In the last 10 minutes of my first career class with Peloton Tread, I wanted to quit, as I had always done in previous attempts to run outdoors or on simpler treadmills. But when I approached to slow down the machine to a stop, platoon instructor Robin Arzon smiled at the camera. "You can do the same thing you've been doing yesterday or move on," he tells the audience, many of whom must feel as much as I do. "The decision is yours.
It was exactly the kind of message I needed to hear to guide me through those final minutes of the race. For the first time in my life, a treadmill made me smile, not only because it is crowded inside my little apartment in New York City, a comical scene in itself, but because it gave me the motivation that I needed to achieve something. I had not done it before.
For the base of loyal followers of Peloton, this was its appeal. Instead of going to a gym, you can have a study experience at a gym in your home, choosing your own time and place to exercise with your favorite instructors. While the hardware is certainly nice, the real appeal of Peloton is the training it receives in real time as it completes its training, much like a spinning class in a studio. People have their own reasons to be in shape, and for my time on the 4,200 Peloton new treadmill, I wanted to test their ability to help me run and train for my first 5km timed race.
The Peloton Tread is the company's tracking machine for its popular stationary bike. The basic concept is the same as your bicycle counterpart: for the price of the machine and a monthly subscription of $ 39, you can use it to broadcast live or in classes on request, where an instructor guides you through how to adjust your machine as it advances. a workout For the tread, Peloton offers a variety of classes such as hill training, drag racing, easier combos for walking and even full-body exercises such as yoga or arm and leg exercises. It also offers a specific program for 5 km training, exactly for what you planned to use the tread, which breaks down what classes to take each week before your race.
On the tape there is a 32-inch iMac type touch screen with a sound bar on the bottom. (The screen runs on Android under the hood, but is locked only to run the custom Peloton app.) You can not check Gmail and Instagram or watch Netflix while it is running. Along the sides, there are controls that allow you to control the speed and inclination. You can press the middle button to jump to the next level or the red button to stop the Tread. The race surface is a grid belt with a tough texture that is designed for softer landings. Again, since I am not a regular runner, I can not really compare it to other treadmills in their price range. But I will say that I did not experience any pain in the knee as I had done previously after taking other classes in traditional gyms.
In general, it is a beautiful machine, which strangely complements the crown molding in my room, and it is better for $ 4,500 (including the delivery and assembly of $ 300 white gloves, with taxes that they vary according to the state). Other treadmills in this price range offer up to twice the power of the engine and can support more weight, but a solid machine for informal runners usually costs half the price.
However, premium finishes do not mean much without the heart of Peloton's appeal: its programming. Although the company is currently going through a legal battle with labels and publishers about its use of music, where I believe that beginners will benefit most are the instructions provided by the talent on screen. At the moment, the platoon employs 11 trainers of the tread. Each one has its own style and personality, so you can choose the one you like the most. The content library is also constantly growing as the new classes are taught almost every day since the company's live study in New York.
There is something to be said about having a treadmill that can somehow be integrated into your small apartment without creating too much space. a nuisance In my two-month stay with the tread, I was surprised at how little the treadmill did apart from the sound coming from the speakers. I could watch the television next to me without having to adjust the volume significantly to accommodate the treadmill while my partner ran in it, and the vibrations surprisingly did not transfer to any of the furniture the machine was on. (I live on the first floor, but my neighbor above never complained about any unusual noise).
On the machine itself, I found that the screen wobbled a little too much when you start running. There were also some occasional software delays where the speed would not match the number shown on the screen, which felt like a potential danger. Unfortunately, the only way to know at what speed you are is to look at the screen. While the treadmill operates manually without requiring the screen to be on or connected to the Internet, without it, you will have to feel the speed and inclination on your own when adjusting the wheels to the sides.
For In my 5 km training, I used the tread three to four times a week for at least 30 minutes each time, including a 10 minute warm-up walk. Since I am a beginner, most of the classes I took tended to focus on the form, which was useful to keep in mind as I ran more frequently over time. I also had many breaks to walk, similar to what you would get with applications like Couch to 5K that help you increase your endurance each day of training.
Where Peloton differs is actually entertaining for Watch instructors run with you. Their monologues, cheesy as they sometimes get, help to kill the time between each race. Instead of focusing on the clock, I heard the instructors speak in a low voice, encourage the right way, or even sing with the song that is playing. It's similar to running out with a friend, conversing with each other on the way to make the time pass, minus the cold weather of February. But when the instructors exhale deeply, you too. It is that human element that makes you feel connected to the experience together.
Obviously, this is going to be different for everyone. Even when it comes to music, some Peloton users are angry, while others are not bothered by the limited variety of songs that users can save to play in their own personal games. (You can only play music played in class that you save to your Apple Music or Spotify account from Peloton Tread, otherwise you will have to use your phone and your headphones).
The physical condition is mainly mental, and one thing that helped me focus on my goals was to monitor my training history and the output in my profile statistics. It was motivating to see how my speed increased each time I ran, exalting myself to continue running even when I felt lazy and wanted to jump during the week. During the periods in which I spent too much time without running, I kept thinking about the first thing I heard outside the tread: Arzon reminding his students that pursuing ambitions is ultimately their choice.
It is this kind of goal-seeking thinking that extends to the rest of the platoon's programming. Your application also offers gamification badges, such as achievements and challenges, to strive to keep working. (In general, I struggled for the monthly miles / races challenges, which I achieved during the months of February and March). Some Peloton users also like to press for new personal records, which the machine shows in each class it takes. You can also view the statistics of other users through the classification table or user name search, too. But if you do not want to share this with others, you can disable the function.
When I started in mid-February, my fastest race was 2.2 miles in 30 minutes. Although the catalog of classes on demand kept me busy every two days, I discovered that it was very difficult to find live offers, since they were super early in the morning or at times when I was still not at home from work. The last classes at night tend to be for strength training, which was not what I was looking for. Maybe as more people buy the tread, the offers will increase, but I was disappointed during the review, since the point of the Squad was their community, and I would have loved to see the leaderboards change live.
Instead of live programming, I tried using the machine's 5K course of six weeks. However, I found myself abandoning it after two weeks since I ended up preferring and connecting emotionally with other instructors to those who appear in that program. Over time, making the Squad a part of my routine became much less tedious. When I got up in the morning and saw the giant treadmill next to my bed, I reminded myself why I put myself in this ridiculous situation to begin with, and I did not want to waste it by not moving forward.
With each race, I felt faster and stronger, which finally culminated in an 11 minute rhythm that made me finish the 5 km in just a few seconds in less than 32 minutes. It went far beyond what I thought I could do given my personal health record and it was rewarding.