iFit LIVE Treadmills 101
If you’re just starting to buy a treadmill (and you haven’t bought one in the last few years), you’re in for a big surprise.
These aren’t your Momma’s treadmills anymore.
The treadmills today have so many cool features that they make the treadmills of even 3 years ago look just plain dull. One of the coolest of these features is iFit LIVE.
This is a workout technology that was pioneered by ICON Health and Fitness – the largest fitness manufacturer in the world. They own brand names like Nordic Track, Proform, Reebok (treadmills), Golds Gym (treadmills), Freemotion and Weslo. ICON is adding iFit LIVE to their higher end brands – namely Proform and Nordic Track.
What’s the big deal?
Well actually it is a big deal. Because iFit kind of changes the game when it comes to treadmills.
iFit connects your treadmill to the Internet (using the wireless in your home). From there you can do a number of things like:
1) Run pre-planned routes all over the world using Googlemaps to show you the terrain and landscape as you run (a kind of virtual reality treadmill experience).
2) Map out new trails to run using Googlemaps (want to run in Paris along the Champs Elysee? Or how about through Central part? What about going back to your favorite vacation spot and exploring the trails there?)
3) Track your fitness and nutrition online. This makes it easy to set and reach new fitness and weight loss goals.
4) Download new workouts from Jillian Michaels where she coaches you through your workout.
5) Watch HD Video workouts – enjoy a Hawaii island run or explore the red rocks in Arizona.
6) Compete against your Facebook friends – or the iFit online community.
Basically, iFit is the coolest thing to come along in years. While ICON did have some false starts with it (A contact at ICON admitted to me that they rolled it out way too soon), that was a few years back.
It seems they’re over that hump. They’re now focusing on building in more features to iFit LIVE.
There are a few things you should know however:
#1 iFit LIVE comes in two forms – built-in and module format.
So you don’t need to buy a module to set up iFit – you just get online and go. This will save you about $99.
If you buy a treadmill on the lower end scale (under $1200), you probably will have to spring for the iFit LIVE module.
Note that these treadmills will still work without iFit – you don’t HAVE to use it. You can even wait and try it out in a few years if you get bored with the treadmill and want to try iFit out.
#2 iFit is a subscription-based service. This means you’ll pay a yearly fee to subscribe to iFit.
It’s about $99 a year (you save a bit more if you buy 2 years up front). That works out to about $8 a month – which isn’t bad (and a lot cheaper than a gym membership!). But again, it’s something to be aware of.
So that’s a brief primer on iFit LIVE treadmills – now you have an idea of what makes these treadmills so popular.
Want to shop for iFit LIVE treadmills? Since iFit is being added to the new models, your best bet is to shop Nordictrack direct or shop Proform direct. Any treadmill over $799 will usually have an iFit option.
Good luck and enjoy running through the streets of Paris!