EUGENE -- Think of riding an elliptical machine out the front door of your health club and down the street.
Brent Teal and Bryan Pate have invented just such a fantasy, called the EliptiGO. It combines running and cycling in one pedaling machine.
“Early on we focused on filing patents and protecting the intellectual product," said Teal, a Eugene native. "In that phase, I built prototypes out of things in my garage with things I had."
The longtime friends were a good match. Teal was the engineer and Pate the marketer.
"We did a lot of iteration," Teal said, "before we produced a product that we could market and sell to people.”
And right now, the ElliptiGO is turning skeptics into believers.
The two started working on the product five years ago. Both were die hard runners and felt that it was the perfect machine for staying fit and injury-free.
The ElliptiGO is low-impact and high output, meaning less wear and tear on the knees and joints than hard pavement.
“Imagine you are going running at 20 miles an hour," Teal said, "They are long gliding stride lengths. Honestly, you really feel like how it would be to be an Olympic sprinter.”
The pair have produced 400 of the ElliptiGO machines and demand remains greater than supply. Customers have ordered from them worldwide, even with a $2,199 price tag for the 40-pound unit.
Despite the weight, Teal said the ElliptiGO was nimble enough to cruise around 20 mph. In fact, he just rode one on last weekend's Seattle to Portland ride, completing the 200-mile ride in 13 hours.
“We get a lot of great reactions when people first see these," Teal said, "They’ve never seen anything like it before.”