Best Home Fitness Equipment for Weight Loss

Best Fitness Equipment for Weight Loss

What Home Gym / Fitness Equipment is Best for Losing Weight?

Buying fitness equipment that you will enjoy using is way more important for weight loss than the number of calories burned per session.

Everyone starts with the best intentions.

We convince ourselves that the pain of stepping, rowing, or running will be easy to handle, and that willpower will overcome the inevitable boredom.

Then reality bites.

That reality is that unless you find home fitness equipment you can tolerate (or even enjoy), then weight loss will be much, much harder. As well as listing the calories burned and types of workout for each category of fitness machine – I have addressed this ‘elephant in the room’ below.

Let’s start by being honest with ourselves, exactly what kind of cardio equipment will you use regularly?

Types of Weight Loss Fitness Equipment Covered

Here is a quick list of your options. I’m sure there are one or two which are a hard-no – great – let’s skip to the ones that work.

I have covered the most popular fitness machines: Treadmills, exercise bikes, cross trainers, rowers and steppers. After this, EMS belts and vibration plate trainers get a mention. These are brilliant for the final steps. Once you get rid of the excess weight, they will add tone to make you feel great.

You will find calorie burn ranges, pros and cons and options for different budget levels below.

Calories Burned by Different Fitness Machines

Tracking Calories Fitness EquipmentBefore you jump to the numbers below, keep in mind that you simply won’t be able to do an hour on all types of fitness equipment. This is possible on a bike, or treadmill, though almost impossible on a stepper.

Treadmill: Light 500 Cal / hour – Intensive 1100 Cal / hour

Cross Trainer: Light 500 Cal / hour – Intensive 800 Cal / hour

Exercise Bike: Light 300 Cal / hour – Intensive 500 Cal / hour

Rowing Machine: Light 400 Cal / hour – Intensive 600 Cal / hour

Stepper: Light 600 Cal / hour – Intensive 1000 Cal / hour

*These are averages of the numbers listed at popular sources.

 

Pros and Cons: Deep Dive into the Types of Weight Loss Fitness Equipment

This part lists the plusses and minuses of each type of machine. If you have already ruled out one or more types, simply skip to your preferred ones.

Below each assessment are some notes on what you get in different price ranges. Best Fitness Equipment for Weight Loss - Rowing?

 

Best Weight Loss Home Gym Equipment – Pros and Cons

This part of the page goes through the different types of equipment one by one, notes the main pros and cons when it comes to weight loss.

Best Treadmills for Weight Loss

Treadmills are a hugely popular choice for getting fit at home, and for good reasons.

You can start slow and steady, gradually building up to sprints and longer sessions. On the plus side, sessions can be longer, allowing for a solid calorie burn. You can listen to music or a podcast, or even run through scenic views via popular treadmill running apps.

On the minus side treadmills are bigger, and often noisier than other forms of equipment. I recommend spending enough money to get a cushioned running surface. Super budget ‘no brand’ treadmills can be rattly, small, and sometimes dangerous.

A final positive is that treadmills work for the whole family, with less turned up noses than a rower or elliptical.

Treadmills: Price Ranges

Here is the type of treadmill to expect for your money:

Budget: £150 to £350

You need to do your research at this price point. A lot of ‘no name’ imported brands pump reviews at popular retailers, then disappear when the truth about their products gets known – only to be replaced by an almost identical model under a new name.

There are some decent budget treadmills. I like the F10 from German brand SportsTech and the Fit4Home models are always solid.

While you won’t get extras like a colour screen, incline, or high-speed settings – you can get a good basic model at the budget price point.

Mid-Range: £350 to £800

The sweet spot for treadmills, with a ton of well-known brand names to choose from. While you won’t get the commercial level running machines in this range, you will get some amazing treadmills.

Options here include faster (14/km / hour +) speeds, cushioning, auto incline, built-in speakers / fans, and quieter mechanisms.

I’d recommend a folding treadmill if you have any doubts about space. These machines can be big, so folding them against a wall between uses can be a lifesaver.

I’m a big fan of ProForm at this price point. Their Power 525i treadmill is a wonderful machine for the money. You can also try the British brand JLL, their T450 Folding Treadmill is a new model with some serious tech for the price.

JLL T450 Treadmill Review

Upper End: £800 to £2000

Top end treadmills add tech, super-quiet motors, and advanced shock absorption to the mix. You get amazing machines in this bracket, which are built like those in commercial gyms.

Think 20km / hour top speed for sprints, built-in colour screens and even the ability for a trainer to change the speed and incline remotely as part of a class.

On the wish-list for me is the EXP 7i from NordicTrack, this comes with a trial of iFit (their interactive personal trainer app). You should also check out the Incline Trainer range, which are popular in gyms and fitness centres.

For some fantastic options, see my list of the Best NordicTrack Treadmills here.

 

Treadmills Options Table: Weight Loss at Different Budget Levels

the amazing EXP 7i

The Amazing NordicTrack EXP 7i

A new model which is a high-tech, high-performance marvel. This treadmill will last for years and has it's own HD screen.

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Power 525 from ProForm

ProForm Power 525 Treadmills

Big brand technology at a mid-range price. The ProForm works with iFit and has a serious spec for the money.

Check Price!
T450 Mid Budget Treadmill

T450 from British Brand JLL

A big, powerful unit with an impressive top speed of 18km / hour. JLL are UK-based and well known for excellent after sales service

Check Price!
Burning Fat on a Budget F10 from SportsTech

F10 Treadmill from SportsTech

German engineering, a quiet motor and a spec / electronics that put other treadmills in this price category to shame. This is a great value model.

Check Price!

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Elliptical Cross Trainers for Weight Loss

Known as Ellipticals or simply Cross Trainers, these machines work both the arms and legs in a circular motion. Due to similarities in the setup, you will find many elliptical trainers also include exercise bike capability. I have covered these in a lot of detail in my Elliptical Trainer Reviews main page. The main benefit here is the intensity. Most equipment works out either your legs or upper body, while a cross trainer does both. They burn calories fast, though most people will not sustain exercise for as long as with treadmills or bikes (make sure you keep this in mind for your weight loss calculations, as a full hour on an Elliptical is harder than an hour on a bike or a treadmill).

Price Ranges:

Budget: < £100

Mid-Range: £101 to £250

Higher-End $250+

Calories / Hour = Up to 800

 

 

Recommended Elliptical Trainers – 3 Price Points

Best Sellintg CT300 from JLL

Category Best Seller: The JLL CT300

I'd put this popular elliptical cross trainer in the 'Budget+' category. It ticks all the right boxes, a decent size, LCD console and smooth resistance at a very reasonable price point.

Check Price!Read Review
X-Fit Cross Trainer from Branx Fitness

Mid Priced Marvel - X-Fit from Branx

More quality from the Branx Fitness range. This super-spec'd cross trainer includes a huge 32lb flywheel, app connectivity and even a USB charger - great quality.

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Commerical Cross Training with the Sportstech LCX800 Elliptical

Commerical Level: The Sportstech LCX800

German engineering meets a commercial grade home elliptical. Connect with KinoMap, and enjoy this big, solid, robust cross trainer from the increasingly well-regarded Sportstech brand.

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Air Walker - From Sunny Health and Fitness

Manual: Sunny Fitness Air Walker

No-frills air walking machine from the Sunny Fitness studio. This budget level model is perfect for those returning to fitness / older users looking for a basic, easy to use unit.

Check Price!Read Review
Best Budget Elliptical Trainer - the JLL CT200

Great Value Budget Elliptical: JLL CT200

The popular entry level model from the UK-based JLL. With solid engineering and top-rated service, this is another example of what JLL does brilliantly.

Check Price!Read Review

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Exercise Bikes for Weight Loss

One of the biggest advantages of exercise bikes is that you can lose weight in front of the TV! I’m deadly serious, the workout may not be as intensive as some other types of equipment – but the ability to do it quietly in an evening while enjoying your favourite show is a huge plus. For some people, this makes the difference between sustaining their weight loss exercises and giving up. Bikes are also cheap – you can get a budget model for around £60 and a nicely featured one for just £150.

Home Exercise Bike ReviewsPrice Range:

Budget £100 to £150

Mid-Range: £150 to £400

Higher-End £400 to £995

Commercial / Top Home: £1000 and over

Calories Burned Per Hour = 300 to 500

 

Recommended Models:

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Rowing Machines for Weight Loss

Rowing machines are enjoying a comeback, and you can now buy some very impressive (and stylish) rowers (check out these Water Rowers for example!). This is a great workout, and is lower impact than many formats – at the same time as having a decent calorie burn rate. One thing to keep in mind is that rowing machines do take up quite a lot of space. Unless you get a folding one, then you’ll really need to have some dedicated floor space for this.

Rowing Machine ReviewsTypical Price Ranges

  • Budget: Under £200
  • Mid-Range: £201 to $500
  • Higher-End: £501+

Calorie Burn Rate = 400 to 600

 

Best Home Rowing Machine - Body Sculpture B1000

Budget Rec - Body Sculpture B1000

Hugely popular model, this is aimed at beginners looking for a simple rower without all the extras. Cheap price, with a BIG discount at the time of writing!!

Check Price!Read Review
Marcy Regatta Rowing Machine Mid Range Red

Mid-Range Rec - Marcy Tunturi R30

Great looking folding model from the gym specialists Marcy, this is robust as you'd expect, though you might not expect such a long list of features!

Check Price!Read Review
BodyMax Infiniti

Upper End Rec - BodyMax Infiniti B90 Rower

Touch button resistance, amazing console and super-smooth. This is gym-spec kit for your home, I have to say it looks the part too! With plenty of weight training experience, BodyMax kit is as solid as they come!

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Stepping Machines for Weight Loss

All of the machines covered so far require storage of some kind – though steppers start from just 30cms high! Sure, a higher end stepping machine will need space, though until you are really committed to this tougher exercise format I suggest starting with something a lot smaller. If you put the work in with a stepping machine, then toned legs and butts come as an extra benefit.

ultrasport-swing-stepperPrice Ranges for Steppers:

Budget (Mini-Steppers) – £30+

Mid(Frame Included) – £60+

High (Stairmills) – £1000+

Calorie Burn = 400 to 650

Best Home Rowing Machine - Body Sculpture B1000

Budget Rec - Body Sculpture B1000

Hugely popular model, this is aimed at beginners looking for a simple rower without all the extras. Cheap price, with a BIG discount at the time of writing!!

Check Price!Read Review
Marcy Regatta Rowing Machine Mid Range Red

Mid-Range Rec - Marcy Tunturi R30

Great looking folding model from the gym specialists Marcy, this is robust as you'd expect, though you might not expect such a long list of features!

Check Price!Read Review
BodyMax Infiniti

Upper End Rec - BodyMax Infiniti B90 Rower

Touch button resistance, amazing console and super-smooth. This is gym-spec kit for your home, I have to say it looks the part too! With plenty of weight training experience, BodyMax kit is as solid as they come!

Check Price!Read Review

Recommended Models:

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Summing Up – You Now Have The Options – Which is Best?

Most people I speak to have a type of equipment in mind already, and want to confirm that this will work for losing weight. It will. So long as you keep at it, and exercise in conjunction with a healthy diet and lifestyle, all of the types of home fitness equipment above will help you to reach your goals.

If you still need some help narrowing the list, here are my guidelines:

Less Fit Users: If you are just starting out on the road to fitness, or just want to ease yourself into this gently, then exercise bikes and rowing machines are the best option. Bikes let you watch TV while you exercise, while rowers have the advantage of an upper and lower body workout at the same time.

Fitter Users: If you are already active, and want to burn off a few pounds extra then elliptical trainers are my top choice. These are more vigorous, and give you a solid aerobic workout. Steppers are a good alternative, especially for those who are shorter on space.

I recommend you pick the type of equipment that you are more likely to use for the longer term – this will make a bigger difference than the calories per hour alone does.