Sunday, April 13, 2014

Maximize the Elliptical Trainer

Sometimes your schedule causes you to miss your favorite class at the gym and you find yourself in the cardio machine room, dismayed by the thought of a boring workout. Or you are nursing an injury and want a workout with less impact on knees or other joints. Or you just want to mix up your regular workout plan. These tips can make your time on the elliptical trainer interesting & effective and make the time fly by while you burn calories and strengthen muscle.

Bun Burner: When striding forward for the entire exercise time, the quads are often more developed than the back of your lower body. To activate the glute muscle and maintain muscle balance, reverse your stride. Drop the hips and steady the body in a lower position. Pedal backward, pressing the heel through the rotation.

Up Tempo: For beginners, aim to get the heart rate to 75% of its maximum. Experienced exercisers should aim for 80- 85% of their max. Try increasing the resistance on the machine in short, 5 minute segments with 1 minute recovery periods.

Mix It Up: Change resistance and speed throughout the exercise to keep the mind and body guessing. Try to shift focus every 2 - 3 minutes.

*Try striding forward then shift to striding backward.
*First push with your right arm only, then the left.
*Sprint for 45 seconds with hands on hips.
*Pull with the arms instead of pushing.
*Squat throughout the stride.
*Do hill sprints - Stride as fast as you can for 30 seconds, starting with medium resistance.Recover for 30 seconds. Each minute, increase resistance until you reach maximum.

While using the elliptical trainer, keep a tall posture and always maintain a bend in your knees and elbows to prevent injury. You can burn up to 512 calories an hour and challenge your body with a great workout anytime with an elliptical trainer.

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