Walking is a great and easy cardiovascular workout that everyone can do. People usually have a limited time for working out so they want to do something simple yet effective. Walking is good for working on your leg muscles and is a relatively low impact work out. In fact, people with a lot of health issues are often recommended by doctors to take a daily walk to aid their healing process. Both walking on the treadmill and walking outside have various advantages and disadvantages, let us assess the both.


The first thing to consider is whether you have access to both walking outside and walking on a treadmill. Some people live in areas that are highly congested with traffic and don’t have the open space to go walking without having to constantly dodge vehicles. Others have this open space but don’t want to make a full-time commitment to a gym membership, especially if it is expensive. Assuming that you have access to both a treadmill and walking outside, let us consider some of the other factors that make the two activities different.

Engaging the brain

Any outdoor work out is likely to engage the brain more than an indoor work out. With outdoor workouts, even something as simple as walking, our minds need to be agile and adapt according to the circumstances. While working out indoors such as on a treadmill, we are the ones that decide what the settings will be, so that need to adapt is taken out of consideration. When running or walking outside, we have to constantly account for changes in terrain or wind speeds, or even just other walkers whom we would have to dodge on our path. Walking indoors does not give us this benefit and stops the workout from being an all-round engagement of both mind and body.

Mental health

Walking outdoors is often beneficial for your mental health or even helps to uplift your mood in a bad day. There are certain hormones which are released when you go outdoors, especially if you have been indoors for a long time. A lot of people have jobs that have long hours and their routine has become a repetition of sleep, work, eat. In this lifestyle, people can go days at a time without going outside since their work, transport, home, everything is indoors. For such people, the decision to exercise is not just to cater to their physical health but also to create a time in their day that is just for themselves. The change in scenery is great especially in these cases since it gives people a tangible reason to go outside instead of moving from one closed room to another. Of course, exercise itself is something which has been proven to be beneficial for mental health, so a treadmill too could contribute to this, but perhaps not in the same degree.

Impact and control

For a lot of people, especially people with injuries or ailments, walking outside is not an option because of the strain it causes on the legs. Running or walking on a treadmill is a much better option for these people since the circular motion of the treadmill relieves the strain on the leg muscles and the smooth plane ensures that there is no harsh impact on the legs. The ability to control the incline, speed, resistance, etc. instead of having to rely on what the outside world offers, is another great benefit of using treadmills. Sometimes you may live in an area where there are no slopes or you don’t trust yourself to follow speed variations without being forced to do so. For these things a treadmill is great because you can pre-set speed variations and vary inclination according to your requirement. However, one thing to remember is that treadmills offer only upward inclination and are restricted in that sense.
Walking outside is free! There are no costs of buying or maintaining equipment, or even operating expenses. On the other hand, if you decide to buy a treadmill, or a walking machine, then not only do you have to invest a lot of money, but also your time on the upkeep and the maintenance of the equipment. If you do decide to purchase, everydaythings has a bunch of good recommendations for treadmills you should consider. Head over to the website and find the treadmill that is most suited for you.


Different workouts work for different people, no one workout is inherently better than the other and is a question of what works for you personally. If you are someone who uses exercise as a way to go outdoors then obviously walking outside is the best option for you. If you are someone concerned with rigour and meeting goals during your exercise then a treadmill allows you to hit those check points more easily. If you are someone who likes the challenge of an uneven terrain or are training for a marathon or such an activity that is necessarily outdoors, then walking outside should be your mode of exercise. On the other hand, if you need to reduce impact on your muscles and have a controlled workout then a treadmill is the better option for you. It comes down to what you are looking to achieve from a workout, understanding which option provides you that, and going with that option.

Author's Bio: 

John Smith is a Digital Marketing Consultant with more than 8 years of experience in SEO, SEM, SMO, blogging, etc having wide knowledge base into content marketing.