Best Treadmills for Runners

Treadmills that will keep up with you year after year

The main concern when shopping for a treadmill for running is finding a machine that can stand up to such intense workouts over time. A strong motor is crucial, as are solid warranties. Then, you have to think about how comfortable the treadmill is to use. A large track surface with adjustable cushioning is best. From there, it’s all about personal preference. Considering the types of workout programs and entertainment features you are looking for in addition to your price range is the best way to find the treadmill that’s right for you.

Our top picks for the best treadmills for runners

After evaluating the top treadmills, the Reviews.com team found five to be exceptional for runners.

NordicTrack Elite 9700 Pro

NordicTrack Elite 9700 Pro

Features

  • Quadflex™ Precision Calibration cushioning: Choose from nine levels of in-deck cushioning to reduce impact up to 24%.
  • Heavy-duty motor: The 4.25 CHP motor runs quietly and is powerful enough to tackle the toughest workouts.
  • Over 40 workout programs: The Elite 9700 Pro comes with 42 built-in workout apps, plus iFit capability.

Quick Facts

  • Motor 4.25 CHP
  • Track size 22" x 60"
  • Adjustable cushioning? Yes
  • Workout programs 42

NordicTrack Commercial 2950

NordicTrack Commercial 2950

Features

  • Extra-wide, two-ply belt: The Commercial 2950 has a 22-inch deck, designed to be comfortable for any running stride.
  • Strong warranties: NordicTrack offers industry-leading warranties, including lifetime frame and motor protection.
  • Nice workout selection: This machine is iFit-enabled and includes 40 onboard workout programs.

Quick Facts

  • Motor 4.25 CHP
  • Track size 22" x 60"
  • Adjustable cushioning? Yes
  • Workout programs 40

ProForm PRO 9000

ProForm PRO 9000

Features

  • Durable, powerful motor: The ProForm PRO 9000's 4.25 CHP motor is well-suited for heavy use.
  • Huge workout library: Access the entirety of the iFit workout library in addition to the 38 built-in programs.
  • Variety of entertainment features: This model includes an audio port, speakers, a tablet holder and an Internet browser.

Quick Facts

  • Motor 4.25 CHP
  • Track size 22" x 60"
  • Adjustable cushioning? No
  • Workout programs 38

NordicTrack Commercial 2450

NordicTrack Commercial 2450

Features

  • Adjustable deck cushioning: Turn the shock absorption on or off by rotating each cushion a half turn.
  • Built-in TV: Stay entertained during your workout with your favorite shows.
  • Large running surface: The 22- by 60-inch deck gives plenty of room to people with long strides.

Quick Facts

  • Motor 4.0 CHP
  • Track size 22" x 60"
  • Adjustable cushioning? Yes
  • Workout programs 40

SOLE S77

SOLE S77

Features

  • Solid warranties: The SOLE S77 comes with lifetime warranties on the frame, deck and motor.
  • Excellent shock absorption: The Cushion Flex Whisper deck reduces your impact up to 40%.
  • 4.0 CHP motor: The SOLE S77's 4.0 CHP motor is far more powerful than the industry-standard 3.0 CHP motors.

Quick Facts

  • Motor 4.0 CHP
  • Track size 22" x 60"
  • Adjustable cushioning? No
  • Workout programs 10

What to look for to find the best treadmill for running

Motor

The motor should be a runner’s most important consideration when choosing a treadmill. Running puts more strain on the motor and more wear and tear on the machine in general, so finding something durable is key. Most treadmills on the market today have at least a 3.0 CHP motor, which is probably suitable for most workouts. If you plan on using the treadmill mostly for running, it’s best not to go much lower than this. But an even stronger motor is better if your treadmill’s going to see a lot of use. All the treadmills listed above have 4.0 CHP or 4.25 CHP motors, which should be strong enough for any workout.

Warranties

Strong warranties help ensure your treadmill will last year after year. A lifetime frame and motor warranty are must-haves, and most treadmills out there offer these. Where you see more variation is with the parts, electronics and labor warranties. Cheaper treadmills usually offer a maximum of three years of protection. However, when you pay more, you also get better warranties, and the treadmills listed here all come with five-year parts and electronics warranties and a two-year labor warranty.

Comfort

Running can be hard on joints, so to prevent injuries, it’s best to choose a treadmill with cushioning in the deck. This is standard on most treadmills, but the best will have adjustable cushioning that lets you choose how much shock absorption you want. The NordicTrack Elite 9700 Pro stands out in this area with their QuadFlex™ Precision Calibration cushioning that has nine settings to choose from. Another thing to pay attention to, especially if you have a long stride, is the size of the deck. A 20- by 60-inch deck is common, but going with a wider track is better if you find you’re feeling cramped on a regular machine. All the treadmills on this list have extra-wide decks, so any of them should suit you.

Extras

There are many treadmills that fit the main criteria listed above. Once you’ve narrowed down your options to a few, it becomes about your personal preferences. What types of workouts do you plan on doing? Are you interested in an iFit subscription? Would access to a TV or Internet browser make you more motivated to work out? All of these extras are going to raise the overall cost of the machine, however, so you also have to consider your budget. If you’re interested in all the bells and whistles, a NordicTrack model is the way to go. But if you’re after something basic, check out the SOLE S77.

The Bottom Line

All the treadmills on this list are excellent choices for runners, but our recommendation is the NordicTrack Elite 9700 Pro. However, if your budget puts this model out of your reach, one of the other treadmills mentioned here may be a better fit.