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When looking for a treadmill, there are a few factors you should consider. The best treadmills for a home gym are compact in size, have powerful motors, and come with useful technology capabilities, programming choices, training options, and other conveniences. It’s a good idea to prioritize machines that are versatile enough to fulfill your fitness goals.

Whether you’re new to exercise or a seasoned runner, there is a treadmill on the market for you. For each of our 7 top picks below, I’ll let you know what I liked and what you should be aware of before you run headfirst toward such a sizable purchase.

We’ve developed a list of the best home treadmills on the market, taking essential factors like price, performance, and unique features into mind. If you’re looking for a certain type of treadmill, our list can help you narrow down your choices.

Why You Should Trust Us

The last couple of years brought an onslaught of at-home workout demands. Consumers ran themselves ragged online in search of the best treadmills and fitness equipment. I have personally unboxed, assembled, researched, and tested countless running machines to bring you the best of what 2022 has to offer.

Best Treadmills for Your Home

Best Treadmill Overall: NordicTrack Commercial 1750

Best Treadmill Overall
NordicTrack Commercial 1750
NordicTrack Commercial 1750

The NordicTrack 1750 treadmill features a 14-inch HD adjustable touchscreen with which you can stream iFIT programming on (sold separately). The under $2,000 machine can be financed through the NordicTrack website where you can get deals as low as $49 per month with 0% for 39 months.Models from 2013-2021 of the 1750 had adjustable cushioning, but the 2022 model no longer has this feature.iFIT workouts incorporate Automatic Trainer Control, which allows your trainer to digitally adjust your incline, decline, and speed. This is a nice feature to have because all you have to do is focus on the workout at hand versus frantically switching the controls.

Good for: Runners and walkers looking for guided programming from a reputable manufacturer

Pros:

  • Interactive training with iFit, and a free year of iFit are included with the purchase
  • Financing options available
  • Downhill training options with a 3 percent decline
  • Conveniences: Water bottle holders, fan, storage tray, Bluetooth speakers

Cons:

  • The cost is just under $2,000
  • Assembly is long and complicated
  • It’s a big, heavy machine: a whopping 339 pounds! But it does fold for easy storage
  • Without iFit programming, your options for preset workouts are limited
  • Keeping the machine in non-climate-controlled space voids the warranty 

The NordicTrack Commercial 1750 is a serious machine packed with extras that benefit walkers and runners. Right away, you’ll notice a 14-inch HD touchscreen loaded with iFit, which is NordicTrack’s interactive training program. It has walking and running programs that take you all over the country, which I enjoyed as a welcome distraction to the burning in my legs.

The iFit program also automatically adjusts the speed of the treadmill as well as the incline and decline. Yes, this treadmill has a declining function, which is another reason it took my top pick. If you want to get closer to simulating a run outside, then running both inclines and declines is a must. Decline running also strengthens your leg muscles in a way that incline and flat running do not, so there’s that added bonus as well.

Coop running on the NordicTrack Commercial 1750 treadmill

This is a big machine with a really intricate assembly. You need plenty of room for it, and you should carve out a few hours to put it together. Expert assembly for a NordicTrack treadmill isn’t currently available due to COVID-19 precautions. Please also note that you should not put this in your garage if you want to be able to use the warranty at some point – it’s unfortunately in the fine print.

RELATED: NordicTrack Commercial 1750 review.

Best Treadmill Under $1,000: Sole F63

Best Treadmill Under $1,000
Sole F63
Sole F63

Named "Best in its Price Range" by Fit Rated, Run Reviews, Treadmill Reviews, and many others. Easy Assist Folding Deck Design makes storing your treadmill easy and convenient. High-end rollers create a static free motion leading to a long lifespan. Smoothest treadmill when making adjustments mid-workout. LCD screen provides real-time statistics to monitor progress towards goals.Plus, Sole has recently released its own version of Peloton-esque programming: STUDIO. You can access a variety of on-demand classes for just $19.99 per month.

Good for: People who want a good cardio machine without breaking the bank

Pros:

  • 10 preset workouts
  • Heart rate chest strap included
  • Bluetooth speakers, USB port, and cooling fan
  • Cost is less than $1,000
  • Folds fairly easily to save space

Cons:

  • Large footprint
  • Slight jostling during runs
  • Basic LCD screen
  • Delayed shipping due to high demand

I’ll be honest, I don’t expect much from treadmills under $1,000. The Sole F63 surprised me. It comes with a Bluetooth heart rate chest strap monitor (that actually works), and it has Bluetooth speakers that rock. Plus there is a large store tray, a tablet holder, and a USB port to charge your device.

The F63 has a steel frame backed by a lifetime warranty. It’s the base model from Sole but far from basic. The motor is 3.0 continuous horsepower, it has 15 incline levels and speeds up to 12 mph. Programming-wise, this guy has six standard programs, two programs that are heart rate-based, and two that are customizable.

Coop running on the Sole F63 treadmill

Keep in mind, that this is a treadmill that costs less than $1,000. My runs on the F63 weren’t as smooth as workouts on higher-priced machines. It’s the kind of jostling you would expect from a budget-friendly machine. While not a dealbreaker, it is something noteworthy. The LCD screen is pretty basic but still spits out all the metrics you’d want to know while exercising. Also, Sole notes that due to high demand, it could take up to 45 days to get your treadmill.

In my testing and research, I found many other budget-friendly treadmills, but few with all the features the F63 boasts. Its strong warranty, programming options, and conveniences make it my pick if you want a quality machine without forking over too many Benjamins.

For more on my experience with this machine, check out my Sole F63 Treadmill review.

Best Treadmill for Running: ProForm Pro 9000

Best Treadmill for Running
ProForm Pro 9000
ProForm Pro 9000

Take your training to the next level with an iFit Family membership on the Pro 9000 treadmill. Engage in a whole new workout experience as streamed live and on-demand personal trainers lead you in studio classes and take you all around the world, automatically controlling your treadmill's speed, incline, and decline to give you a unique, hands-free workout.

Good for: People who want preset workouts and a durable machine

Pros:

  • Incline and decline settings
  • Cushioned deck to protect your joints
  • iFit programming free for a year
  • Fan, water bottle holder, and a 22-inch touchscreen

Cons:

  • Priced around $1,800
  • iFit requires a subscription; without iFit, there are few preset workouts available
  • Heavy machine with a big footprint
  • You cannot store or use this treadmill in your garage without voiding the warranty

ProForm has long been a respected name in the running game, as the company formerly manufactured the official treadmill of the Boston Marathon. Its best piece of cardio equipment today, in my opinion, is the ProForm Pro 9000. The powerful, 3.6 continuous horsepower motor is ideal for high-volume runners, as is the 20-inch by 60-inch running deck. Speeds go up to 12 miles per hour and the machine has both incline and decline settings.

There are two treadmills in ProForm’s Pro Series: The 9000 and 2000. The 9000 is priced higher mostly due to its motor strength and its 22-inch HD touchscreen, however, we always make sure to keep an eye out to see what type of deals ProForm offers on treadmills, ellipticals, and other cardio machines during holidays like Black Friday and Labor Day.

Coop running on the Proform Pro 9000 treadmill

ProForm is part of the ICON Health and Fitness family (just like NordicTrack), so the 9000 also comes with a full-year iFit membership. With iFit, you have access to countless running, interval, HIIT treadmill workouts, speedwork, and other trainer-led programs.

In testing, I really liked the Bluetooth speakers to blast my music, and the fan to blast my face with cool air. Running on it feels stable as there is no jostling. The assembly took me about an hour, and I only really needed a second person to help me attach the console.

RELATED: Best Home Treadmill for Running

At 236 pounds, this machine isn’t easy to move around and takes up quite a bit of room. It does have one-step folding to maximize your space. There are also wheels on the front so you can deadlift the deck and push the treadmill around if necessary.

Read my full ProForm Pro 9000 review.

Best Treadmill for Walking: TrueForm Trainer

4.50
Best Treadmill for Walking
TrueForm Trainer
TrueForm Trainer

TRUEFORM Trainer is lighter weight and easier to use. The Trainer is an affordable, rugged, quality built solution for any commercial training facility or home gym. The included display keeps you informed on your pace, speed, distance, time. The display is compatible with Polar heart rate monitors. An optional Bluetooth display is available.TRUEFORM is the industry leading curved non-motorized treadmill. It's the least steep curve on the market, which promotes good form and allows you to easily control your speed. TRUEFORM is the most natural running surface when compared to running outdoors.The proprietary Responsive Belt Technology (RBT), reacts to every subtly in your movement; balance, posture, hip position, foot strike and more. The TRUEFORM requires no power. All the power comes from you, responding to your pace allowing you to go from a walk to a jog, to a sprint, to a stop. Instantly. You will feel when your body is not in the optimal position for running or walking. Long term use of the TRUEFORM will promote better movement patters improving overall health and wellness. TRUEFORM is proven to reduce impact stress which reduces the risk of injury.The simple design of this unique, non-motorized treadmill is also what makes it one of the most effective devices for developing proper running technique. Unlike standard electric treadmills, the TrueForm Runner from features an innovative curved deck that is controlled 100% by the movements and force of the user. There are no on/off switches or complex buttons and settings to worry about. It’s a manually operated treadmill that helps train and reward technically-sound posture, balance, and cadence. Set your own limits or push right past them.

Good for: People who want a non-motorized treadmill to help optimize walking form

Pros:

  • Curved running surface to promote better form
  • Durable frame and hefty weight capacity
  • 60 percent more affordable than the TrueForm Runner

Cons:

  • Costs around $3,000
  • Non-motorized treadmill – you’re going to work hard
  • The monitor is as basic as they come
  • No preset workouts

The TrueForm Trainer is a non-motorized machine and is an industry leader. TrueForm offers three models of curved treadmills. The Trainer is my favorite of the three for most home gym owners because it offers the sound ergonomics of its big sister, the Runner, but at about 60 percent of the cost.

Unlike a motorized treadmill, the Trainer relies on you to move the belt. As a study published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport reports, this means you work harder – around 27 percent harder – than if you were on a treadmill that uses a motor for power. The curved belt on the Trainer also pretty much forces you into walking and running with better form (TrueForm is its name, after all).

Trueform Trainer in a garage gym

Whether you run or walk on the Trainer, the angle of the belt, as well as the lack of a flywheel, really forces you to move with better form. Better form means less unnecessary stress on your joints and also helps with injury prevention.

The Trainer weighs 270 pounds and has a weight capacity of 400 pounds. Its frame is a very hard plastic, which could be prone to cracking over prolonged use. However, there isn’t much wobble when you’re on board thanks to the pegged, adjustable feet. The wheels on the front of the machine make it pretty easy to move around your space.

RELATED: How to move a treadmill

Downside time: The monitor. It makes an abacus look sexy. TrueForm put all the effort into the bottom half of the machine and left the monitor to simply report pace, speed, distance, time, and heart rate. But, of all things that could be wrong with a treadmill, this isn’t that bad. 
Read my full TrueForm Trainer Review.

Best Manual Treadmill: AssaultRunner Elite

Best Curved Treadmill
AssaultRunner Elite
AssaultRunner Elite

Introducing the most powerful and personalized manual treadmill ever created. The brand new AssaultRunner Elite is expertly crafted to meet the specific needs of professional athletes, home gym users, and commercial owners alike.

Good for: People who want a top-of-the-line non-motorized treadmill

Pros:

  • Has some built-in workouts
  • Long running surface
  • Better monitor than most manual treadmills

Cons:

  • Expensive at almost $4,000
  • Lots of plastic pieces for such a pricey item

The AssaultRunner Elite is the big brother to the AssaultRunner Pro, formerly known as the Assault Air Runner, which is one of the most popular non-motorized treadmills in existence. We have CrossFit to thank for that: Assault Fitness as a brand really got its start in the CrossFit world, and it is used in affiliates all over the world.

Just looking at it, The AssaultRunner Elite looks a lot like the TrueForm: curved deck, no-frills, etc. But it has one of the better monitors compared to other manual treadmills. 

RELATED: Best Manual Treadmill

Coop running on the AssaultRunner Elite treadmill

I personally like how long the deck on the AssaultRunner is at around 62 inches. That accommodates a longer stride than most treadmills, motorized or not. The belt itself is very heavy, giving the running surface an almost flywheel effect. This is really useful if you’re into over-speed training.

You don’t have to plug in this machine to get it to work, as it is 100% athlete-powered. It weighs 289 pounds but I found it pretty easy to move, thanks to the bar on the back of the machine.

The plastic shrouds on the sides of the machine have been known to crack, but the internal powder-coated steel frame is extremely sturdy. And if you’re looking for fancy programming, it ain’t here, but you will find a few built-in treadmill workouts.

RELATED: AssaultRunner Elite review.

Best Budget Treadmill: LifePro Pacer Folding Treadmill

Best Budget Treadmill
Lifepro Pacer Folding Treadmill
Lifepro Pacer Folding Treadmill

The Lifepro Folding Treadmill has a lot going for it, but it won’t be the best option for everyone. If you’re tight on space, but want a reasonably priced treadmill you can fold to store away, you’ll love the Lifepro. However, if you’re a serious runner or someone with a particularly long stride, you likely won’t be thrilled with this treadmill. The running deck is small at just 49.2” L x 16.5” W. Plus, with a motor HP of just 1.75, this treadmill is hitting below the industry standard for a motor that can handle serious amounts of running. It is also worth noting that the Lifepro is only 115 lbs, which can be both a blessing and a curse. Since it is so lightweight compared to comparable treadmills, it can more easily be moved from room to room, which can be a big plus for those tight on space. However, with the light weight of the treadmill comes a low weight capacity at just 220 pounds. This makes the Lifepro not a particularly inclusive option.Something that really stands out to me on this treadmill is the lifetime warranty. Even if this more budget-friendly option has issues down the road, it is clear that Lifepro stands behind their products. 

Good for: People in small spaces who want an affordable home cardio machine

Pros:

  • Costs less than $800
  • Foldable design cuts space in half
  • The footprint is just 60 inches long and 27 inches wide
  • Lightweight at 115 pounds

Cons:

  • The running deck is small at 49 inches long, 16.5 inches wide
  • The motor is on the weaker side at just 1.25 CHP
  • Max user weight is 220

By nature, treadmills are large machines, and most are expensive. However, not all are heavy-duty steel monsters with a price tag that could make a grown man cry. The Lifepro Pacer Folding Treadmill is small and best of all, affordable. 

For its price, the Lifepro Pacer has a lot to offer. It offers speeds up to 9.9 mph and 12 levels of incline, with a small footprint of roughly 60 inches long and 27 inches wide. Folded, it basically cuts the length in half to just 32 inches long.

The Pacer’s weight is a super light 115 pounds. Combine that with the folding and the wheels on the back, and you have yourself a super portable running machine. It also has great interactivity with more than 40 preset workouts like interval training and heart rate programs.

Now, with the good also comes the considerations: A smaller, less expensive treadmill typically doesn’t have the capacity of a larger machine. The Pacer has a small running surface at just 49 inches long and 16.5 inches wide. That’s tight! Doable, but tight. The user capacity is 220 pounds (most of today’s treadmills support 300 pounds or more).

The Pacer motor is 1.25 continuous horsepower (CHP), and 1.75 peak power, which will support runners but isn’t suited for high-volume running. When all is said and done, this is about what you can expect from a compact, affordable treadmill. You have to make sacrifices to save space and money.

RELATED: 10 Best Budget Home Gym setups

Best Folding Treadmill: Echelon Fitness Stride

Best Folding Treadmill
Echelon Fitness Stride
Echelon Fitness Stride

Functionality and technology meet intelligent design in the newest addition to the Echelon product family. Designed with convenience in-mind, the Echelon Stride features auto-fold technology to make heart-pumping workouts more accessible than ever before.

Good for: Someone looking for a space-saving design on a high-powered treadmill

Pros:

  • Auto-fold technology that takes the footprint to just 10 inches deep
  • Lightweight and easy to move
  • Super simple assembly and usability
  • Bluetooth connectivity to Echelon United

Cons:

  • A weaker motor isn’t ideal for frequent, high volume runners
  • A short running surface of 55 inches may not work for taller people
  • The warranty is just one year

Foldable treadmills aren’t really unique anymore, especially when it comes to equipment designed for consumers and not commercial gyms. Therefore, I can demand a lot from this category, where I feel the Echelon Fitness Stride takes the cake.

I first fell in love with the Stride because it comes assembled in its folded state. That’s an amazing perk compared to some of these machines that take hours to put together. Folded, the Stride is just 10 inches deep. Whereas other foldable treadmills require a 200-pound deadlift as you raise the deck, the Stride folds with just a few buttons. 

A lever auto-folds the handlebars, and the machine is flattened to a pancake. Once it’s folded, the Stride can be lifted into a vertical position, as there are wheels on the front of the machine so you can push it up against a wall or behind a door.

And those are just the folding benefits. The Stride uses Bluetooth connectivity for Echelon United, which is Echelon’s interactive programming app. Without the app, there are still eight preset workout programs to guide your exercise.

Now, for some downsides. The motor on the Stride peaks at 2.5 horsepower, so very high-volume running and advanced speed work aren’t recommended. Also, the running deck is just 55 inches long, which may be a little short for taller users. Lastly, the warranty is only valid for one year. One year! We would expect at least 10 years, especially given that it costs upward of $1,300.


Check out my in-depth Echelon Stride review here.

Other Treadmills We Researched

Here are some other categories we’re exploring and considering adding to our best treadmills list as we get more treadmills in our Springfield, Missouri, testing center. We haven’t tested all of the treadmills in this section, but we’ve thoroughly researched them and think they’re worth pointing out. 

Best Smart Treadmill

There are a number of smart treadmills on the market now. In a previous version of this article, we chose the Peloton Tread+ as our pick for the best smart treadmill. However, that product has since been recalled and discontinued due to reports of safety hazards. We will never recommend a product that endangers you, your family, or your home, so despite our positive experience with the Tread+, we’ve removed it from our list.

The Peloton Tread is still available and there are no incident reports regarding Peloton’s base model treadmill. The Peloton Tread is known for its fancy, immersive display screens, and it’s more affordable than the Tread+ anyway.

We’ll update our guide to the best treadmills when we have tested more smart treadmills and can confidently recommend one for your home gym.

Best Treadmill With Incline

NordicTrack Commercial x22i: This NordicTrack treadmill features an impressive max incline grade of 40 percent. That’s insane compared to most motorized treadmills that top out at 15 percent. Not only does the Commercial x22i have a whopping incline capacity, but it also has all of the other features you’d expect from a high-quality NordicTrack treadmill: an HD touchscreen, remote trainer control, and iFit streaming capabilities. 

Best Treadmill With HD Screen

Bowflex Treadmill 22: The Bowflex Treadmill 22 strikes me as the Bowflex version of the Peloton Tread. It’s big, sturdy, and has a gleaming 22-inch HD touchscreen display. It streams JRNY, a workout app available only on Bowflex and Schwinn equipment. The app offers a large library of on-demand workouts and real-time coaching. 

Best Under Desk Treadmill

UREVO Treadmill: This simple folding treadmill doubles as a laptop stand, so you can walk while you work. It’s extremely affordable as far as treadmills go, with a price point of about $350, and often goes on sale on Amazon. The UREVO treadmill has a compact footprint of 55.2 inches long by 27.8 wide by 5.1 inches deep, yet it has a 2.5 horsepower motor. 

Other Folding Treadmills 

Bowflex Treadmill 10: The most affordable treadmill option from Bowflex, is the Bowflex Treadmill 10 has a 10-inch interactive HD console, decline and incline settings, Bluetooth connectivity, and a top speed of 12 miles per hour, and compatibility with the JRNY fitness streaming app. At $2,000, I can’t say it’s inexpensive, but it’s not the most expensive treadmill out there. 

Sunny Health & Fitness T7603: Simple, compact, and affordable describe this folding treadmill from Sunny Health & Fitness. The running deck is quite short at 49 inches, but it is marketed as a space-saving cardio machine. Still, it has three levels of incline, wheels for easy transport, and nine built-in workout programs. 

Other Manual Treadmills 

Tru Grit Grit Runner: The Grit Runner is the cheapest manual treadmill available, and I mean that in terms of both price and construction. Non-motorized treadmills are generally very pricey, and in an attempt to make them more affordable, I fear Tru Grit has cut some corners in the manufacturing department. I’ve tested this treadmill and it works fine, but you’d notice the quality difference if you stepped foot on an AssaultRunner. 

TrueForm Runner: I talked about the TrueForm Trainer in my top list of the best treadmills, and the Runner is very similar. However, I think the price increase of almost $2,000 is too high considering the small differences between the two ‘mills. 

Assault Runner Pro: This is the original AssaultRunner treadmill (formerly called the Assault Air Runner). It’s much like the AssaultRunner Elite but isn’t quite as heavy-duty. 

Other Smart Treadmills

Horizon 7.4 AT Treadmill: This smart treadmill from Horizon nudges the brand from entry-level treadmill territory into a higher-level space. On the Horizon 7.4 AT, you can stream running workouts from various fitness apps, including Peloton, Zwift, Studio, and many others. However, despite all of its smart features, the 7.4 AT does require use of your own device (e.g., a tablet) to stream the workouts. 

Other Treadmills Under $1,000 

Horizon T101: Clocking in at $650, the Horizon T101 features exactly what you’d expect in an entry-level but high-quality treadmill. It has a 55-inch running deck, 2.5-horsepower motor, three-zone deck cushioning, and easy one-step hydraulic folding. I’m sure it’s far from the most durable treadmill out there, but at its price point, it offers a wealth of features. 

Horizon Fitness T202A couple of hundred dollars more expensive than the T101, the T202 features a few more nice-to-haves. This treadmill has a 60-inch running deck with three-zone cushioning, a 2.75-horsepower motor, hydraulic folding, Bluetooth speakers, and compatibility with many fitness streaming apps. 

How we Picked & Tested

Before I get down to business reviewing a product or products, I like to have set criteria I’ll use to judge the product. When I go to review a treadmill, I actually use it multiple times for a variety of workouts.

Here are the factors I considered to bring you the most complete treadmill reviews possible:

Ease Of Setup

How easy is it to set up? Is there an option to have it assembled by a professional for a fee? Do I need another person to help with assembly? Are there other tools I need for assembly that isn’t included? Are all the parts clearly labeled? Were the instructions simple to follow? 

I take note of the instructions provided and if the parts they include are clearly labeled. I also am honest if the assembly wasn’t the easiest. Sometimes (if you can afford it) I will recommend saving yourself the hassle and hiring a professional to put it together.

Adjustability

How accommodating is this treadmill? Will it work for a variety of heights? I take into account the adjustability of all the equipment I use. I love seeing if companies have included a height range to see how short or tall people can be and comfortably use the machine.

Compatible App

Is there a compatible app? Do you have to pay to use the app? What features does the app have?

Included Workouts

Are there any included workouts with the treadmill? How many workouts are there?

Technology

What technology is included with the treadmill? How easy is it to use? Does it a glitch or is it fairly consistent in operation? Some technology I look for includes touchscreens, easy-to-use buttons, a user-friendly interface, non-glitchy programming, and anything else that sets it apart from other treadmills.

Incline/Decline

Does the treadmill have an incline and decline? If so, what levels are the incline and decline? Decent treadmills will offer incline, but not all offer decline. I also make sure to see what levels the treadmill I’m testing ranges between.

Durability

How much does the treadmill weigh? How much weight can the treadmill support? Does the treadmill shake or move around while in use? Durability is usually something you’ll be able to tell better with time. However, you can see signs that the durability and longevity of the treadmill will be good or bad, based on the materials used and if the treadmill itself seems sturdy.

Portability

Is the treadmill easy to move? Do you need additional people to help move it? Can it be folded away for easy storage? I know not everyone has tons of extra space and the portability aspect of a treadmill may be important to them. I make sure to test moving it myself (to see if it’s doable) or if I need to get assistance, I’ll do that as well.

Price

How much does the treadmill cost? How does that compare to other treadmills? Is it worth the money? Is it a good value? Treadmills can cost as little as $300, but you generally get what you pay for. I’m not looking for the cheapest price but instead for great performance at a price that makes sense for what you’re getting.

Warranty

How long is the warranty? How does the warranty compare to other treadmills? A typical treadmill warranty will generally be between 5-10 years for the motor and frame. A 1-year parts and labor warranty is also typical.

Extras

Are there any extras included with the treadmill? Things to look out for include cup holders, device holders, weights, speakers, a TV screen, and more.

What To Look for When Shopping For A New Treadmill

best treadmill for home

Before running all over the Internet to find the right treadmill for your home gym, get your priorities organized. Here are my tips for knowing which one is the right one:

Your Fitness Goals

What do you want to do with your treadmill? And be specific:

High-Volume Running: If you’re logging upward of 20 miles or more a week on a treadmill, you need a machine that performs. Look for a motor of at least 3.0 continuous horsepower and a running deck that’s 60 inches long.

Jogging: So, you want to take the treadmill for a run a few times a week? You can look for a motor in the 1.75-2.5 horsepower range, as a more powerful motor will cost you more. Odds are you worry about your joints, so you might seek a cushioned deck.

Walking: Walkers have some freedom when it comes to treadmills because you can walk on anything. If you want to save money, you can opt for small motors (1.75 horsepower or less) and a short and narrow running surface (smaller than 55 inches long and 20 inches wide).

Pro tip: Monitor your progress toward your fitness goals by using a workout tracker.

Training Options

You know you want to run, but what kind of running matters to you? Consider the following options to enhance your training:

  • Incline, or hill, settings
  • Decline, or downhill, settings
  • Speed ranges (how fast do you need to be able to go?)

If you’re training for a hilly outdoor event, I hope you choose a treadmill that can replicate such ascents. You may want to compare the grade of the slopes you’ll be on with the maximum inclination of the treadmill, much like you can with exercise bikes. Also, check out the speed settings on the treadmill. Some have peak speeds of only 9.9 mph, which equates to a 6:04 mile pace. People that perform speed intervals are probably looking for something faster.

Programming Choices

You can hop onto any quality treadmill and just start moving. That’s a given. But what if you are ready to push yourself? And what if you need help?

Many treadmills today come with preset programs. Some of these are built into the machine itself, and some of them are through a streaming app. In most cases, the apps that accompany these machines – like iFit, JRNY and Echelon United – come with an additional price tag. Not only that, but the machines themselves aren’t as attractive without the app.

Research your programming options with each machine well and factor the price of the app into the price of the treadmill.

Technology Capabilities

The options seem endless, really, but here are a few items you might deem important to your workout experience:

  • Bluetooth enabled speakers
  • HD touchscreen displays (or a basic LCD display)
  • Streaming services
  • Heart rate monitoring
  • Customized user profiles

Keep in mind that the more you want, the higher the price range of the treadmill.

Conveniences

Why not make your workout as enjoyable as it can be? Some things, like a water bottle holder, feel necessary, whereas other conveniences are just an added bonus. Here are a few options you might consider:

  • Media shelf or tablet holder
  • Cooling fan
  • Cushioned deck for shock absorption
  • USB charging port
  • Storage tray
  • Safety stop

Space

Lastly, a big thing to consider is space. What’s your place like? Do you have room for a huge, commercial-sized treadmill, or do you need more compact exercise equipment that folds? Technology today means you can push a button and the treadmill folds in half on its own.

You might also look at the portability of the machine. If you know you will be moving the treadmill often, then getting wheels and a lighter weight machine might be necessary.

A treadmill of any size is still a large purchase. My advice is to figure out what you need in terms of price, space, and fitness goals. Thoroughly research the products you like, and give them a test run if you need to (many machines come with a 30-day guarantee!). Good luck, and have a great run.

Budget

It’s best to begin with your budget; in general, the more money you can invest in a treadmill, the longer it will last. However, at under $1,500, many treadmills give the same degree of durability and usefulness as professional gym equipment.

Best Treadmill FAQs

Which treadmill is best for home use?

The best treadmill for your home is going to largely depend on your goals. You need to find one that matches your budget, your fitness goals, and your space demands, among other factors.

What is the best inexpensive treadmill?

The first thing is first: Inexpensive shouldn’t mean cheap. You can find a lot of cheap treadmills out there, but they won’t last long.

In the treadmill world, inexpensive would be something under $1,000. I like both treadmill lines from Horizon Fitness because they offer a lot, like a lifetime warranty, some nice tech features, and decent durability.

Are cheap treadmills worth it?

If you’re looking to jog or run on a treadmill, paying a few hundred dollars for something off Amazon likely isn’t worth it. You need a motor, deck, and frame to support your activity. Walkers can get away with lower-powered motors and a less durable frame simply because the machine doesn’t need to work as hard.

Even still, you get what you pay for. Budget-friendly motorized treadmills are notorious for having issues with motors that need to be replaced, belts wearing out, and necessary adjustment to tension (How to fix a treadmill). There are good treadmills in the $700-$900 range that are friendlier to your wallet – and have financing options – and will last much longer than the $200-$300 options.

RELATED: Best Budget Treadmill

Is a home treadmill worth it?

There are countless benefits to using a home treadmill:

Improved cardiovascular fitness
Burning calories and fat
Getting to exercise whenever you want
Not worrying about the time limits commercial gyms sometimes place on machines
Wearing whatever you want
Watch a show or a movie while you exercise

Yes, treadmills can be expensive, but most come with financing options to help allay the cost.

RELATED: Treadmill Benefits

Further reading

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