A home treadmill is an excellent way to stay fit. And though they all may look similar at first glance, a more in-depth review will make sure you’re getting the right one for you and your fitness goals.
One of the biggest benefits to an at-home treadmill is that there are no more excuses not to get to the gym. The gym is your house now. This works two ways: both as a motivator to get started (no excuses about having to drive to work out), but also knowing you can push yourself to your absolute limit, without the intimidation of other people around you, or pricey membership fees.
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What You Need to Know Before Buying a Treadmill
There are many different types of treadmills available online. Before you buy, consider a few things:
Usage: How many people in the house will be using the treadmill? If it’s going to have multiple users, make sure to look at the belt length, and be certain that it can accommodate the most extreme needs for the tallest person in the house, including not just their height, but also the length of their stride.
A 54-inch tread will fit in a small space, but a taller person may require a 60-inch, which is generally what you’d find in a gym or health club. Width and weight matter as well. Always go for a treadmill that’s designed to hold more than the heaviest person’s weight – the landing force and impact of a body in motion is heavier than just standing still on a scale. Treadmill belts have gotten immensely better at shock absorption over the years, but if that constant pounding of running is taking a toll on your ankles and shins, or you’ve got old injuries that you don’t want flaring back up, a softer “Orthopedic Belt” is available on some models too.
Motor: Horsepower and motor size are another point to consider. What type of workout will you be doing? For moderate health maintenance or brisk walking to running, a standard treadmill should meet your needs. But for more intense running — say, marathon or long-distance training — you’ll need something that can handle the speed and time without overheating. Incline matters too — even if you’re not full-on running, a brisk walk at a steep incline will still get your heart pumping.
Space: Finally, take a moment to look at the space you’re planning to put your treadmill in. If you prefer to be watching something as you exercise, consider where in the room your treadmill might go so it’s pointed at your TV. Or if not, a treadmill with a built-in TV screen is an option too. And if you live in a small space, many models fold up for easy storage. Just fold it down and hide it away under the bed or against the wall.
Overall, you don’t want to feel constrained, either in terms of space or your workout. Go for something that not only meets your needs now, but that’ll meet them months and years from now, as your workout evolves and your fitness levels up.
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