Peloton Bike Review (+ my Peloton app experience)

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My husband and I got a Peloton bike in January 2020 and we LOVE it. We especially love it right now since all the gyms are closed with coronavirus. In this post I’m sharing why we love it, how much it actually costs, and my favorite instructors and classes. I also shared how it fits into my weekly workout schedule.

peloton bike review

Before we bought the Peloton bike, I used the Peloton app on my iPhone for three months. I have been dealing with an ankle injury since last June and the doctor put me in a walking cast in October. After four weeks in the boot, I was cleared to ride a bike, so that’s when I first tried the app. (It’s free for the first month and then $12.99 a month after that.)

Before we had the bike, I just propped my phone up on the stationary spin bike at my gym, opened the Peloton Digital App, popped in my airpods (review here) and would take classes that way (sometimes live, but usually just a replay). I really enjoyed the classes – they flew by and left me in a sweaty, happy mess. I also starting doing their core classes and stretching classes and loved those too.

Then, at Christmas, we went to Pinehurst with my in-laws and the gym in their neighborhood had two Peloton bikes, so that’s where I tried out the actual Peloton bike for the first time. I absolutely LOVED it and I made my husband go take a class on the other bike at the same time with me the next day. He loved it too. (I knew he would.)

We used the bikes again for a few days and on our way back home, we chatted and decided that we’d give the Peloton bike as an early Valentine’s Day gift to each other. I got a referral promo code from a friend to save $100 on accessories, ordered the bike and accessories and it all arrived two weeks later.

Since we’ve had the bike, I’ve used it at least three times a week every week and I also stream other types of classes from the bike (strength, HIIT, yoga or stretching classes) so I use it almost every single day. My husband uses it two to three times a week, sometimes more. (Or, sometimes less. If it’s nice outside, he goes to the golf course instead. 😉 )

So the bottom line is, we’re so glad we have it! I got a lot of questions on Instagram about our Peloton so I’ve listed all of those with my answers below!

Peloton Bike Review

If you’re unfamiliar with Peloton, it’s an online workout class subscription. They first started with a stationary bike only, but have expanded into floor workouts (like yoga, strength training and bootcamp) and even have a treadmill. They’re most known for incredible cycling classes but are quickly gaining popularity for all types of workouts.

How much does a Peloton bike cost?

We purchased the bike with a 39-month service plan (in case anything broke) and that was $2225.

On top of that we got two pairs of shoes ($125 each), a mat for the bike to go on ($59), and 3 lb weights that fit into a rack built onto the bike ($25).

The subtotal for all of that was $2559.

The home delivery fee was $250 (but you don’t have any other option for delivery or shipping). Amazon may be different – we ordered directly from Peloton.

I had a referral code from a friend for $100 that went towards the shoes, mat and weights.

Our tax was $182.86. (Each state’s tax will vary.)

So our grand total was $2891.86.

Then, after you get your bike, there is a $39 monthly charge, kind of like a gym membership fee, to access all the classes.

Not. Cheap.

Is it worth the money?

For us, absolutely. But this is hard for me to answer for anyone else because what’s worth it for us may not be the same factors that make it worth it for you. Here’s why it’s worth it for us:

The convenience.

We both work a lot. While my schedule is more flexible than my husband’s, if I drove to the gym, got all my stuff in the locker room and then drove home, that’s an extra 30-40 minutes tacked onto my workout time. (Never mind how often I get interrupted by people at the gym who want to chit chat, such a pet peeve.)

For my husband, he used to do CrossFit, but his work schedule makes it hard to get to a class at a set time. He loves that he can hop on the bike at any time of day and get a great workout.

And this is something I never expected or thought about when we bought the bike, but I oddly really find joy in wearing my slippers to the bike and then putting them back on afterwards. It feels so luxurious!

And when nearly all gyms were closed, we were certainly grateful to have this option at home. W were especially glad we had the bike since I couldn’t run every day.

The instruction and quality of classes.

I have NEVER liked working working out at home. If I go to the gym, I can definitely take myself through a killer workout, no problem. But I struggle with motivation at home to work hard. With the Peloton bike (or app), having someone tell me what to do helps a LOT with a home workout.

The competition.

I don’t care about this as much, but my husband loves the leaderboards, badges, and interactions with other riders. He likes seeing where he ranks in a live class or against anyone who has taken the class at any time. He likes the badges you can get, e.g. 25 rides, 50 rides, riding with a friend, first xyz type of class, etc. And he likes comparing his output to previous classes. I guess he likes that aspect of Peloton the same way I like all of that in Strava!

One membership fee for multiple accounts.

Unlike gym memberships where you have to pay per person, with the Peloton bike, your monthly subscription allows you to add others as you like as long as they have an existing Peloton account. Your membership comes with free access to the app too.

Peloton Bike Review

If you already use the Peloton app and regular spin bike, why is it better or worth it?

I’ve found the Peloton bike is much more stable than the regular spin bikes I was using at the gym. I also think the pedal stroke is smoother. My husband agrees that the Peloton bike is much more comfortable to ride than other bikes he’s used (he did CycleBar for a year), and he said “it feels very high quality.” And since I’m using it multiple times a week, I like the ease and more immersive experience of having the built-in screen vs. propping my iPhone or iPad up somewhere.  It also has a nice, sleek design…as far as workout equipment in a home goes!

If you use a regular spin bike and the app, you don’t get the output numbers or know if you’re matching what the instructors tell you do. When I used the app only, I definitely got a feel for how much resistance to add on the bike at the gym, but I never quite knew if I was matching what the instructors were saying. And since I’m a data person, I really like seeing my numbers and comparing my progress across time.

What’s the difference between the Peloton and Peloton+ bike?

When we bought our bike, they only had one option. Now, a year later (updating this in January 2020), they have two bike options: the Peloton and the Peloton+. The biggest difference is that the screen on the Peloton+ turns so you can do floor workouts more easily. I honestly wish mine did that but the Plus wasn’t an option when I bought mine. The Peloton+ bike also has better sound, a bigger screen and is supposedly more stable. But it costs a bit more. You can also buy accessories like cycling shoes, weights, and a mat, to go with your bike.

Peloton also has a treadmill – the Tread – that I’ve heard GREAT things about.

Given your history teaching Les Mills RPM, how does a Peloton ride compare (fun, intensity, etc.)?

I actually like this better. Even though I haven’t taught in about 8 years, I’ve taken a few RPM classes in the last year at my gym and while I liked them, I didn’t like them enough to go regularly. And RPM is always the same structure. Yes, there’s variety in each class with different songs and exactly choreography, but it’s the same seven tracks structure in every class. I like the wide variety of types of classes with the Peloton.

I also like that Peloton never has you go above 120 RPM vs. RPM has you doing a much higher cadence at times.

Peloton Bike Review

Does a Peloton Bike work without a subscription?

No. At least, not as far as I can tell. You could certainly get on the bike and ride and adjust the tension but you won’t be able to see any stats like your resistance level, RPMs or output.

Can you use the app if you don’t have the bike?

Yes, absolutely. Like I mentioned above, I used the app only for three months.

What should people consider before purchasing?

Think through if you’ll use the bike regularly. If you primarily want to do other types of workouts (bootcamp, HIIT, yoga, strength), I would stick to the app only and then just put your phone on a bike at the gym for the times you do want to cycle.

Who is your favorite Peloton instructor? Who has the best Peloton classes?

I like Olivia Amato best overall – I like her personality and her classes are VERY hard. I also really like Ally Love and sometimes Robin Arzon, but I have to be in the mood for Robin, since she’s a bit more crass. Ally is so sweet but sometimes her classes are so hard, I get discouraged because I’m like, “There is no way I can hit these numbers.” That’s probably why I should keep taking them!

For a more low-key ride, I like Hannah Marie Corbin’s and Cody Rigsby’s classes. They’re still challenging but they don’t DESTROY me like Olivia or Robin. Cody does the best arms section of anyone I’ve tried and he’s just HILARIOUS.

January 2021 UPDATE: I shared in more detail the best Peloton classes for cycling, strength, running, bootcamp and yoga.

Peloton Bike Review

My husband favorite is Alex Toussaint. I’ve taken a few of Kendall Toole’s classes and like her too. I haven’t tried anyone else!

For class types, I like Pop Rides, Interval & Arms, and HIIT ride. I haven’t done many hill classes while my ankle has been recovering (and then I hurt my back at physical therapy, oh the irony). The Low Impact rides have been great while I’m recovering from an injury – don’t let “Low Impact” trick you into thinking it’s not hard!

Peloton Bike Review

Have you done any other classes, e.g. bootcamp, yoga, strength, etc.?

Yes! I’ve done quite a few and a wide variety, including strength with weights, bodyweight strength, HIIT, yoga, meditation and walking.

I’ve found the strength ones hit and miss, but to be fair, I don’t have a huge variety of weights and probably need some heavier ones at home (I have 3lbs that I got with the bike and some 8 lbs ones I got ages ago.) I consistently like Olivia’s strength classes, and she also has great HIIT cardio classes. And I like them so much I’ve taken them multiple times (she doesn’t have many on there!). I liked the bodyweight strength classes better.

I really enjoy the pre- and post-run warm-ups (found under the Stretching section) and I’m excited to try the Strength for Runners classes with Matt Wilpers.  I’ve even done an outdoor walking class that I enjoyed.  I’ve taken a few yoga classes and liked those too!

I also absolutely LOVE the meditation classes. I’ve used Headspace, Insight Timer and Waking Up for years and like the Peloton ones just as much and it’s included in my membership. (I was paying extra for Headspace and Waking Up at different points over the years.)

Do you get bored with it?

Not yet. I’ve been doing it for 6 months now and am not bored. And that’s impressive because I NEVER liked cycle classes in the past, other than RPM. I didn’t like Cyclebar, I didn’t like Flywheel, you name it, I was meh on cycle ever since I stopped teaching RPM. And even then, I like this MUCH better than RPM and that’s saying something since I used to teach RPM!

Do you have to put it together?

Nope! They deliver it. It’s pretty much assembled when they bring it to your house. You do have to assemble your shoes, i.e. put the clips on, but there’s a video showing you how.

Favorite socks?

These and these. Also worth calling out are these leggings, this bra and this tank or this cropped version of it, which is what I’m  wearing in all these photos. These workout pieces are my favorite for Peloton classes!! They’re also my favorite for strength training, but I wear different leggings and sports bras for running. (You can see all my running gear here.)

Did you purchase a gel seat?

Nope. And neither my husband nor I have felt like we need one. The seat is comfortable!

Peloton classes

Favorite accessories you got

I am really glad we got all the accessories we did!

It’s nice to have the mat to go under the bike to protect our hardwood floors since we both sweat a lot. A regular yoga mat would probably work too, but I knew I would want to use my yoga mat. The three pound weights are great for the intervals and arms classes. I wish they sold five pound weights but three pounds really does get heavy with the way they do workouts. If you have other weights, you could certainly use those but it’s nice that there’s fit on the bike to keep things neat and organized.

And I am REALLY glad we got the spin shoes. If you don’t want to clip in, you can buy a shoe cage to attach and then wear regular sneakers but cycling shoes make such a difference if you’re riding regularly. I had other shoes, but the clips were different and they were literally 16 years old and just weren’t very comfortable!

If you decide to get the bike, this Peloton referral link will get you $100 off accessories that you buy at the same time as your bike. If it doesn’t work, just shot me an email — [email protected].

spin shoes

Is it a good supplement to running? What’s your training schedule?

Yes, it’s a GREAT supplement to running! It’s a low-impact way to recover from a run, and it’s great cross-training to help improve your running. (Read more about the importance cross-training here.) It’s also been a nice option as I recover from an injury. And, even if running isn’t your primary sport, cycling is a GREAT workout in and of itself. If you want it to be your main workout, it certainly could be. And I know for many people it is.

Right now, I’m slowly working to increase my running mileage again as I continue to recover from a posterior tibial tendon tear. So below is a is a rough outline of my workout schedule, but I usually end up having one more rest day in there or doing a more low-key day. I’m really just paying attention to my body and how it feels, and adjusting my workout accordingly. And that’s another reason I love the bike: variety to fit what my body craves!

Here’s my current loose schedule:

S – rest or yoga (or run, if I rested on Saturday). Sometimes I’ll do a Sundays with Love class too. (It’s a weekly class Ally Loves does that I love!)

M – 45 minute run-walk

T – Peloton 30-45 minute cycle

W – Peloton 20-30 minute HIIT and/or Strength

Th – 45 minute run-walk

F – Peloton 30 minute cycle or 20 minute HIIT or a 30 minute walk

S – 45 minute run-walk or rest

Do you have the Peloton? What else would you add to this list for why you love it? If you don’t have a Peloton, let me know if you have any other questions! Happy to help in any way I can can!

My favorite Peloton workout gear

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    25 responses to “Peloton Bike Review (+ my Peloton app experience)”

    1. I ordered my bike this morning and can’t wait to get it. I took notes on your favorite instructors and workouts, thank you for sharing.

    2. Here’s the thing…I live in a city with a Peloton studio. I’ve only been on ClassPass, but their monthly memberships for the gym look PRICEY. And for two people? Yikes! Buying the bike and sharing the membership would pay for itself within 6 months! Congrats and stay healthy!

    3. Agree with you that Olivia’s classes are the best! I’ve tried a lot of the instructors and thought they were difficult, but then I took one of Olivia’s classes and realized how wrong I was.

    4. I just bought a bike on Monday and it is set to come next week so this is perfect timing (though I wish I had the accessories code sooner!). I’m a cycle instructor part-time, so I’m also excited for this to help inspire my own classes whenever I can get back to a bike to teach. I kept hoping you would write about the bike so this could not have come at a more perfect time!

    5. FYI – you can ride in ride mode without a membership and get your RPM’s and miles and basic stats. Works just like a regular spin bike.

    6. My favorite classes are power zone! (I should really branch out and do more variety but I just love them!) Denis Morton is my fav instructor and I’m a big fan of his music! Thanks for sharing your review!

      • I’ve been intrigued by the Power Zone classes. I have to do some baseline class first, right?? That’s why I haven’t done them since I thought I read that somewhere and was confused. I need to try Dennis again – he looks like this guy I can’t stand which is why I never take his classes hahahaha

        • Hahahah I hate when that happens! They do have a class that helps you establish a baseline but I don’t think it’s necessary at least to start (I never even took one ha!). The class is based off perceived exertion on a scale from 1-6 which is associated with an output number. I would say give a class a shot and see if you like it and then if you feel like you want to take the baseline class later you can!

    7. For cycling only, unlimited, it’s $205 a month! More if you want the strength classes and such! Is that bad? For somebody who just uses ClassPass for crosstraining and runs for free…seems high! Downtown Chicago, though

    8. I am using the app right now while in stay at home mandate. I have a rented spin bike from a local gym and the peloton app has been a godsend! Been talking about a bike with my boyfriend and this article was super helpful. I will have to try Olivia – but my favorite do far was Matt Wilpers.

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