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InTheMarket’s Guide to Treadmills

Having a foldable treadmill or running machine which is suitable for use at home is extremely convenient and saves you from having to visit the gym to use their equipment, or from running in the rain during those rainy days. This guide by InTheMarket.ie will highlight the key features you need to look out for when you’re considering buying a treadmill for home use.

We all know that running has many benefits, whether you’re a seasoned gym-goer or a complete newbie looking to improve your fitness. Running can help you to lose weight, increase your fitness levels, loosen stiff joints, and even provide a form of stress relief. But, the type of treadmill you need will depend on your fitness goals, so we’re going to take a look at some of the various different types of treadmills to help make sure you get the right features in a treadmill to ensure you reach your personal fitness goals.

Fitness Goals

As we touched on above, the perfect treadmill for you depends on your long-term fitness goals, so that’s what you need to be thinking about first of all. Your fitness goals will dictate the budget you need to spend, and the features you need to make sure are included in your chosen treadmill. For example, if you’re only looking for a treadmill to walk or power-walk on a few times a week, then you don’t need to invest in a treadmill with a heavy duty, powerful 4.0 HP motor.

Fitness goals vary from person to person, but the most common fitness goals are:

  • Weight loss
  • Training for a marathon
  • Toning
  • Improving overall fitness and stamina

Now, let’s take a look at each of these fitness goals in further detail…

Weight Loss

Treadmills are probably the best piece of equipment you can purchase when it comes to cardio exercise at home, and we all know how good cardio exercise is for weight loss. Treadmills make it easy to switch up your training style, ensuring your training sessions are as effective as possible. If your training style is going to be light use; a few times per week switching between power walking and a light run, then you don’t have to invest a large amount of money into a treadmill which can handle that, but if you are taking your fitness regime seriously and plan on using your treadmill regularly and with vigorous running speeds, then you could be looking at needing to invest up to €1000 for a quality unit which can withstand that type of frequent use and exercise regime. 

As well as durability, there are of course other things that you need to take into consideration too, such as the running deck size and weight limit, and the power of the motor. Some treadmills also offer built in programs which guide you through what you need to do with a visual display, this can help motivate some people with their exercise program, as you can see your progress clearly on the treadmills display, ensuring you keep your workout routine going until the end. 

Toning

The most important feature you need to look into if your main goal is toning your muscles, is the incline function. This function is not available on all treadmills, so make sure you read the product description carefully and ensure this feature is included if toning is your main goal.

The incline function simulates running or walking uphill, and some treadmills even have a decline function too, which paired with the incline function, simulates real-life running conditions. You also want to make sure that you can quickly switch from running and power walking easily, preferably with a quick hit on a “speed” button, as changing your speed and incline intensity regularly during your workout will allow for the best toning results.

Marathon Training

If you’re training for a marathon then you are a serious runner and will likely be using your treadmill five or more times per week, with that in mind, you need the invest in a higher quality unit, paying close attention to the motor, speed limit, cushioning, and incline/decline features to simulate the real-world running experience that you will have during your marathon event.

There are some light commercial units which can cope with frequent use, but for the most part, the light commercial units will not last for a long time when being used on a regular basis and for high intensity training.

Improving your Overall Health and Fitness

If your main goal is just to generally improve your overall health and fitness, then you have much more leeway when it comes to finding the perfect treadmill for yourself. If all you need is a basic treadmill which won’t break the bank, and can fold away to be stored easily when you are not using it, then you can find plenty of cheaper options that offer that.

If you want to get a bit more advanced or plan for the future and further improvement of your health, then you should consider all of the other options and features which we have spoken about in the other fitness goals above. If you invest a good chunk of money into a treadmill, then you can be fairly confident that it’s going to last for a long time, and have all of the features you’ll want and/or need as your fitness levels increase and you look to add more versatility to your running programmes. 

Space

Treadmills are among the largest and most space-hungry pieces of home gym equipment, and unless you have a dedicated workout room or shed where you plan to do your workouts, you’ll need to carefully measure the space you have available for a treadmill and plan accordingly. The last thing you want is to order a treadmill and then find out that you don’t have enough space to set it up. When you’re searching for a treadmill, you will usually find the size of the treadmill in the specifications, this should include the sizes for when the treadmill is set up for use, and the sizes for when the treadmill is folded up for storage.

These measurements will allow you to make sure you have the space needed to operate the treadmill, as well as adequate space to store it when not in use. Most treadmills designed for home use have very simple and easy to use folding systems – such as hydraulic systems and transport wheels, taking only a matter of seconds to fold up your treadmill ready for storage between each use.

Specifications

Now that you know the different types of fitness goals you can achieve with a treadmill, and some of the space requirements, now it’s time to look at the specifications. These will determine which type of a workout you can get from your treadmill, so it’s important to consider each of these specifications and features carefully. 

Deck Size

The size of the deck is very important as it will dictate how comfortable using your treadmill will be. If you are average height and weight, then a deck size of around 20” x 55” (which is average for treadmills) will be comfortable for both running and jogging. But, if you are on the taller side, you may want to invest a little more money to get a slightly bigger deck size which will allow for a more comfortable running environment.

Power Track 3000

Motor 

As a general rule of thumb, a motor of 2.5HP will be fine for power walking, a motor with 3.0HP will handle walking and jogging, and a motor of 3.5HP will give you enough power for a vigorous running regime. The more advanced the motor, the quieter your treadmill will be and the higher speed limits it will be able to deliver, so choosing the right HP engine is a crucial step in finding your perfect treadmill.

Maximum Weight

This is the maximum user weight which your treadmill (or more specifically, the running belt) is able to support. Ideally, you want to pick a maximum weight which is much heavier than your current weight, this will ensure that the equipment will be solid and sturdy.

Speed

If you’re going to be using your treadmill for running rather than just power walking, then you want a treadmill which is capable of accelerating to speeds of at least 12km per hour to give you the high intensity workout that you’re looking for.

Incline & Decline

Having incline and decline functions on your treadmill will allow you to easily simulate real-world running conditions, making it good for marathon training, as well as toning your muscles.

Cushioning

A treadmill with premium cushioning on the belt will help to protect your knees and offers some sort of shock-absorption system, it greatly reduces the impact suffered by your legs when compared to running on a hard surface like pavement or a treadmill belt without cushioning.

Heart Monitors

Being able to monitor your heart rate through the process of your run will make it easier for you to ensure that you are in the correct zone for burning fat or improving cardio fitness.

Wrapping Up…

Hopefully this guide has given you a good idea of what type of treadmill you need to obtain your personal fitness goals. After reading this guide, you should know which features are the most important for you, and the ones you need to look for when you’re shopping for a treadmill. 
With that in mind, follow this link to view all of the  treadmills for sale here at InTheMarket.ie. We have treadmills to suit every budget, starting with basic features and right up to the most advanced features suitable for even the most accomplished runners.

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