As it turns out, the main reason most people prefer using an elliptical machine is its low-impact cardio workouts. As a matter of fact, it’s recommended that everyone gets in at least 150 minutes of intense cardio weekly. This then brings us to today’s main agenda- how can you be able to effectively do this with a cross-trainer?
Since cardio is mostly about keeping in shape by cutting down on your weight, it’s also important to know that you need to stick to a strict low-calorie diet. For starters, you could cut down on carbs by sticking to low carb veggies and increasing protein and healthy fat intake.
At the same time, doing the same thing over and over again won’t get you the results you need. That being said, let’s have a look at some tweaks you can make on your elliptical workouts to get the most out of them.
What about working out on an empty stomach?
Something else worth pointing out is that unlike what most people assume, working out on an empty stomach isn’t the best thing to do. Your blood sugars will be low and you may feel a little light-headed and not go as hard as you normally would. Also, if you don’t eat a light meal prior to a workout, your body may adjust to storing more fat reserves than usual.
Here is a video guide to help you optimize your elliptical workouts.
Table of Contents
1. Don’t always stick to the fat-burning zone
One of the greatest mistakes most people make that results in them lacking in their weight loss journey is always sticking to the ‘fat-burning’ program.
In the fat-burning program, your heart rate will be at about 75% of the maximum. Yes, you’ll burn a great portion of the calories in your body but then they will only be from fats and you’ll leave out the carbs.
On the contrary, you should push yourself more. This way, you get to burn more calories overall that easily include calories in the fat you burn which is the main goal of the whole workout, right?
Additionally, as far as the heart rate is concerned, you should start with a low intensity if you’re a beginner. To determine your maximum heart rate, go ahead and subtract your age from 220, multiply the resulting figure by 0.65, and again by 0.90. this way, you should know the healthy heart rate range for you.
Once you step up the intensity that you are normally used to, you will burn calories even after leaving the gym while your body recovers. This is much better as compared to working out in your fat-burning zone since your calorie-burning power ends as soon as your elliptical workout session is done.
2. Always watch your foot placement
One of the most overlooked aspects when it comes to using an elliptical trainer is foot placement. Most people just hop on and push through with their toes and raise their heels slightly. As small a move as this may seem to be, it ends up slashing your caloric burn.
On the contrary, by pushing through with your entire foot, you’ll engage more muscles in your legs and in doing so burn more calories. The emdaot Elliptical Machine Trainer for Home Use should be great to start with
3. Playing around with the resistance does more for you
You can be able to alter the resistance settings on almost any elliptical trainer nowadays.As such, you ought to take advantage of this feature as much as possible.
The rule of thumb when it comes to getting the most out of the resistance levels is switching between high and low resistance settings. Generally, resistance helps you build more muscle, and even better, you get to burn more calories even after you are done working out.
You shouldn’t be discouraged if you pedal slower than normal as you increase the resistance; it’s natural and worth it in the long run.
4. Spice up your workouts with intervals
Unlike what most people think, intervals can be used in ellipticals just as efficiently as they can be used while cycling or using weights at the gym.
The idea is to start with an intense pedaling for a set period (about 20 seconds)and then recover with a slow pedaling for a shorter period (about 10 seconds). Go ahead and repeat this cycle for a total of 5 minutes.
Once you are done, your body will work hard in recovering the energy stores, and the best part about it is that the fat burning capability of your body will remain elevated for at least 48 hours.
5. Utilize the handles
The best way to lose weight is by engaging as many of your body muscles as you can. Because of this, you must grab the handles and move your arms as you pedal. This however does not mean that you just hold on to the handles for balance. Instead, actively press and pull your arms
By doing this, you’ll not only engage the arms but also the back, core, and shoulders. After all, it is proven that by engaging more muscle groups, you get to burn more calories.
6. Watch yourself exercise when you can
Nothing yields better results than the mind and muscle connection during a workout. This, however, cannot be achieved whatsoever if you’re glued to the TV while trying to get a cardio workout in, right? Watching TV while on your elliptical probably means that you are not pushing yourself to the limit.
On the contrary, it’s quite the opposite if you try climbing on the elliptical while facing a mirror. By doing this, you should be able to perfect the correct form.