Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Nordic Track E5Vi Elliptical

As we all know, buying fitness equipment can be a little nerve wracking, especially since it can be quite an investment.  I used to own a treadmill, and I loved having it.  But when I moved cross country (again) I gave it to my sister.  But almost immediately after getting to my new location, I regretted not having it.

So knowing all of this, back in December, I bought a Nordic Track E5Vi Elliptical from Sears.   I will go into more detail about some of the features of this elliptical in a bit.

I opted to have it delivered, but not have someone put it together for me.  (I've put a lot of things together over the years, and I was pretty sure I can handle it.)  It actually wasn't too hard to put together.  Just remember, when you have to use the grease, use all of the grease.  Grease will be everywhere, but don't worry about it.  It's okay.  It will keep it from squeaking later so learn to love the grease.  Besides, you won't ever see it once all of the pieces are on.  The screws that are used to attach the display to the support post are positioned in an awkward location.  I found it difficult to screw it in all the way because the posts were in the way.  But it went on and is stable.  And to all of the people who say "You have to have two people to put it together." - it's a lie. I did it all by myself within an hour or two and it was just fine.

Putting it together wasn't hard, but there was a problem with my elliptical.  To adjust the stride, you have to pull a pin out, rotate it into the desired stride length, and release the pin.  It should be very easy, and it was very easy in the store when I tested it.  However!!!  Mine was stuck.  And I'm not talking about, "Oh - it's a little mushy but moveable." No - mine was stuck so bad, I had my feet propped up on the motor case and was pulling with both hands and.... NOTHING.  I called Icon Fitness, which owns Nordic Track.  Let me just say this now.  I have had the worst time dealing with them.  Let me put it this way.  I've had this elliptical for almost 5 months now, and it is just now getting fixed. In fact, I had to threaten to call a lawyer in order for them to actually take care of the situation.  And from what I understand, this is not an uncommon occurrence.  They will not offer financial compensation because I bought it from Sears and not directly through them.  I will update when everything is finalized with them.

That being said, there are some great features of this elliptical.  If the stride adjust was working, it's a great feature.  The 13" stride is for the quads, the 15" more total lower bode, and the 18" works the hamstrings and gluts. And since it has been stuck on the 13" stride for 5 months, I'm ready  - and my quads are ready - to change it up.

The display is nice. It does have different workouts to chose from and has  a portal for iFit cards.  It has a built in speaker that allows you to plug you iPod directly into the elliptical.  It has a fan which is really nice when you need a little cool down.  While this elliptical, like most home ellipticals, does not have a function where you can adjust the angle of the stride, you can adjust the resistance.  It does have heart rate monitors but I have noticed that it isn't quite accurate. (I use a Polar heart rate monitor to get an accurate reading of heart rate and calories burned.) It's still good to have to make sure you aren't going over or under your target heart rate.

One great thing about this elliptical is that it foldable for easier storage.   For people like myself, this is really handy because it doesn't take up as much room.  Also, ellipticals in general are very quiet so very good for people in apartments that don't want to drive their neighbors crazy.

All in all, it's a good elliptical and I have a feeling that it will be even better when it is fixed.  Right now, I would give the elliptical a C+/B- because it isn't fully functional.  This will be adjusted once it is fully functional, I'm sure.

Icon Fitness, however, gets an F.  If I could give them a lower grade, I would.  I could write pages and pages of things they have done. But just suffice it to say, they need to improve tremendously.

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