It’s early in the morning, like, the sun-is-just-starting-to-peek-into-the-day type of early. You want to pull the covers up over you head and sleep a little more, but you can’t because cycling instructor Robin Arzón is 900 miles away, setting up on a Peloton bike, getting ready to start her class. And you need to be there, too.
You walk downstairs, and there she is, your bike. Your Peloton bike. And you don’t dare walk by that bike. That’s just the effect this piece of exercise equipment has on you — it’s unlike any other, including the most advanced fitness tracker. You don’t walk by it, you don’t want to skip you workout. You look forward to it. You crave it, actually.
Let me explain. I’ve met several people who own Peloton bikes and their enthusiasm is generally the same: extreme enthusiasm. Extreme. So I decided to give one of these Peloton bikes and a Peloton spin class a try and let me say, it didn’t disappoint.
Trying Out the Peloton Bike
First, some basics. The Peloton is an indoor cycling bike. It’s stationary, fairly compact and the ride is super fluid and smooth, thanks to the magnetic resistance. The bike is well made — you get the feeling you’re riding a professional studio bike in the comfort of your home. But, of course, where this bike pulls ahead from its competition is in its incredible community. And we’re not just talking the New York City Peloton class headquarters.
When you purchase a Peloton bike, it’s WiFi/Ethernet enabled so you can tap into live cycling classes with the NYC class or choose any of thousands of on-demand classes. The touchscreen, the bike component the company calls the “heart of the bike,” also allows you to keep track of a wide array of performance metrics, including your heart rate, resistance, cadence, output, calories burned and distance. You can also chat with your other Peloton buddies on-screen during your ride, if you’d like.
And here’s what I really love about the Peloton bike: If you’re a competitive personality type, the touchscreen provides the tools to really motivate you through your ride and to help you push to your next level. Whether you’re riding in real-time or hopping on an on-demand ride, you can compete against people exactly as they progressed through the ride.
You may catch yourself chasing someone who rode the same ride a week prior on the other side of the country. It’s pretty cool! On the flip side, if you’re not competitive and don’t find this type of feedback motivating, you can simply “X” out this data to hide it during your ride.
Peloton Bike Workouts
There are all different types of classes to take, depending on your mood:
- fat-melting HIIT workouts and tabata rides
- live DJ rides
- endurance rides
- beginner rides
- rhythm rides
The key here is that there’s pretty much any type of ride to fit your mood and time allowance. Feel like doing a ’90s hip-hop ride? Not a problem. Need a 45-minute power ballads ride? You got it. South rock ride if you have 30 minutes free? Sure, why not. There’s pretty much something for everyone. (And yes, in case you were wondering, there is an ’80s Mix ride.)
Peloton Bike Cost
The cost of the Peloton bike is substantially steeper than many pieces of home exercise equipment. It’s a serious investment. And yes, you can absolutely get in shape for very little money doing burst training using mostly your bodyweight. But if you like to cycle and you’re not finding your groove with other forms of exercise (and if this is in your budget), it is a solid choice.
The Peloton bike costs $1,995 plus $250 for delivery and in-home assembly. You also are required to subscribe to the classes for at year at $39 a month. Clip-in shoes are not required but very helpful in garnering more power throughout your full pedal stroke. Those are $125. It’s not cheap, but I’m not the only one who think it’s a great piece of equipment. Men’s Health called it “The best cardio machine on the planet.” (1)
Final Thoughts on the Peloton Bike
Technology impacts our health each and every day. For the majority of us, it means too much sitting is a normal part of the day. That comes with huge health ramifications, most notably, (eek!) shorter lifespans. (2) While many forms of technology lull us into more sedentary lifestyles, one of my favorite recent technological advances — the Peloton bike — does anything but that.
We’re in the midst of a global crisis: People just aren’t active enough. Too much sitting is actually considered as dangerous as smoking. Clearly, we need to get moving, so I’m all for any safe type of exercise that inspires you. And as it turns out, the Peloton bike really seems to inspire people.
While it does come at a higher price point, it’s also much more technologically advanced than most other home fitness equipment. I believe the Peloton bike is one of the best examples of how we’re bringing exercise into the 21st century and using technology to help inspire us to greater levels of health and fitness — rather than sabotaging us into a more sedentary lifestyle as many other forms of technology do.