There are various ways to get an excellent cardio workout from home. Treadmills have been around for decades, and there is always the trusty stair-stepper. However, both of these machines can put a great deal of stress on your joints. Then there is the elliptical machine.
Over the last three decades, the elliptical has become an increasingly popular piece of exercise equipment. Here are some benefits to explain why elliptical workouts have become so popular, followed by some common questions about using an elliptical.
Various pieces of fitness equipment provide different benefits. Likewise, there are multiple advantages to using an elliptical as opposed to a treadmill, exercise bicycle or stair-stepper. You can burn calories and build strength using an elliptical as well. Here's an explanation of five benefits of using an elliptical machine.
Hitting a target heart rate is essential for you to maximize the aerobic benefits of a workout. With an elliptical workout, you can push yourself to this optimal level without the unnecessary pounding on your joints.
This is possibly the most significant advantage of an elliptical machine over other forms of cardio equipment. Many beginners ask themselves the question, is the elliptical good cardio? Because of the increase in aerobic capacity, it is a great cardio machine.
Increasing the aerobic capacity during a workout is target number one. To reach and maintain this level of aerobic benefit, the length of your workout is essential. Again, to help increase the duration of aerobic exercise, elliptical benefits from the non-impact motion of the platforms.
Incorporate the movement of your arms when pulling and pushing on the handles, and you have a total body workout. By altering the resistance levels during your workouts, you can also build strength and muscle tone while burning off calories.
The lower body is the primary target of an elliptical. It provides a combination movement of gliding and gentle rotation that is easy on your joints. You can work every muscle in your lower body as well.
Pedaling forward mainly exercises your calves and thighs, while the reverse motion helps develop the hamstrings and gluteus muscles.
The final benefit of an elliptical workout, as opposed to other fitness machines, blends each of the previous four. Since you can work out longer at higher aerobic intensity, you'll burn more calories.
The ability to combine both upper and lower body movements further increases the total calorie burn. Calculating your total calories burned must consider your weight and the length of each session.
On average, a 120-pound person will burn approximately 540 calories during a moderate one-hour training session. Using the same weight and one-hour length of workout, and this same person would burn 168 calories using a treadmill at 3 mph.
Since you can exercise for more extended periods on an elliptical machine without undue stress on your joints, you will burn more calories. Calories are the chief cause of belly fat, so elliptical machines will help you lose belly fat.
This answer is yes as well. Beyond allowing you to exercise for more extended periods, using an elliptical machine burns nearly triple the number of calories per workout. Therefore, they are a great way to lose weight.
You can get more than just a good workout on an elliptical machine. You can go both forwards and backward to work different muscle groups in your legs, plus the push and pull motion of the handles will exercise your upper body as well.
The length of your elliptical workouts should be determined by your fitness level. You can get a quick workout in 15 to 20 minutes, but to maximize calorie burn and muscle toning, elliptical workouts should be between 30 minutes and one hour.
While this question can involve personal preference, the physiological answer is definitely yes. No matter whether you walk, jog or run on a treadmill, there is a degree of stress on your joints, but when you use an elliptical machine, there is virtually little or no stress.
Here are four basic workouts you can do on your elliptical machine. Each one can be helpful depending on your particular long and short-term fitness goals. Remember, even if you're working out on your home elliptical, you should be sure to have a medical checkup before starting any fitness program.
A good beginner workout will target multiple body parts, but never overly stress your body. This workout is designed to gradually get you comfortable as a beginner with both exercises itself, and the motion of the elliptical machine.
Interval workouts can be flexible. When you rotate between forwards and backward peddling, you are essentially doing a basic interval program. However, when you raise and lower the resistance during particular segments, you do what is called interval training. Elliptical interval training is a great fat burning elliptical workout.
The elliptical machine is for more than just a low impact workout. The moving handles with resistance allow you to perform a total body workout. You can shape and tone or build muscle strength and size doing this total body program.
When you're on a rigid time schedule, that's when an elliptical machine can be beneficial. Since you can target just about every muscle in your body, you can get a solid workout on your elliptical machine, even if you're pressed for time.
The elliptical machine ushered in a new era in fitness. It provides health and fitness enthusiasts with a low-impact motion where you can train vigorously and still be gentle on your joints. For a stronger, leaner and healthier body, without undue stress on your joints, try using an elliptical machine. If you're looking for the best elliptical for home use, please review my extensive guide.