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Work(out) From Home: Cardio Conditioning
All the advantages of the gym, none of the bad classic rock.
Text by Roy M. Wallack   Photograph by Alex Di Suvero
Photo: Home Gym Equipment
1 of 3 »

For some there is no more dreadful an experience than a visit to the gym. The mirrors, the spandex (the thought of yourself in spandex), the sweaty guys using the machines before you. It can be enough to end the most well-intentioned fitness program before it even starts. Instead, consider never leaving your house. Home gyms are no longer the domain of the 10,000-square-foot (93 square-meter) set. Equipment is space efficient, cost conscious, and most important, highly effective.

Cardio Conditioning

1. The Big Item
ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: The eBay Experiment: 
Find out how to make room for new gear by recycling your own old on eBay >>

Vision Fitness T9450 Premier Folding Treadmill

The trouble with most foldable treadmills is that they feel like they are going to fall apart when you accelerate above a jog. Not so with the Vision Fitness T9450 Premier ($2,199; www.visionfitness.com). The 250-pound (113-kilogram) machine is rock-solid, folds to less than five feet by three feet (1.5 meters by .9 meters), and rolls smoothly away. The unit is loaded with custom programs, including Sprint 8, an innovative interval-training program that reportedly revs up human growth hormone production (the stuff that keeps you looking young). 

2. Fresh Take
Concept2 Indoor Rower
Rowing delivers one of the best all-body cardio workouts around, blasting arms, legs, and core in one dynamic, fluid motion. And while a number of quality machines have recently entered the market, the updated version of the classic Concept2 Indoor Rower ($850; www.concept2.com) is still the industry standard and the choice of many Olympic teams. Why? It features a solid, natural feel, helpful and easy-to-use electronic feedback, and a convenient fold-up, roll-away design. All that, and it's the lowest priced in its class.

Back to Basics
3. Tacx Swing Magnetic Trainer
Far from a clunky stationary bike, the compact Tacx Swing trainer ($341; www.tacx.com) employs a powerful magnetic unit to adjust resistance on the rotating wheel of any bike. The new Trek Portland commuter bike ($1,400; www.trekbikes.com) is shown here. The adjustable resistance is controlled with a handlebar-mounted lever and is so effective that it can generate 400 watts of resistance at speeds as slow as 17 miles (27 kilometers) an hour. After the finish line, it folds up and fits under the bed.


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Pick up the February 2006 issue for 36 amazing Hawaiian adventures, the most spectacular treks in Australia, 11 weekend escapes near you, and more.








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