Lisa Whitney, a nutritionist in Reno, Nevada, came across the deal of a lifetime about two years ago. A gym went out of business and sold its equipment. She posted an indoor exercise bike for $ 100.

Mrs. Whitney soon made some additions to the bike. She propped her iPad on the handlebars. Then she experimented with online cycling courses that were streamed on YouTube and in the app for Peloton, a manufacturer of Internet-connected exercise equipment that offers interactive fitness classes.

Ms. Whitney didn’t feel like upgrading to one of Peloton’s over $ 1,900 luxury exercise bikes, which includes a tablet for streaming classes and sensors that track your speed and heart rate. So she further modified her bike to become a home improvement peloton and bought sensors and indoor cycling shoes.

The grand total: approximately $ 300 plus a monthly subscription of $ 13 to the Peloton app. Not cheap, but a significant discount on what she might have paid for.

“I’m happy with my setup,” said Ms. Whitney, 42 years old. “I really don’t think upgrading would do much.”

The pandemic that has closed many gyms has driven hordes of people into it Treat yourself to luxuries like Pelotons bikes and treadmills so you can train at home. Apple took advantage of this trend and released it last year Apple Fitness Plus, an educational fitness app that is only offered to people who have an Apple Watch that requires an iPhone to work.

But all of this can be expensive. The minimum pricing for an Apple Watch and iPhone is $ 600, and Apple Fitness Plus is $ 10 per month. To stream classes on a big screen TV instead of a phone while you workout, you’ll need a streaming device like an Apple TV, which costs around $ 150. The full peloton experience is even more expensive.

In the face of the poor economic climate, many of us are trying to cut our expenses while maintaining our health. So I experimented with ways to minimize the cost of video workouts at home, spoke to hobbyists, and assessed the pros and cons.

Here’s what I learned:

To begin my experiment on exercising at home cheaply, the first question I addressed was whether to subscribe to a fitness app or stream classes from YouTube for free. Both mostly offer videos from instructors to walk you through the workout.

So I bought an $ 8 yoga mat and a $ 70 pair of adjustable dumbbells and turned on my TV, which has the YouTube app on it. I then subscribed to three of the most popular YouTube channels that offer free content for exercising at home: Yoga with Adriene, Fitness mixer and Holly Dolke.

An immediate downside was almost too much content – often hundreds of videos per YouTuber – which made it difficult to choose a workout. Even when I finally decided on a video, I learned that I had to be prepared for some quality issues.

For example, I have the video “Yoga for when you feel dead insideThe video looked fine, but sometimes the teacher’s voice was muffled.

Production issues were more visible in the Holly Dolke Channel, which contains a collection of intense workouts that you can do without equipment. When I tried the video “Muffin top melterOne instructor in the background was showing how to do a more challenging version of each exercise, but the other instructor in the foreground kept blocking it.

Then there were the ads. When I was lifting weights while I was a 10 minute fat burning workout Fitness Blender’s YouTube paused to play an ad for Dawn Soap. I then held a dumbbell over my neck while waiting for the ad to end.

With these issues aside, I was able to do all of the exercises demonstrated by these YouTubers, and they left me churned and sweaty. For the free cost, I can’t fault much. Most importantly, Yoga With Adriene managed to make me feel less dead inside.

To compare the free YouTube exercise videos with the paid experience, I subscribed to Peloton and Apple Fitness Plus on my Apple TV set-top box. I’ve trained with both products for the past two months.

Peloton and Apple Fitness Plus fixed many of the issues affecting the free exercise content.

For one, the workouts were categorized by type of workout, including yoga, strength training, and core, and then by difficulty or duration of the workout. It took little time to choose a workout.

In both Peloton and Apple Fitness Plus, the video and audio quality was very clear, and the workouts were recorded from different angles to give a good overview of the instructors’ activities. The bonus of Fitness Plus was that it showed my heart rate and calories burned on both my Apple Watch and the TV screen.

In short, paying for these subscriptions provided convenience and shine, which resulted in a more enjoyable workout. I concluded that Peloton’s videos were worth paying $ 13 a month. And $ 10 a month is reasonable for Apple Fitness Plus, but only if you already own an Apple Watch and iPhone.

So what about exercise machines like spin bikes? If you want the technical bells and whistles of a peloton but don’t want to spend on the gear, there have been two main approaches.

To find the cheapest route, you can use an existing bike. Do-it-yourselfers can be particularly clever and resourceful here.

Take Omar Sultan, a manager at the network company Cisco. He modified his racing bike with a couple of add-ons: a bike trainer that secured the rear wheel and bike frame and cost about $ 100; on $ 40 Wahoo cadence sensor that tracked its energy output and speed and transferred the data to a smartphone; and a heart rate monitor strapped around his chest like that $ 90 Polar H10. Then he used a streaming device to watch the Peloton lesson on his television.

“The DIY setup is 80 percent on the way,” said Sultan.

The more expensive option was to buy an indoor exercise bike and use a tablet or phone to stream bike lessons on YouTube or the Peloton app, as Ms. Whitney did. The $ 700 IC7.9Contains, for example, a cadence sensor and a holder for your tablet. You could then buy a heart rate monitor and a $ 100 pair Indoor cycling shoes this clip into the pedals.

However, if you use your own bike or a modified spin bike and try out the Peloton app, you won’t be able to participate in the app’s so-called leaderboard, which shows a graph of your progress against other Peloton users online.

Also, with a DIY bike, figuring out how to shift gears can be tricky to simulate when the instructor tells you to increase the resistance – like pretending to be riding up a hill.

Nicole Odya, a Chicago nurse who modified a high-end indoor bike, the Keizer M3i, said the DIY route had great benefits. With her own iPad, she can flexibly choose which fitness apps she wants to use, e.g. Zwift and mPaceLine. It also gave her the freedom to customize her bike so she swapped out the stock pedals for better ones.

“I didn’t want to be locked in their platform,” she said of Peloton.



Source link

Leave a Reply