Why a Treadmill?
I’m sure you have all seen the numerous fitness equipment infomercials. The promises are beyond absurdity. Get the perfect abs in 10 minutes a day. Have a sculpted body in no time. Each machine lauds patented revolutionary technology designed to miraculously get you in shape and lose pounds with a minimal effort.
If it was only that easy.
If you want to look great and feel healthy you have to work at it. That generally requires a vigorous exercise routine combined with a well balanced diet. To lose weight and trim down you need to burn calories on a regular basis. It doesn’t take a Rhodes Scholar to figure that out.
Of all the various types of fitness equipment that come and go, there is one that is still a major contender, that is a treadmill. Torso Track, Total Gym 1000/2000, Ab Sculptor, Ab Rockers, Ab Doers, Slam Man, Thighmasters, Toning System, Door Gym, Orbitrek are here today gone tomorrow.
Why do you not find treadmills sold on infomercials? Because it is not a high margin, hyped up exercise equipment. The majority of the infomercial equipment is designed for one purpose, to make as much money as soon as possible before the general public figures out they don’t work. A substantial portion of the price of this equipment is going towards the promotions.
Who are the people that primarily buy this stuff? Individuals who want to believe that there are shortcuts to losing weight and getting in shape. Getting fit takes time and effort, and no machine is going to avoid that reality.
Have you ever seen any infomercial equipment at a health club? No, because they don’t work and they’re not built to last. What you will see is a number of treadmill, often with people waiting their turn to use them.
It really is a numbers game. The more time you spend doing cardiovascular exercises the more calories you are going to burn and the more weight you will lose. And if you are looking for fitness equipment that will get the maximum burn, then a treadmill should be at the top of your list.
According to the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association, consumers spend more money for treadmills then any other home exercise equipment. In 2000 there were over 40 million treadmill users, a 9% increase over the following year.
The treadmill is unsurpassed for a cardiovascular workout. It works the large muscles in your body. According to a study done by the Medical College of Wisconsin and the VA Medical Center in Milwaukee, calories burned on the treadmill for 60 minutes averaged 865 – 705. This compares to:
- iStair machine 746 – 637
- Rowing machine 739 – 606
- Stationary cycle 604 – 556
- iCross-country ski machine 678 – 595
This is one of numerous studies, including one by the American Medical Association, that rank a treadmill as the number one cardiovascular machine. There are several other important factors that make treadmill exercising so practical.
Either Run or Walk
The two most popular forms of exercising are running and walking. Whether you are a casual walker or a serious runner, a treadmill can accommodate your exercise needs. Set the speed and incline to suite your desired cardiovascular goals. You can do a power walk up an incline or a heart pumping run at high speed.
Avoid Bad Weather
A treadmill can guarantee a consistent workout in all seasons. If you live in a cold climate, freezing temperatures and snow will not disrupt your workout. For those in warm temperate regions, you don’t need to be concerned about heat exhaustion in hot and humid weather.
For walkers and runners alike, injuries are common from the constant pounding of joints on asphalt and concrete. Particularly higher end treadmills offer surfaces that absorb impact and reduce pressure. Injuries are less common and stress is reduced on those critical joints. Achilles tendons, knee joints, back muscles, ankles, thighs take less of a beating, which guarantee that you’ll continue to walk or run into your old age.
As treadmills become more sophisticated so does the versatility of the workout. Speed and incline have always been a feature on motorized treadmills, but now your workout is enhanced by a variety of preprogrammed computerized exercises. Simulate running up and down hills, focus on cardio exercise, concentrate on burning calories, or work on speed training. Often treadmills have preset programs with various levels of intensity. In addition you can program your own workout, combining speed with incline.
Choosing a Treadmill
Treadmills come in all shapes and sizes, including folding and stationary models. It is important to find just that right model that accommodates your present and future exercise goals. You can research on the Internet through articles and reviews. In addition, you may want to talk with fitness professionals that can recommend a treadmill specific to your needs.
Don’t be lured by the blue light specials found in large retail and sporting goods stores. They lack the components and functionality to provide an enduring and pleasurable exercise experience. If you are in it for the long run you’ll want to buy a treadmill that is build to last and designed to be virtually maintenance free.
Of course buying a treadmill is just the beginning. You won’t lose weight looking at it. It is important to get yourself on a regular routine. The more time you spend on it, the more calories you burn and the more weight you lose. Find a fitness program that works for you. Depending on your preference, combine your workout with music, television or videos.
Treadmills have experienced substantial and steady growth over the years. Since their introduction there has never been a year where the sales have decreased. They are designed to enhance the most popular form of exercising, running and walking. They are built on the basic premise that the more effort you put in, the more you will get out. As infomercial fitness equipment and gimmicks gather dust, treadmills continue to gain popularity and get results.
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