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TOPIC: Burning Fat on an Elliptical

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July 26, 2012 8:09 AM
What is the best way to use an elliptical for burning fat?

Fast or Slow pace?
High or low resistance?
Etc

I have a hard time staying on my elliptical for longer than 15 minutes no matter the settings; I'm obviously very out of shape. Each time I do a little better though, so now I just want to make sure I'm using it to my advantage.
July 26, 2012 8:11 AM
if you are doing it for 15 minutes, i'd go with high intensity intervals
July 26, 2012 8:12 AM
Shorter time + higher intensity for the short burst of exercise.
Longer time + lower intensity so you can keep up a steady pace during the workout.

That's how I do it anyway. :)
July 26, 2012 8:12 AM
It's all a matter of preference. It takes some time to get used to. Just increase the length of time or resistance by 10% each week. This will build your endurance. I usually do Interval training on mine. Good luck finiding out what works best
Edited by kaa02c On July 26, 2012 8:13 AM
  17225417
July 26, 2012 8:13 AM
I use the weight loss program on resistance level 2 my elliptical. It is a 30 minute program and I am up to 20 minutes. Any pace on an elliptical will burn fat. It is a full body engaging exercise. Just pace yourself and enjoy it!
July 26, 2012 8:14 AM
I use the weight loss program on the eliptical if I am strictly using it for burning calories. If I am going to endurance I will use the hill program. You definitely feel it in different areas. I love the eliptical for a quick workout too because you can burn a high amount of calories in the least amount of time vs a treadmill or walking/jogging.

I alternate days with weights so I am mixing it up and not doing the same thing all the time.
July 26, 2012 8:15 AM
QUOTE:

Shorter time + higher intensity for the short burst of exercise.
Longer time + lower intensity so you can keep up a steady pace during the workout.

That's how I do it anyway. :)


I recommend this.
July 26, 2012 8:16 AM
High intensity interval training (HIIT) is one of the best ways to burn fat, especially in a shorter period of exercise time, but they are definitely intense. :)

Basically you want warm up for a few minutes, then start to do a cycle: Do a burst of high speed, high resistance, and then a recovery period at slower speed, lower resistance. For example, I will use resistance level 16 (out of 20) for 20s at about 85-90 rpm, and then do 1:40 recovery at resistance 7 at about 70 rpm.
  24232944
July 26, 2012 8:16 AM
I use the interval program when I'm on it. In a 15-minute program I think it might cycle too fast, though, so you might need to check that. (If it's moving your elevation/resistance back and forth every 10 seconds it could be kind of weird.) Play around with the programs a little and see what is comfortable for you. I think it matters more that you're actually *doing* it, not necessarily that you're doing a particular program - especially if the difficulty level is taking you off of the machine faster. Start slow and get accustomed to the machine and how it works your body, so you know what your abilities and limitations are - and then work gradually to increase your abilities and reduce any limitations that aren't hard and fast (e.g. something like severe arthritis).
Edited by Wenchilada On July 26, 2012 8:17 AM
July 26, 2012 8:20 AM
I have been doing level 12 for 30 minutes...seems to be helping my weight loss
  13573386
July 26, 2012 8:24 AM
Life Fitness machine then, X-train if it has that function, fast, slow, resistance up, resistance down, concentrate on upper body, concentrate on lower body all automatic.

And yes to high intensity intervals, if you know how to do them on an elliptical machine.

Better still and it seems that you may find cardio machines a bit dull, take this challenge

50 squats
25 left leg lunges
25 right leg lunges
50 jumping jacks
25 press ups - use knees
25 squats
15 left leg lunges
15 right leg lunges
25 jumping jacks
30 seconds PLANK
rest I minute and 30 seconds plank - this should take about 15 minutes. Raise heart rate to cardio levels and hit your muscles.

You rest as and when you need it, but try to complete in one go. Do it at least 3 times a week, time each session and after a month amaze yourself with your progress.
July 26, 2012 8:27 AM
I had good results doing interval sessions on the elliptical, I would do 30s slow pace followed by a 30s sprint on it, than the next minute a 20 second rest, 20 second sprint and another 20 second rest, than 10 on and off for a minute, after those 3 minutes I would start the process from beggining again, good luck :)
  26228884
July 26, 2012 8:27 AM
QUOTE:

Shorter time + higher intensity for the short burst of exercise.
Longer time + lower intensity so you can keep up a steady pace during the workout.

That's how I do it anyway. :)


SAME as above, it really depends on your preference....you will burn fat either way.

Oh PS. if you go backwards it really works on your GLUTES! iE...YOUR butt...AMAZING x
  4703198
July 26, 2012 8:28 AM
HIGH resistance.

Also intervals in the elliptical. Good - Elliptical interval work out - there is a ton out there on the net!
  675779
July 26, 2012 8:29 AM
I would fluctuate the intensity levels throughout the workout, do intervals of high then do a low pace, which will get your heart rate going while also reaching maximum performance.
  24017416
July 26, 2012 8:30 AM
slow speed high resistance
July 26, 2012 8:32 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Shorter time + higher intensity for the short burst of exercise.
Longer time + lower intensity so you can keep up a steady pace during the workout.

That's how I do it anyway. :)


SAME as above, it really depends on your preference....you will burn fat either way.

Oh PS. if you go backwards it really works on your GLUTES! iE...YOUR butt...AMAZING x


This, but I also switch up the programs and change the intensity levels of the programs to mix it up. And I also don't do it all the time. Only on my recovery weeks.
July 26, 2012 8:33 AM
If I am lifting that day I do 30 minutes on level 8 but I break it up in two 15 min sessions. One before weights one after, keeps metabolism up long after work out. No lifting I do 45 mins on level 8-12, I start at 8 then increase every 5 mins or so. Helps with my weight loss. Also you can do more than you think you can, just get in your zone and work through the burn. You would be amazed at how long you can really stay on there. I am a good 20 lbs over weight and my heart rate is in the 170's and up, sweat just pouring off, and my legs are burning. But what do you want more to get off the elliptical or to lose weight. Music helps me think of something other than the burn. :) Good luck!!!
July 26, 2012 8:33 AM
I like to do 30 minutes on the weightloss/fat burning programme but only on level 1. I try to go as fast as i can and keep up the intensity and speed. To make it harder try not to hold onto the handles and keep your abs tight, i find this really help to tone my back and sides whereas when i hold the handles it tones my arms and chest.
  3844964
July 26, 2012 8:46 AM
QUOTE:

Life Fitness machine then, X-train if it has that function, fast, slow, resistance up, resistance down, concentrate on upper body, concentrate on lower body all automatic.

And yes to high intensity intervals, if you know how to do them on an elliptical machine.

Better still and it seems that you may find cardio machines a bit dull, take this challenge

50 squats
25 left leg lunges
25 right leg lunges
50 jumping jacks
25 press ups - use knees
25 squats
15 left leg lunges
15 right leg lunges
25 jumping jacks
30 seconds PLANK
rest I minute and 30 seconds plank - this should take about 15 minutes. Raise heart rate to cardio levels and hit your muscles.

You rest as and when you need it, but try to complete in one go. Do it at least 3 times a week, time each session and after a month amaze yourself with your progress.


this sounds very similar to the 30 day shred
  20409350
July 26, 2012 8:57 AM
I'd start by building up some endurance. Take a modest resistance that you can comfortably do but isn't super easy and if you can do it for 15 minutes, then the next day shoot for 17, then try to up it a few minutes every week until you can do 30 minutes or momre. Then I'd look at some interval training. I will go for 2 minutes pretty hard at a modest setting and then 2 minutes at much higher resistance for 2 minutes and alternate back and forth on 2 minute intervals for 30-60 minutes (I do day 1 at 40 min, day 3 at 50 min and day 5 at 60 min with strength training on days 2, 4 and 6). If you have an elevation setting then increase it along with the resistance on the "work" segments and then decrease it along with the resistance on the "rest" segments. I never really rest but I like the varying resistance and elevation. You can do the same thing on a treadmill. This is a great cardio workout and it burns a lot of calories. I do this 3 times a week and then I do a shorter version 3 times a week at 15-20 minutes before strength training. It really pays off to work on strengthening and toning muscles a you lose weight, fat and inches. If it has a heart rate monitor (or better yet buy a chest strap heart rate monitor) then I like to pay close attention to the heart rate and during the low resistance/elevation segments be in the 130s (once I get warmed up which takes a few minutes) and then well into the 140s or even 150s during the high resistance/elevation segments. If your desire is to burn fat then I'd recommend this along with a good strength training program. I have found it most effective in terms of burning fat, losing weight and inches to do things at a higher intensity than the "Fat Burning" programs on most elliptical which opt for a much lower resistance at a much lower heart rate. In order to really burn the same amount of fat and calories you have to do it for a much longer period of time which can be an issue and the longer times make my feet and sometimes knees hurt. Good luck
  14124513
July 26, 2012 9:10 AM
Interval training is a great way to burn more calories but it isn't necessarily easy to do if you are just starting out.

If you can only do 15 mins try taking a break for a few minutes and get back on. It will help you build endurance too.

I do interval training on the elliptical machine. I change my speed not resistance because it is easier for me to get through my workout...maybe someday I will work my way to changing the resistance but for now it is about burning calories. I use my music to gauge my speed some days...the right music can make or break your workout some days. Other days I just time it. 3 minutes normal speed (5) and 2 minutes fast pace (6-8)...but that is what works for me.

But you will burn more fat/calories the longer your on the machine do whatever works for you to get the time up...your body will burn more calories per min the longer you workout. Plug in to some music and go! There are a lot of people who have lost weight just 15 minutes at a time...good luck
July 26, 2012 10:36 AM
QUOTE:

QUOTE:

Life Fitness machine then, X-train if it has that function, fast, slow, resistance up, resistance down, concentrate on upper body, concentrate on lower body all automatic.

And yes to high intensity intervals, if you know how to do them on an elliptical machine.

Better still and it seems that you may find cardio machines a bit dull, take this challenge

50 squats
25 left leg lunges
25 right leg lunges
50 jumping jacks
25 press ups - use knees
25 squats
15 left leg lunges
15 right leg lunges
25 jumping jacks
30 seconds PLANK
rest I minute and 30 seconds plank - this should take about 15 minutes. Raise heart rate to cardio levels and hit your muscles.

You rest as and when you need it, but try to complete in one go. Do it at least 3 times a week, time each session and after a month amaze yourself with your progress.


this sounds very similar to the 30 day shred


I have no idea what a 30 day shred is. That to me is just a nice simple full body workout which raises heart rate and works muscle which is more interesting than cardio machines and I believe more fun. We do not have to be slaves to machines, machines are our "slaves"
July 26, 2012 10:38 AM
Honestly, do intervals. A low intensity for the first 5 minutes, then start doing 30 seconds on a super high intensity at a fast pace, then break for 30 seconds, and go back and forth as such.

Don't use the arms when you're doing high intensity and just focus on the legs.
July 26, 2012 10:39 AM
QUOTE:

Life Fitness machine then, X-train if it has that function, fast, slow, resistance up, resistance down, concentrate on upper body, concentrate on lower body all automatic.

And yes to high intensity intervals, if you know how to do them on an elliptical machine.

Better still and it seems that you may find cardio machines a bit dull, take this challenge

50 squats
25 left leg lunges
25 right leg lunges
50 jumping jacks
25 press ups - use knees
25 squats
15 left leg lunges
15 right leg lunges
25 jumping jacks
30 seconds PLANK
rest I minute and 30 seconds plank - this should take about 15 minutes. Raise heart rate to cardio levels and hit your muscles.

You rest as and when you need it, but try to complete in one go. Do it at least 3 times a week, time each session and after a month amaze yourself with your progress.

This sounds so doable once I can't train outside in the winter. Thanks for thisflowerforyou
  3864577

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