Sole F85 Treadmill Review – 2024

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Last Updated: December 6, 2023

Sole F85 Treadmill Review 2024

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Sole F85 Treadmill

Top entertainment streaming apps, screen mirroring, and wireless charging make the Sole F85 one high-tech home treadmill.

Star Rating: 4.8/5
MSRP: $2,399
Overall Rating: 84
Workout Experience 8
Specs / Features 9
Dimensions / Storability 8
On-Board Workouts & Apps 8
Build Quality 8

The Sole F85 has a powerful 4.0 HP motor and a firm running deck to prepare you for your next marathon.

Summary Sole F85: The Bottom Line

The Sole F85 is consistently among the best treadmills we recommend because it’s stable, foldable, and handles a lot of use and weight.

The Sole F85 has been updated to a very impressive machine. In addition to the quiet and powerful 4.0 HP motor, the F85 inclines 15 levels and declines to 6 levels. This one of the highest declines we’ve seen on a folding treadmill. The deck is spacious and great for most people and activities, plus when it’s folded the F85 can be pushed around with its 4 transportation wheels.

Imagine all of this along with a 15.6” touch screen, preloaded apps and workouts, and a lifetime warranty. It has a nice amount of tech. There are apps for Netflix, YouTube, Spotify, and other popular streaming apps. The Sole F85 has features we haven’t encountered on other home treadmills, like screen mirroring and wireless phone charging. It’s no wonder that the Sole F85 Treadmill is such a highly rated treadmill! Let’s check it out in this Sole F85 Treadmill review.

Editor’s Note, 12/6/2023: Our review of the Sole F85 was updated to include testing of the maximum speed range, maximum incline, motor’s sound, and performance as we have continued to train on it in the 8 months since this treadmill was received.

The Sole F85 has more than earned its place on these lists: Best Home Treadmills, Best Folding Treadmills, Best Treadmill For Heavy People

What We Like
  • The 15.6” touchscreen comes with preloaded streaming apps, workouts, and screen mirroring
  • It handles users up to 375 lbs and has a large 22” x 60” deck.
  • The 4.0 HP motor is great for households with multiple users and those who want to do a lot of running.
  • The deck inclines to 15% and declines to -6%.
  • This solid, heavy-duty treadmill folds up and has 4 transportation wheels so you can just push it where you need it to go.
  • The new design is streamlined and easy to use, yet is powerful, quiet, and durable.
Areas for Improvement
  • The console is packed with so many features that the screen sits a little further away, making it harder to reach while running. Fortunately, its size (15.6 inches) makes up for its lack of adjustability.
  • Place the Sole F85 in a room with a ceiling fan or pair it with a floor fan, because its built-in fan isn’t quite as strong as it should be.
  • Note: The running deck is firm. Fortunately, this keeps your treadmill and road running paces similar. Walkers and runners who need extra cushioning should consider ProForm or NordicTrack as an alternative.

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Nearly 200 Treadmills Reviewed and 13+ Years of Experience

No one gets more excited about a new treadmill being released than we do. Every time a new treadmill arrives, we are keen to put the miles and hours necessary into thoroughly testing each machine. As a team of fitness experts and exercise enthusiasts, we know what it takes to make a good treadmill for every training goal and experience level. Our reviews are geared toward anyone who wants to improve their cardiovascular fitness, train for a marathon or first 5k, and hit their daily step goal. To do so, we know you need a treadmill that’s durable and long-lasting. A treadmill should test your endurance, not the other way around.

Sole F85 Treadmill Video Review


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Sole F85 vs Similar Treadmills

Treadmill Sole F85 NordicTrack Commercial 2450 Bowflex Treadmill 22 ProForm Pro 9000 Horizon 7.8 AT
Price (MSRP) $2,399

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$2,999

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$2,799

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$2,299

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$2,699

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Star Rating 4.8 4.8 4.7 4.7 4.7
Bottom Line A durable folding treadmill for heavy runners that inclines, declines, and streams Netflix. A high-tech treadmill for runners that offers iFit workouts with a comfortable and enjoyable running experience. An over-built, high-inclining foldable treadmill that streams JRNY content and handles a lot of use. A compact, folding treadmill with a large, beautiful 22” touchscreen for streaming iFit while running. Horizon’s premium model that features a quick-adjusting motor, roller dials, and Sprint 8 programming for the ultimate HIIT training treadmill.
Ratings Sole F85 NordicTrack Commercial 2450 Bowflex Treadmill 22 ProForm Pro 9000 Horizon 7.8 AT
Overall Rating 85 86 81 76 79
Workout Experience 8 9 9 8 8
Specs / Features 9 9 9 8 8
Dimensions / Storability 8 8 6 8 8
On-Board Workouts
& Apps
8 9 7 9 7
Build Quality 8 8 9 6 7
Paid Programming – Cost N/A iFIT – $39/month JRNY – $19.99/month iFIT – $39/month N/A
# of Onboard Workouts 17 2 10 2 10
Netflix / 3rd Party Apps YouTube, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, Max, Peacock, Hulu, Spotify, ESPN, CNN, Audible, Kinomap N/A Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, Disney+, Max N/A N/A
Display 15.6″ touchscreen 22″ HD touchscreen 22″ HD touchscreen 22″ HD touchscreen 9.3″ TFT LCD screen, 16-digit LED
Dimensions (In Use) 82.5″L x 38″W x 66″H 78.5” L x 35.6” W x 65” 85″ L x 39.6″ W x 70″ H 77.3″ L x 35.3″ W x 59.6″ H 76″ L x 37″ W x 64″ H
Dimensions (Folded) 44″L x 38″W x 71.5″H Coming Soon! 44.5″ L x 39.6″ W x 70″ H Coming Soon! 42″ L x 37″ W x 71″ H
Treadmill Type Folding Folding Folding Folding Folding
Treadmill Weight 319 lbs 303 lbs (in box) 336 lbs 263 lbs (in box) 330 lbs
Weight Capacity 375 lbs 300 lbs 400 lbs 300 lbs 375 lbs
Running Surface 22″ x 60″ 20″ x 60″ 22″ x 60″ 20″ x 60″ 22″ x 60″
Deck Height (Step Up) Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon! 8.75″
Deck Height At Highest Incline Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon!
Ceiling Height Required(6’ Tall Runner) Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon! Coming Soon!
Motor Size 4.0 CHP 3.6 CHP 4.0 CHP 3.6 CHP 4.0 CHP
Incline/Decline 15 incline levels, 6 decline levels -3% to 12% -5% to 20% -3% to 12% 0 to 15%
Min / Max Speed 0 to 12 mph 0 to 12 mph 0 to 12 mph 0 to 12 mph 0 to 12 mph
Frame steel steel steel steel steel
Roller Size 2.75″ 1.9″ 1.9″ 60mm/46mm tapered
Warranty lifetime frame, lifetime motor, 3-year deck, 3-year parts, 3-year wear items, 1-year labor, 90-day cosmetic items 10-year frame, 2-year parts, 1-year labor 15-year frame, 5-year mechanical parts, 1-year electronics & HD touchscreen, 2-year labor 10-year frame, 2-year parts, 1-year labor lifetime frame, lifetime motor, 5-year parts, 2-year labor
Connectivity Bluetooth, WiFi, Sole+ app, Garmin Bluetooth, WiFi Bluetooth, WiFi (required) Bluetooth, WiFi Bluetooth, third-party apps (Peloton, Nike, Zwift, etc)
Heart Rate Sensors EKG pulse grips, compatible with Bluetooth HR monitors compatible with Bluetooth HR monitors EKG pulse grips, Bluetooth HR armband included compatible with Bluetooth HR monitors compatible with Bluetooth HR monitors, EKG pulse grips
Additional Features release lever, wireless charging pad, Bluetooth speakers, device rack, reading rack, fan, cup holders, speed/incline switches AutoAdjust, AutoBreeze fan, 30w dual speakers, ActivePulse, SpaceSaver Easy Lift Assist, OneTouch controls, Google Maps Workout Technology, integrated cup holders, soft cushioning SoftDrop folding system, ComfortTech deck cushioning, cooling fan, JRNY radio, incline handles, textured device shelf AutoAdjust, CoolAire fan, dual 2″ speakers, ActivePulse, SpaceSaver Easy Lift Assist, QuickSpeed Button Control, Google Maps Workout Technology, integrated cup holders, soft cushioning device racks, audio jack, Bluetooth speakers, interval keys, energy saver mode, fan, media controls, storage tray, QuickDial controls, USB charging, cup holders, 3-zone cushioning

In-depth Testing & Analysis of Sole F85 Treadmill


Dimensions/Storability

Even though the Sole F85 is a folding treadmill, you need to make sure you have plenty of room around the treadmill to train safely when it is unfolded. Its dimensions are 82.5″ L x 38″ W x 66″ H, but you will need extra room around the treadmill. After you are done using it, the clearance and space are not as important, because the treadmill shrinks to 44″ L x 38″ W x 71.5″ H.

The F85 weighs 319 lbs but don’t worry too much about moving it around. The Sole F85 has four transport wheels, so you can push it. Most home treadmills only have two wheels, so you have to tilt them and roll. The system Sole uses is much easier, and we applaud them for it!

Sole F85 Treadmill moving

Moving and folding the Sole F85 is also pretty easy even though this is a large, heavy treadmill.

The deck offers assistance with the hydraulic system. There is a yellow handle that once pulled will unlock the deck so it slowly lowers to the floor, itself. Folding the deck requires a little bit of effort because you have to bend and lift, but you get assistance with the system. The deck feels a little heavier to lift than other models like the NordicTrack and ProForm, but it is manageable for most people.

What is nice about this deck is that even though it inclines and declines, it still has a slim profile. From the floor to the top of the side rails (at a neutral grade) is only about 8” high. This makes the F85 easier to step on and off of, and it works better for lower-ceiling homes. Check out our blog post for more advice on the proper ceiling height for a treadmill.


Onboard Workouts & Apps

The Sole F85 has been updated to include even more tech and features than the previous model. Even with all of these features, I’m about to mention, the F85 still manages to be a treadmill that I can hop on, press start, and begin my workout on. You don’t have to pay a subscription fee to access all of these features, they’re included on the touch screen.

Sole F85 Treadmill  Workout Modes

The F85 comes with nice workout options.

There are 10 onboard workout modes available. These modes include hill, fat burn, cardio, strength, HIIT, 5K, 10K, and heart rate. There is also a manual mode and a custom mode. Each mode comes with preset speed and incline/decline levels, however, you can select a total max speed and time before you hit start. The treadmill will then automatically adjust to the preset settings during your workout. In custom mode, you have the option to create your own workouts and save them as templates. Of course, you can just use manual mode and adjust the treadmill as you go, too.

There are also different fitness tests you can take, such as Air Force, Marine, and Coast Guard tests to see how in shape, or out of shape, you are. The workouts are standard but a nice feature on the F85.

The previous model of the F85 included 7 streaming apps which were nice, but on the new model, you have access to 12! These include YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, HBO Max, Peacock, Hulu, Spotify, ESPN, CNN, Audible, and Kinomap. This is an insane amount of apps, and all you need to do is log into your respective account on the screen for each app to start streaming.

Sole F85 Treadmill Streaming Apps

Sole F85 Treadmill – Workout Modes

And if these apps aren’t enough, you can mirror content from your phone on the screen. So, really the options are practically endless on the new F85.

The Sole F85 is also compatible with other apps, including the Sole+ App. This is a free app to keep track of your workouts. It also makes pairing your phone to the screen really easy so you can utilize all of the features. Once you pair, you can create a profile on the F85 with your Sole+ App profile. There are classes for the treadmill and other Sole equipment on the app. These classes feature an instructor who guides you through each workout. These classes aren’t quite on the same level as iFit and Peloton, but the Sole+ app is free with the F85. You can use the app on your phone and mirror the screen, although, in a future update, it would be nice to be able to utilize this app right on the touch screen.

Console

Sole F85 Treadmill console

The console on the F85 is streamlined to include just what you need.

It has a 15.6” touch screen that’s large, responsive, and easy to use. As far as a console layout, I really like this design and the features it comes with. I do have a couple of gripes with the console though that I’m going to get into later.

The screen isn’t adjustable. So, you can’t tilt it up or pivot it to either side. It is angled back slightly so people of most heights can see it. On either side of the console are quick adjustment buttons for the speed and incline/decline. While I like that these buttons are now here instead of below the screen, I wish they included every increment instead of skipping a few. On the left side, for instance, the available buttons for the incline and decline don’t include the max incline and decline that the F85 offers.

Sole F85 Treadmill incline buttons

So, if I want to go to -6%, I have to use the buttons on the handlebar.

This is a small and probably nitpicky thing, but I feel like Sole is really close to nailing this design. The quick buttons make adjusting the treadmill fast and easy, so including more of these buttons would enhance the experience overall, I think.

The speakers below the screen are clear and go really loud. They connect to Bluetooth headphones and will play content from your device. There isn’t a button to adjust the volume on the console though, only on the touch screen. The icon on the screen to adjust the volume is small so it’s hard to increase and decrease the volume when you’re running. Having a button to adjust the volume on the console would be very helpful.

Another area for improvement is the fans. Well, kind of. There are two vents on either side of the console, but the airflow for some reason points outward to the sides of the treadmill. So, when I’m walking or running on the deck, I can’t feel the air. I can only feel the air when I put my hand in front of them.

Sole F85 Treadmill wireless charger

I love the wireless charging pad.

The wireless charging pad sits in the middle of the console below the screen. It’s slightly angled so when I put my phone on it to charge, I can still see the screen. It also keeps my phone well within reach when I need it. My phone case isn’t compatible with wireless charging so I have to take it out of the case to use this, but it’s convenient and a really nice feature. Keep in mind that this only works with phones that allow for wireless charging.

You can also put your phone or tablet on the device holder above the screen. It is adjustable for larger iPads. The Sole F85 has a surprising amount of storage considering it is much sleeker than the previous model. While there isn’t a storage tray below the console anymore, we didn’t miss it because the 2 cup holders and smaller pockets hold everything we need. My large 40 oz Stanley Cup also stayed pretty still while running in the cup holders, too.

Sole F85 Treadmill left cup holder

These pockets are nicely sized to hold whatever small items you need nearby.

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Build Quality

One thing that I really like about the Sole F85 is that it still feels like a Sole Treadmill. Even though it looks vastly different from the previous model, the integrity of the construction is still intact.

Sole F85 Treadmill Construction

We love Sole Treadmills because they’re quiet, powerful beasts and the F85 is just that.

It’s also great for heavy runners because it handles up to 375 lbs of user weight. Compared to other treadmills in its class like the NordicTrack 2450, the F85 is better for larger users.

Frame

The “Z-shaped” frame is made of steel. It’s streamlined and sleek. You might notice that the new design looks like NordicTrack’s new models, as well as the Peloton Tread. What Sole has accomplished with this design though is that the console and screen stay very steady and in place. There’s very little if any shaking of the screen, unlike the Peloton Tread which shakes at high speeds.

The Sole F85 might have a slimmer design than the previous model, but it is still a heavy treadmill at 319 lbs. The steel frame supports the base of the treadmill and steel uprights connect to the frame to hold the console. There isn’t a steel crossbar in between the uprights anymore, but the F85 doesn’t need it. It feels incredibly stable and solid.

I like the handles. The side handles are long enough to provide support and the front handle is one continuous piece so it is easy to grab. There are pulse grips built into the handle to read your heart rate when you’re holding them.

Sole F85 Treadmill Front Handle

The handles are a little too thick for me to wrap my fingers around but I can rest my palms on the grips to get a reading.

Motor

The Sole F85 has a 4.0 horsepower motor.

Sole F85 Treadmill Running

In our testing, this motor is best for handling all kinds of heavy use, from multiple users to long-distance training.

It is a DC motor that is commonly found in home treadmills. It’s quiet which we love about Sole Treadmills. So, the F85 works in most home spaces because it doesn’t generate a lot of noise. We tested the motor at 4 speeds (3 mph, 6 mph, 9 mph, and 12 mph) without anyone running on it. The F85 was 46.6 dB at 3 mph, 55.5 dB at 6 mph, 60.5 dB at 9 mph, and 64.8 dB at 12 mph. The ambient noise of the room with the treadmill off was 37 dB. For reference, a dishwasher is about 65 dB, so the F85 is quieter at its loudest than the average dishwasher. When you are running on it, your foot noise will increase the amount of sound generated. Unfortunately, walkers and runners differ vastly in the amount of noise that they generate so we aren’t confident in supplying a number that will reflect your use. Your weight, shoe cushioning, and running form can all drastically affect how loud your walking and running noise are.

The motor is pretty slow to adjust so it makes interval training a little more difficult, but you don’t have to worry about the treadmill getting up to speed too quickly before you’re ready. We timed the speed and incline adjustments. The F85 takes 41 seconds to accelerate from 1 mile per hour to 12 miles per hour. The incline takes about the same amount of time (42 seconds) to go from level 0 to level 15. As for the decline, it takes 23 seconds to go from level 0 to level -6. While these times are slower than some of Sole’s competitors, it does make the transition very smooth and safe. If you accidentally press a button, you have a lot more time to step of the treadmill or correct your mistake before you get going too fast or too steep. The last thing we tested on the incline was the noise. The Sole F85’s incline did not add much noise to the noise already generated by the belt moving and motor running. At 3 mph the noise level was 56 dB, and at 6 mph, it was 60 dB.

As far as training capabilities, the F85 goes up to 12 mph to offer plenty of range of speed. It also inclines up to 15 levels and declines to 6 levels. Our measurement of the Sole F85’s incline and decline grade came out to be -5.1% to 12.6%. While at a supposed neutral grade, the F85 measured as inclined to 1.4%. These results reveal that each level of incline and decline is not exactly 1%, but it is very comparable to its competitors in what it offers. This range of incline and decline allows you to effectively train your posterior and anterior muscles. Plus, if you are training for an event that has some downhill terrain, the F85 is very beneficial in helping with that.

Sole F85 Treadmill decline motor

When the deck is folded up, you can see the declining motor positioned below the deck at the rear.

For the deck to decline as much as it does, this motor works to lift up the back end of the deck. When going from an incline to a decline, you can feel the deck shift smoothly. Plus, under the deck are swiveling feet that rotate slightly depending on the grade. This is a smart design and an effective way to include more training capabilities on the F85.

Deck

The deck is spacious at 22” wide and 60” long. It’s plenty large to accommodate long-running strides and users who prefer more space to move around on.

Sole F85 Treadmill deck

For folding treadmills, this is usually the largest-sized deck we see.

What is nice about this deck is that even though it inclines and declines, it still has a slim profile. From the floor to the top of the side rails (at a 0% grade) is only about 8” high. This makes the F85 easier to step on and off of, and it works better for lower-ceiling homes.

The deck overall feels very similar to the previous model. It’s large, heavy, and firm to run on. The cushioning in the deck has shock absorption for your joints, but the surface is hard when running. It feels softer than running on the pavement outside which doesn’t offer any shock absorption, but it isn’t as soft or springy as other models. This is great if you’re a road runner or if you are training for a road race. If you have joint sensitivities and issues when running, however, you might want to look into a treadmill with softer cushioning like the Horizon 7.8 AT or NordicTrack models (ex: NordicTrack 2450).

Plus, the motor hood has been upgraded to be a little bit slimmer than the previous model. We would often hear people talk about how they hit the motor hood with their feet when running. The motor hood on the new model is slim and sits out of your way. The only time we hit it was when we were trying to navigate the touch screen while running. If you’ve ever tried to use a phone or iPad while running or even walking, you probably know how difficult it is. That is how it feels trying to log into and use all of the streaming apps while running. My recommendation is to have your show and workout set up before you begin your workout.

Warranty

We love Sole’s warranty. The brand includes a lifetime warranty for the frame and motor, 3 years for parts and other components, 1 year for labor, and 90 days for cosmetic items. Assembly is pretty straightforward, but having multiple people help with the setup is a good idea.


Should You Buy The Sole F85

I really love how solid and stable the F85 is to use. It handled our testing with ease and each of our reviewers thought that this new model performed very well while being a little easier to use with this new design.

The Sole F85 has a great console loaded with features. The only drawback is that they feel a little too far away for my short arms. I’m only 5’1”, so that’s probably my problem. It’s a little easier for our taller reviewers to reach, but in a future update, we’d like to see the screen positioned a little closer and for it to be adjustable. Other than that though, we love the layout of the console and the included tech features. The Sole F85 is a great choice for walkers and runners who want a large touchscreen with great features and no commitment to a subscription service.

We love the F85 for heavy runners, but it is also great for people who want a solid folding treadmill with thoughtful features. It’s a great choice if you want training and entertainment choices without having to pay an additional fee. It’s also a good option if you are looking for an easy-to-use treadmill that will last.

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Sole F85 Treadmill FAQ’s / Q&A’s

Which is better Sole F80 or F85?

The Sole F80 and F85 are very similar treadmills. The Sole F85 is Sole’s top folding treadmill. It has the largest screen, the most powerful motor, and it offers decline whereas the F80 only inclines. If you run a lot or share the treadmill with other runners, the Sole F85 is the better option. If you weigh over 350 lbs but under 375 lbs, the Sole F85 is the better option. We have a written comparison of these two treadmills if you would like more information, but these are the main differences that may sway you one way or the other.

Can you watch Netflix on the Sole F85?

Yes! You will need a WiFi connection and your own Netflix account, but nothing else is required. You do not have to pay Sole to access the app which is great! In addition to Netflix, there are apps for the following entertainment streaming services: Hulu, Max, Peacock, Disney Plus, and Prime. If there are others you would like to access, you can also use the Bluetooth speakers and screen mirroring feature to display any streaming service you prefer.

Can you add apps to the Sole F85 treadmill?

Unfortunately, you cannot add apps to the Sole F85 at this time. It comes preloaded with YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney Plus, HBO Max, Peacock, Hulu, Spotify, ESPN, CNN, Audible, and Kinomap. You can also screen mirror content from your Apple or Android device for more entertainment options.

Which Sole treadmill is the best?

Here at Treadmill Review Guru, we have a lot of good things to say about Sole treadmills. They are durable, well-built, and powerful running machines. From the F63 to the F85 to the ST90, Sole treadmills have a lot to offer. The Sole F85 has the most to offer from Sole’s folding treadmill line, with its large touchscreen, powerful motor, and large incline/decline range. The Sole F63 is a great budget pick and supports both walking and running. If you really like the Sole F85 but can’t quite wrap your heart around the price, the Sole F80 is a great compromise between these two options!

How much does the Sole F85 treadmill weigh?

The Sole F85 weighs 319 lbs. It has four transport wheels, so it is much easier to push around. The Sole F85 treadmill is heavy and large, so I do recommend keeping it in one location if possible. Fortunately, it folds!

Is your Sole F85 Treadmill review a paid review?

We were not paid to conduct our review or testing of the Sole F85 or any of the other treadmills that we receive. However, brands often supply these treadmills to us for free. Our process and opinions are our own, developed without the influence or guidance of any of the brands we work with. We are very fortunate to work with all major brands, which keeps our reviews honest and unbiased. Whether you decide to go with a Sole or opt for another brand, like NordicTrack, ProForm, or Horizon, we hope you find the right treadmill for you!

So, how do we keep the lights on and dedicate so much time to the review process? We receive an affiliate commission when you use our links to purchase the treadmills that we review. This commission does not add anything to the cost of your treadmill and helps support us! We appreciate our audience and hope to bring you accurate and timely information to guide your treadmill buying process. Our rigorous process is designed to streamline your treadmill research process and help you match your training goals to the right cardio machine!

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About the Author

Sydney Kaiser, ISSA-CPT, ISSA Nutritionist Certification
Sydney is a certified fitness instructor, personal trainer, and sports nutritionist who combines her passion for fitness, health, and wellness with her passion for writing. After graduating from UC Riverside with a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing, she began teaching indoor cycling and Lagree Fitness group fitness classes to people of all ages and abilities. Raised in Central Michigan, Sydney grew up training and competing on the Arabian Horse Association circuit through both Regional and National levels in Dressage and Sport Horse classes. In college, Sydney went on to compete at the collegiate level as a Division 1 equestrian athlete. Here at TRG, Sydney relies on her extensive background in fitness when reviewing and recommending all kinds of fitness, recovery, and health-related products.