Updated on December 11, 2020 by Lyric Fergusson
Treadmills are a great edition to almost any at-home environment. With gyms sometimes being overwhelming and fitness classes being even more frightening, beginning (or continuing) a fitness regiment on a treadmill is a great way to exercise in a variety of ways. Whether you’re planning on losing fat, gaining muscle, or just adding some additional movement to your life in the office, check out our 7 favorite treadmills under $500 that would be a great addition to your home.
Best Treadmills Under $500
Why it’s great: The Sunny Health and Fitness Folding Treadmill is a fun, affordable, and durable choice for the fitness lover. With the selection of speeds from 0.5-9 MPH, 3 manual options the incline with 2% and 4.37%, and a large 15 inch running band, this treadmill is simple, durable, and just plain nice to use! It comes with durable handrails for exercise management, 9 built-in workout programs, a display that features time, distance, speed, and calories burned, a pulse tracker, and a smartphone holder for listening or watching, it has all of the features you’d want out of a treadmill without breaking the bank.
Keep in mind: Though it’s foldable, it’s not as compact as some other models, and has limited storage opportunity.
Good for: Functionality and ease-of-use.
(Best for speed)
Why it’s great: If you want speed, then you have it with the XTERRA TR150! This treadmill goes from 0.5 to 10 MPH, one of the fastest models of our featured favorites. With 12 preset exercise programs, 3 manual incline settings, this model is a trusted brand that always boasts durability, longevity, and ease-of-use. It also lies in the middle of our price range, at a good cost for the value that’s given, built to last.
Keep in mind: This model is bulkier than the other ones, but if you’re planning on keeping this machine out in a workout space, then it shouldn’t be an issue.
Good for: Speed and durability.
Why it’s great: WEKEEP’s Folding Treadmill can fold completely vertically for a compact and easy use. Unlike some other models, the heart rate monitoring system is a photoelectron design, which is a more advanced way of tracking by only needing one finger instead of the whole hand. It’s also crafted with Silkworm technology as an advanced shock absorption for a silent workout for your family and neighbors, with additional shock-absorption treatments inside the machine. The WEEKEEP Folding Treadmill also has a Bluetooth connection for easy access to your phone for listening or watching, and the LED Display is a sleek touch-sensor that’s easy to see in both the daytime and at night.
Keep in mind: It’s on the higher end of our pricing scale, but it’s worth it!
Good for: Those who need to be quiet during their workouts.
(Best training programs)
Why it’s great: The LifePro Electrostride has a lot of similarities to WEKEEP’s model, in that it’s small, sleek, and super easy to use. It’s created with handrails that are easily used during a workout, and easily stored when put away, as they fold along with the control pad. Its 5.5” width fits easily in small spaces whether during use or when being stored. It also has Bluetooth connection capabilities, BMI calculations, a heart rate and pulse monitor for easy tracking, and an LED display that shows calories, distance, time, speed, and pulse. It also comes with a lifetime warranty for additional trust and support, so if you have any problems with your treadmill, the LifePro team is here to help.
Keep in mind: This model is a bit more narrow than others. If you have a wider step and have a bit more space for storage, be sure to weigh your options with some of the other models we feature.
Good for: Training programs! It has the most out of all of the models with 39 pre-set training programs and 3 customizable exercise programs
(Best for home offices)
Why it’s great: The 2-in-1 treadmill can be used both as a treadmill and as an under-the-desk walking machine, as it’s handlebar can come all the way down and still function. It’s speed ranges from 0.6 to 6 MPH, and the width of the band is over 16” wide for larger walkers. You may be wondering how you’re able to control it when you’ve folded the control center down: it’s through either the remote control that comes with it, which you can easily have on your desk while working or through a cell phone app! This app doesn’t only control your speed but can track and save your exercise history and calories burned. And yes, it does have a Bluetooth connection as well.
Keep in mind: This treadmill’s speed doesn’t quite reach the speed that some other ones do. It’s better for walking and light jogging than intense intervals.
Good for: Desk exercising!
Why it’s great: This treadmill comes 90% pre-assembled, so you don’t have to shuffle through a manual for hours before being able to use your new purchase. It takes just about 15 minutes to be fully up and running, a good deal compared to some other at-home workout equipment. It does have a foldable feature as well, along with 12 pre-set exercise modes, a monitor that shows heart rate, speed, time, distance, and body fat, and even has a step counter (if you also like to track your steps). The exercise settings range from 0.5 to 6 MPH, and you can adjust these settings both manually and based on certain criteria like calories. It comes with a 6-level shock absorption system that helps with knee and joint pain, and a special lubrication hole for easy-greasing.
Keep in mind: Unlike other folding treadmills, the larger control center causes the treadmill to be a bit more difficult to store if you’re planning on putting it away on a regular basis.
Good for: A functional design that covers all the bases.
Why it’s great: The UREVO has a unique foldable design unlike any of the other uber-compact models we’ve featured. Instead of having a minimal control center shaped like a bar, its control center is flat, and has a clear display and control buttons distributed in a simple layout. Then, when you want to store it, the folding mechanism uses a soft-drop system to lay completely flat, so the control center doesn’t make it difficult to store. The powerful motor ranges from 0.6 to 7 MPH, with 12 pre-set training programs, and a treadmill belt with a wide 16.5” length.
Keep in mind: This treadmill doesn’t have the speed capabilities of some of the other ones. Additionally, it doesn’t have Bluetooth connectivity.
Good for: All of the features you want with a sleek and simple design.
FAQs about treadmills
1. Do I need to oil a treadmill?
Depending on the model, treadmills need to be lubricated on a specific plan for them to work in the most efficient way possible. Sometimes, there’s a particular lubrication hole that’s designed on the treadmill to make it easier for upkeep, and sometimes it’s a little more complicated. Check your model and how they recommend you lubricate it, including how much, how often, and where.
2. How do I use the training programs on my treadmill?
Many treadmills that have pre-crafted workout programs create a program based on incline and speed. This means that depending on the program you pick, these two factors will automatically adjust during the program, with the outcome of burning fat or building cardio.
3. Where can I store my foldable treadmill?
If you have a super-compact treadmill, storage could be as easy as sliding under a desk, a bed, or a couch. If your treadmill is built with a bit more sturdiness, sometimes keeping it in your garage, basement, or a designated workout area will be easier so you can keep it out.
4. How do I know the speed I should start using on my treadmill?
Depending on your experience with treadmills and exercise, speed can vary. If you’re a beginner, start on the lowest speed and build it up from there. Most treadmills have an emergency brake that you can pull if you feel you’re going too fast, which will automatically slow down and eventually stop the belt so you don’t get injured.
5. How do I burn fat on my treadmill?
When exercising, it’s important to know that one of the best ways of burning fat is utilizing an interval training feature. Some treadmills might have this setting, and some might not. If not, you may be able to manually input your own interval session, or you can use the up and down buttons to keep adjusting your speed throughout the workout.
Treadmills are a great way of creating your own customizable workout. When set up in a space where you can make it comfortable for yourself, like in front of a television or with a speaker system, you can make your workout completely catered to yourself, so you can stay healthy and happy in your own home!