Best Treadmills for Heavy People: Heavy-Duty Cardio Machines for Beginners to Avid Runners

running on treadmill

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The best treadmills for heavy people have sturdy frames, large decks, powerful motors, and a higher weight capacity than other models. Some of them are super advanced with large screens and the ability to connect to treadmill training apps, while others are more basic (and often less expensive) without a ton of extras.

The Best Treadmills for Heavy People - Our Top Picks

When shopping for a treadmill for a heavy person, one of the most important considerations is the weight capacity—you have to make sure it can accommodate your current size. You also want to think about speed and incline ranges, portability, and dimensions (treadmills and ellipticals are some of the biggest at-home cardio machines you can buy). To help you narrow down your choices, the ACTIVE Reviews Team researched some of the most highly rated models from Sole, NordicTrack, ProForm, and more. Here are the seven best treadmills for heavy people that came out on top.

Why Trust Us?'s editorial team relies on the knowledge and experience of fitness and wellness experts including competitive athletes, coaches, physical therapists, nutritionists, and certified trainers. This helps us ensure the products we feature are of the highest standard. Collectively, the team has spent countless hours researching equipment, gear, and recovery tools in order to create the most accurate, authentic content for our readers. Customer satisfaction is also a key part of our review process, which is why we only feature products that are highly rated.

Best Overall Treadmill for Heavy People - NordicTrack 1750 Treadmill

NordicTrack 1750 Treadmill


  • Dimensions: 80" L x 38" W x 65" H
  • Weight: 340 lbs.
  • Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
  • Max speed: 12 mph
  • Max incline: 15%


The NordicTrack 1750 Treadmill is one of the best you can get. While it is an investment, it comes with all of the specs and features you would expect for a treadmill at this price point. There's a large, 14-inch HD touchscreen that allows for an immersive training experience via iFit. And unlike other models that have fixed displays, this one rotates and tilts so you can customize your viewing angle.

It has a -3% to 15% incline range with a maximum speed of 12 miles per hour, plus an intelligent feature called ActivePulse technology that will read your heart rate (when connected to a compatible heart rate monitor) and automatically adjust speed and incline to keep you in your optimal zone. It's just as impressive under the surface, too: It has a 3.5-CHP motor that supports faster speeds and a weight capacity of up to 300 pounds.

What We Like

  • Large, rotating touchscreen
  • Advanced technology that responds to heart rate
  • Generous incline/decline range

What We Don't Like

  • Basic operation without iFit
  • Large footprint
  • Expensive

BUY: NordicTrack 1750 Treadmill

Best Compact Treadmill for Heavy People - ProForm Pro 2000

ProForm Pro 2000


  • Dimensions: 77.3" L x 35.3" W x x 59.6" H
  • Weight: 262 lbs.
  • Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
  • Max speed: 12 mph
  • Max incline: 12%


Treadmills take up a lot of space. If you're set on a treadmill, but don't have the dedicated space to spare, you need a folding model that's still heavy-duty enough to properly support your weight. The ProForm Pro 2000 has the brand's patented SpaceSaver design, which means the deck lifts up and goes nearly flush with the display and handlebars. It also has wheels so you can roll it out of the way when you're not using it.

The 3.25-CHP motor goes up to speeds of 12 mph and supports up to 300 pounds. You can incline up to a 12% grade, but also decline down to -3%. It's also pretty loaded with features, especially for a model at this price point. It has a 10-inch HD touchscreen that allows you to follow along with fitness apps (there's a 30-day iFit trial included with your purchase). If you decide to keep the iFit membership, you'll get access to trainer-led control—the trainer can change your treadmill's speed and incline during live workouts to simulate a real experience.

What We Like

  • Folds almost flush
  • Inclines and declines
  • HD touchscreen
  • 30-day iFit trial

What We Don't Like

  • Can't connect to third-party fitness apps
  • Limited manual mode
  • Some report difficult assembly

BUY: ProForm Pro 2000

Best Folding Treadmill for Heavy People - Sole F80 Treadmill

Sole F80 Treadmill


  • Dimensions: 82" L x 37" W x 66" H
  • Weight: 278 lbs.
  • Weight Capacity: 375 lbs.
  • Max speed: 12 mph
  • Max incline: 15%


The Sole F80 is an excellent all-around option for beginners and experienced runners alike. There's not a lot of fancy tech here, but it's a solid treadmill with a 3.5-horsepower motor and a 375-pound maximum weight capacity. The cushioned deck is wider than most—it measures 22 inches across compared to the standard 20-inch width of others—and is designed to absorb impact so it puts less stress on your joints.

The console combines a 9-inch basic LCD display with manual controls as well as quick-start buttons that let you choose from 10 preset workout programs. The speed ranges from 0.5 to 12 mph and the treadmill supports inclines of up to 15%. It's Bluetooth compatible so you can play your own music through the integrated speaker system, and has some added convenience features, like a tablet holder, water bottle holders, cooling fans, and heart-rate chest straps. It's foldable so when you're not using it, you can stow it away more easily.

What We Like

  • Strong motor
  • Large, cushioned deck
  • Lots of convenience features

What We Don't Like

  • No decline option
  • Underwhelming display
  • On the expensive side

BUY: Sole F80 Treadmill

Best Walking Treadmill for Heavy People - Horizon Fitness T101 Treadmill

Horizon Fitness T101 Treadmill


  • Dimensions: 71" L x 34" W x 57" H
  • Weight: 180 lbs.
  • Weight Capacity: 300 lbs.
  • Max speed: 10 mph
  • Max incline: 10%


If you're planning to use your treadmill mostly for walking, you can save some money by getting a machine with a less powerful motor (the more powerful the motor, the faster it can go). The Horizon Fitness 101 has a 2.5-horsepower motor that's ideal for slower speeds. It still goes up to 10 mph, which translates to about a 6-minute mile, but keep in mind that the motor might lag a little bit at this speed. It also inclines up to 10%.

The cushioned deck is divided into three zones—an impact zone, a transition zone, and a push-off zone—with different levels of response for a more comfortable stride. It's pretty bare bones as far as technology goes, but that's reflected in the budget-friendly price. It has a basic LED display that shows current metrics, like time, speed, distance, and calories, and gives you access to five preset workout programs. If you want to kick things up a notch, you can connect it to Bluetooth and follow along with your own fitness app or streaming service on a tablet.

What We Like

  • Folds for storage
  • Zoned, cushioned deck
  • Budget-friendly price

What We Don't Like

  • No decline function
  • Minimal preset programs
  • Display is underwhelming

BUY: Horizon Fitness T101 Treadmill

Best Decline Treadmill for Heavy People - Sole Fitness TT8

Sole Fitness TT8


  • Dimensions: 82" L x 26" W x 58" H
  • Weight: 322 lbs.
  • Weight Capacity: 400 lbs.
  • Max speed: 12 mph
  • Max incline: 15%


The Sole Fitness TT8 doesn't just work for heavier people, it was specifically designed to handle more weight without any effects on its performance. This treadmill has a 4-HP motor and supports up to 400 pounds—one of the most powerful combos out there. Like many of the others, it caps out at 12 miles per hour, but it has the largest decline and incline range of any on the list (-6% to 15%) so it most closely simulates the ups and downs you get when hill running or walking.

It has an extra-wide, 22-inch cushioned deck that helps reduce impact, and pulse grips to monitor heart rate (it's also compatible with a chest strap). The display is a bit underwhelming at this price point, though. It's plenty big at 10.1 inches, but it only displays basic metrics and workout progress rather than connecting to a fitness app. However, the treadmill is Bluetooth enabled and has a USB charging port so you can follow along on your tablet.

What We Like

  • High weight capacity
  • Large decline/incline range
  • Wide, cushioned deck

What We Don't Like

  • Underwhelming display
  • Doesn't fold
  • Speed transitions can be slow

BUY: Sole Fitness TT8

Best Incline Treadmill for Heavy People - Life Fitness Club Series+

Life Fitness Club Series+ Treadmill


  • Dimensions: 82" L x 36" W x 56" H
  • Weight: 434 lbs.
  • Weight Capacity: 400 lbs.
  • Max speed: 12 mph
  • Max incline: 15%


The Life Fitness Club Series+ Treadmill is an investment, but it's one of the best machines you can buy. Often found in professional gyms, this commercial-grade treadmill has a stainless steel and aluminum frame and a 4 CHP (continuous horsepower) motor that can support users up to 400 pounds. At 22 inches across, the deck is extra wide and has a shock absorption system that helps cushion your landing to take pressure and impact off your joints.

It has an incline range of 0-15%, a maximum speed of 12 mph, and 22 preloaded workouts. There are also quick speed and quick incline buttons that let you adjust the settings with one push. At this price point, you would expect a fancy screen, and the Life Fitness delivers—it has a 20.5-inch LED display that shows multiple metrics at once or can be connected to a streaming service or fitness app.

What We Like

  • Heavy-duty 4 CHP motor
  • Large immersive LED screen
  • Extra wide, shock-absorbing deck

What We Don't Like

  • Very expensive
  • Doesn't fold
  • Large footprint

BUY: Life Fitness Club Series+ Treadmill

Best Budget Treadmill for Heavy People - Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7643

Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7643


  • Dimensions: 60.5" L x 32" W x 52.4" H
  • Weight: 143 lbs.
  • Weight Capacity: 350 lbs.
  • Max speed: 6 mph
  • Max incline: N/A


If you're looking for a basic treadmill for walking and light jogging, the Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7643 fits the bill. You won't find any advanced features here, but it has a sturdy frame and can accommodate up to 350 pounds, which is pretty impressive for a treadmill at this price point. It has a 2.5-horsepower motor that maxes out at 6 mph, which is about a 10-minute mile, so it's a good choice for those who want to keep things at a slow to moderate pace.

There's no incline function—the treadmill stays flat—but there are some quick-speed presets that you can use to automatically set the treadmill to 1, 3, and 5 mph. A simple display shows basic metrics like time, speed, distance, and calories. And while this treadmill doesn't have Bluetooth capabilities, it does have a tablet holder so you can watch a movie or follow along with your own fitness app if you want.

What We Like

  • Sturdy frame
  • High weight capacity for this price point
  • Preset speed buttons

What We Don't Like

  • No Bluetooth
  • Lower max speed than others
  • No incline function

BUY: Sunny Health & Fitness SF-T7643

What to Look for in a Treadmill for Heavy People

When shopping for a treadmill for heavy people, weight capacity is one of the first things you should look for. You should also think about dimensions, the weight of the treadmill itself, and speed and incline range. Here's how to narrow down your options.

Weight Capacity

The weight capacity is the maximum weight that a treadmill can support without potential damage to the motor or the frame. Most treadmills for heavy people support 300 to 400 pounds. When choosing one, make sure it can properly accommodate your current weight.


Treadmills are one of the largest pieces of cardio equipment you can buy. Some of them fold to reduce their footprint, but they still take up a decent amount of space. Before choosing one, measure your space and make sure it can fit comfortably. Consider the overhead clearance, too, including when you're walking on an incline, to make sure there's enough space so your head doesn't hit the ceiling when you're using it.


You might also want to consider the weight of the treadmill itself, especially if you plan to move it out of the way when you're not using it. Some treadmills are fairly lightweight, weighing around 150 pounds, while others are pretty hefty at more than 400 pounds. Treadmills for heavy people often have sturdier materials and frames so they can weigh more than typical treadmills. Check the item weight and make sure you're comfortable with it before purchasing.


Speed range is an important factor with any treadmill. Most treadmills go up to around 12 mph, but some that are more geared toward walking may cap out around 5 mph. For reference, 5 mph translates to a 12-minute mile, while you'll run a mile in 5 minutes going 12 mph. Decide how fast you need the treadmill to go before committing to one.


A treadmill's incline can simulate hills and give you a more intense lower body workout, even at slower speeds. Most treadmills go from zero to 10% or 15% incline—equivalent to a very steep hill. Some treadmills also have decline capabilities, which mimics traveling down a hill (and works different muscle groups). Treadmills with incline and decline offer a more realistic road feel but are usually more expensive.

Decide if these features are worth the extra investment and, if so, make sure the treadmill you choose has an incline/decline range that will work for you.

FAQs About Treadmills for Heavy People

How fast should a heavy person walk on a treadmill?

It depends on your stamina and fitness level. If you're new to treadmill workouts, start slower at 2-3 miles per hour. Once you're comfortable with that speed, you can bump it up to 3-4 miles per hour. For reference, a 4 mph speed translates to a speed walk, or a 15-minute mile.

Can I use a treadmill if I'm over the weight capacity?

No, you should not use a treadmill if you're over the weight capacity. This can put excess stress on the motor, causing the system to overheat. Over time, this can break down the machine. If you weigh more than the capacity, the belt can also stall which will negatively affect the machine's performance and your workout experience.

Do heavier people burn more calories on a treadmill?

In general, the more you weigh, the more calories you burn doing any type of activity. So yes, heavier people burn more calories on a treadmill when all other factors (like speed and incline) are the same.

About the Author

Lindsay Boyers

Lindsay is a functional nutritionist, writer, and editor. She has written 15 books and numerous articles on fitness, wellness, and nutrition. Her work appears on,,,,, mindbodygreen,com, and, among others.

See More from Lindsay

Lindsay is a functional nutritionist, writer, and editor. She has written 15 books and numerous articles on fitness, wellness, and nutrition. Her work appears on,,,,, mindbodygreen,com, and, among others.

See More from Lindsay

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