Getting the right treadmill for your body and budget!


Treadmill Ratings & Reviews Blog

Tips for Treadmill Shopping & Fitness So You Can Meet Your Goals



Why You Need to “Shock” Your Body to Make a Change

When most of us think of losing weight and getting healthy, we think of running. This isn’t without good reason. But the long term effects of running alone may not get you everything you’re looking for.

This is especially true if you are trying to lose weight. Your body will adapt to your running regimen and you will reach a plateau in your weight loss journey. That doesn’t mean you should stop putting in the miles. It just means that it’s time to give your body a shock and get it working again.

How to Shock Your Body Out of a Weight Plateau

When you’ve gotten into the groove of your daily run, it’s easy to just do the same thing every time. You’ve found a route or program that you love, and that’s great, but it also means that you are essentially repeating the same workout every single time.

NordicTrack Performance 800i Click here to read our full review.

Some simple changes to your run can shock your body and start producing the results you’re looking for.

Run Faster – You can follow your usual route or treadmill program, but time yourself and see if you can do it faster than the day before. This will get your lungs, heart and muscles working harder and jumpstart those systems a bit.

Run Farther – Another way to get your body working again is to push it farther. Add a mile to your run at your usual pace and see how you feel when you’re done.

Run On A Different Terrain – You may be surprised how much some changes in incline or running surface can make. If your normal run is pretty flat, try some hills. Those ups and downs will really up your cardio and you’ll be working a whole different set of muscle groups than usual.

The actual surface that you run on can make a difference too. If you’ve ever tried running on the beach, compared to a paved trail, you’ll know what I’m talking about. Try taking your run off-road and you just may find that you’re having to put in some extra work.

Periodization – Periodization is when you take your whole training program, maybe 20 weeks’ worth, and divide it into phases. Each phase works toward a different goal, requiring different skills to meet it. This provides you with a larger range of benefits, prevents you from plateauing and results in your best overall performance.

HIIT Training – If you are needing to shock your body, an HIIT workout is going to do it. HIIT stands for high intensity interval training. As Todd Keating, associate professor of kinesiology at Manhattan College in New York says, “interval-style training enables you to work at higher intensities for longer durations—which is good for long-term weight loss results.”

The benefits of HIIT training extend after the workout is over too. Interval training kicks in your body’s after-burn effect, which has you burning fat post-workout while your body returns to a normal resting state.

Switch to a Different Activity Altogether

Just because you love running doesn’t mean it is the only form of exercise you should be doing. Throwing another activity into your routine is another way to shock your body and see more results.

Swimming is a great full-body workout that also provides fantastic cardio. Plus, swimming is perfect active recovery because there’s no impact on your joints.

Hopping on an elliptical is another low impact option that provides great cardio and full-body muscle work.

It is hugely beneficial to work weight training into your training routine as well. This will help your muscles support your back and joints when you are out pounding the pavement.

Best Types of Running for Weight Loss

There is more to a well-rounded running program than just lacing up your shoes and going until you are exhausted. In fact, mixing up these different types of running workouts will help you continue to see results even in the long term.

Base Run – This is what most people think of when they imagine going for a run. It is a short to moderate-length run at your natural pace. You aren’t meant to be really pushing yourself to the limit. For instance, a 5 mile run at a pace that feels comfortable would be a base run.

ProForm SMART Power 995i. Click here to read our full review.

Progression Run –  This type of run is going to build on your base run from start to finish. You will start at your natural pace and finish a bit faster. An example would be to do 5 miles at your normal pace and then finish with an additional mile at a faster pace.

Long Run – This type of run is when you are going to be building your stamina and pushing yourself toward continued weight loss. The distance that you can run will naturally increase as your endurance increases, but that doesn’t mean you should quit when the going gets tough. Change starts at the end of your comfort zone, so keep going! An example of a long run would be 10 miles at your natural pace.

Intervals – These are your HIIT workouts, of the running variety. These are going to be burst of high intensity sprints with periods of walking or jogging in-between as recovery. For instance, 5 sets of 100 meter sprints followed by 20-minute jogs.

Tempo Run – This type of run pushes you to run at your fastest sustainable pace for the longest amount of time that you can. Needless to say, this type of run isn’t going to be the best for beginners. For instance, a tempo run might consist of running three miles at the fastest pace you can maintain.

As you build your endurance and performance, however, this type of run will prove especially worthwhile for weight loss. In data compiled by the Harvard Medical School, we see that a 155 pound person running at 5mph burns 298 calories in 30 minutes. If that same person runs for 30 minutes at 6 mph, they burn 372 calories.

Nutrition Is Key for Weight Loss

When it comes to weight loss, eating habits and exercise routine are two halves of the same whole. Studies show that cardio alone isn’t effective for losing weight. It must be paired with a healthy diet.

A good rule of thumb to follow is the Healthy Eating Plate, developed by the Harvard School of Public Health. This method dictates that roughly half of your plate should be fruits and vegetables, one quarter designated to whole grains, and the remaining quarter to protein.

When you are running for weight loss, don’t give up just because the number on the scale isn’t falling. Remember these tips to keep seeing those results that you’re working so hard for.

Sources:

How to Get the Most Out of Cardio for Weight Loss: Ashley Mateo: 2018

Calories Burned in 30 Minutes for People of Three Different Weights: Harvard Medical School

Isolated Aerobic Exercise and Weight Loss: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials: Adrian Thorogood, BSc, Salvatore Mottillo, BSc, Avi Shimony, MD, Kristian B. Filion, PhD, Lawrence Joseph, PhD, Jacques Genest, MD, Louise Pilote, MD, MPH, PhD, Paul Poirier, MD, PhD, Ernesto L. Schiffrin, MD, PhD, Mark J. Eisenberg, MD, MPH; 2011

Harvard School of Public Health: Healthy Eating Plate


A Side-by-Side Comparison of the NordicTrack x22i Incline Trainer and Commercial 2950

The NordicTrack x22i Incline Trainer and NordicTrack Commercial 2950 Treadmill are both fantastic machines that can help you reach your fitness goals. But which one is right for you?

Features Face-off

Size and Folding Capability

Both of these machines will take up about the same amount of space in your home when in use. The footprint of the two machines is nearly identical in width, but the Commercial 2950 is 79” in length compared to 70.2” with the x22i Incline Trainer.

This is to be expected given the uses for each machine. Since the Commercial 2950 is designed for runners, this extra length is perfect for taller users or those with a longer stride.  The x22i Incline Trainer is instead designed for walking at extreme inclines.

NordicTrack Commercial x22i Incline Trainer
NordicTrack Commercial x22i Incline Trainer. Click to read our full review.

That being said, the Commercial 2950 does have folding capability with NordicTrack’s Easy Assist system. If you reside in a smaller living space this could be an awesome feature. It is also a bonus if you have small children at home. Putting the machine away when it’s not in use helps prevent accidents from happening.

  *** Winner – Commercial 2950

Low Impact Workout

When it comes to impact, it is necessary to note that these machines are not meant to be used in the same way. The Commercial 2950 is a treadmill that can really put in the miles pounding the “pavement”. However, the x22i Incline Trainer is going to provide you with an intense workout without any of the impact to your joints. If low impact is a must-have for your workout regimen, you can’t beat the Incline Trainer.

  *** Winner – x22i Incline Trainer

Best for Running

Even though the Commercial 2950 is built for avid runners, the x22i Incline Trainer can give it a run for its money. Both of these machines boast a 4.25 CHP motor, which is powerful enough to keep up no matter how many miles you’re putting in. They also both have a top speed of 12 mph, so you don’t need to worry about your machine not being able to keep up.

The incline and decline on the x22i Incline Trainer give you the ability to get a fantastic workout just from walking, which is what it is designed to do. For that reason, the best running workout battle has to go to the machine that is built with runners in mind.

iFit Coach Plus on the NordicTrack Commercial 2950
iFit Coach Plus on the NordicTrack Commercial 2950 – Read our full review here.

  *** Winner – Commercial 2950

Muscle Targeting Variety

This is a category that is ruled by the incline! The extreme 40% incline and -6% decline on the x22i Incline Trainer really make it possible to work a wider variety of muscle groups. The Commercial 2950 offers a 15% incline and 3% decline, which is impressive when compared to other treadmills. However, when it comes to working your muscles, more really is better…and the x22i Incline Trainer has it.

  *** Winner – x22i Incline Trainer

Technology

Technology is one department where these two machines put the competition to shame. Each of them boasts a huge 22” Smart HD Touchscreen, the largest we’ve seen on the market. This allows each machine to provide an immersive experience when you are using the iFit technology.

Both the Commercial 2950 and the x22i Incline Trainer are iFit ready, which means you have a world of exercise possibilities at your fingertips. Remember that iFit is a paid subscription service, so there is an annual membership fee associated with these awesome perks.

Access to custom designed workouts based around your individual goals – Whether you want to lose weight or train for a marathon, you can find workouts right for you.  Plus, your workouts can be led by a celebrity trainer, like Jillian Michaels, guaranteed to keep you motivated along the way. These workouts are progressive and will help you toward your goals step by step over the course of several weeks.

Online Community – Share your stats online through your iFit account and keep track of your progress. You can also interact with other iFit users in challenges to help keep you motivated and working hard.

Sync with Google Maps – Bring the outside inside. Through their partnership with Google Maps, NordicTrack allows you to choose routes and then simulates the terrain and road conditions to make it feel as though you’re really there. Get that “real road” feel without having to leave the comfort of your own home.

Take Your Workout Around the World – Why stay in your living room when your workout could be anywhere you want? With an extensive library of virtual workouts, NordicTrack allows you to choose from hiking trails and beachfront scenery when you hop on your machine. Your machine will simulate the terrain to give you a fully engaging experience no matter where you feel like going.

iFit Coach Plus
iFit Coach Plus

  *** Winner – Tie

On- Board Workouts

If you aren’t going to be paying for the iFit subscription you can still find some excellent workout options in the preprogrammed workouts on each machine. The Commercial 2950 provides you with 40 exercise routines at the touch of a button. This is impressive compared to other brands, but the x22i Incline Trainer ups the ante with 44 workouts already available.

Having those additional options if you don’t want to pay for a subscription service is a nice option. Preprogrammed workouts help keep your routine feeling fresh and fun to keep boredom at bay.

  *** Winner – x22i Incline Trainer

Ease of Use

Let’s just be honest, both of these machines are built with comfort and ease of use in mind. Nordictrack makes it easy to hop on your machine and do exactly what you want to do. Both machines feature OneTouch Controls and technology options that provide you with the things you are looking for.

  *** Winner – Tie

Effective Cardio Workout

Getting an effective cardio workout isn’t just about your machine, it’s about you. Either one of these machines will provide you with the cardio your body needs as long as you are putting in the work. 

However, this is another category where incline gives a slight advantage. Whether you are walking or running, an incline is going to force your body to work harder. This means burning more calories, getting your muscles firing and your heart pumping.

  *** Winner – x22i Incline Trainer

Now that we’ve taken a closer look at the features for each of these machines, it’s up to you! Use the information above to help you decide which machine will work best for your needs. If you still need a little direction read out full reviews of the NordicTrack Commercial 2950 and x22i Incline Trainer for a more in-depth look.

Learn more about our top rated treadmills on our Best Buy Treadmills page.


Top Tips for Fitness Success

Have you recently pledged to recommit yourself to fitness and nutrition? Maybe you vowed to eat healthier, work out and just get your life together in general!

Many of us start out full of excitement, motivation and enthusiasm, buying gym memberships or joining supplement companies and meal prep programs. We envision a whole new future, accomplishing all of our dreams and being our best versions of ourselves while doing it.

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An Incline Trainer May Be Just What You’re Looking For

NordicTrack x22i Incline Trainer
NordicTrack x22i Incline Trainer – Read our full review here.

Not all treadmills are created equal.  And, the NordicTrack Commercial x11i and Commercial x22i Incline Trainers have a slew of features that put them a head and shoulders above the rest. 

So, which one is right for you?  Read on to find the top reasons we love these machines.  Plus, we’ll help you find which model is perfect to help you get in your best shape this season.

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New and Improved for the New Year

As we enter the holiday season we are surrounded by flashy and fancy new things to buy at every turn. The world of fitness equipment is no different. This season, you may notice treadmill companies are rolling out new and updated models left and right.

Horizon Elite T5 – Read full review here.

Shopping for home exercise equipment can be a daunting task, but we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for the inside scoop on some of the machines that we have our eye on, and catch up some of the trends that we are watching.

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Get The Best Workout on Your Treadmill 

Horizon Elite T5

Horizon Elite T5 – Read our full review here.

With the change of the seasons comes the change of the workout routine. If you are an outdoor runner, this may mean having to rethink how and where you are going to log your miles.

But never fear! When the weather outside is frightful, look no further than your treadmill to keep your fitness levels up and meet your goals throughout the winter months.

We’ve put together a list of tips to keep you from getting cabin fever during your indoor sessions. Plus, try out the workouts below for a change of pace or a new, fun challenge to ensure you are getting the most out of your indoor workouts.

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A Look at Virtual Reality Workouts

 These days, technology is woven into almost every aspect of our lives.  Yes, it’s everywhere!

  • We use it to communicate with co-workers and loved ones – the text or chat box is often more convenient than walking down the hallway to talk in person!
  • We use Netflix or Hulu to binge watch our favorite TV shows – remember the days of antennae and video recording!?
  • Even our cell phones now use facial recognition technology and augmented reality to enhance our experience and provide security.

It’s nuts!

Pretty soon, we’ll all have self-driving cars, in-home computer assistants, and be escaping to the virtual world just like the characters in the sci-fi book Ready Player One!

So as we embrace technology more and more, it only makes sense that we use it to improve our exercise and fitness as well.

Many treadmill brands already offer programming that provides some aspect of virtual reality… iFit Live, ViaFit and RunSocial to name a few. These programs are great for motivation and make your workout fun, but what if they can do more than that?

New studies have shown that virtual reality (VR) for exercise may be more beneficial than just providing entertainment. It can actually help you endure pain, push harder and run farther!

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How to Jog Your Way Back to Productivity 

We all live busy lives and want our minds to be sharp, focused and quick processing to help us put our best foot forward. This may become all the more necessary when you have a huge presentation at work, or a major exam is looming on the horizon. So what do you do when you just can’t seem to focus on the task at hand?

Many of us may think that a few moments of calm relaxation to peacefully gather our thoughts is the best course of action. However, research is showing that a brief jog may be just the thing to get your mind on the right track.

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Why You Should Get Moving After Dinner

After a long day and a good meal, many of us long for nothing more than the couch and to catch up on Netflix. If this sounds familiar, you aren’t alone. But what if that plan that sounds oh-so-good isn’t really so-good for you?

Before there were endless options for entertainment calling your name every evening, it was common practice to go for a walk after dinner. In fact, many cultures around the world still do!

While normal evening activities may have changed, the proven health benefits of an after-dinner stroll are something that you can still take advantage of.

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What’s the Deal with Curved Treadmills? 

Woodway Curved Treadmill

Whether you are new to treadmills or a seasoned professional, you may have noticed a new kid on the block – the curved treadmill!

Companies like Woodway, TrueForm and Technogym SkillMill, have introduced curved treadmills to the market for a unique new way to get in a running workout.

Since many are unsure what to make of this new machine type, we’ve put together a list of some differences you can expect to encounter. This way you can make an informed decision about whether or not it’s for you.

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