Best treadmills for indoor running and walking workouts 2024

Having one of the best treadmills at home is a great way to help you maintain or improve your cardio fitness. Whether you use the machine for low-impact walks or high-intensity runs, having easy access to a treadmill is only going to encourage you to train more regularly, especially when it’s cold, dark or wet, and stepping outside isn’t appealing.

Many treadmills also now offer virtual classes to help motivate you to step on and run, with Peloton leading the way on this with its high-energy classes. You usually need a subscription to access the live and on-demand workouts on a treadmill, so make sure to factor that ongoing cost in when picking a machine.

We rate the Peloton Tread as the best treadmill for most people, partly because of the excellent classes, and partly because of the commercial-standard specs of the machine which include a high top speed and maximum incline. But if Peloton isn’t your style there are plenty of other great treadmills available to suit different runners.

It’s a big purchase, which is why we put these treadmills to the test to check how comfortable they are to run on, along with checking other features like the speed and incline range, and whether they have space-saving or foldable designs.

The quick list

The best treadmills you can buy today

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Best treadmill overall

Woman running on the Peloton Tread

(Image credit: Peloton)
The best treadmill for most people

Specifications

Surface size: 59 x 20 inches
Max speed: 12.5 mph
Max incline: 12.5%
Display: Yes, 23.8 touchscreen
Virtual classes: Yes, $44/month membership required

Reasons to buy

+
Access to Peloton's motivational classes
+
Durable build with new safety features
+
Immersive display

Reasons to avoid

-
Monthly membership is expensive

The Peloton Tread is easily the best treadmill for most home workouts. The equipment is easy to use and nicer to look at than most treadmills, plus it comes with a large, 23.8-inch touchscreen display for your workout stats and virtual classes. 

And, rather than display-mounted buttons to adjust the speed and incline, there are easy to use control knobs on each of the machine's arms, so you can quickly change the intensity. Not that you always need to, as Peloton's machines can adjust automatically during streamed workouts based on the trainer's instructions. 

The main downside is that to get the most from this premium machine, you also need to take out a Peloton All Access Membership, which will set you back $44 per month, although that does cover multiple users, so everyone at home can use it. 

But, in our opinion, the membership is worth the cost, as the classes are fun and effective, and Peloton's instructors help you stay motivated for the whole session. Plus, the music choices are always pretty fun, too. 

However, all's not wasted if you choose to stop your membership. Unlike some smart home gym equipment, you can continue to use the Peloton Tread if you cancel your subscription in the Just Run mode, which turns the Tread into a more standard treadmill experience.

Best value treadmill

Woman running on the Echelon Stride treadmill

(Image credit: Echelon)
The best value treadmill

Specifications

Surface size: 55 x 20 inches
Max speed: 12.5mph
Max incline: 10%
Display: Yes, LED console
Virtual classes: Yes, $39.99/month membership required

Reasons to buy

+
Easy auto-folding mechanism
+
Good top speed and incline range
+
Compact machine for tight spaces

Reasons to avoid

-
No integrated display
-
Expensive monthly membership required
-
Short running deck

The Echelon Stride sits between treadmill categories — it's not cheap, nor high-end. In most categories, it’s just fine in terms of build, power and features. The Stride has fewer bells and whistles than more expensive treadmills; for instance, it doesn't have an HD video screen. 

That said, don't let the lack of a screen put you off. With a max speed of 12 miles per hour, this should be fast enough to suit most runners — that's around a five-minute mile running pace. It's also got a 10% incline, and a 3% decline. With a smaller footprint than the Peloton Tread, the Echelon Stride has one major selling point — it folds for easier storage.

The Stride can be paired with a tablet running the Echelon app, which provides access to live and in-demand studio classes for a monthly fee. If you’re looking for a cheaper Peloton alternative, then the Stride plus the Echelon Fit app mostly fits the bill.

Best treadmill for runners

Woman running on the BowFlex Treadmill 22

(Image credit: Bowflex)
The best treadmill for indoor runners

Specifications

Surface size: 60 x 22 inches
Max speed: 12mph
Max incline: 20%
Display: Yes, 22-inch touchscreen
Virtual classes: Yes, $19.95/month membership required

Reasons to buy

+
Heavy-duty build
+
Powerful 4.0 HP motor
+
Netflix, Disney Plus integration

Reasons to avoid

-
Very expensive
-
JRNY app requires subscription
Recent updates

In early 2024, BowFlex filed for bankruptcy. All of the company's products remain available (for now), but it's not clear what the future holds. We still believe the machine is a great treadmill, but be cautious about investing if your main interest is in the JRNY workout app, as these services could be discontinued if the company is acquired or folds completely. 

This is a beast of a treadmill — and the price tag reflects that. The Bowflex Treadmill 22 boasts a top-notch design and build, robust performance and many accompanying features.

This high-end machine is as big and sturdy (or even more so) than what you’d see at your gym. The running surface is roomy and comfortable, while the huge 22-inch touchscreen makes viewing workouts a pleasure. Not only that, connect your streaming services through the JRNY app, and you can watch Netflix or Disney Plus while running. 

Speaking of the JRNY app, it's required, though the treadmill comes with a two-month free trial. JRNY doesn’t offer live studio sessions or community features like Peloton, but it does have plenty of on-demand and adaptive workouts. 

This treadmill has a top speed of 12 miles per hour, which is around a 4:59 minute mile pace, so should be fast enough for most runners. 

Best commercial treadmill

Woman running on the NordicTrack Commercial 2450

(Image credit: Best Buy)

4. NordicTrack Commercial 2450

The best commercial treadmill

Specifications

Surface size: 60 x 20 inches
Max speed: 12mph
Max incline: 12%
Display: Yes, 22-inch touchscreen
Virtual classes: Yes, $39/month membership required

Reasons to buy

+
SmartAdjust automatically changes speed and incline to follow iFit class
+
31 incline levels from -3% to 12%
+
Foldable design

Reasons to avoid

-
Doesn't fold away flat
-
Can be quite noisy

The NordicTrack Commercial 2450 is an excellent alternative to the Peloton Tread. There's only $4 between them, so if you're not invested in Peloton's brand of high-energy, high-intensity workouts, this treadmill may suit you better. 

You can access on-demand and live classes using the machine's 22-inch display and the iFit workout app. You'll need to subscribe to get access though, which will set you back an additional $39 per month, but this allows you to get the most from the machine. 

You can technically use it without a membership, but then you may as well choose a cheaper, non-smart option to begin with. However, what makes this treadmill so attractive isn't just the app — it reaches 12mph, and adjusts between -3 and 12% inclines. 

Plus, it can fold up for easier storage, although it doesn't fold flat like the Echelon Stride, so it's not quite as compact. This makes sense though, as it's part of NordicTrack's Commercial range, which are machines that suit home workouts as much as gyms and fitness centers. 

Best treadmill for inclines

NordicTrack Commercial x22i in a testing facility

(Image credit: Future/Tom's Guide)

5. NordicTrack Commercial x22i

The best treadmill for incline training

Specifications

Surface size: 60 x 22 inches
Max speed: 12mph
Max incline: 40%
Display: Yes, 22-inch touchscreen
Virtual classes: Yes, $39/month membership required

Reasons to buy

+
Massive incline
+
Large touchscreen 
+
An integrated fan 
+
30-day iFit membership included 

Reasons to avoid

-
Speakers are weak 
-
Treadmill is huge 

The NordicTrack Commercial x22i is a massive machine — not ideal if you're short on space — but there's a good reason for its large size. The treadmill ranges between -5% and 40% incline, a far greater spread than most other home machines. 

Like several of the other best treadmills, it tops out at 12mph, so you can really work on your cardio fitness and leg strength, especially if you turn the speed and incline up to max. There's a handy cupholder so you can keep hydrated during hill sprints. 

We found that the treadmill was a joy to run on, as the compact running deck has some cushioning for a comfortable bounce underfoot as you run. But, of course, there's no getting away from the fact that you need a lot of space to fit it in. 

It has a sizeable footprint (70 x 39 x 72.5 inches) and it doesn't fold either, so it'll need a permanent space in your home. However, if you've got the room, the 22-inch display means you can access iFit's virtual classes and workouts too, if you take out the $39 per month membership.

How to choose the best treadmill for you

When deciding on the best treadmill for you, there are a few things to consider. 

What type of workout are you planning? 

First, determine what kind of workout will you need — hard running, light jogging, walking, etc. If you are training for a marathon, you may want better shock absorption and a longer surface length. Meanwhile, walkers may find longer arms useful. 

What is a good treadmill speed for you? 

Most of the treadmills on this list have a top speed of around 12 miles per hour, which is around a five-minute mile running pace. This should be speedy enough for most runners, but if you're particularly speedy, you might want something quicker. Cheaper treadmills might also offer lower speeds, so it's worth checking before you buy.

What is a good treadmill incline for you? 

If you're training for a hilly race, you'll want a treadmill that'll allow you to hike up those hills. Most treadmills with higher inclines demand a higher horsepower, so are likely to be more expensive. 

How much space do you have? 

There's also the subject of space. If you’re a city dweller with a small apartment, a folding treadmill could save a lot of space. Folding treadmills are also considered to be the slightly safer option if you're living in a house with small children or animals. 

Does the treadmill have live classes? 

There's no doubt about it, running on a treadmill can get boring, fast. Another important feature is the content that the treadmill offers, like pre-programmed exercises or live and on-demand studio classes. 

What is the warranty on the treadmill? 

Unlike the treadmills in your local gym, you'll want the one you're buying for your home gym to last you a while, so take a look at the warranties on the treadmills. The NordicTrack Commercial 2950 has a lifetime warranty on the frame and parts, whereas the Peloton Tread only has three years. 

The more features you want, the more expensive the treadmill. Everyone has a different price point, so you may have to trade off some bells and whistles if you’re on a budget. 

How we test the best treadmills

We test the best treadmills on the market by running on them! All of the treadmills on this list have been tested by the Tom's Guide team who have run miles on them. We do several different sessions on a treadmill when testing it — from slow easy miles to quicker tempo sessions, to see how easy it is to change speed quickly while maintaining a pace. 

When testing, we look for how easy the treadmills are to run on, the top speed you can reach, as well as how quiet they are if you're installing them in your home, and whether they can be folded away. If you have pets or young children in your home, it's worth taking some time to look at the safety features of a treadmill. 

We also take into consideration the membership costs and live classes on offer. 

Best treadmill workouts

So you're thinking of investing in a treadmill to up your training from home, but what are the best workouts to do to see results in your running? We've rounded up some of the best treadmill workouts for every type of runner here, including the best HIIT treadmill workouts, and treadmill workouts for beginners. 

Of course, if you're not a runner, or you're looking for a lower-impact workout, treadmills can still be great. Walking at an incline of 2% or more has been found to burn more calories than walking on the flat, plus it engages different muscles in your legs. Looking for inspiration? We tried the viral TikTok 12-3-30 treadmill workout.

FAQs

How much money should you spend on a home treadmill?

There's no doubt about it - a treadmill is definitely an investment. If you're looking to do serious mileage on your treadmill, it's a good idea to spend a bit more and invest in one that'll keep up with you. Like with all tech, you get what you pay for and cheaper options won't have the same build-quality or top speeds.

Is a treadmill good for losing belly fat?

Running is a great workout, and if you're looking to lose weight, it's a good form of exercise to add to your routine. Read more about how to lose weight by running here.  

Is walking on the treadmill for 30 minutes a day enough?

Jane McGuire
Fitness editor

Jane McGuire is Tom's Guide's Fitness editor, which means she looks after everything fitness related - from running gear to yoga mats. An avid runner, Jane has tested and reviewed fitness products for the past five years, so knows what to look for when finding a good running watch or a pair of shorts with pockets big enough for your smartphone. When she's not pounding the pavements, you'll find Jane striding round the Surrey Hills, taking far too many photos of her puppy. 

With contributions from