Treadmill Makers: My Open Letter (I Want More Than 60 Minutes)

Dear Companies Who Make Our Treadmills,

Jogger exercises on treadmill.
Jogger exercises on treadmill.

You are supposedly in the business of fitness. Yet many of you are making a big mistake. While our country is fighting against obesity, some of these treadmills you build automatically go into cool down mode after 60 minutes.

I assume I'm in the 3 to 5 percent (maybe it's lower) of people who, when we get on the treadmill, we plan on running more than six miles. But give us the option. Why cut us short and only allow us to run an hour before cooling us down for five minutes?

I'm not sure how it exactly works, but many of the treadmills in many of the gyms I've worked out at--including the two gyms I go to and gyms and the road--have this ridiculous pre-set of an hour. I know why it came into being. Gyms were concerned that people would hog the treadmills, so they tried to restrict the time. The treadmills also last longer in the end. But why is it set to 60 minutes when I'm at my apartment gym? A gym that never, in its history, has it had people on all the treadmills at the same time.

Don't even ask me why I can't just start over after it hits 60 minutes. Anyone who has run 6.7 miles knows the answer to this one. Once you stop, it's hard to work back up to that pace again unless you just happen to be on the most unbelievable song on your iPod.


D. Rovell

Questions? Comments?