Elliptical trainers have become increasingly popular and are seen in many gyms and homes across the country. Athletes use elliptical machines as a way to improve strength and fitness. They are an excellent alternative to other cardiovascular machines. Essentially, ellipticals are a cross between a treadmill and a stairlift, with the upper-body work with arm levers. They can be customized to different fitness levels, are simple to use, and a good way to burn calories.
The number of calories burned on an elliptical varies depending on your weight, how long you use the machine and your workout intensity.
Here are some examples of how many calories a person would burn during a moderately demanding workout on an elliptical: A person weighing 125 pounds would burn 322 calories by working for 30 minutes and 645 calories by working for 60 minutes. A person weighing 150 pounds would burn 386 calories by working out for 30 minutes and 773 in 60 minutes. A person weighing 175 pounds would burn 451 calories in 30 minutes and 902 in 60 minutes.
You can increase the number of calories you burn by increasing the tension on the machine. Most ellipticals have voltage or resistance settings. When you increase this setting, the machine requires more work from you to move forward at the same speed, so your body is forced to work harder and burn more calories.
Adding training also burns more calories. Instead of staying at one speed while exercising, increase the resistance setting for 30 to 60 seconds, recover to a lower setting for 30 to 60 seconds, and repeat this cycle for 10-20 minutes. Interval workouts challenge your heart and muscles to work harder for short bursts, ultimately burning more calories.
As with many exercise machines, an elliptical is only as effective as you make it. Because you choose the settings for the duration, speed, and resistance, you can control how much benefit. If it’s too easy, you won’t be able to benefit from the exercise. Choose a setting that will challenge your body, burn more calories, and strengthen the cardiovascular and muscular systems as much as possible.