My New Fitness Journey with Peloton: Why I Bought Into the Hype

Fitness, Lifestyle / Thursday, May 24th, 2018

Embarking on a new fitness journey takes guts. Literally. But your gut will thank you if you do it right. After much debate and research, my husband and I finally decided on Peloton. I recently published a post on how to create an easy guest bedroom spin station and today I’m sharing a full review of our Peloton experience so far. If you’re on the fence about investing in a bike, this post is for you. This is a completely unbiased review of our Peloton experience. This is not a sponsored post and all opinions are my own.

My New Fitness Journey with Peloton: Why I Bought Into the Hype | Cathedrals and Cafes Blog

My New Fitness Journey with Peloton: Why I Bought Into the Hype | Cathedrals and Cafes Blog

Why we chose Peloton…

Busy is the norm around here. Finding time to drive to a gym was not working. We knew we wanted to be able to exercise at home and have tried various methods over the years. But nothing was getting me excited to actually workout. I get bored really easily and I’ve finally figured out at my age that I hate gyms. There, I said it. I hate gyms. And I’m ok with that. I no longer have to drag myself to one and pretend that I’m enjoying it.

We wanted to be able to squeeze in a full body workout any time of day or night without the added time of driving somewhere. Sometimes all you have is 20 minutes (or less) to get some kind of physical activity in. Being able to just hop out of bed and take a few steps to the Peloton is so easy.

Another big reason why we chose Peloton were all the reviews we read. I poured through hundreds of online reviews and blog posts about the experience and asked those I know who have one. The response was overwhelmingly positive, almost to a cult-like fever pitch. As someone who is usually pretty skeptical of anything with that much hype, I did my best to find something negative. I couldn’t really find anything that would make me consider something else. Sure, there were a few small complaints here and there but I mostly found them to be user error or personal preference related.

We also liked the Peloton app that allows you to get rides in when you’re on the go. With as much as my husband and I travel, we can use the app with any stationary bike at a hotel.

The order and delivery process…

Ordering was really easy. I spent a few days chatting online with a Peloton representative who answered all my questions. I asked about ordering the shoes and what happens if they didn’t fit, I asked how the login process worked with two people using the same bike, and I asked about service and payments and the touchscreen and anything else I could think of. The representative was patient and answered all my questions quickly. They were very upbeat and seemed excited to help me, without pressure to purchase. Just a friendly exchange of information. If you have the same questions I did you can rest assured that the shoes are easily exchangeable (although ours fit perfectly), an entire family can use one bike because everyone has their own login, and response to service related issues is very fast and professional.

I added the bike and an accessories kit to my cart, pressed the order button, and was able to request a delivery date that worked with my schedule. Someone needs to be home when they deliver so they can come inside and set it up for you. Don’t balk at the inside delivery and set up charge. It’s completely worth it. They will make sure your bike is up and running and even attach your cleats to your shoes.

Equipment and accessories we purchased…

We pressed the easy button and purchased the family pack accessories kit. You’ll get two pairs of Peloton shoes (with cleats), two heart rate monitors, two water bottles, two pairs of headphones, one set of weights, and one bike mat.

The shoes are a must because of the bike pedals. They are designed for you to clip into, so regular athletic shoes will not work.

The hand weights are really nice and are used in a lot of the rides. I love doing an intervals and arms ride. You’ll have the option of selecting 1, 2, or 3 pound weights.

The heart rate monitors are important so you can track your heart rate during all rides and workouts. This will be calculated with the rest of your metrics as you continue to ride and track your progress.

The water bottles are really nice (they’re actually made of glass with a rubberized sleeve on them) but I’m not sure how practical they are being glass. Eco-friendly? Probably.

I haven’t noticed a need for the headphones. The sound coming from the bike has been loud and clear. If you’re worried about bothering anyone else in your home, then maybe consider using them.

The bike mat is a must. You’ll be sweating…like, a LOT! So it does keep that grossness from getting on your floor. It also helps give a solid gripping surface for the bike to sit on. A little tip – have a piece of ½ inch plywood cut at your local hardware store and place it under the mat if you’re using the bike on anything other than a hard surface. Our bike is in a guest bedroom that is carpeted so the plywood is a great stabilizer. We had ours cut to just smaller than the mat’s dimensions so you can’t see the plywood underneath at all.

My New Fitness Journey with Peloton: Why I Bought Into the Hype | Cathedrals and Cafes Blog

The rides…

With your monthly membership, you have access to thousands of live and on-demand rides. They are always updating and adding more, which is great for someone like me who gets really bored doing the same workout over and over. I love that there is so much variety with Peloton. There are low impact rides, HIIT rides, interval rides, and rides where you incorporate hand weights. Live rides are available throughout the day and you can search from the on-demand library by amount of time. I feel most comfortable doing a 30 minute ride but I’ve also tried a 45 minute ride and when I’m crunched for time I do a 20 minute HIIT ride.

You can even choose rides based on music genre. The 80’s music rides might be my favorite. Before selecting a ride you can see the entire playlist that you’ll be hearing, plus a breakdown of what is involved (example: 5 minute warm up followed by 10 minutes cycling, 5 minutes arms, etc). You’ll see the difficulty rating and how many people have done the ride. There are even rides with a live DJ spinning some tunes (is that what the young people say these days?), which is a totally new and fun way to workout.

As you complete ride after ride, you’ll earn badges on your profile. There are badges for completing a 3-day or 5-day streak, badges for working out with a buddy, and milestone badges for 10, 25, even 100 rides. There are “personal best” badges letting you know that you’ve increased your output from the last time. Everyone likes feeling like they’ve earned something and the badges almost make it feel like a game. I’m only 4 rides away from my 25 ride badge and it feels great!

The instructors…

There’s a Peloton instructor for everyone! I am enjoying Jess King and Emma Lovewell, but you’ll find who you connect with. The difference in working out with a Peloton instructor versus any other trainer I’ve worked with is the shift in focus from pain to progress. I love this! Rather than drawing attention to my burning legs, the instructors help you visualize that burning as a power source. You learn to harness your power and inner strength and apply it not only to your ride but your day after that. The Peloton ride is much more of a holistic approach to working out that I think I’ve been missing all these years going to a gym. The instructors will make you feel like a legit badass. Jess and Emma are great at making sure you thank your body for what you’re able to do with it.

Beyond the rides…

The Peloton is much more than just a bike. There are strengthening, toning, stretching and yoga classes available through the Beyond the Ride series, which is included in your monthly membership. These are live and on-demand extensions to your ride that really make it a full body experience. So even if you’re not feeling like pedaling today, there’s a great workout waiting for you. Even the 5 minute beyond the ride workouts get you nice and sweaty.

My New Fitness Journey with Peloton: Why I Bought Into the Hype | Cathedrals and Cafes Blog

My New Fitness Journey with Peloton: Why I Bought Into the Hype | Cathedrals and Cafes Blog

What to wear…

I recommend breathable clothing because you will get hot quickly. This is a good thing (harness that burn, remember?). I usually wear some kind of wicking fabric tank top and leggings. The bike seat will be uncomfortable at first. I’m pretty used to it now having done over 20 rides, but I use a chamois cream “down there.” This is something not many people talk about, but things can rub you the wrong way, if you get my drift. You can order chamois cream on amazon or find it in a drugstore. It’s cooling and keeps your bum comfy.

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Overall we could not be more pleased with our Peloton. I actually get excited to go workout! For the first time in a long time I feel like I’m getting the exercise I need.

If you’re considering a Peloton, I highly recommend it. I have had so many questions about what it has been like that I wanted to put together a complete review for you. If you have questions, please comment below! I’d love to know your thoughts or what you’re doing on your fitness journey. Are you trying something new? Happy riding!

Xo – Erin

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