Peloton Review – Two Years In
My Peloton review is here!
I bought Eric a Peloton for Christmas and ended up falling in love with it. Eric loves cycling but due to life, work, and Chicago weather, it’s hard for him to get out on the bike for a few hours at a time. He loves the Peloton. I didn’t think it was something I’d be into I am not a person who ever liked spin class. Sure, I’d go with friends but it’s not something I was ever passionate about. But I LOVE the Peloton–the classes are fun, the music is great, and there is something for everybody! (No one is more surprised than I am.)
The Peloton basics:
- My username: SeeAnnaJane
- I bought it on Black Friday (no, it wasn’t on sale, but I think we got free shoes) and had it delivered right before Christmas.
- I ride it about 3-4 times a week. And I am currently on a 16 week streak which means I have ridden it every week straight since January 1! It’s addicting, seriously.
- Would I recommend it or buy it again? YES, absolutely.
- Cons: Sometimes my internet sucks (probably due to us all working at home) and it can cut into the class since the service is streaming.
Q: What shoes do you use? And do you really need spin shoes?
Yes, you need spin shoes–specifically toe clips. If you use normal sneakers, you’ll lose control because there are no foot holds. The Peloton comes with one pair of shoes. Since it was my gift to Eric, the official Peloton shoes were his. I ordered these spin shoes off of amazon with these toe clips. They’re perfect and TTS (and about $50 cheaper than the Peloton official shoes!)
Q: Is the bike seat uncomfortable?
A little, but after a few rides, I didn’t even notice it. I generally take 30 minute classes (sometimes a 45 minute class). Eric uses padded bike shorts but also rides for up to 90 minutes (he’s intense). I thought about getting these padded bike shorts off Amazon but I don’t think I need them.
Also, I received questions about what I wear to Peloton and I just have been wearing normal workout clothes! I love my Beyond Yoga or Alo leggings but I also wear bike shorts and a tank. For once in my life, I sweat a lot during a workout so I always wear a tank or just a sports bra.
Q: Compare the energy of the class vs going to an in-person, packed studio class.
You’ll never replace the experience of an in-person class, in my opinion, but this is pretty damn close. I REALLY enjoy the classes and you get into a groove with the teachers. It truly feels like you’re there with them! They hold you accountable and when they call out adjustments or resistance levels or cadence speeds, you listen. They’re really engaged and I think that’s what makes them so unique.
Let it be said that many of my friends love Soul Cycle. I never went because I didn’t like spinning.
Well, I love the Peloton. And I have friends who love the Peloton that also love Soul Cycle. I still go to my barre class because it’s a different workout (well, I will return one day after the studios open again).
Also, the Peloton app has SO MANY different classes. I sometimes take a meditation before bed, I’ve taken quick core classes and someday I want to take a bootcamp. I haven’t quite taken advantage of the app as much as I should, but I do stream it on my TV in the basement so it’s super easy. And I like the quick classes that are like 10-minute abs, plank series, or arms. I need to get used to just adding that after my ride. I also love the stretching classes.
Q. Do you really need the bike or can you use a different spin bike with the app?
I’ve heard of people buying inexpensive bikes and rigging it up with an iPad and the Peloton app. I have only heard good things about Peloton as a company and I am happy to support them–plus, I don’t love tinkering with things–buying the whole Peloton system was fine by me. There are youtube videos dedicated to setting up a different bike with Peloton, so you can definitely find out how to do that. The only thing that would bother me is that you can see your speed and resistance on the Peloton screen because it’s connected to that specific Peloton bike–so I don’t know how you could track that during the class without the whole Peloton system. Check out Lake Shore Lady, though, because she has a non-Peloton bike setup and uses the Peloton app.
Q: Have you noticed a change in your body or weight loss?
I’m naturally pretty thin, so my goal isn’t to lose weight–it’s to get in shape and tone up. I have a hell of a time trying to gain muscle and I will never be “jacked.” (Someone also asked if it makes you bulk up, and again, that totally depends on your body. I personally don’t get bulky.). My weight has remained the same, but my legs are definitely more toned which is what I want! It definitely engages your core the more you ride and I think eventually my mid section will get there (but a core/mat class on the app helps). They also have arm sections during the ride which I do sometimes, but I need to do those more!
Eric has hit his goal weight! He works a lot and his job can be pretty stressful; he is a stress candy eater (I’m not kidding), so he wanted to lose about 15 lbs which he did and then some since he started riding in January. And his legs are rock solid. He is big into cycling though, so he’s been obsessed with it since day 1; he rides religiously 4-5 times a week.
Q: Cost/benefit analysis. Is it worth it?
It all depends on your personal workout routine and your stage in life. I live to the suburbs where we don’t have a fitness studio at every turn like we did in the city, have two kids, and to me, the convenience is an amazing perk. I love that I can sneak in a workout whenever I want. My husband loves it for convenience, too; he’s been working crazy hours at home during the COVID-19 crisis and he will hop on it at 8PM to clear his mind and get a workout in.
The classes are tough and I ALWAYS break a sweat (and I don’t sweat much during barre or the interval class I love).
Some of the classes and teachers are super challenging, too–it all depends on how much you push yourself. I am not motivated by the leader board, but I am motivated by beating my personal records and by keeping up with the cadence that the teacher sets (the screen makes it really easy for you to know where your speed and resistance is).
The bike with delivery and set up is $2,245. It’s a decent chunk of change (you can pay monthly payments). The monthly app (which you’ll want as you have access to ALL the classes) is $39/month, which is extremely reasonable. I’m pretty sure Soul Cycle classes are $40 EACH, right? My barre classes are $20 each–the Peloton app with all its fitness classes is a straight up deal. These are world-class instructors, too (former Soul Cyclers, top athletes, etc). And I believe the app is free for the next couple months, so download it now and explore the core, walking, running, meditation classes!
Q: Favorite instructors?
You’re all going to be motivated by something different on the bike.
I not big on the “motivational” instruction or inspirational quotes. Maybe it’s because I’m not an athlete or maybe I’m just too cynical (ha) but it doesn’t do anything for me. I just want someone to tell me to go and to distract me with funny jokes or fun playlists. I pick every ride by the playlist. On the bike, you can search by artist, which is what I commonly do.
If you’ve seen me post on Instagram, you know I’m a big fan of Cody Rigsby.
He’s sassy, hilarious, and makes the class fly by. I think he’s great for all levels if you want to have fun but I could see him being perfect for a beginner because he just gets you ON the bike. It doesn’t hurt that we share an affinity for 90s and 2000s pop–he picks the best throwbacks.
Emma Lovewell is tough and she plays great alternative.
She’s definitely a close second behind Cody. Her Coldplay ride honestly brought me to tears and I never thought I’d be one to shed a tear while working out…it was very cathartic. She pushes you and plays great tunes–what more could you ask for!
I love Denis Morton; he’s truly a teacher.
He reminds you constantly to check certain things that you would’ve otherwise forgotten and he’s challenging, too. He’s motivational, but not cheesy. (The super motivational stuff doesn’t always speak to me.) I like that he rides the whole time with you. Apparently, he was a god at Soul Cycle in LA (so I’ve heard ;). He’s also an awesome yoga instructor!
Alex Toussaint is great for hip hop.
Sometimes you just need to hear some Biggie or Tupac while you ride, ya know? He’s definitely one of the “motivational speaker” kind of instructors but you can tell that he walks the walk. I also love his voice–it’s so low!
I’ve also taken Robin Arzon (she’s the VP in charge) and I like her 15 minute Tabata classes, which are hard as well (but she’s definitely one of the motivational instructors who says, “what’s up, hustlers” which is why I limit myself to the 15 minute classes, ha). She’s REALLY popular, though and she IS a hustler, so I get it! I like the London studio instructors because they’re low-key but hard: LeeAnn Hainsby and Ben Alldis (they’re so polite and opposite of someone like Cody, who tells you to fix your wig and get your life together). I KNOW that I need to try Ally Love–I have only heard great things but when I log on, I see a Cody class and can’t resist!
Eric’s two favorite instructors are Matt Wilpers (never taken him, but he’s a serious cyclist) and Denis–we have that in common! He’s very into the Power Zone rides.
TWO YEAR UPDATE:
It’s been two years since I surprised Eric with a Peloton for Christmas and it’s still one of the best things I’ve ever bought. I’m still riding the Peloton a few times a week and my affinity for Cody classes hasn’t changed (I was a DWTS super fan!). I’m doing more strength classes and I absolutely LOVE the bike bootcamps. They FLY by and you get the best of both worlds! I also love the outdoor classes son the app; the power walks are my favorite.
Yes, life has opened up a bit more but I was never a real gym go-er anyway so I will continue to love on my Peloton for as long as it loves me back! Would HIGHLY recommend to anyone thinking about it. And I have never loved cycling! I know there are Peloton dupes out there but I have never tried and can’t speak to it. What I can tell you is that the Peloton instructors have become quasi-celebs for a reason; they have a sparkle that can’t be taught. They define Peloton. If/when any of them leave, it will cause a STIR. Everyone has a favorite! Two years ago I started following my favorite instructors on Instagram and Cody had as many followers as I did; now he has a million. Nothing but respect!
What other questions do you have? Drop in the comments below!