Treadmill running is perfectly fine if you have little interest to enter races. The cushioning of the rolling belt is not the same as the asphalt surfaces of road races. Nor is it the same as mixed surfaces (dirt, crushed stone, roots, grass, wood chips) found in trail races.
Outside you need to actively summon intelligent race pace, on the treadmill the belt sets it for you. Outside you have to deal with Mother Nature's worst: rain, sun, humidity, wind, cold, plus slippery footing, frost heaves & potholes. Inside it's always windless and comfy.
You can run undulating uphills and downhills through a forest preserve or state park, but not so on a treadmill. You can't even practice turns or passing moves.
In my book treadmills are conveniently useful training tools, but no substitute for the real deal.
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