So I just got myself an Elliptical machine... What to do now? Any tips??

  • DJZ77

    Posts: 381

    Jan 29, 2009 9:05 PM GMT
    I'm just wondering if anyone has any tips. Can I just say that I've been using it everyday since I got it. I do about 30 minutes, should I be doing more? Oh and my ASS hurts icon_eek.gif ... ha ha... it literally is sore (and not in THAT way, y'all can stop chuckling now). I don't recall using any other type of machine that made my ass sore... It's freakin' Awesome. I haven't been this motivated about getting back in shape in ages. Shelling out a decent amount of bucks on this piece of equipment is the best thing I've done for myself in some time. I want to get the best use out of this machine as possible, hence my request for advice. Thanks guys!
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    Jan 29, 2009 11:04 PM GMT
    If I may ask... which one did you buy, where did you get it, and for how much? I've thought about getting one myself.
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    Jan 29, 2009 11:24 PM GMT
    As my trainer said first day, "Here are the exercise machines that they sell gym memberships with... we won't we using them...get down on the floor" . That was almost 2 years ago. I see the same guys on those machines. They gets fatter and fatter but probably workout 4 times more than i do.
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Jan 30, 2009 12:57 AM GMT
    I get bored by cardio machines. My trainer only has me use them as a warm-up to get my heart pumping. I use the elliptical for about 10 minutes, stretch, then on to my workout.

  • Jan 30, 2009 3:41 AM GMT
    According to Men's Health eliptical machines misrepresent calories burned by 30% or so...so take that into account.
  • DJZ77

    Posts: 381

    Jan 30, 2009 5:40 PM GMT
    Hey guys,

    Thanks for the info and advice!

    Alpha13 and EricLA... ok, so I know that it's not all about the cardio, I'm aware that I have to include some anaerobic stuff as well. So my question is the following....

    My main goal for the moment is to lean out. I need to shed the fat... so I thought I needed to concentrate more on the cardio and modify my diet, which I've started to work on. Do I have this mixed up? I figured I would up on the anaerobic after dropping some pounds.

    Keep those comments coming!
  • TR_Latitude10

    Posts: 206

    Jan 30, 2009 10:34 PM GMT
    I started getting back in shape this past Sept. The elliptical machine at the gym and I have become very good friends. So far, I've lost 37 lbs with about 10 more to go. Keep modifying your elevation and resistance on the machine and do a HIIT program 2-3 times/week.

    As for diet, I read the south beach diet book and the P90X nutrition book to set more guidelines as to how much food I should be consuming.

    Lastly, you gotta have some great music to jam to since the machine does get monotonous. The playlist suggestions on this site are fantastic.

    Good Luck...
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    Jan 30, 2009 10:36 PM GMT
    my trainer said that if u dont hold the handles that go back and forth and hold onto the handles in the middle that dont move and just focus on ur legs and going a faster pace its a better workout just passing alot what he said icon_smile.gif
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Jan 30, 2009 10:39 PM GMT
    It will help shed the pounds, but I would keep up with lifting weights so you don't get flabby and discouraged.

    The important thing is that you're doing something. Just do all you can to keep it up. Peddle backwards mix it up, listen to music or watch tv or even read. Eliptical can get boring-don't let it!

    Good Luck!!

    mike3
  • CAtoFL

    Posts: 834

    Jan 30, 2009 10:53 PM GMT
    I have a Star Trac in my living room and like most of the above posters say, it's about getting into the rhythm and just going until your time goal is reached. TV helps, music helps (there are some amazing podcasts that are mixed to the beat and they're free) and even reading helps if you're not going too hard to make it difficult.

    Don't be discouraged by the negativity of some of the above posts. They're full of sh*t. When I first got into cardio, I lost 60+ pounds using the elliptical and have kept it off while improving on that result. Cardio is always overlooked by folks in the gym who are just there to develop 'movie muscles'. But of course, cardio is critically important if you're talking about your long-term health and fitness and without your heart being healthy, the other muscles really don't mean all that much, do they?

    Congrats and good luck with your elliptical!

  • DJZ77

    Posts: 381

    Jan 31, 2009 3:00 AM GMT
    Again... Thanks to all for the feedback!

    Well for what it's worth, I definitely feel A LOT better since I've started working out on it. As for the motivation, I just crank up my stereo and put my mp3 player on shuffle. I'm a huge clubhead, so I'm not worried about the music getting old, I'm constantly getting new mixsets. That being said, I'll take everything you guys have mentioned into account and I'll keep all of you posted.

    Laters taters... gonna go work out now! icon_razz.gif

    -D
  • cbrock

    Posts: 212

    Mar 06, 2010 9:48 AM GMT
    plug it in and use it... duh! icon_razz.gif
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    Mar 06, 2010 10:14 AM GMT
    OK, not my weapon of choice (I find cardio machines ALL make me feel travel sick, with the exception of spinning bikes and rowing machines, which are kinda different).

    However, that said, you want helpful comments so here are two (1) try doing some fartlek on it. Fartlek is "speed play" and works better in nature as you can run really fast til that tree, or overtake that woman or whatever. On the elliptical you could say run hard until the chorus comes on your ipod. The idea is to mix up all sorts of speeds in a training session. Makes it much harder, but is also quite fun as you can go slow or fast depending on how you feel. you know: 5 mins slow to warm up, then pick up the pace for a few minutes, 30 seconds really hard, 2 mins easy, 10 second "fuck that dog is going to bite me RUN" speed, etc.

    (2) More formalized and harder are intervals. try a 5-10 min warm up then you could do 1 min hard, 2 easy for a total of 15 mins (5 sets) then cool down.

    These will make your sessions more enjoyable, pass quicker and be more profitable than just running slow for 30 mins.

    hope it goes well
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    Mar 06, 2010 2:01 PM GMT
    Lostboy's advice is perfect. When I do cardio, I always try to mix it up. If I'm at the gym, I'll do 10-20 minutes on one machine, 10-20 on another and so on. I usually do cardio for 30-45 minutes on cardio days, and less on the days I lift. I also vary the intensity on the cardio machines as well, like Lostboy suggests.

    It also helps to lift weights when you are trying to lose weight. I had a weird health problem and couldn't lift for about a year without getting a terrible headache for several days. Now that I've solved the problem I've been able to lift I started losing some of the weight I gained. I can fit into pants I haven't worn in a couple of years. Muscles also burn more calories than fat.
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    Mar 06, 2010 4:35 PM GMT
    waxon saidmy trainer said that if u dont hold the handles that go back and forth and hold onto the handles in the middle that dont move and just focus on ur legs and going a faster pace its a better workout just passing alot what he said icon_smile.gif


    Were all the treadmills occupied that day?

    The handles that go back and forth on the elliptical machine are not for holding on to they are for pumping your arms & shoulders simultaneously with your legs. For extra fun do the elliptical backwards it needs all the "fun help" it can get.
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    Mar 06, 2010 7:55 PM GMT
    In the end lifting is really vital for decent weight loss (ie changing body composition). You don´t even need to do normal cardio (you can do circuits and super sets and the effect is enough).

    That said, I used to be a triathlete, and know as well as anyone that steady state cardio can bring a nice buzz. I don´t begrudge that to anyone, and activity will burn calories and therefore help weight loss (diet being sorted already).

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    Mar 06, 2010 8:21 PM GMT
    Lostboy saidIn the end lifting is really vital for decent weight loss (ie changing body composition). You don´t even need to do normal cardio (you can do circuits and super sets and the effect is enough).

    That said, I used to be a triathlete, and know as well as anyone that steady state cardio can bring a nice buzz. I don´t begrudge that to anyone, and activity will burn calories and therefore help weight loss (diet being sorted already).



    I have liked that buzz for 48 years now and yet really like the change up as you put it. I find it all good and as you say it has kept me doing it this long and hopefully longer.

    Your initial statement on weight lifting is right it is vital and also in slowing done the rate of decline we all go through as we age. As I have gotten a tiny bit older it becomes more apparent when together with my college friends that don't workout or do cardio how different the rate of decline is.

    Hey loved your "10 second "fuck that dog is going to bite me RUN" speed"
    Do you have that 2 min " fuck balls out that old guy is going to get me Run" speed"

    Just asking icon_rolleyes.gif Better watch your back icon_cool.gif
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    Mar 06, 2010 8:32 PM GMT
    work up to an hour on the machine and it will significantly change your metabolic rate. There seems to be something special about the hour mark.