Top-rated Treadmills and Ellipticals: Consumer Reports 2012

Topics: Aging and Costs of Aging, Obesity and Weight Loss, Wellness and Health
Treadmill vs. Elliptical What’s the Better Workout

Consumer Reports’ ratings for top exercise equipment just came out, and the LA Times helpfully summarized the findings. I’ve subscribed to CR for years, and like the analysis: they are careful, test thoroughly on quality not price, and rate objectively.

In my opinion, the best machine is the one you’ll use. You can burn more calories on a treadmill if you take a full stride, and use your arms! Don’t hold on to the handrails.

Expect to pay $900 up to $3k+ for something that will last.

Top non-folding treadmill: The Precor 9.31. Number is the Landice L7 Cardio Trainer at $3,800 and third is the True PS300. Number 4, and less than half the price of the Precor, is the Sole S77.

Top folding treadmill: the LifeSpan TR4000i.
Top folding treadmills (budget): NordicTrak C900 and the ProForm Power 995.

On ellipiticals, use your arms! Try interval training: fast for a minute, slow for a minute. High intensity workouts burn calories faster and more efficiently. And with a lower impact exercise comes lower risk of injury and the ability to prevent injury.

Top elliptical trainer (also $900 to $3k): Octane Fitness Q37ci (though at 1/3 the price, the Smooth CE 3.6 is #3)

Happy cross training!