This is the Peloton question everyone asks themselves before making a purchase. “Peloton bikes look great…but should I buy a Peloton bike?” Is it worth the money? Is it worth paying the subscription fee? I might give it a try! ? So, if I use it, will it do any good?’
These are the questions I asked myself over the 18 months leading up to my purchase.
Peloton bikes look great and everyone is raving about them. Looking at online reviews and chatting with Peloton users for just 5 minutes, he can see that most people not only like, but love his Peloton bikes.
If you’re like me, you’re intrigued by Peloton bikes but aren’t sure what makes them so great.
What makes a spin bike good enough to justify a cost of £1,750 and a £39 monthly subscription? Read on. We’ll explain why it’s worth every penny and answer that big question…should you buy a Peloton Bike?
If you are ready to purchase, please use my referral link. Save $100 or £100 on accessories!
What is a Peloton Bike?
Let’s start with the basics.
The Peloton Bike is, simply put, a high-quality spin bike with a large screen attached. The screen displays Peloton fitness classes, so you can live stream classes or take pre-recorded classes.
In addition to bike classes, we also offer a variety of strength training, yoga, meditation, boot camps, and outdoor running classes.
You can also “just ride” or “ride while enjoying the scenery,” so you can ride a bicycle without taking part in a class.
How much does a Peloton Bike cost?
There are two bicycles available:
Peloton Bike – £1,350
Peloton Bike+ – £2,025
(Prices are accurate as of January 4, 2022. I purchased in June 2021 when each bike was at a higher price.)
The main difference between these bikes is that the Bike+ comes with a rotating screen. So if you decide to hop off your bike and do a yoga class on the floor, you can rotate the screen and continue your workout seamlessly. Bike+ automatically adjusts the resistance to the recommended settings for your class.
Peloton membership – Peloton membership costs £39 per month and gives you access to all classes. Multiple users can use the same membership, effectively costing you £39 per household.
The bike is available on finance, with payments of £49 per month over 39 months.
So if you buy on finance and also pay for the membership subscription, your household will pay £88 a month.
For most couples, this is probably the same amount as a gym membership for both of you.
Why I chose the original Peloton Bike (£1,750)
I chose the original bike mainly because it was the cheaper option. Now I’m 100% sure I didn’t need the more expensive Bike+. I’m glad I didn’t have to pay extra.*
turning knobs to manually adjust resistance is fine by me, and I don’t mind not being able to see the screen when jumping off the bike to do a mat-based workout. Anyway, I often do mat-based workouts in my bedroom. I follow on my iPad or turn up the volume on my bike and follow using audio (and occasionally peeking into the screen!)
There’s also a Peloton app, which is great and eliminates the need for a rotating screen for me.
*Updates should be added here. I’m still 100% happy with my decision to buy the original bike, but my partner Sam also uses it now and wishes he had the Bike+. He would like the bike to automatically adjust the resistance and is considering using a rotating screen. That being said, I don’t know if he will actually pay the difference!
Can a Peloton Bike replace your gym membership?
Is Peloton Bike really good enough to completely replace your gym membership? Can you get an all-around workout using just Peloton?
The answer to this will be different for everyone, but I can 100% say that a Peloton bike and a subscription to other Peloton classes are much better than a gym.
I’m moving more, training more intensely, and doing more variety of exercises, which gives me a better all-around workout. I can burn more calories, feel myself getting healthier in ways I’ve never seen in the gym, I feel stronger and leaner, and most importantly, I is really enjoying it. I still get really excited and enthusiastic about riding my bike most days, but it never feels like a chore.
*Update: I recently invested in some weights and am using Peloton’s strength classes more and more. I started with strength classes using lighter weights, but am now taking classes with heavier weights and really seeing (and feeling!) the difference.
How to Peloton spin classes compare to regular cycling classes?
Many of you reading this are probably thinking that you might still prefer a real-life cycling class to a virtual cycling class at home. Understood! I loved the atmosphere, energy, and community of my previous spin classes. I loved it…but how often could I actually go there…? At most once a week! The best part about Peloton spin classes is that you can take them every day.
Here are some other things I love about Peloton’s spin classes:
- With hundreds (maybe thousands) of choices, you’ll never get bored
- No need to go with the same instructor every time
- You can choose a class according to your mood at the time
- You can choose the length of your class
- Don’t worry about being seen when you rock, sing along, or get sweaty
- I can work harder because I don’t have to worry about being seen
- The instructors are great – much better than any instructor at my local gym
- you can wear whatever you want
- Take a Peloton spin class any time of the day or night
- You can attend “live” classes
- Community spirit still exists on leaderboards
My exercise routine prior to Peloton
To give you some background, I’m the type of person who goes to the gym once a week.
I really like to exercise, but life has been so busy that I’ve struggled to find time to exercise. It was fun to get there, but it felt like a hassle to leave the house and actually go there. I usually attended classes like Body Pump, Body Balance, Yoga, Spin, etc., but I didn’t stick with it enough that I saw huge improvements in my fitness, made friends at the gym and enjoyed the community spirit. I never went to school.
With three young kids, a full-time job, a dog, hobbies, and a bit of a social life, going to the gym always falls to the bottom of my to-do list, no matter how hard I try. I couldn’t find it though. Time to push it.
I’ve tried so many home workout packages, including Insanity, Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Fit app, BarreMethod, Adrienne’s 30 Day Yoga, Joe Wicks, and tons of YouTube workouts. But nothing caught. If you do something with enthusiasm for 5-7 days, you’ll lose motivation after that.
Why is the Peloton bike different from other home workouts?
I couldn’t stick to all my other home workouts, so why was Peloton any different?
I don’t know if I can answer this 100%. I think there are many things.
- The class was really great and I feel like I got a really good workout
- There are lots of stats to track so you can see yourself improving and performing slightly better with each class. So I became quite competitive with myself to get a little bit better each time
- You can choose your bike class based on music, but I think music is really motivating
- You can choose the class you want to do instead of a predetermined class, so you can train according to your mood
- There are a lot of short classes, so if you’re not feeling too great, even a quick 15-minute HIIT ride can make you feel like you’ve gotten a good workout.
- Riding the bike feels like a safe, comfortable little bubble. When I put on my headphones, focus on the screen, and close the door, it feels like a cozy little space to me.
- Bike training can be easily started from a seated position, so you don’t need much motivation to get started. For me, it’s not like running, where you start out really hard and then it gets easier. Peloton bikes start out easy and get progressively more difficult, which is good for me because it’s easy to get started.
- You’ll get a badge! It may sound silly, but earning badges for milestones is really motivating.
- Seeing an overview of my workout history really motivates me and I want to keep up my 10 week streak.
- It is also recommended to rest and take it easy, which ultimately leads to more exercise.
- I know this isn’t a fad, so I don’t feel pressured to go crazy. I have the bike now and I know I love it and I know I’ll keep using it for a long time to come. So even if you’re having a busy day or just can’t be bothered, you won’t feel guilty or disappointed about wearing your bike. I haven’t used it. I don’t set any specific goals and just use it when I want to, so I started using it more.
The main thing my Peloton subscription has taught me about fitness
The absolute change for me was the realization that big results come “little by little and often.” Not only that, but there’s nothing scary or intimidating about a 30-minute workout, so any barriers that have been holding you back from exercising will be removed.
My favorite workout is a 20-minute high-intensity bike class followed by a 10-15 minute strength training or yoga class. It’s only 30 minutes out of his day, usually right before he takes a shower, so it’s built into his day very well.
Just 30 minutes of vigorous exercise a day can make you feel so much better.
I don’t want to do an hour-long exercise routine, even though I’m sure I’ll get better results from it. An hour routine is scary. You worry about them, you put them off, you make excuses for them, you do everything you can to avoid them, you don’t enjoy them, and ultimately you don’t do them.
But a 30 minute routine? Well, I love them so much that I enjoy doing them every day!
That’s why having a Peloton bike is so great. A 30-minute intense workout just got a whole lot easier.
I wouldn’t go to the gym for even 30 minutes every day. Because by the time you drive there, change, shower, stop at the store (which you might also do while you’re in the area), and then drive home, It takes an hour and a half, but I don’t have 90 minutes every day. Gyms also don’t offer such short classes if you need them.
What about the additional Peloton accessories?
I’m going to spend a lot of money on a spin bike, but do I really need to buy anything else? Well, hey…
When purchasing a bicycle, you will notice that there are additional accessories available for purchase. You can get shoes, weights, headphones, a heart rate monitor, a water bottle, and a mat to rest your bike on.
Personally, I think all of these additional items are necessary, especially the shoes and weights, but they don’t have to be from Peloton.
I purchased the Bike Essentials package, which comes with a pair of shoes, free weights, and headphones.
peloton cycling shoes
I have Peloton cycling shoes and they actually feel very uncomfortable. Peloton’s products cost £119, but if I could go back in time, I’d buy mine in a sports shop. It’s cheaper and you can try it on and see if you like it. I’ve seen others complaining about how small and uncomfortable they are too, so I’m not the only one!
My partner Sam already had his own cycling shoes, so all I had to do was buy new cleats to use on the Peloton bike. Cleats are the things on the bottom of your shoe that help secure it to the pedals. Sam told me that Peloton bikes come with standard cleats, so most shoes come with ones that fit the Peloton. If not, you’ll need to buy a new one (available on Amazon), but there’s plenty of information online about that.
I love having the 2kg Peloton weights because they fit nicely into the wire rack on the back of the bike, making them easy to grab while training on the bike. I like cycling which includes arm training, so it’s very convenient to be able to do arm training on the bike while cycling. We recommend purchasing Peloton’s light free weights, as you won’t find anything cheaper online. I really like it and am happy to always have it on hand.
If you plan on doing a Peloton Strength class (which I highly recommend), you’ll need a variety of heavier weights. The Peloton weights look nice, but I chose Decathlon’s slightly cheaper ones. I have Corength Hex dumbbells (I mainly use his 5kg ones). When purchasing your own dumbbells, look for ones with flat ends. Personally, I think these are much easier because they don’t roll off.
The Peloton headphones included in the package are good, but pretty standard. They stay in your ear and are quite comfortable, but I prefer wireless because wires get in the way.
I have JBL Live Pro+ TWS headphones and love them, but I’m actually having a hard time connecting them to my bike. Sometimes I can connect and sometimes I can’t, and it’s really annoying. So I often end up just using what came in the Peloton package.
heart rate monitor
Although a heart rate monitor isn’t completely necessary, it can help motivate you to give your best effort. I don’t have his Peloton stuff. I have a cheap one that I bought on Amazon and it works fine. Once you connect via Bluetooth, it will automatically appear on your screen. It shows you which heart rate zone you’re in and gives you an “effort score” based on your heart rate. Effort score is a personal, non-competitive metric that helps you see the intensity of your workouts, whether it’s a bike ride, a yoga class, or a strength class. It’s very useful when doing non-bike classes because you can see your progress.
There’s a new Peloton heart rate monitor that you wear on your wrist. If you haven’t already, you’ll definitely be looking into it!
peloton bike mat
I didn’t get a Peloton bike mat, but depending on the flooring you’ll be resting your bike on, you might want to buy one.
We store our bikes in a vacation home with wood chip floors. The guys who came to set up their bikes recommended buying mats. Not because of the bike, but because the cleats of your shoes can make small dents in the floor. I have an old playmat sitting around and I just keep an eye on it and it doesn’t have any dents.
Any other accessories you’ll need?
100% recommended to get fans! I placed a fan next to my bike and my performance skyrocketed.
If you plan on doing yoga or other strength training, you’ll need a mat. I have his Liforme mat and I love it and really recommend it, but realistically any yoga mat will do. It is a good idea to buy a suitable exercise mat as it will not be sticky and your hands and feet will slip on it.
Thick training mat?
I also have a very thick training mat because I like to work out outside on my patio or on my hard, uneven slate tile kitchen floor. I have this from Amazon and I’m really happy with it.
I keep my Peloton bike at my vacation home
Let’s talk about the Peloton setup. Depending on where you live, the delivery person may also set up your bike for you. The guys who came and took care of us were nice, but didn’t do a very good job with the setup. The bike wasn’t level and my shoes weren’t set up properly, so I was riding with my toes turned in the first few times and felt a little unstable overall. The staff told me it was set up correctly so I didn’t feel like double checking.
It’s not a big deal to fix everything yourself, but this is a word of warning that Peloton delivery guys aren’t necessarily experts.
Using the Peloton App
The Peloton app is amazing and makes the transition from taking classes on your bike to classes on your TV, desktop computer, laptop, phone, or tablet completely seamless. The app and bike also sync instantly.
There’s also an app for smart TVs, so you don’t have to squint to watch on your phone or iPad. You can also mirror your phone to your TV. I love working out on the big TV in the living room. Especially since we always encourage children to participate. There’s also an outdoor TV under the covered BBQ shelter and it’s great fun to do a yoga class there.
Tracking my workouts with stats
What really surprised me is how much I love looking at my workout stats. I’m not usually a statistics person. I do words, not numbers, and I’ve never felt motivated by scores.
But that really changed when I got the Peloton!
I love seeing the total output and effort score for a workout. I also really like seeing my heart rate and what percentage of my ride time I was in which heart rate zone. This is really motivating and when you start to feel tired, it gives you that little push to keep going and get closer to your best score.
Another fun thing about Peloton is that you can check the leaderboards while you ride. When you’re on a live ride, you want to compete with the people nearby. If you’re doing an on-demand class, there are usually tens of thousands of people already doing it. So you can see how you rank compared to them. You can also filter the leaderboard to only show specific people. For example, you might be following certain hashtags like #PelotonMoms or #UKPelotonLadies, or you might only want to see people who are attending classes at the same time.
Another fun thing about the leaderboards is that sometimes there are celebrities who are participating live in the same class. Usain Bolt rode the ride and Mel B rode the Spice Girls ride.
Hashtags and community
Add hashtags to your profile to find other members like you. There are plenty of hashtags to help you categorize yourself by location, interests, profession, and even your favorite Peloton instructor.
This creates an even greater sense of community, and it’s easy to see that there are inside jokes and separate social media communities.
I haven’t really delved into the Peloton community yet, but I’ve started and I’m loving it. They are welcoming, friendly, motivating and collaborative, rather than horribly competitive.
What I didn’t expect was that the instructor was a celebrity. The Peloton instructor has a cult following among fans, and he feels himself falling in love with it. I have some of my favorite instructors (Ben Aldiss and Cody Rigsby!), but I also have some very talkative instructors, so you get along easily. Find your favorite teacher based on the music they play, whether they’re talkative or quiet, the difficulty of the class, and more. And once you get to know them, you’ll know exactly who to go to depending on your mood.
Can you store your Peloton Bike away?
This is something I’ve been asked several times.
not much. It’s not a very portable machine, so I personally have a hard time carrying it around. It has small wheels on the front so you can lift the back and move it back and forth, but moving it sideways will be difficult.
If you buy a Peloton Bike, I think you should always have a dedicated space to store it.
I’m a member of the Peloton Facebook group, where people regularly share photos of their bike setups. Some people have great home gyms with lots of space, but most people keep their bikes in random corners of their homes. Many people keep them in their home offices, bedrooms, spare rooms, living room corners, garages, and even utility rooms.
My house is in a summerhouse (which was my office before I built an extension) and I can open the door to the garden, so it’s working really well for me so far. I don’t know if it’s too cold in the winter, and if it’s really cold it might be difficult to set the right temperature, but let’s see!
Can you use a Peloton Bike without the Peloton membership?
This is a frequently asked question, and one that I was also curious about.
Paying £1,750 for a bike and having to pay an additional £39 a month in tuition fees sounds expensive, right!?
The answer is yes. You can use the Peloton bike without a membership, but let’s be honest, once you start attending classes you quickly realize that you’ve spent £39 a month. The classes are very good, they keep you working hard, you progress very quickly, and overall it’s a lot of fun.
I’m no expert, but if you’re planning on buying a Peloton bike without a membership, you’re probably better off buying a cheaper spin bike. Because the main value of Peloton bikes is the combination of class and bike.
Can you use a different spin bike with the Peloton membership?
i’ve seen a lot of information online about the “Peloton hack” where you buy a cheap bike and use your iPad to stream Peloton classes (because you don’t have to have a Peloton bike to subscribe to the classes).
You could do this, but I think you would miss out on a lot of benefits. You won’t get community, leaderboards, or statistics to track your performance. You also don’t know if you are achieving all the goals your instructor has set for you.
Before I got my Peloton bike, I didn’t think I’d care that much about communities, leaderboards, and stats, but I’ve found them to be very motivating and I’ve started using them. I thought it was worth paying full price for the Peloton to get it.
What if I only want the bike classes and don’t want yoga and strength etc?
There’s more than just signing up for a bicycle class. Subscribe to get it all.
I didn’t have any desire to take another class, but I quickly realized that if my overall fitness improved, I would progress much faster on the bike. You need a strong core and strong legs, but it also helps with calmness and flexibility. Even if cycling is your main activity, it’s definitely worth tagging your workouts with a short strength or stretching class.
If I get a Peloton bike, will I actually use it?
And that’s a big question!
Just buying a Peloton Bike doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be able to ride it…but it can remove the obstacles and excuses that keep you from exercising.
Can’t find time to exercise? Surely everyone can find 20 minutes a day.
Don’t you love working out in front of other people? Peloton has you covered.
Don’t you feel like you’re not even in the right place to start? There are many classes that start with a small amount.
Do you find it boring? Find a music class you like and it will be even more fun!
Can’t leave the kids home alone? It is okay. My kids quickly learn to stay out of my way while I’m on the bike, and they prefer to join me in a strength class afterwards.
Can you buy or sell a second hand Peloton bike?
If you’re still on the fence and aren’t sure if it’s worth investing that much money, we recommend checking out how much used Peloton bikes are selling for online.
When I bought it, I found it for sale on Facebook Marketplace for £1,500. It retails for £1,750 including all accessories. So, if you buy it and find that you won’t use it, you can always sell it and you won’t lose much.
Overall verdict – Should I buy a Peloton bike?
To summarize this whopping 4,000 word blog post…
After just 10 weeks of riding my Peloton bike, I’ve never felt healthier and happier in my body. I enjoy working out and look forward to short-term workouts, but I know this is a long-term thing.
I don’t use it every day, about 4 times a week, but I still see a huge improvement.
If weight loss is your goal, the Peloton bike is a great way to burn calories, but for the first time in my life I’m exercising just because it makes me feel good, and it’s worth every penny on its own.
Click here to learn more about Peloton. You can really get a feel for it when you sign up for a free 30-day trial of our exercise classes.
Peloton discount link
If you’re planning on buying a Peloton bike, you can use my referral link to get $100 or £100 off accessories.
7 month update
I wrote 7 months worth of Peloton updates to answer the big question: “Are Peloton bikes worth it!?