Adam holds a Bachelor's and a Master's degree in Linguistics, and creative writing has always been his greatest passion. For more than 25 years he's been working for several well-known automobile and travel magazines as an editor and expert consultant, but when Adam started his writing path here, at WisePick, it turned out that he's capable of writing practically anything about everything.
Initially being an engineering specialist, Tom has never stopped learning and acquiring other knowledge and skills. Now he’s involved in technical support for a well-known household appliances manufacturer, so no wonder he knows everything about almost everything you buy for your home.
Last updated: June 18, 2021
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It seems like most people are on a never-ending quest to lose weight. Well, if you’re finally ready to get serious about it, a treadmill is a great investment. With this machine, you can workout every day of the year. If you’re not sure which one to purchase, consider the best treadmill with 400 lb weight capacity.
If you’re starting at a larger weight, then you will need a treadmill that can support you. We’ve found six of the best treadmills with a large weight capacity. Among them, our Editor’s Choice is the Bowflex BXT216. This machine has an easy to use LCD screen and features 11 workout programs to keep you motivated. It comes from a highly reputable brand and will not disappoint.
Each of the 400 lb weight capacity treadmills we found comes with pros, cons, and important features to consider. You’ll find all of them in our product review section. In addition, we have put together a buying guide that highlights all the information you need about treadmills. This will help you find exactly what machine will keep you running all year long. There is also a section that answers the most commonly asked questions.
Bowflex is synonymous with home exercise. It stands to reason, then, that this is the perfect option when you want an in-home option to get fit. The Bowflex BXT216 allows for weights up to 400 pounds, which means it’s never too late to get moving.
With this treadmill, you get 11 workout programs. These programs add a tone of variety to your workouts and will inspire you to keep going. The biggest problem with treadmills is that they can become quite tedious. With the varied workout programs, you try something new and get the feel of the outdoors.
One of the best features of the Bowflex BXT216 is that it uses personalized coaching technology. This included personalized feedback so it’s as if you have your very own coach to motivate and push you.
Furthermore, you can choose from dozens of virtual courses from around the world. You can run from continent to continent, all from the comfort of your own living room.
The display screen is an impressive 9 inches in size and all the controls are easy to use. There’s even a simple push and go option if you just really want to start running.
As for negatives, the only real issue with the Bowflex BXT216 is the assembly. It can take a bit to put together and furthermore, it is quite heavy. After delivery, be sure to have another person there to help you move the box and for setup.
What stands out?
Includes 11 different workout programs
LCD screen is easy to use
Explore different parts of the world from the video screen
Have you ever gone to the gym and marveled at their weight loss equipment? If you want to bring that gym experience into your living room, check out the Precor TRM 885. Now, this is our Premium Choice for a reason. It has everything you could think of wanting in a treadmill, but that does mean it will come at a premium cost.
The Precor TRM 885 has a very large screen. Not only does it tell you all its important stats, but it also lets you watch videos or run along paths the world over.
Included with the Precor TRM 885 are an impressive 27 workout programs. You can select a program targeting weight loss, one that works on aerobic principles, one with rolling hills, and one with mountain peaks. There is no way you’ll ever get bored with all these amazing workout options.
Another impressive feature of the Precor TRM 885 is its Ground Effects Technology. When you run on the deck, it will reduce the shock and cushion your movements instead. This eases your joints and makes running a lot more pleasurable.
While the Precor TRM 885 does have the ability to connect to the internet and TV channels you need to connect it to the Preva network first. This is an added step and while it may be a bit of a hassle, without the connection, this quickly becomes an overpriced treadmill.
Why are we impressed?
Includes an amazing 27 workout options
Technology makes it easier to run on
Large screen allows you to watch internet, TV
What negatives must you be aware of?
Need to connect to Preva network for better screen options
We get it. Running can be boring, especially when you’re stuck inside. To combat this, many people look for a large workout screen to help them stay motivated. The Life Fitness 95T has a massive 19-inch screen. It works by touch and is incredibly easy to navigate. You can see all the important stats, such as heartbeat and calories burned, while also jumping to the internet or your favorite show.
With the workout screen, you can also choose workout programs that take you around the world. You can run through the forest or stroll down famous boulevards. It really is like running outside, without actually needing a passport.
The treadmill deck has advanced technology that lessens the knee and joint stress. You can run for as long as you want and not worry about the strain on your legs.
There are 26 workout programs to choose from, which is especially nice for beginners who aren’t sure how to run or for how long. The 15% incline ability and the 14 MPH speed give you lots of versatility. No matter if you’re just trying to get fit or are training for your next race, the Life Fitness 95T will help you succeed.
The biggest downside to the Life Fitness 95T is that it needs to be assembled. There is an option to have it delivered fully assembled, or to have someone help you after delivery. However, there are obviously extra fees associated. If you’re not too tech savvy, though, you may need to budget for this extra cost.
Precor is a standard at most commercial gyms, so it stands to reason that you would want one in your own home. The Precor TRM 835 has a lot going for it. Most treadmills, even newer models, are quite bulky. The Precor TRM 835, however, has quite a sleek look to it. Yet even with its more stylish design, it is still one of the best Precor treadmills with a 400 lb weight capacity.
As you run, you won’t have to worry about joint pain, especially your knees. The track technology is highly absorbent and will cushion your every movement.
With the Precor TRM 835, you get an impressive 25 workout programs. No matter how you want to run, there is an option for you. You can wind your way down a gentle path, traverse tall mountains, or furrow over local hills. Wherever you want to go, there is a virtual option for you.
The only thing the Precor TRM 835 is lacking is a video screen. While the actual control panel is large, there is no place to watch a video on. For those used to having a screen in front of them while they run, this might be a deal breaker. However, if you’re able to set the treadmill up in your living room, or another place in your home with a TV, this could easily salvage your experience.
The Precor TRM 835 does have an impressive lifetime warranty, so there’s no need to worry about anything breaking.
Most treadmills have pre-programmed workouts installed and the Cybex 770T is no exception. However, what makes it stand out among the competition is the inclusion of six military workouts. If you’re tired of the same-old workouts that are uninspiring, then this treadmill is one to really consider.
The Cybex 770T is a great pick among treadmills with a 400 lb weight capacity. It has a great, shock-absorbing deck so no matter how large you are, you can run with ease. The desk will cushion your feet as you land, allowing your knees and other joints to continue running. This minimizes injuries and leads to a more satisfying experience.
While you’re running, you can stay entertained thanks to the 15.6-inch monitor. You can watch videos or browse the internet. It will help you stay motivated by keeping you engaged and not bored.
The Cybex 770T also keep you motivated thanks to the plethora of health information it keeps track of. You can see your heart rate, blood pressure, and calories burned. The more data involved, the easier it is to see how much you are improving, which will surely inspire you to keep moving.
As for safety features, the Cybex 770T offers an automatic stop function and thick arm stability bars, in case you are worried about falling or just need a break. This machine does not want you to fail, so everything you need for a productive workout is included.
One of the biggest reasons people don’t want to purchase a treadmill is price. While there are plenty of treadmills that offer giant display screens and more options than you actually need, if all you want is a place to run, consider the Exerpeutic TF1000. No, it doesn’t have a screen that let’s you imagine running through the French countryside. But it does have all you need for a steady walk towards weight loss.
The Exerpeutic TF1000 is in fact a walking treadmill, and not a running one. Its maximum speed is 4 MPH. This is not fast enough to run but it is the perfect speed for a brisk walk. If you have any joint issues or are in the process of rehab, a steady walking pace is perfect to get you mobile again.
With the Exerpeutic TF1000, there are some extra features. These include heart pulse pads so you can monitor this very important stat. There are also extra-long safety handles. If you’re keeping a brisk pace and are afraid of faltering, the handles are there for you to grab on to and will prevent you from falling.
Furthermore, the Exerpeutic TF1000 has a nice, foldable design. You can easily collapse the upper portion of the treadmill and slide the flattened machine under the bed when not in use. This makes it the perfect option for when you have a small space and don’t want your living room to be cluttered with a treadmill.
Purchasing a treadmill is a great step forward in your overall health. No matter the weather, no matter the time, you can hop on whenever you have a chance and get moving. Here are some important features to consider as well as answers to any questions you might still have.
Features to consider while choosing a high-capacity treadmill
Not all treadmills are created equal. The best treadmills for heavy people are those that have the right amount cushioning and extra safety features for when you first start on your new health regimen. To find out more about treadmill features, read more in our in-depth analysis.
Running path dimensions
The running path is the area that you are able to run on a treadmill. It is measured by width x length and is usually presented in inches. A larger running path means you have more flexibility in how you run. A wider running path also means more comfort, especially if you are wider in the middle, as you won’t have to run up against the side arms of the treadmill.
The standard dimensions for a treadmill’s running path is 22 x 60 inches. However, the Exerpeutic TF1000 is quite a bit smaller with a running path of 20 x 40 inches. It is, though a walking treadmill so you don’t need as much of a length to hit your full running stride.
Within a treadmill, there are various pre-determined workout programs. While you can just start running and adjust the speed and incline as you want to, you can also select a workout program that will manually change the speed and incline. Workout programs take a lot of the guesswork out of operating a treadmill. They are especially great if you are a beginner and are unsure of how to maximize the benefits of a treadmill.
Some workout programs include hills of various inclines, steeper mountain climbing, programs that are designed to burn fat, and programs that are designed for a cardio workout. Different treadmills will have different amounts of workout programs. For example, the Bowflex BXT216 has 11 workout programs while the Precor TRM 885 has 27 workout programs. If like variety, then the number of programs is an important factor when determining which treadmill to purchase. If, however, you like to manually decide how to run, or have one optimal program you want to exclusively use, then the number of programs isn’t that important.
Maximum speed, increments
There are two types of treadmills: walking treadmills and running treadmills. A walking treadmill, like the Exerpeutic TF1000, has a much lower maximum speed, in this case 4 MPH. It is meant for walking and therefore won’t be able to achieve a faster speed.
The other five treadmills on our list are meant for running. Their speeds vary between 12 and 16 MPH. Most people won’t be able to hit that extreme speed, so really, any treadmill would be appropriate. The only instance where you really want to focus on a high maximum speed is if you are doing high intensity interval training. This is when you alternate between sprinting and jogging, as a way to increase your power and endurance. In some cases, those top speeds can be reached, so finding a treadmill that can reach 16 MPH would be a priority.
Most treadmills will have speed increments of 0.5 or 1.0 MPH. Generally, more higher priced treadmills will be the ones that offer the more subtle, 0.5 MPH increments for a more fine-tuned workout.
The incline angle on a treadmill refers to the maximum degree a treadmill can tilt. Most treadmills can move between 0 and 15% incline. This, however, only allow the treadmill to move up, as if you are running up a hill. On our list, the Precor TRM 885 allows you to also move the treadmill at a -3% incline. This means running downhill.
While it’s not advised to run downhill if you have joint issues, once you have built up more strengths in your legs, downhill running can help you train for outdoor settings. It’s a really nice option to have.
Treadmills are large. They are also quite bulky. While a few may fold in half and allow you to store them under the bed or couch, for the most part, you will have to pick a spot for your treadmill and keep it there.
Furthermore, treadmills do not come fully assembled. They will be in a few pieces and you will have to put them together. These pieces will still be heavy and it can be hard for one person to carry everything. Most companies will provide you with the option of paying to have someone assemble your treadmill although this, of course, can be quite expensive.
Generally, you can expect a length of about 80 inches. The width is normally around 35 inches. And the height is about 65 inches. As treadmills technology has increased, these dimensions have decreased. You can find sleeker designs, although you normally have to pay a premium for them.
You should also keep in mind that a treadmill is unfortunately not easily moved. You will need two people to move it once its set up in order to move it in a safe manner. It’s best to really think about where you want to place your treadmill before you even purchase it. As well, it’s a good idea to measure that area. Don’t forget height. Stand on some blocks or cushions that are 6 inches above the ground, to mimic the dimensions of running on a treadmill. Make sure there are no obstacles like low beams or wall hangings to get in your way. If you are planning on running in front of the TV, try it out in a simulation to ensure your sightlines are good and you don’t have to crane your neck to see the screen.
Ideally, you will use your treadmill every day. Also ideally, you will have a dedicated space to put it, such as a basement. But ideal is not always possible. If you plan on using your treadmill sporadically or you just don’t have much space for it, having a foldable design is a great advantage. This allows you to fold it and store it under a couch or bed.
Unfortunately, most advanced treadmills are too bulky and are not usually foldable. On our list, the Exerpeutic TF1000 is a bit smaller than the other models and is completely foldable.
Every treadmill will have a display. How large that display is and what it shows will differ, though. Some displays, like with the Exerpeutic TF1000, just show standard information like your heart rate and calories burned.
More advanced displays will show not only your health statistics but a TV screen as well. The Cybex 770T and the Precor TRM 885 have displays that include video options. If you want a truly impressive screen, check out the Life Fitness 95T. It has a massive 19-inch screen. You can watch all your favorite shows and be truly immersed in the experience and almost forget that you’re exercising at the same time.
By far, the biggest concern with treadmills is that they can be a bit boring to run on. It used to be that you had to set your treadmill up in front of the TV as the only way to keep yourself entertained. This was not always easy, as then you would be forced to have a giant treadmill in your living room. Now, there are display screens so that watching a screen is always an option. And, to enhance the display screen, some treadmills come with Bluetooth capability. You can sync your smartphone to the treadmill and watch any downloaded content, or you can listen to your favorite tunes.
Treadmills have a lot of moving parts, quite literally. They have motors and gages, and everything needs to work properly for the best safety features. Having a warranty on your treadmill is essential.
The Precor TRM 835 has the best warranty of all the products we have reviewed. It has a lifetime warranty on both the frames and the welds. Most other warranties have five or ten-year warranties which are pretty good. As always, pay close attention to the warranty date and check in before it expires in case anything breaks or needs to be fixed.
Shock absorbers, safety features
Treadmills need safety features. They have moving parts can be a risk. Furthermore, running and staying in motion can lead to some health concerns. If you are new to a treadmill and especially if you are on the heavier side, you want a treadmill that will keep you safe.
All treadmills will have a quick-stop function. This is always in the form of a large red button that is easily pressed on the display console. In addition, many treadmills will have a wrist attachment. You can place it around your wrist and if you fall, the wrist cord will activate and automatically stop the treadmill.
If you fall, you don’t want the motor to keep running. Not only is this uncomfortable but things like your clothing or shoelaces can become stuck, adding to greater injury.
Another nice safety feature ins the inclusion or armbars. Some treadmills, like the Exerpeutic TF1000 has extra-long safety handles. The longer the handles reach out, the easier it is for you to grab on to them. If you misstep or feel faint, having the arm safety feature can greatly prevent injury.
When you start running on a treadmill, the machine will usually default to an hour workout. If you don’t adjust the time, after one hour, the treadmill will enter a cooldown mode, which is a less intensive workout. However, you can easily adjust the time and extend it for as long as you want.
For the best experience, the belt on a treadmill should be able to move smoothly. For this to happen, the belt needs to be lubricated. It’s recommended to lubricate your treadmill belt every three months.
It’s time to get moving and the right treadmill will help you with it. Our Editor’s Choice is the Bowflex BXT216. This machine is time-tested and will work with you in the long run to improve your health and quality of life. If you want a treadmill with even more advanced choices, check out our Premium Choice. The Precor TRM 885 has amazing technology so no matter how heavy you are, you can still run in comfort.
Finally, if you want the best treadmill with 400 lb weight capacity that also has a large workout screen, the Life Fitness 95T is a solid option. Its 19-inch screen means you can watch your favorite movies and not even realize you’re exercising. It’s a complete win-win package. There are many options for your treadmill needs. Pick the one best for you and start your path to a healthier person.