Octane Zero Runner ZR8 Review

Editor's Rating: 4.5 /5
Update: This model has been discontinued. To find a suitable replacement, check out our treadmill finder here.


Take your running to the next level with an Octane Zero Runner. The ZR8 is Octane Fitness’ top alternative to treadmills and elliptical cross-trainers. By suspending your whole body, this unique fitness machine eliminates the harsh impact that normally accompanies indoor or outdoor running. While exercising with zero joint compression, you’ll feel less fatigue than usual and will burn calories more efficiently.

Besides replicating running, the Octane ZR8 has other major exercise functions:

  • It can serve as an elliptical trainer and a stair stepper. Take short steps or stretch your legs with an up to 58″ gait, the Zero Runner adjusts automatically.
  • The ZR8 makes total body training easy with its moving arm bars. These let you swing your arms as you normally do when running, but with the benefit of extra resistance.
  • The machine’s frame has seven attachment points for resistance bands. Built-in programs can prompt you to use the bands for cross-training with your cardio workout.

The electronic personal training features are impressive. Access to 35 SmartLink programs is included. These workouts are categorized as Endurance, Toning and Active Recovery. To ensure that you meet each session’s objectives, these programs will automatically recalibrate if you get off track. Additionally the SmartLink app can track and graph workout data, generate long-term workout plans (30-day to 90-day programs) and provide step-by-step video guidance for hundreds of cross-training exercises. There is also a feature called Gait Analysis, which which monitors user posture.

What We Like:

  • Zero Impact: It sounds incredible, but Octane makes it possible to run with zero joint compression. Using this machine can help runners avoid injury and extend their running careers.
  • Multipurpose: The Octane ZR8 can replicate the functions of a treadmill, a stair climber and an elliptical machine with movable arm bars. This three-in-one cardio trainer has seven resistance band attachment points for extra cross-training variety. It arrives with two resistance bands and additional bands are sold separately.
  • Narrow Pedal Spacing: For hip comfort, the ZR8’s pedals are placed just 1.4 inches apart.
  • Lightweight Pedals: Pedals on this top-of-the-line unit are made from aircraft-grade aluminum. They’re especially lightweight to promote endurance. The pedal set on the ZR7 weighs slightly more.
  • Bluetooth: A Bluetooth connection for the SmartLink fitness platform provides access to diverse preset workouts and customized fitness plans. SmartLink also can track and chart fitness data.
  • Tablet Holders: Two tablet computers holders are integrated with the machine.
  • Cardio Feedback: The ZR8 Zero Runner has a contact grip system for heart rate monitoring and arrives with a chest strap for wireless monitoring.
  • Gait Analyzer: Zero Runners promote healthy posture with Gait Analysis technology. This feature alerts you if your form starts to slump, encouraging you to reinvigorate your workout.
  • Home-Friendly: Octane Zero Runners are more compact than traditional home treadmills. The ZR8 Zero Runner measures 38″ wide x 63″ long. It can be used in a low-ceilinged room and doesn’t require a power cord. Transport wheels are attached.
  • Water Bottle Holder: A water bottle holder is built into the console for convenient hydration during workouts.
  • Good Warranty: The manufacturer’s warranty includes lifetime protection for the Zero Runner frame, five years for parts and one year for labor.

Octane Zero Runner ZR8 Treadmill - Key Specs:

Star Rating:4.5-stars
Running Area:n/a
Top Speed:n/a
Weight Capacity:300 LBS
Dimensions:63" L x 38" W x 58" H
Built-In Programs:35 Programs
What We Don’t Like:

Here are possible drawbacks of choosing the ZR8.

  • Not Foldable: This fitness machine is relatively compact, but it can’t be folded for storage.
  • Price: With an MSRP over $4,000, the ZR8 costs more than the typical elite treadmill for runners.

See Octane’s Video Profile Of The Zero Runner

Our Verdict:

Quite appealing to serious runners, the Octane Zero Runner ZR8 is a high-end alternative to traditional training. Its low impact design can help runners improve their performance and minimize strain on their bodies. As a hybrid fitness machine, it can also earn its keep as a cross trainer for the whole body. Highly recommended for anyone seeking a workout that’s low impact on your joints, but high impact on your fitness goals.