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Exercise Equipment
Old 05-19-2009, 03:12 PM   #1
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Exercise Equipment

My wife and I recently joined a fitness club but have found it too inconvenient due to the length of the drive. Now she want to get her own treadmill just for walking. I can't see putting a lot of money into this as it might go by the wayside within a year. Also, she is the only one that will be using it as my knees are bad and I don't do walking. I can use some advice on going new or used, the better brands on the market, features to look for and what to watch out for. At this time we found a new Golds Gym model 450 for $387. Its an entry level machine with nice features and would be at the top of the price range in which I'm interested. I understand there are better machines out there but should I go new for $400 or used at $400 and get a used upper level treadmill?
Any experiences or advice? Thanks.
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Old 05-19-2009, 03:30 PM   #2
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Johnnie, we bought a new treadmill nearly 3 years ago. We paid about $1300 from Sears - it is a NordicTrack brand. I think it has been worth it's money as I use it regularly.

I would caution you about getting anything that is too cheap - the cheaper models tend to have skinnier walking surfaces. Also you would probably need to compare the motors.

That said, the said treadmill likely needs to be position near a television as I find it really boring without something playing on the screen.
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Old 05-19-2009, 08:46 PM   #3
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Johnnie, we bought a new treadmill nearly 3 years ago. We paid about $1300 from Sears - it is a NordicTrack brand. I think it has been worth it's money as I use it regularly.

I would caution you about getting anything that is too cheap - the cheaper models tend to have skinnier walking surfaces. Also you would probably need to compare the motors.

That said, the said treadmill likely needs to be position near a television as I find it really boring without something playing on the screen.

We did something similar. We purchased a Nordic track in the similar price range. It gets used at least 5 days out of the week. It really takes a pounding. IE running on hill intervals or flat surface. If you plan on using it. Dont go cheap. Ive stayed at various hotels with the cheaper brands. You can tell how the belt slips and its just not fun or secure to use. We put ours right in front of the tv

Oh it probably depends on your weight ranges too. People under 200 lbs might not need something as beefy. I weight around 225. So I needed something that can take the abuse.
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Old 05-20-2009, 06:51 PM   #4
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For $500 you are going to get a machine thats only suitable for walking,the joggers start around $1000
You are right about it being boring as i bought one for $500 used it for 6 months and its been collecting dust in the basement for the last 3 years. Friend of mine just bought a piece of equipment that works as well as a treadmill but has no motor so its quiet and is much lighter and a lot cheaper not sure what its called but looks like this=http://www.diet.com/products/000285.jpg
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Old 05-20-2009, 07:06 PM   #5
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Wii Fit is another possibility. Cheaper and more interesting workout. After years of winter treadmills it was a nice change.
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Old 05-20-2009, 07:13 PM   #6
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We got a treadmill a few years back, DW uses it often. I used it sometimes but go to a gym near my office now. I have tried to use it recently, but it is not happy with my weight, and the circuit breaker on it trips every time I try to use it (231#). DW at 115# has no problem with it at all, jogging or walking. It has a 2.5hp motor. Not to insinuate anything, but if your DW is large, go for a higher powered model. I have read somewhere I think it was www.treadmilldoctor.com that said that the models with 2.5hp are for lighter folks who only walk. There are lots of reviews on that website. I highly recommend you go there and browse before buying new or used.

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Old 05-20-2009, 07:31 PM   #7
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Wii Fit is another possibility. Cheaper and more interesting workout. After years of winter treadmills it was a nice change.
I never tried Wii Fit. Can it duplicate up to a 12% incline hill climb workout? If so it would be much cheaper than a 1500$ treadmill.
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Old 05-21-2009, 03:49 AM   #8
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I never tried Wii Fit. Can it duplicate up to a 12% incline hill climb workout? If so it would be much cheaper than a 1500$ treadmill.
No but it will give you a darn good workout in Yoga,Aerobics,Strength training and balance,you will work up some sweat using the device. This you tube video shows you what its all about
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Old 05-21-2009, 06:06 AM   #9
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On this trip I've used some super fancy treadmills that I'm sure cost over $10,000. The only difference between them and the one I have at home (free from friend, probably would cost $150 on craigslist -- similar to this one) is the power incline feature and the complicated programs (automatically change speed, incline, etc). Other than that, the experience is identical. I get on, set the speed or change it as desired, and it tells me how fast I'm going, how far I've gone and how long I've been running.

I haven't found those extra features worth any additional expense.
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Old 05-21-2009, 06:54 AM   #10
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I am not a fan of the cheaper bits of treadmills. I have owned 2 over the last 15 years.....first was $5k and the last one was $3k. Just depends on what you like. I like a SOLID machine under me that has no wobbling...which often happens when you put the angle up fairly high. I haven't shopped for one for almost 10 years, but I know the prices have dropped for "decent" treadmills.....but I sure wouldn't buy one for less than $1000 or so. Damn....now I probably won't be able to resist looking to see how much decent ones are going for now days.........
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Old 05-21-2009, 07:40 AM   #11
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After I retire, and move north, I want to get a treadmill and/or an elliptical. I am thinking of trying Craigslist first, but if all I find on there is junk then I will have to buy new. I want the wider walking surfaces and increased stability and durability that you don't get with the cheaper models of treadmill. The bells and whistles don't matter to me as much as the overall quality, motor size, and cushioning of the walking surface that most upscale treadmills seem to have in order to be easier on the feet.

The Nordictrack treadmill that Notmuchlonger and Dangermouse use sounds great to me, though I haven't tried one yet.

Initially, while I ramp things down here at work, retire, prepare my house to sell, and (hopefully) sell it, I plan to just rely on a gym. No sense in buying more exercise equipment until after the move.
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Old 05-21-2009, 08:01 AM   #12
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dh2b has a wonderful treadmill...but he never uses it.
We are keeping it because it is a high end model and he just might get back into using it. It is a fold up type so it occupies very little space.
I can use it for very short periods with a knee brace (worn kneecap). I wish I could use it more.
My exercise machine is a $20 special from a garage sale. It is a Weslo brand Horizon Ergometer, very compact in size. It has a large solid metal wheel in front with resistance pads changable with a manual variable control knob. All analog. The handlebars are padded with thick foam. The seat is a thick 1970s bicycle type. I added a thin soft pillow to reduce friction to my inner thighs and but-tocks (said in a Forrest Gump voice).
All I need is someone to nag me to use it more often.
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Old 05-21-2009, 08:09 AM   #13
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No but it will give you a darn good workout in Yoga,Aerobics,Strength training and balance,you will work up some sweat using the device. This you tube video shows you what its all about
Looks like it would give a nice workout.
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Old 05-21-2009, 08:34 AM   #14
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After I FIR?, I don't want to ever see another treadmill...
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Old 05-21-2009, 09:00 AM   #15
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I don't use a treadmill much, so never could justify buying one. The exercise I would do on a treadmill I can easily substitute just running (or walking) around outside. For me, the exercise machines worth investing in are stationary bike, rowing machine and weights (or universal gym). Then I can do what I typically would do at a gym without the trip - and therefore more likely to do it.
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Old 05-21-2009, 11:19 AM   #16
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One thing I like about my NordicTrack is the inbuilt programs which I use regularly. I am also able to buy additional programs on chips from Ifit. I find it boring if I manually adjust my settings and it is not a good thing to do the same workout day after day. This way I can shake things up so my body does not know what to expect. For example, I am not really in the mood to do a long workout so I will do one of the programs, it's a max speed of 4.0 miles with a max incline of 10%.

I think you are either someone who will use a machine at home regularly or you won't use it at all. There doesn't seem to be any middle ground. I much prefer to work out at home as there is no excuse not to take the 30 seconds to walk out to the garage and get on the damn thing.

With regards to the stationary bike - I use my bike set up on a trainer which can be purchased from REI or a cycling store for less than $200. It's a cheap option and you still have a bike to use everyday.

I am thinking about getting an elliptical machine next just so I can throw in some additional variety. I am also thinking about the P90X tapes.
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Old 05-21-2009, 12:30 PM   #17
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I would like to second craigs list for purchasing a treadmill. I bought one 3 years ago, very beefy and with all the electronic programs and automatic incline for $400 originally over 1K. I have a bad knee and although I love to run can not. I find that the incline feature can give a good workout without going over 4mph.

One reason not to go the craigs list route is that these things are very heavy and awkward to move. You may want it delivered.

I have not experienced this with my treadmill but a friend who is a total cheapskate recomennded buying the extended warranty if you buy new. Said they break often and are expensive to fix, perhaps he bought a cheap model to begin with
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Old 05-21-2009, 12:34 PM   #18
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I did buy the extended warranty but have not had to use it, I've had no problems at all. I know someone who bought a similar model and had a lot of issues and constantly had to have it repaired. However, said person was a male and quite a bit beefier than I am.
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Old 05-21-2009, 06:46 PM   #19
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Thanksfor all the input/comments/reviews. Went to look at a high end NordiTrack yesterday off Craig's List. Would have been a great buy at $225. Must have been $2000 new, BUT--it was stored in the garage, really grimey, dirty, didn't have owners manual, etc. Still considered it; however, it was huge! 20 " belt. I don't think it would have fit in my available space. So, we have decided to go with a new Gold's Gym model #450 for $387. My wife will be the only one on it and all she will do is walk. I suspect she might use the incline now and then. 2.5 HP with 5 yr warranty, 18 " belt and goodies on the control panel. I think this a good entry level machine and should serve the purpose which is to be able to walk when she wants and not have to worry about the Florida heat and not have to drive 10 miles to the fitness center. Again, thanks for all the replys.
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