T Nation

Stationairy Recumbent Cycle versus Rower/ERG

Over the last 18 months i added about 17 pounds of muscles and now i am happy to just maintain that level(i went from very small to average).
I am in my 50’s and i am considering investing about 400$ to buy a new or used (in good condition) Stationairy Recumbent Cycle or Rower/ERG.
I plan to do some cardio and HIIT. The last 14 years without a car i use my bicycle daily for transportation but in a big city it is not that pleasant with all the risks involved. Here the bike pathways are really not safe. Since i am often up at 4 AM a low noise machine is a must. I might use it on the balcony(most of the time) about 5 days weekly every week to loose that last ± 7 pounds and be a bit fitter.
After a day of looking around the IM Fitness 1760 Recumbent Cycle 350$ seems interesting but i could wait till Xmas a store person told me it is their lowest price period. I guess an elliptical is not suited for HIIT/Tabata.

Thanks for your suggestions/input.

Now my 2 top options are a barely used 5 years old Schwinn 213 recumbent stationary exercise cycle or a new ironman fitness 1760 for twice the price 350 versus 175$. The rowers do more noise and are more expensives.
Any feedback about Fitness Depot retailer, IronMan Fitness/Schwinn manufacturers will be greatly appreciated.
Thanks !

I would give serious consideration to an “Schwinn Airdyne Bike”. It’s the best thing IMHO for Tabatas and HIIT exercises and it’s a full body workout.

I’d suggest a rower but I’m biased because I was a team rower for a few years. I feel like you get less bored rowing since your whole body is now involved. (I get really bored doing stationary cardio like biking or running on a treadmill)

I would personally recommend anything BUT a recumbent bike. In terms of both energy expenditure and mechanics/movement pattern it is the least effective choice for cardio exercise in my opinion. I actually wrote an article about it billthe5thfitnessexercise.blogspot.com/2012/12/the-recumbent-bike_10.html

An upright bike or spinning bike would be a better option, or the aerodyne as mentioned.

Thanks for all the input.
The Airdyne was dismissed because of noise like the rower. I think they are very good options but not suited for my needs. I plan to use it at 3, 4, 5 am. My mom has a bad knee and she might use it(we are allmost neibors) and many say recumbents are great for rehab/people with bad knees. I also guess i will be able to use small weights and use it a bit like an elliptical, 4 members/full body WO. In a few weeks i will share my experience. I just got it today.

I found an almost mint condition Airdyne on Craigslist for $75. Try to shop around a little.

Never mind… missed your last post.

My results are in the last paragraph.
I really like it. We can use it for

  • steady cardio
  • intervals
  • HIIT
  • Tabata
  • mixing with pullaparts ands so many mouvements with bands or dumbells.
    As for the seating comment i find it odd. Our back is about 20 degrees from vertical and it is real easy if we prefer to be at about 40 degrees from vertical(just use a cushion). A motorized threadmill is only good for rehab in my opinion so a therapist can prescribe/monitor the progression. Other bikes come with a bad neck position so i never considered those 3 other options.

In 9 weeks i lost 9 pounds. I lost an inch at the waist and my leg size is the same. My eating stayed the same. As a bonus my morning heart rate dropped about 8 beats per minute. I did mostly steady cardio with some intervals. I used it frequenly usually between 15 to 45 min. at a time.