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TR1200-DT3 Treadmill Desk

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24 Review(s)

$1,499.00

$999.00

Customer Reviews

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Upgraded after 5yrs at a standing desk...

Review by Will McDoe
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I've been using standing desks for about 5 years and I finally decided to bite the bullet and get a new desk and treadmill. I picked up a an Edison table from VersaTables and a LifeSpan TR1200-DT3. The desk is fantastic with the treadmill after you remove the cable tray down at the foot of the desk. I was planning on purchasing a GeekDesk but the monitor stands, cable management, and under-the-desk CPU holder were decisive features for me and helped me conceal loose cables.

Here are a list of things learned or questions that I've now answered:

*) The reason I decided to get a treadmill was because my legs and back would ache after a full day of standing. I'm a fit individual, but the stiffness... ugh. I prefer the ache from a good run or some exertion, not standing. Anyway, I finally bit the bullet after pining over a standing desk/treadmill for a few years. When I finally ordered the treadmill I assumed I'd walk at 1.0mph or something reasonably slow so that I could program and/or type with a low error rate. Well, after about four days I settled on 2.0mph because at 1.0mph I find my head moves forward and backward in a rocking motion in order to keep my gaze steady on the monitors. At 2.0mph it's much more natural and I don't have this feeling like I just climbed out of a small boat in choppy water. With time I think I might creep a bit above 2.0mph for the bulk of the day. This surprised me in a very pleasant way.

*) I'm a work-from-home dad who does programming and administration with a toddler running around. I called LifeSpan to ask if there was a way to disable resuming at 0.4mph and it turns out there is. This is huge because last time I almost pulled the trigger on a treadmill was a year ago and back then it wouldn't have been possible. Here's what I learned: Enter "Engineering Mode" by pushing "Stop + Up Arrow" for three seconds and cycle through to option F019 and change the setting from "0" to "1" and you should be good to go. Note, if you're an old user of the model this option doesn't exist. In talking with the sales rep at LifeSpan they added this feature around mid-2013. With the toddler near, it was going to be a deal-breaker if I had to constantly mash the Up Arrow every time I had to step off and tend to ___fill in the blank crisis___.

*) This is important (and obvious) to parents: the treadmill belt is not much different than a belt sander. Put a locked gate up around your treadmill and keep the fingers out. There is a gap to the left of the belt that is about 1 pinky wide for infants (at least on my unit) and I did have a close encounter the day after I set mine up: nice little abrasion and scab. I don't fault the treadmill for this, it was clearly a dumbshit parent moment when I stepped on and didn't fully lock the gate behind me (and oddly enough, he hasn't shown much interest in the treadmill since). Anyway, a bit of caution - I'm pretty diligent as a parent and this spooked me how quick that happened. If applicable, consider yourself warned.

*) Barefoot. Definitely walk barefoot and not in shoes... or socks if it's cold and you know you're going to be standing for an extended period of time on the belt. I switch to socks because my feet will start to perspire on the belt (it doesn't breath terribly well). Under no circumstances do I recommend using shoes, however. If it's a work environment, use Luna Sandals or something, but if you're going to the trouble of walking while working, you probably care about your arches and the worst thing you could do for yourself is put arch supports under your feet while walking. Read "Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen" if you want an introduction. I have a 0.5" difference in my leg lengths due to an ancient skiing injury and haven't had any issues running barefoot (last 8 years) or walking barefoot. Anyway, barefoot.

*) I didn't see this one coming, but it completely makes sense: my abs were tight and sore for the first few weeks. It makes sense, but I didn't expect that transitioning from a standing desk to a treadmill would result in much, if any, physical discomfort or new aches, etc. Well, my abs. They ached for a while, and in a good way. The reason is pretty simple: my head needs to be stable in order to see what's on the screen, it's your core that stabilizes your upper torso. Anyway, this was something I didn't expect but I appreciated at the time.

*) And lastly, this is for the guys: don't do boxers. I'm not kidding. Briefs? Yes. Boxer briefs? Yes. Boxers? Only if you're a masochist. After a few days I finally changed things around and am happy I did so. I walk to the store frequently or frequently go on day hikes using boxers, but ended up falling back to any form of brief. It's not the same as running in boxers, the slower motion of walking... catches differently. This isn't a hard lesson to learn or figure out on your own, but it wasn't something I saw anyone comment on when I was getting ready to purchase so I figure why not be fully transparent.

*) And lastly,the unit arrived with a bum console that required me to flick the power on and off repeatedly to get the unit to initialize correctly. I called LifeSpan and they did send me a replacement that arrived within two days and I've had no troubles since.

... I think that just about does it. I'm averaging around 15mi per day right now and am very pleased. In hindsight I'm ticked I didn't do this earlier, but the F019 option wasn't available earlier, so earlier would've been maddening. First world problems of the world unite? Good luck in your stationary travels.

INCREDIBLY Quiet, great treadmill

Review by Erik
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Before reviewing the unit itself, a little information for those of you shopping around for a treadmill desk. I don't have a lot of experience with walking treadmills, but I did do a lot of research before getting one for my standing desk. I am normally a very DIY type individual, which combined with my thriftiness (some might say cheapskate-ness) means I would have built my own desk with a treadmill from Craigslist. This purpose-built treadmill is far superior, and I am EXTREMELY glad I bit the bullet and got it instead.

Running treadmills, unless they are 3hp+ commerical grade units, are generally not designed to be run all day like a walking treadmill. So if you are going to DIY you need a powerful treadmill. I was still going to look for a high powered treadmill on Craigslist, however, there's another problem: the low speeds of walking are usually at the low end of a treadmill's designed speeds, and running at said speeds is apparently very hard on the motor. A purpose built treadmill with high horsepower yet a low top speed will last longer and work better. I was still on the fence, but I'm glad I got this unit (on to the review).

There's something to be said for the "it just works" features of this unit. It slides under whatever raised desk you have, adding about 5 inches of height, and allows you the freedom to set up your workstation as you like. Some have complained about its size, but personally I'd rather have something too big than too small. It could probably shave 4 inches off length wise and 1 or 2 width wise and still be functional, but I think that would feel slightly cramped (I'm 5' 10"). Additionally, the fact that it's new and has a warranty means it's a lot less likely to break down, which would be quite the hassle since I don't have a home office. I also went with LifeSpan over other companies not just for price (better than Steelcase, the same as treaddesk, for instance) but because they also have experience with treadmills, rather than being a start-up or experienced in charging too much for office furniture.

But the number one best feature, the reason I got it and the reason I'm so happy with it, is how quiet this treadmill is. My office has a lot of white noise, but my cubicle neighbors have to strain to hear my treadmill. My footfalls are MUCH louder than the unit itself, and even those are hard to hear. I cannot understate how pleasantly surprised I was, and I had even read that this unit was quiet. (Side note, to keep it that way - make sure to use silicon spray. Don't buy LifeSpan Fitness brand, it's all the same, and you don't need to use it as often as they say, but do it fairly often to keep your belt healthy).

So what are the cons with this unit? No height adjustment is one thing that would be nice. I recall reading once upon a time that a very slight incline was better for you than a flat treadmill, but I'm not complaining. The closed off nature of the Bluetooth functionality is a major bummer, because it would be GREAT if they put an API out and allowed people to write mobile apps to tie it in with your workout logging site of choice. (Note to LifeSpan Fitness - no one is going to use your ridiculous $70 logging website when there are tons of better free options available - strava.com, beginnertriathlete.com, mapmyrun.com, etc).

The biggest cons, and I mean enough to knock a star off, have been fixed though! Unfortunately, the unit beeps EVERY time you hit a button. it also has the annoying default setting of resetting your speed every time you pause the unit, which can happen fairly frequently in an office setting. Luckily, in the new firmware, Lifespan allows you to edit these settings, and I HIGHLY recommend you do so. The full instructions are located here: [...] but I've copied the pertinent points below.

Treadmill Desk Personal Settings

To enter Personal Settings mode, press and hold the Stop/Pause button simultaneously with the Up button. After 3 seconds, F001 should show in the display.

2. To turn the Intelli-Guard feature on or off, press the Down button until F012 shows up in the display. Press enter so on/off appears in the display. Press the Down button to turn Intelli-Guard off, or press the Up button to turn Intelli-Guard on. Press enter and remove and re-install the safety key.
3. To turn the Audible Alert on or off, press the Down button until F015 shows in the display. Press enter so on/off appears in the display. Press the Down button to turn the audible alert off or press the Up button to turn the audible alert on. Press enter and remove and re-install the safety key.
WARNING – The audible alert is turned on from the manufacturer to warn the user that the treadmill desk is starting or the speed is changing. Turning this alert off is done at the sole discretion of the user.
4. To change the allowable maximum speed from 4 mph (6.4 kph) to 2 mph (3.2 kph), press the Down button until F018 appears in the display. Press enter and 4.00 will show by default. Press the Down button and 2.00 will be displayed. Press enter and remove and re-install the safety key.
5. To start the treadmill at the speed it was going prior to pressing the pause button, press the Down button until F019 appears in the display. Press enter and by default the display shows "0". Press the Up button to display a "1" and press enter. Remove and re-install the safety key.

So all in all, I am EXTREMELY satisfied with my treadmill. There are ways that it could be better (mainly the Bluetooth thing, in my opinion), but it's certainly not enough to knock a star off. If you're looking to switch to a walking desk, I'd humbly suggest that you've found your answer.

Just glad it works!

Review by Marked Twain
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I need to live and work inside for the most part, therefore I'm happy with this. It does the job, though I wouldn't recommend going over 3 mph on it; it's a bit shaky after that, for even a 100 lb person. I couldn't really do design on it at any speed, but writing or surfing the web at 1.2 mph is actually possible. I put a Herman Miller desk over it that has a 20 degree slant, and the ergonomics work out nicely. Moving between this and an exercise ball for periods each day provides welcome change from my chair. Anyone chained to a computer for long periods might want to consider making the investment. If it survives 2 years, I consider that money well spent (on health, not hardware).

Oh, the Envelop desk? Do not buy. It's a wobbly piece of crap unsuitable for real work, and Herman Miller should be ashamed.

Relatively quiet and it works well.

Review by Mainsil
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As the title says, the treadmill is relatively quiet and works well. Subtracting one star due to minor irritations:

1. I have to reset the treadmill just about every day by turning the power off and on in order to get it to work.
2. The windows app is lame; minimal functionality, can't even relocate the window of the application to a different area of the screen.
3. To get the application and the treadmill to talk requires connecting via Bluetooth, which gets tiresome on a daily basis.

Other than that, superb product so far. Of course, at this point I don't know about durability.

Fantastic with one big downside. The step counter is not always accurate if you are running lightly.

Review by David
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This is a fantastic piece of equipment. I am a programmer usually on the computer 8+ hours a day. I built a desk from a steel shelf unit. Since I received it the treadmill 2.5 weeks ago, i have been putting on about 6 miles a day and 20,000+ steps. Varying the speed depending on your activity is critical. Likewise, read the manual on disabling the speed resetter, and beeps etc. Those will drive you crazy.

The BIG downside, at least for me, is that the step counter is not very accurate. I called LifeSpan customer support and they confirmed this is an issue for a lot of people. When I am running at the max speed of 4mph, I run on my toes (barefoot running style) *without* a heel strike. (See book "Born to Run") Because I am running so lightly, the torque sensor in the motor (which senses a step) does not sense my steps accurately. At best it catches every 5th step. This does not seem to be an issue at slower speeds when my heel is striking more heavily (and I'm not on my toes).

But at the end of the day, I don't really mind. (Except that an expensive piece of hardware like this should be better designed)

I am walking all day while I work, staying fit and healthy. I wish I had bought this thing 10 years ago!

Better than I expected...

Review by bjm
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I was worried about the noise and positioning on an existing desk. It's relatively quiet, I'm in an open area and so far seems to be ok. Speed adjustments are fine, can configure the display (and silence it). There are some options I haven't used yet (USB charging and bluetooth)

Like others have mentioned each time you restart it, it starts on the lowest speed. It would be nice to have it resume the previous speed and ramp up slowly.

Love it!

Review by Leslie
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I bought this treadmill because after years of sitting while I work, I started to develop a lot of aches and pains in my legs, back and butt. On the weekend, or on vacation, these went away, so I knew the sitting was the culprit. I tried standing for a while, but I tend to lock my knees so it put too much strain on them. The second I started walking on the treadmill, all my pain went away. The cost is high, but I consider it an investment in my health and future.

The pros: My body feels great, and everything is easy to do while you are walking. I thought there would be some sort of adjustment period while I learned to type and walk, but it was instantaneous. I basically just forget I am walking. No one I speak to on the phone can tell I am walking. If my feet didn't get tired, I could easily walk 9-10 miles per day, but I have settled into a pattern where I walk about 5 (about half my day) and then sit the rest of the day. It's a good balance.

Cons: As other reviews have noted, the console is lame, but I didn't buy it for the console, so my expectations were low and it's not that important to me. I had to build myself a higher desk, and make sure I also had a sitting desk for those times when my feet need a rest, which was a big commitment of time and money, but again, worth it to me. The biggest con for me is that I live in an apartment and even though the treadmill is very quiet in my room and people on the phone can't hear it, my downstairs neighbor can definitely hear me walking. Luckily I have a section of my apartment that is over the vestibule and so I can put the treadmill there and it doesn't bother her, but it could have been a significant problem. I called the company and they had no solution for this.

Overall, I love this thing!

Would Buy Again

Review by A. Millard
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I've been using this constantly since I bought it. Allows me to walk several miles every day while I'm working at my desk. The only irritant: you can't jump to a particular speed. After you press Start, if you want to walk 2.0 miles per hour, you have to press the "Up" speed arrow 16 more times to get up to the desired speed. You get used to it, though.

Really great product

Review by klm
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I have owned this product for a few days and I love it. The treadmill seems to be of good quality construction, of course time will tell if the treadmill continues to work well in the coming months/years.

I spend 10 to 12 hours per day at my desk, mostly writing software. But I also do tech support and manage a network remotely. I find that the treadmill is a little too distracting at this point to write software while walking. But I love the treadmill for doing tech support and other administrative tasks. I have a sit-stand desk, and I roll the treadmill into place under my desk whenever I want to walk while working. Then I roll the treadmill away from my desk when I want to lower the desk to work seated in a chair. The treadmill weights about 115 lbs, so moving it back and forth might be challenging for someone who is slightly built. This treadmill weighs much less than other treadmills though.

Some of the other reviews mention frustration with the control panel. I do not feel frustrated with the control panel - I think it works well. The control panel does not remember the last speed entered, so that would be a nice feature for the next revision. Perhaps a slow acceleration to the last speed, I know the manufacturers are concerned about lawsuits from starting at high speeds (spoke with them on the phone).

Overall this seems to be a great product.

It's good NOT to be idle at a desk job

Review by James M.
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Loving the treadmill. I had a standing desk already and I love walking a few hours at work each day. Would highly recommend.

If the manufacture were to want to improve on this model, you have to single tap on the speed up button for each .1 MPH you want. It would be nice if you could hold it down. Also, I've had to tape the cord to the back and side for when I slide it in and out.

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