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Can You Save Money with a Treadmill?

Sunday, May 16th

Can You Save Money with a Treadmill?

Dropping a thousand dollars or more on exercise equipment doesn't seem like a cost savings opportunity, but when you look at it in the long-term you might change your mind. Getting into shape and maintaining a healthy level of fitness takes time and regular exercise. If you're finance savvy, or trying to be at least, take a few moments to calculate your options and see where you come out:

  • Walking or Running Outdoors. It can be very relaxing, fun and, best of all, free to go outside and exercise. However, for many of us, our jobs and the weather get in the way of successfully exercising outside as much as we'd like. Exercising outside also involves the element of risk. There's no need to worry about the safety of running outside or walking in the park when you're safe at home.
  • Gym Membership. A lot of people have wonderful intentions when they sign a gym contract. The initial fees and monthly charges seem affordable at first glance given tricky pricing that seems to always end .99. During, the first month of a gym membership most customers show up pretty regularly until they get sick or have to go out of town. As new activities and challenges come up, many struggle to find available time to work out during gym hours. Many months will go by before a gym member realizes that they've spent hundreds or thousands of dollars and are nowhere near their fitness goals.
  • Personal Trainer. A personal trainer is very trendy and seems like a great way to make a solid effort at getting into shape. Think of Jillian Michaels screaming and pushing to help contestants lose weight. At $40 - $60 per hour, you're looking at a big financial commitment. If you calculate that out, it's around $7,000 for one year of fees. In addition, you have to work with someone else's schedule, which makes it hard to maintain the effort.
  • Exercise Classes. Exercise classes, often geared more toward ladies, are less expensive than a personal trainer but can quickly add up. At $5 - $12 per class, three times per week, your total investment would average over $1,200 per year. However, classes are less flexible than most options as you can only exercise at a specific assigned time and if the class is full you're out of luck.

Money isn't everything when it comes to choosing the right exercise plan. History has shown that exercise goers are more successful when they consider the following factors:

  • Convenience. Exercising at the crack of dawn or late at night might be the best time for you to sweat. Having a treadmill conveniently located in your home allows for an easily accessible workout. You'll also not bother primping or grooming to visit your treadmill. Jumping on before you shower or put on makeup is ultimately going to save time.
  • Routine-Friendly. If you don't have to rely on good weather, a class schedule, or wait in a long line at the gym for a free machine to exercise, you'll find it easier to get into an exercise routine. Regularly finding time for exercise is most achievable when it's convenient, and convenience leads to routine. A consistent workout regime can help lead to the body and health you desire.
  • Confidence. Working out in front of others embarrasses many people, especially when one is just starting out on the road to health. Onlookers can be creepy and prevent us from wanting to regularly show up each day. If you have a treadmill at home, you can simply throw on your favorite t-shirt, crank up the tunes, and get moving. No need to worry if your outfit coordinates with your shoes in the comfort of your own home!

As with any fitness equipment, you'll want to choose a quality product that will last for years to come. Compare several different treadmill brands and models that provide the options you want. Find independent product reviews that will help you in your search of identifying treadmills that are a good value with the options you want in your workout. Avoid brands that have a lot of negative customer feedback and a history of product failure. In the end, having a quality treadmill at home can save you thousands of dollars and lead to more regular workouts and a healthier you.

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Treadmill FAQ

As one of the most commonly-used pieces of gym equipment, treadmills are usually the first machine people think of when setting up a workout space at home. Whatever your level of fitness, a treadmill can help you make progress: from low-intensity walking to running intervals on an incline, the possibilities are endless (and they don't depend on the weather!)
It depends on the model you choose. Some machines allow you to fold the tread surface up towards the console, similar to a Murphy bed. But, with the higher-end machines that come with plenty of features like live-coached workouts or sky-high incline capabilities, you're likely to need a reasonable amount of floor space. Check the dimensions of any treadmills you're considering and compare them against the places you're thinking of keeping your machine.
You might be surprised to learn that you can get a basic treadmill for under $600. On the other end of the spectrum, you'll see prices in the $9,000 and up range for models exactly like what you'd use at a fitness center or gym. Fortunately, there are plenty of mid-range options that give you good features, top-notch tech and durability without breaking your budget.
Yes. Coverage varies, and most manufacturers have different timeframes of warranty protection for the frame, electronics, and any labor costs. You may also be able to add an extended warranty and/or maintenance plan, to keep your treadmill in good shape for longer.
How does "free" sound? Many retailers of treadmills give you no-cost delivery. Just be aware that if you return your treadmill, you're likely to be on the hook for the shipment costs to get it back to the store (and your refund may have their original shipping costs deducted from it!).
Check the retailer's policies. Many offer return periods of 30-60 days, but some provide none at all. You may have to pay restocking fees of up to 25% too, in addition to the return shipping costs (which could get expensive on such a heavy piece of equipment).
Yes, though not all retailers offer it as an add-on service with your treadmill purchase. Look for that option during the checkout process. Otherwise, the company might be able to recommend an installer in your area. If all else fails, it might be worth it to call a fitness center or sporting goods store near you to get the name of a professional they trust.
There's no better way to get the world's widest selection of treadmills - at the best prices. Shopping online makes it easy and even fun to check out all of the latest features and see what customers say about the machines once they're in home use. And, there's no need to rent a truck or try to fit your treadmill in the back of your car with so many retailers offering free delivery right to your doorstep.
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