One of the exercise equipment to have become favorite of the gym goers in the last few years is the elliptical trainer. The reason this machine has scored over the ever favorite treadmill is because it is not difficult on the joints. Added to it is the fact, one can practice a number of different movements with the elliptical, which is not the case with the other exercise machines. As much as one can move the legs forward, the legs can also be moved backwards. It works not just the lower body, but also the upper body, all the while the focus of this machine is on the core. To derive the best benefits from an elliptical trainer, the tips for an elliptical workout come in handy.
Tips for Elliptical Workout
According to me, the best advantage of using an elliptical trainer is the fact, that it gives a whole body workout, but it is gentle on all joints. Using the machine regularly will give a number of benefits, other than just weight maintenance and weight loss. It will also help in building endurance, promote cell growth in bones and prevent osteoporosis.
Stretching: Before you start with the elliptical workout, it is important that you perform some stretches. It is a good practice to march on the spot for 5 to 7 minutes or jog before you do the stretches. This will ensure that your muscles are not cold, before you stretch. Stretches also should be done after your finish with your workout.
Strides Per Minute: When you are working out on an elliptical, it is important that attention be paid to the strides per minute. It is the number of times the pedal completes one rotation. It is best to keep the strides per minute anywhere between 140 to 160 strides. If you are doing interval training then the strides per minute should be closer to 160.
Use your Feet: This is a tip, which 'must' be followed by any one who wants to work the thigh muscles. When you are using the elliptical it is important that you make use of the heel the maximum. It will not only work the calf muscles, but pressure will also be exerted on the hamstrings and on the buttocks. On the other hand, if you use your toes, then pressure will be exerted on the quadriceps. Depending on your needs, you can choose to focus on any one part of the feet.
Work your Arms: If you have fighting your bulky arms, then you will want to ensure that the arms are also exercised. Although you should let the legs do most of the work, there should be some part of the work, that needs to be left to the arms as well. Using your arms and legs equally will give you a great cardiovascular workout. The number of calories burned on elliptical, when both the hands and legs are used equally are always on the higher side.
Work the Core: Most of us focus a lot of attention on the hands and legs and forget the main part of the body the core. One of the elliptical workout tips, when you want to work the core is that you should let the legs do all the work and do not use your arms at all. Initially you will want to be a little careful, as using only the legs can challenge your balance, but it also works the core immensely. When you are not using your arms, you will want to take care and ensure you are not swaying from one side to another. Placing the hands on the hips will prove to be of help in this case.
Change Routine: According to me this is the most important of all the elliptical machine workout tips. It is important that the elliptical workout plan be altered at regular intervals. Varying the workout ensures you are not bored of the workout and give up on the routine rather easily. There are some people, who choose to work only one part of the body with the elliptical trainer on a given day. The next day another part of the body is used. This ensures that the person is not bored of the workout.
Do NOT Push Yourself Beyond Limits: It is commonly seen that a number of people push themselves beyond their limits in the initial few days. This can lead to health problems, which is not something that you really desire. The other thing is that you may discontinue with the workout rather sooner than expected.
These were important elliptical workout tips, which will go a long way in changing your workout routine. After you have finished with your workout do spare sometime for a cool down. Most people forget their cool down it is important to note that as much are the warm ups important the cool downs also have an important role to play. If you suffer from any health problems, consult your physician before you start with your elliptical workout.