How Much Time Should You Really Spend On The Elliptical?

For years, the elliptical has been a popular choice for aerobic exercise, or as you may call it, cardio. A good option for people of all fitness levels, the elliptical is a low impact machine that can deliver a high impact workout. With the ability to target different muscles along with varying intensities, this machine is great for those of all fitness levels. As effective as this machine may be, the question still remains... how much time spent sweating is needed to yield results?

According to Women's Health, results can be found in just 15 minutes. Research shows 15 minutes a day of high-intensity exercise can increase your lifespan, burn more calories, and increase your brainpower. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is an effective method for burning fat in a short amount of time and can be achieved on the elliptical by increasing the intensity settings or implementing a HIIT program (via Verywell Health). While a 15-minute workout is appealing, for many people the high-intensity part... not so much.

HIIT vs. LISS on the elliptical

If you cringe at the thought of a high-intensity workout but still want to stride on the elliptical, have no fear. According to Vogue, you can lose weight and enjoy other health benefits with low-intensity steady state cardio (LISS). The secret to LISS is keeping your heart rate in fat burning range for 30 to 60 minutes (via American Heart Association). Most people can benefit from LISS and according to celebrity trainer Obi Obadike, M.S., it is a good option for beginners, pregnant women, and those who lack mobility and endurance (via Bodybuilding).

The elliptical is versatile, with most including pre-programmed workouts for all fitness levels. If you are too advanced for LISS, but HIIT scares you, choose a moderate intensity 30-minute workout, which can burn up to 335 calories (via Livestrong). Knowing your own body and limitations is important with any exercise routine, so choose your intensity and duration accordingly. If you are new to the world of fitness, give the elliptical a chance — and pat yourself on the back because no matter how long you stride for, any movement is better than no movement.