Peloton Bike vs Peloton Treadmill – Which Offers the Best Workout?

Peloton Bike vs Treadmill

Peloton provides both bike and treadmill, which are indoor workout equipment. Being one of the most trusted indoor workout brands, its customer base increases by day. But which is the best equipment to start with, given that they both provide brand quality?

They are both great for cardio workouts, making their purpose almost similar. Nevertheless, there are still differences, for which reason one may prefer one over the other.

So, in this article, I’ll first address the most important question: which provides a better workout; cycling or running? Then, I’ll line up the Peloton Bike Vs. the Peloton Tread, analyzing each machine based on a few important criteria.

At a Glance; Peloton Bike

The Peloton bike is an indoor fitness bike used for low-impact cycling cardio exercises. Anyone can take up the cycling exercises, from a novice to an expert cyclist.

Peloton cycling exercises range from 5 minutes to 90 minutes in length, and there are different types of cycling exercises to suit the exercise level and goal.

Peloton has two bike models, the standard Peloton bike and the bike plus. The Peloton bike is the value bike, going for $1,195 + Plus delivery and setup cost. On the other hand, the Bike + is the premium option, and it costs $1,995 WITH FREE DELIVERY AND SETUP.

At a Glance; Peloton Tread

The Peloton Tread is indoor running and walking equipment that works for hand in hand with the Peloton indoor exercise app. It has multiple running and walking exercise options, which will suit your level as a user.

Running and exercises on Peloton range from 5 minutes to 90 minutes, making it an excellent training ground for athletes of all levels.

Currently, Peloton only sells one type of treadmill, the Peloton tread, which costs $2,345 .

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Peloton Cycling Vs. Running; Which is the Best Workout?

Both cycling and running on Peloton are great for aerobic and anaerobic exercises. However, the best workout will depend on your preference, experience, fitness level, and sometimes age.

Generally, cycling is best for low-impact exercises, safety, and all levels of fitness. For this reason, it is the best option for beginners, seniors, and users with limiting health conditions.

Getting a Peloton bike is a good idea because it has more classes than Peloton treads that work on both aerobic and anaerobic health.

On the other hand, running is the most favorable option for high-calorie burning and fast weight loss goals. It is also great for athletes in training due to the endurance and running skills you gain in the workout.

Reasons Why Cycling Can Improve Your Fitness

In general, cycling can improve your fitness from one level to another;

  • It is a cardiovascular exercise that improves cardiovascular and respiratory systems’ health
  • Cycling helps burn calories, as well as shed excess body weight
  • Being low-impact, cycling is the best option for knee injury recovery and knee protection.
  • Cycling helps strengthen leg muscles, from the hamstrings, quads, and glutes to the calves.
  • It is suitable for toning leg muscles for a smaller outlook.

What You Can Expect from Running

Essentially, running will improve your fitness level and much more as follows;

  • Running is the best cardio training for weight loss, with large weight loss margins within a short duration.
  • It strengthens the heart, vessel muscles, and respiratory system muscles.
  • Running is best for toning all the body muscles, from the upper body, the core, to the lower body muscles.
  • For athletes who want to improve running skills, speed, and endurance, running is the best option.

What Burns More Calories, The Peloton Bike or The Treadmill?

According to Harvard University, biking at a moderate speed of 12 to 13.9 miles per hour will cause a 155-pound person to burn 298 calories in 30 minutes. At a faster rate of 14 to 15.9 miles per hour, a person of the same weight will burn 372 calories.

Harvard Health Publishing documented that 30 minutes of moderate-intensity stationary biking burns about 210 calories for a 125-pound person, 252 calories for a 155-pound person, and 292 calories for a 185-pound person.

And For Treadmill: The average person will burn between 80 to 140 calories per mile when it comes on the treadmill. 30 minutes of average running will burn between 280 and 520 calories, depending on your weight and speed. When in a high-intensity running class such as Peloton HIIT, you may burn up to 1000 calories within 30 minutes.

However, note that the calories burned during running will depend on your weight, time spent running, and to a lesser degree, your speed.

Most importantly, the calories burned will depend on the intensity or speed of the workout, as in the tables below;

Calorie Burn from Peloton Bike (for a 125-pound Individual in 30 minutes)

Speed on the BikeCalories burned
13 mph240
15 mph300
18 mph400
20 mph450
22 mph500

Calorie Burn from Peloton Tread (for a 125-pound Individual in 30 minutes)

Speed on the TreadCalories burned
5 mph250 calories
6 mph300
8 mph500
12 mph1000

Is a Peloton Bike or Treadmill Better for Weight Loss?

From the findings above, it is evident that running on the treadmill burns more calories compared to cycling on the exercise bike. So, likewise, one will lose weight faster running on the treadmill than cycling on the Bike.

Running gets the whole body in motion, from the upper to the lower. This ensures that all the body muscles are active, which in turn facilitates quicker impact.

Moreover, running is high-intensity, while cycling is low-intensity. This translates to more weight loss gains from running as opposed to cycling on the Peloton bike.

Nonetheless, workouts on the Bike facilitate weight loss, including Tabata, HIIT, and climb classes.

On the other hand, treadmill classes help maintain weight without losing much, such as the walking classes.

Can You Lose Weight Using Only a Peloton Bike? 

Yes, you can lose weight with just the Peloton bike. Remember that the Peloton bike is cardio equipment, and losing weight is one of the major benefits. 

Essentially, a cardio workout draws energy from stored glucose and proteins, and glycogen in the case of anaerobic exercises. Burning these bodybuilders leads to weight loss.

The best weight loss classes on the Peloton bike are Tabata, HIIT, and climb rides.

Can You Lose Weight Using Only a Peloton Tread?

Yes, you can lose weight with just the Peloton tread. Actually, if you want to lose weight fast, the Peloton tread is the best option to consider.

The best Peloton tread exercises for weight loss goals include climbing, and HIIT runs. The longer and faster you run, the more weight you lose on the treadmill.

Peloton Bike vs. Treadmill: Muscles Worked

Primarily, the Peloton bike works the leg muscles since it involves muscles from the hip flexors, the quadriceps, the hamstrings, and the glutes to the calves. Therefore, over a long cycling time, the leg muscles will appear lean and strong from the endurance gained.

Secondarily, cycling can work on the arms, the chest, and the core muscles. The biceps and triceps occasionally move during the session, supporting the different postures on the Bike. The muscles strengthen and may even get a lean outlook in the process. The core remains contracted during the cycling sessions, especially the high-impact options—continuous involvement of the core tones the muscles over time.

On the other hand, the treadmill works on almost every muscle in the body. Running actively involves the legs most, but the core and the upper body have to move as well. 

Therefore, the impact of the treadmill is on the whole body muscles, from the upper body to the lower body.

Peloton Bike vs. Treadmill: Workout Difficulty

Basically, Peloton varies in workout difficulty for both the Bike and the treadmill. Nevertheless, the Peloton treadmill offers a more difficult workout compared to the Peloton bike. You have to be on your feet throughout the exercise, which makes the exercise more difficult.

However, the Peloton bike workouts are of less difficulty. You even have an option to take low-impact classes, where you are on the saddle throughout the class. 

Therefore, if you have health conditions that prevent you from taking a high-impact workout, the Peloton bike is better than the treadmill. For example, people with knee challenges, heart health problems, and senile challenges in seniors do well with the Bike as opposed to the treadmill.

However, if you still prefer a treadmill, you can get workouts with minimal difficulty in the walking options. Among the low-impact Peloton classes are hiking and power walk classes, which offer sufficient workouts at a minimal difficulty level.

Likewise, suppose you prefer a more intense workout with a Peloton bike. In that case, there are HIIT, Tabata, and power zone classes that ensure you burn more calories and get high-intensity workout benefits.

Peloton Bike or Peloton Treadmill: Your Level of Experience 

Essentially, the treadmill is more challenging to handle than the exercise bike. This is evident from the cases the Peloton tread + went through before it was recalled. The same cannot be said for either of the bikes.

Therefore, the Bike is suitable for all levels of experience, even beginners, because it is safer. Besides, you can have your seat on the Bike all the time before you learn the art of standing on the pedals. With the treadmill, the walking and running skills have to be learned in the same posture, which is standing. Sadly, this is the most vulnerable posture.

However, if your level of experience in running and walking is intermediate to expert, the treadmill provides the best training ground for your rehearsal. In addition, it is easier to manage your training, especially when the outdoor weather is intolerable.

Is the Peloton bike or Tread safer? Injury Risk

Technically, the Peloton bike is safer than the Peloton tread. For people with health conditions that weaken their leg muscles, it is easier to fall on the treadmill and cause injury. However, the Bike provides a seat that enhances one’s stability during exercises.

And though the Peloton treadmill has measures that ensure that it is safer than before, the Bike remains my favorite option for safety. 

Peloton Bike Vs. Treadmill: Enjoyment

Interestingly, enjoyment is where the Peloton bike and treadmill get to a draw. This is because forms of enjoyment are biased, and everyone has their best form.

Some people will run on the treadmill and feel their whole system run with them, as though they were in the best show in life. Others will feel an outdoor cycling breeze while on their Peloton bike and run to the Bike for solace when there is a need.

So, determine which exercise you enjoy between, walking/ running versus cycling, and you will know which is most suitable for you.

What Are Your Goals?

Not surprisingly, we all have different exercise goals, which play a great role in determining the type of exercise or equipment we choose.

Some of us are marathoners who want to increase running duration without fatigue, others are into speed training, others weight loss, yet others simply want to keep fit.

Depending on your workout goals definition, you can easily make a choice between the Peloton treadmill and the Peloton bike.

For example, if you have had issues with your knees or are in fear of knee injuries, the Peloton bike will definitely be your top pick. On the other hand, if you are adamant about losing weight within the next three months and have a background in athletics, you will obviously go for the treadmill.

Peloton Bike Vs. Treadmill for Health

The Peloton bike and treadmill are both excellent equipment for heart health, as well as lung health. They also facilitate a manageable body weight, which in turn minimizes cholesterol and excess fats in the body. Therefore, one is able to manage or keep at bay diseases such as stroke and hypertension.

However, the treadmill is bad for bad knees because it puts pressure on the knee joints. The result is a depreciating knee meniscus, leading to a knee injury.

In this case, the Bike is the best for knee health. With the low-impact classes, one will put minimal to no pressure on the knees, maintaining knee health.

Is the Peloton Bike or Tread Better for Endurance?

The Peloton treadmill is better than the Peloton bike for endurance. This is because one gets endurance from working certain muscles more, and the treadmill works the whole body muscles more than the Bike. Therefore, the treadmill is perfect for endurance in leg and arm muscles.

Nevertheless, the Peloton bike is also great for endurance. The only downside is that it provides endurance to only the leg muscles worked during cycling.

Is the Peloton Bike or Running Better for Glucose Oxidation?

Glucose oxidation results from aerobic exercises, as opposed to anaerobic. Basically, both cycling and running are cardio exercises that you can take in the aerobic form, hence enhancing glucose oxidation.

Peloton Classes Difference Between Peloton Bike and Tread

The Peloton bike has more classes than the Peloton tread on the Peloton on-demand section. There are also more scheduled live rides compared to runs and walks. Since the Bike was the first fitness equipment Peloton launched, this is not a surprise.

However, three class categories are dedicated to the Peloton treadmill, and only two are dedicated to the Peloton bike. The treadmill classes are running, walking, and tread Bootcamp, while the bike classes include cycling and bike Bootcamps.

The Peloton bike has a low-impact cycling category, favoring all riders groups and levels. However, the treadmill does not have a low-impact workout option.

Peloton Bike vs. Treadmill: Adjustability 

In technical terms, the Peloton bike is more adjustable than the Peloton treadmill. After all, it has seat and handlebars adjustment. Therefore, you can ride the Bike within your height and comfort, which makes it more comfortable.

However, the treadmill does not have any comfort adjustments, though they are not as necessary as the Bike.

You can adjust the Peloton bike resistance for the exercises, while the incline and speed are adjustable for the Peloton tread. Therefore, the two provide optimal adjustability for workout convenience.

Peloton Bike or Tread; Which Requires More Space at Home?

The Peloton treadmill requires more space than the Bike since it is larger. As a result, its measurements are 68″ L x 33″ W for the footprint. On the contrary, the Bike only takes up 59″ L x 23″ W for the footprint.

Peloton bike vs. Tread Features

Peloton BikePeloton Tread
Measurements Bike: 59″ L x 53″ H x 23″ W; Bike +: 59″ L x 59″ H x 22″ W68” L x 33” W x 62” H
Touchscreen sizeBike: 21.5 inches; Bike +: 23.8 inches23.8 inches
Weight Bike: 135 lbs; Bike +: 140 lbs290 lbs
Maximum body weight297 lbs300 lbs
Minimum user age  14 years oldover the age of 16
Bluetooth Compatibility  YesYes
Apple watch CompatibilityYesYes
Heart Rate Monitor CompatibilityYesYes
Scenic workouts available  Scenic rides  Scenic runs
Longest class60 minutes90 minutes
Live and on-demand classes  YesYes
Workouts Cycling, bike BootcampRunning, walking, tread Bootcamp

Peloton Bike and Peloton Treadmill Pros and Cons

Now, let’s get into the advantages and disadvantages of the Peloton fitness equipment, which will help finalize the best option for you;

The Pros and Cons of Peloton Treadmill

Peloton treadmill Pros

  • The treadmill is the best training option for runners since it is not limited by weather and space
  • It is the best weight loss indoor equipment
  • It is best for enhancing gait, posture, and endurance for the whole body
  • The Peloton treadmill is easy to control, and you can decide on the level of incline and speed for training
  • It provides a cardiovascular workout for heart and lung health.

Cons

  • The Peloton tread does not fold like other treadmills, taking up more house space.
  • The Tread is more expensive than the Peloton bike

The Pros and Cons of Peloton Bike

Pros of Peloton Bike

  • The Peloton bike offers the best option for beginners, people with knee injuries, and seniors due to the low-impact exercises.
  • The standard Peloton bike is inexpensive compared to the treadmill
  • It is suitable for small house spaces since it is space-saving
  • The Peloton bike improves heart and lung health

Cons

  • Cycling is not suitable for overall body muscle toning, as it mainly concentrates on the leg muscles.
  • It is less efficient in weight loss compared to the treadmill.

How to Choose Between a Peloton Treadmill and a Peloton bike

In choosing between the treadmill and the stationary bike, consider the following;

  • Workout goals: write down your exercise goals against each piece of fitness equipment. The equipment that handles the most goals should have a chance.
  • Cost of the equipment: if you are on a budget, go for the cheaper equipment to ensure that you don’t strain your pocket. However, ensure that you actually love the workout before considering the cost. Peloton offers pricing options, which help you pay for the equipment by hire purchase, so the cost will not be a limiting factor.
  • Health condition: if you have a condition that weakens your muscles, the Bike is the safest option without high risks of injury.
  • Safety: The Peloton bike is safer than the treadmill, but safety shouldn’t be an issue if you can handle the treadmill.
  • Workout preference: If you prefer cycling to run, go for the Bike because it will help you achieve your workout goals faster due to the consistency that comes with something you love.

Head-to-Head: The Peloton Bike Vs Treadmill

Cost

If you are looking for the cheapest of the peloton equipment, then the bike should be the best consideration. It will save you up to $1100+, which you can use to purchase the biking accessories, such as cycling shoes, cleats, bike mat and cycling outfits.

The peloton bike, armed with its 21.5-inch screen and delivery and installation included, comes at $1,195. On the other hand, peloton treadmill comes at a more expensive cost, which is $2,345.

Weight

The treadmill is heavier than the bike. It is 290lbs, while the bike is 135lbs and bike plus 140 lbs, thus a difference of over 100lbs. This being said, the treadmill can handle more body weight in comparison to the bike.

Therefore, if your body weight exceeds that of the peloton bike, which is 300lbs, or your height over 6’5 inches (ca. 13 cm), then a treadmill should have your attention.

In terms of body weight loss, both play a big role in ensuring that you shed as many calories within a single workout as possible, so either choice is suitable.

Account and Subscription

Once you purchase your peloton bike or treadmill, you have to register to either peloton cycling or treadmill classes respectively. The peloton equipment comes with archived workout classes that you can access, whether you have a subscription.

Both classes go for $39 per month, thus similar cost for premium membership. With this subscription, the users not only have access to all the archived workout classes of peloton bikes or treadmills, but can also access the 24-hour available online live classes. You can have an instructor of your choice and at the time of your choice.

Moreover, with a premium subscription, your metrics are recorded in your peloton account, including cadence, resistance, output and remaining workout time, and you can view them on the screen during the workout. You can also view your performance in relation to your workout mates on the leader board.

Equipment Dimensions and Mats

A peloton bike will occupy less space as compared to the peloton treadmill. It is 59″ L x 23″ W. On the other hand, the treadmill is 68″ L x 33″ W.

You should however, ensure that there is a substantial space all round the equipment, thus the room a little larger than the exact measurements.

Therefore, an exact mat for a peloton bike will not fit a treadmill, since it is smaller. If you want a mat that will fit both equipment, then you should use the measurements of the treadmill.

Accessories

Both peloton equipment uses the same headphone types. Wired headphones have to fit in a 3.5 mm inches port, while Bluetooth headphones are to be compatible with Bluetooth 4.0 for it to be suitable for peloton.

Treadmills recommend spiked shoes to increase the output, though any regular sport shoe still works on the equipment. Contrasting this, the peloton bike has to be used with cycling shoes, and specific ones at that. One has to use shoes with cleats that are of the Look Delta or SPD-SL system to ride on peloton bike pedals.

You can use most sports outfits on the treadmill, and the same will apply to the bike. However, if your bike seat does not have a seat cushion, the bike shorts or leggings have to be padded to enhance comfort and performance.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Do you have to have a subscription commitment to use the peloton treadmill?

No, you don’t have to commit yourself to a subscription. You can actually use a peloton treadmill without any subscription, gaining access to the peloton stored workout classes. You will however not have access to live classes, a tutor or recorded metrics.

Can you see the peloton instructor when using the peloton bike or treadmill?

Yes, you can. If you are subscribed to the peloton online live classes, then you will see and interact with your instructor. The instructor, on the contrary, cannot see you.

Can you walk barefoot on the treadmill?

Yes, you can. However, this is neither safe nor healthy, as you can slide, get friction blisters and sustain injuries on your feet. Moreover, the workout will be slow and results not as much. Using spiked or sports shoes will not only enhance your performance, but also protect your feet, hence seeing you use your treadmill longer and faster.

How many times a week should you be on your treadmill or bike?

You can cycle o spin on your indoor bike, or simply workout on your treadmill at least three times a week to realize faster and satisfying results. Ensure that the workout output is within the set standard for the peloton workouts.

Final Word

By this time, you should be in a position to make the decision that suits you most- or even decide on both equipment if you can afford it. The differences between the two are identified in cost, number and type of workouts available and also the dimensions, not to mention the weight that each is capable of handling.

Based on your personality, ability and preference, you can get the equipment that best suits your needs for your fitness requirements.

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