3 Tips From a Personal Trainer
Let’s face it – we all want to burn more calories and get more out of our elliptical trainer time. So how do you do it?
Having a personal trainer for a best friend comes in handy sometimes – especially when writing a blog about fitness equipment. So I asked her for 3 top tips on elliptical crosstraining and what she would do to burn more calories.
Here they are:
#1 Don’t Lean On the Handrails
This is a problem especially with cheaper ellipticals.
Cheaper ellipticals (not Nordic track trainers – the kind of crosstrainers you find in the big box department stores that cost you $399 that you can pack up yourself and take home – those kind of cheap ellipticals) are usually designed poorly so that you’re halfway leaning on the handrails.
This means that some of your body weight is also leaning on the handrails as you workout – and you’re burning less calories overall.
However, if you get tired during your workout – even on a quality elliptical – this can also happen as you shift some of your weight to the handrails. My friends advice to me was – don’t do this if you want to burn maximum calories.
It’s better to go slower and stand up straight, without leaning over – than it is to go fast and lean on the handrails. You can still use the arm bars to work your arms – just make sure you’re not using them for support.
#2 Build In High Intensity Intervals
If you want your body to stay burning calories throughout the day (and up to 24 hours after your workout), build in some high intensity intervals.
These don’t have to be long – from 20 seconds to 2 minutes. But the key is to go at a pace where you are out of breath (not dying mind you – just out of breath) and really pushing yourself for a short time.
Then relax. Then repeat. Then relax. Then repeat…you get the idea.
This challenges your body and keeps your metabolism revved on high – even for hours after your workout.
#3 Change It Up – Always
There are a lot of ways to change it up – but the idea is to never let your body be comfortable. Because when it gets comfortable, it gets efficient – and this slows your calorie burning.
So you may change the time of your workout. You might change the style of interval (high resistance, high incline, forwards and backwards motion, arms or no arms, etc.) You might change the length of your regular workout. Whatever it is – just change it up as much as you can.
This is another thing that will help keep your metabolism revved and on high throughout the day.
Most Nordictrack ellipticals have iFit now. With this option you can go online and set goals, see your past performance and track all sorts of stats.
So it’s a great way to see how far you’ve come and challenge yourself to go further. It can make you feel really great about how far you’ve come.
Whatever you choose to do to burn more calories on your elliptical, please remember to listen to your body and never push yourself beyond your limits! Good luck and happy calorie burning!