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Should I buy a treadmill?

Are you considering buying a new or used treadmill? Treadmills may not offer the same feelings of liberation and excitement as outdoor running, but they replicate the benefits of running better than any other kind of exercise machine. Running on treadmills is a great way to get (or stay) in shape without putting a lot of wear-and-tear on your joints, which is one of the largest drawbacks of running on city streets.

That said, home treadmills aren't for everyone. Perhaps the largest knock on treadmills is that running on a treadmill can be boring. While this is true for any kind of exercise machine, people who are accustomed to running

outdoors may find difficulty in making the transition to treadmills. Also, treadmills require more maintenance. The treadmill belt must be periodically adjusted or tightened, and repairs to the treadmill deck may be needed as a result of long-term impacts from being used. Lastly, higher-quality treadmills tend to be expensive. Be ready to shell out a nice chunk of change to enjoy a programmable treadmill with all the latest features.

If you have space for a treadmill in your garage or extra bedroom -- and if you've considered all the caveats -- then you can get a lot of good mileage out of a home treadmill. Some people simply prefer the feeling of running on treadmills over riding bikes or using elliptical machines. Treadmills are especially good for people who enjoy exercising outdoors but want an option for working out during odd hours or inclement weather.

Complete our survey to learn more about whether buying a treadmill is the right decision for you.

Do you enjoy running?
Do you have enough space in your room for a permanent piece of exercise equipment?
Do you have a gym membership?
Do you have any bone or joint problems with your knees, hips or feet?
How much money do you have to spend?
Do you plan on doing any other kinds of exercise?
How confident are you in your ability to stick with an exercise program?
Are you overweight?