How I Fell in Love With Peloton
To my own surprise, I’m an evangelist for a stationary bike
When I told my partner I was writing about my obsession with my Peloton bike, she texted this in reply:
“Serious journalist who covered the heights of business and politics now talks about her exercise routine. I can just see the tweets now.”
Look, I get it. There’s more important stuff going on in the world. It feels bizarre to me too that I’ve become an evangelist for a piece of home exercise equipment while democracy as we know it implodes.
Peloton, if you’ve never heard of it, is a stationary bike. Yes, an internet-connected, ultra-high-tech piece of hardware that streams live indoor cycling classes into your home. But still, just a stationary bike. Can it really change your life? According to me, yes, it can. It’s helped me to get through a pretty brutal year, and I’m not ashamed to admit it.
I’m not one of those people who Instagrams their food or Yelps about restaurants. I think I’ve written one TripAdvisor post — about a truly horrific hotel stay — in my life. My natural state is to be decidedly underwhelmed by most things. Living in England for a long time does that to you. I’m also really cheap.
And yet here I am, tracking my favorite instructors on social media, proudly wearing my 100 rides “Century Club” Peloton T-shirt in places other than my own home, nagging my friends to try it out.
I ride every day when I can. Sometimes I’ll even ride twice — in the morning and at night. I’m taking a break from work right now, so I’ve got a lot of time on my hands, but I’m not alone. Peloton has sold hundreds of thousands of bikes since launching in 2014. (Peloton does not release specific bike sales numbers).
You can read plenty of technical product reviews of the bike elsewhere, but if you’re wondering about Peloton’s secret sauce and why even hardened cynics like me are such fangirls, I think it’s pretty simple: Peloton taps into your inner athlete, even if you’ve never been one.
I bought my bike in December 2014, after moving from London to Washington, D.C., to cover the presidential race. I must have read about it in a magazine, because it wasn’t a thing yet and…