This article was created in partnership with NordicTrack.
I'm proud to say I'm good at a lot of things—petting dogs, making awkward jokes, dancing the Cha Cha Slide with reckless abandon at weddings. But perhaps the thing I'm best at is finding reasons not to exercise. Maybe that's being a bit extreme (I ran a half marathon recently, so there's that...), but I won't pretend that I don't give in to temptation way more than I should. Taco Tuesday margs? Sleeping in? A slight shift in outdoor temperature? One whiff of an excuse and it's bye-bye HIIT class.
But then I got the chance to try the NordicTrack S22i Studio Cycle. This stationary bike is the antidote to every exercise excuse in the book. Not only does the bike work as a bike (you pedal, you sweat, you get in shape!), but it also comes with some of the coolest tech I've seen in a piece of fitness equipment.
You can stream all kinds of workouts on an adjustable 22-inch touchscreen via iFit—an interactive digital exercise coach that lets you customize your workout plan and fitness goals. iFit also connects you to a massive library of on-demand workouts, from studio classes with kick-butt trainers (the bike even comes with 3-pound weights so you can strengthen your arms while you ride) to real trail rides around the world.
My favorite feature is that the bike auto-adjusts to make you feel like you're actually in a studio with a trainer cranking up the bike's resistance or out on the trail in Moab, Utah. It's hard to explain how cool it is to feel the bike dip and change resistance based on the crags and hills you see on screen, but it's awesome. The other benefit? Those adjustments are designed to optimize form and maximize muscle engagement for a truly effective workout. Smart, right?
And if you're not feeling a bike ride today, just flip the screen around and stream a HIIT workout or a yoga class. Just the other day I did a cross-training session that was half cycling, half floor exercises.
NordicTrack also has treadmills, ellipticals, and row machines with the same iFit technology. There are literally hundreds of workout options for whatever mood you're in—and new ones are added every week. So whether you're like me and you're just trying to find the motivation to work out three times per week, or you're more like our fitness editor Jamey Powell and training for a 70.3-mile Ironman (!), you'll have the tools to not only meet but also destroy your goals.
I'm someone who won't spend more than $10 per month on a gym membership, but I think this is an investment every active or health-minded person should really consider. It's also worth noting you get a free year of iFit, which normally costs $15 per month. That's like getting an entire gym delivered to your house with a free membership thrown in. If you want to treat yourself (or someone special) this year, this is the way to do it.