When it comes to home exercise equipment, the treadmill is the first thing most people consider. There are few exercises more natural than running and walking, after all, allowing you to easily dive into your workouts with little preparation. Plus, doing runs in the comfort of your home spares you from the weather, traffic, and crowd that you need to deal with when running outdoors.
Having a treadmill at home can also simplify your workout schedule, since you can put in a good run in the time it will take you to drive to the gym and back. You can also do quick 10-minute runs if that’s all the time you have available, all while allowing you to get your cardio workout at any time it’s most convenient. If you wake up at four in the morning, you can do your workouts early in the day. If you don’t sleep till the wee hours, you can do midnight runs without any worries. Simply put, having a treadmill can make sticking with your workout schedule very convenient.
These are the best treadmills to get your running workouts at home.
Horizon Fitness 7.0 AT
While many home gym products look for ways to lock you into their training system, this treadmill is all about giving you control. Equipped with Bluetooth for easily pairing with your phone or tablet, it’s fully compatible with all sorts of third-party training apps, allowing you to choose your preferred guided workout service, whether it’s Zwift, Peloton, Studio, CardioCast, Nike Run Club, or something else. Just set down your device on the shelf above the LED readout and you’re good.
Unlike many treadmills under $1,000, this is actually a pretty solid rig. It has an ultra-responsive 500-pound thrust incline motor, a 20 x 60 running path with three-zone variable cushioning, and a really sturdy build. We also like the dial controls for speed and incline, which allow you to switch to a different setting with a quick turn. The only real downside here is the lack of a heart rate sensor, so you’ll need to pair it with a separate one if you want more detailed stats tracking.
If you don’t want a fancy screen to watch videos while you run, this model from Nautilus brings much of the same core hardware as more expensive options, such as a 20 x 60 running path with shock-absorbing cushioning, a 3.5CHP motor that allows speeds of up to 12mph, and adjustable incline up to 15 degrees. It has a more old-school feel to the control panel, with a digital display that shows you vital running stats and large controls that make it easy to adjust on the fly. The treadmill has 26 built-in programs, by the way, for those times you want to follow a pre-designed workout.
In case you’re a bit bored looking at numbers and graphs while you run, it has Bluetooth onboard, which you can use to pair it the companion app, where you can go to any of 27 pre-recorded routes and have the treadmill simulate the contours of the local terrain. The app can play a first-person video of the location, too, with the speed of the footage adapting to your own running speed on the treadmill, so you can pretend you’re not stuck running in your home’s basement. And yes, it’s compatible with other fitness apps.
Slightly more compact than your standard home treadmill, this model measures 69.3 x 49.2 x 31 inches, which is around 10 inches shorter and a few inches narrower than a lot of other options. The result is a treadmill that’s easier to integrate into smaller spaces, complete with a foldable design (it collapses to just 10 inches thick) that makes it viable for storing under the bed or behind a couch. Because of the smaller size, it has a shorter running path at 20 x 55 inches, which should be fine for individuals under six feet. It has a maximum speed of 12 mph, a maximum incline of 12 percent, built-in heart rate sensor on the handlebars, and an LED readout showing vital info, as well as a few built-in preprogrammed interval workouts. You can also use the center section of the LED readout to dock a phone or tablet, in case you’d rather run while watching something more engaging.
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NordicTrack EXP 14i
Designed specifically for home use, this treadmill, which measures 79.9 x 59.25 x 35.08 inches (length x height x width), strikes a good balance of size and features, allowing you to get the functionality of commercial treadmills in a size that should be able to integrate into most people’s homes. During runs, it can be set at speeds of up to 12 mph and a running angle of -3 degrees to 12 degrees, allowing you to make your runs as easy or as challenging as you want them to be. It has Bluetooth connectivity for heart rate monitoring, EKG sensors in the handlebars, and the outfit’s new ActivePulse Cruise Control technology that can automatically adjust the incline and speed based on your detected heart rate. The system has a 14-inch touchscreen where you can monitor all your vital stats, where you can also get access to iFit (you get one month free), which gives you access to over 17,000 workouts that can be synced with the treadmill, such that it automatically changes the speed, incline, and decline based on the training video playing.
While all the treadmills featured here integrate shock absorption for lower impact on joints and quieter operation, none offer them as robust as this model. Equipped with eight compression shock absorbers and an inch-thick deck, this treadmill is extremely gentle on the knees, back, and joints, making it ideal for individuals who experience any pain in those areas.
It’s as good a treadmill as you can ask for, with a 20 x 56 running path, 12 mph max speed, and 15 incline levels, while a 7-inch touchscreen offers three dashboard layouts for monitoring your performance in any of the 38 preprogrammed workouts. While most folding treadmills fold down towards the deck, this one is designed fold upright, so you can stow the whole thing away by simply pushing it up against the wall. While all those things are good, it’s not compatible with any existing workout apps, so you won’t able to accompany your runs with on-demand video instructions.