Treadmills are becoming very tough to find, as more and more of us try to limit the time we're spending outdoors in favor of working out at home. Many of the best-known retailers are completely out of stock, with no new deliveries expected for months.
Thankfully, though, there are still some retailers with treadmills available to deliver right now, and we've rounded up all the best deals available right now, with expert advice to help you choose the right one.
How to buy a treadmill
A treadmill is a big investment, so what should you look for when making your choice? Olivia Neely, personal trainer at Starks Fitness (currently sharing home workout videos at starksfitnessgym on Instagram), gives the following advice.
Olivia Neely (Starks Fitness personal trainer):
With the current uncertainty of when gyms and public spaces will re-open, there’s a lot of focus on everyone trying to create new fitness routines within the home environment. It seems we’re all a bit confused with what piece of equipment would be the greatest investment. So, how about the trusty treadmill? Here’s just a few tips to ensure you’re buying the best bit of kit for you.
The range of costs of a treadmill is vast, therefore it’s important you get the best quality treadmill for your budget. Consider the following; How often do you plan to use it? How much space do you have? Does it need to be brand-new or can you go for second-hand? Do your expectations match your budget? Remember, a sizable piece of kit like a treadmill is an investment.
Ideally, you want one that offers a walk-and-run facility to maximize usage and training variations. Here’s a list of the basic specifications to think about:
Belt size: for running you need a belt size of 48-inch+ in length and 16-inch+ in width. If you’re tall, you may need even longer!
Speed and incline: To utilize training methods (walk, jog, sprint etc) you’ll need a treadmill that goes up to 10mph. You may also want to adjust incline settings to stimulate outdoor training conditions.
Control panels: Get a treadmill that is simple to use and offers easy-reach control buttons. Safety and efficiency go hand in hand.
Try before you buy [when possible]
It may seem obvious but testing out your new purchase will pay dividends in the end. Spend some time doing your research and get down to local fitness stores [when movement restrictions are lifted] to try as many as possible. Test for comfort, noise levels, safety and size.
How do you feel when you’re on it?
The best treadmill deals in the US
- Shop for treadmills at Walmart
- Shop for treadmills at ABT Electronics
- Shop for treadmills at Best Buy
- Shop for treadmills at Amazon
The best treadmill deals in the UK
- Shop for treadmills at Argos
- Shop for treadmills at Fitness Superstore
- Shop for treadmills at Amazon
Treadmills that work with Zwift
Zwift is a great addition to your treadmill training, connecting you with a community of runners and cyclists, and letting you pick from a variety of virtual courses to give your indoor training some variety.
To get started, all you need is a Zwift RunPod and the Zwift app. The RunPod is a cadence sensor that attaches to your running shoe and tracks each step. You can use just about any treadmill (Zwift has some handy recommendations for choosing the right one), but there's also an increasing number of smart treadmills that can connect with Zwift directly. Check out the full list of supported treadmills.
Hiring a treadmill
The right treadmill will serve you well for years to come, but if you only want one for what will hopefully be a few months of isolation, hiring one is an option that's worth considering. You can hire a great quality treadmill for under $30/£20 a week.
Treadmill hire companies all offer a range of different models, so the same considerations apply in terms of size, space, speed, and accessibility of controls. Demand is high right now, but hiring a treadmill isn't an option everyone is likely to consider, so it's well worth investigating.
Due to the logistics of delivering and collecting treadmills, the best way to find a hire company in the US is to search for one in your city or state. Some good options for the UK include:
- Check our our guide to the best home workout apps