offended players lobs a couple of free throws at the rim. Once play resumes, get back to it.
In essence, you're simulating the same level of conditioning that the players on the floor are being subjected to. And, after all, if they can do it, so can you—right?