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Here’s How To Do a HIIT Workout With an Elliptical Machine

When you’re thinking that of HIIT workouts, you likely imagine bootcamp classes like Barry’s,  Orangetheory, or Tone House, aka the toughest workout in America. These intense boutique fitness classes, while modifiable, offer a heart-pumping workout experience that’s sure to go away you breathless, if not aching soon after. That’s one in all the most important downfalls of so many HIIT classes: They will be incredibly high impact, putting your muscles, ligaments, and joints in danger with each lift, jump, and bear crawl. Thankfully, low-impact HIIT workouts exist, too, including HIIT workouts with an elliptical.

Yep, you don’t must shell out the large bucks for an efficient low-impact, high-intensity workout. You can go right over to your gym and hop on an elliptical for a body-quaking regimen that won’t jeopardize your joints.

The advantages of doing HIIT workouts on an elliptical

“Elliptical workouts are an excellent solution to get a difficult cardiovascular workout that’s each low impact, and high intensity,” says BowFlex advisor Amy Schemper, CPT. “Elliptical workouts let you work to your fitness level by changing your resistance and speed accordingly.”

Additionally, HIIT workouts on ellipticals get your heart pumping in record time, making them super effective for high-intensity interval training and cardio alike. “It only takes a number of minutes to spice up your heart rate,” Schemper says. “By increasing your speed, resistance, or each, you may increase the intensity of your workout. If you’re in search of a fast cardio and energy boost, aim for five to 10 minutes on the elliptical with various resistance; if longer endurance training is your goal, 20 to half-hour or more at a gradual resistance and speed is right.”

A serious highlight of elliptical workouts is that they’re accessible for all strength and endurance levels. “Ellipticals work for beginners, who just need to hop on and begin moving, in addition to more advanced exercisers, who utilize the resistance and speed for HIIT and endurance training,” Schemper says.

Another highlight? You can easily multitask while figuring out on an elliptical—even in case you’re going all out. Whether you’re on the gym or at home, you may watch your favorite shows, take heed to entertaining podcasts, and even read a book.

How to do a HIIT workout with an elliptical

Simply hopping on the elliptical and moseying along won’t provide you with the blood-pumping effect of HIIT. To significantly boost your heart rate, Schemper says it’s good to tailor the resistance and be mindful of the dimensions of your steps and where you’re putting your hands.

“Your resistance shall be determined by a variety of aspects: your individual fitness level, how long you’ll be on the elliptical, and what your workout goals are,” she says. “It’s a very good idea to begin with a fast warm-up of a number of minutes at a low resistance—between one to 3 minutes—then progress to a resistance that makes it slightly more difficult in the course of the bulk of the workout. If you’re working in intervals, you may increase your intensity or speed for a brief burst of 20 to 30 seconds, then get better at a lower resistance for 30 to 90 seconds.”

When it involves increasing intensity, you would like to work at 70–90 percent of your maximum heart rate during work intervals. So on rate of perceived exertion (RPE) scale, that’s a seven to nine out of 10, with 10 being all-out effort.

The reason the dimensions of your steps matter is because stride plays a direct role in how briskly you’ll have the option to maneuver. “Your stride length on the elliptical should resemble your individual walking or running pace, so it’s essential to be moving comfortably,” Schemper says. “Taking smaller steps permits you to increase your speed, but decrease your resistance, often working the calf muscles more intensely; larger steps increase your resistance, working all of your lower-body muscles and improving range of motion.”

Lastly, your hands. According to Schemper, hold onto the handles. Unlike holding onto a treadmill mid-stride, using your hands on an elliptical doesn’t cheat your muscles. Rather, it makes you more stable, allowing you to exercise more safely, while also providing a full-body workout.

“The handles provide safety and form and may increase muscle involvement in your workout—use them to take care of proper posture, keeping your chest open, shoulders back, and core engaged,” she says, noting that it’s nice to lean forward barely, as long as you may maintain a straight spine. “The handles are also connected to the resistance of the elliptical, allowing you to push and pull along with your upper body. This affords you a possibility to have interaction your arms, shoulders, back, and core, while also taking a few of the load off your legs.”

HIIT elliptical workouts to try

Now that you already know the importance of resistance, stride, and hand grip, it’s time to speak sequences. According to Schemper, it’s best to maintain it easy. “After a two to 3 minute warm-up, increase your resistance, speed, or incline for 30 seconds, then decrease for a 60-second recovery,” she instructs. During recovery, take into consideration dialing things back to a two to 5 on the RPE scale, depending on how hard you’re working.

Another option? Maintain your intensity at some point of your work out, but changing the resistance. To achieve this, follow Schemper’s guidelines, below.

10 Minute HIIT: (Complete a 2–3 minute warm-up at a low intensity before starting the workout below.)

  • Minute 1: Resistance 1
  • Minute 2: Resistance 3
  • Minute 3: Resistance 2
  • Minute 4: Resistance 5
  • Minute 5: Resistance 4
  • Minute 6: Resistance 7
  • Minute 7: Resistance 6
  • Minute 8: Resistance 9
  • Minute 9: Resistance 8
  • Minute 10: Cooldown: Resistance 2–3

Lastly, Schemper suggests a pyramid HIIT workout. Following a two to 3 minute warm-up at a low resistance, she says to extend the resistance by one for one minute. Once the 60 seconds are complete, rest for 60 seconds, then increase the resistance to the subsequent level (so level 2). Once you hit the highest of your pyramid, rest for 60 seconds, then work your way back down in the identical fashion.

Ultimately, the length of your pyramid workout will rely on how much time you’ve, but as a general rule of thumb, HIIT workout needs to be not more than half-hour, it you’re truly going all out.

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