I know that elliptical exercise machines are pretty common, but whether many people use it, I'm not sure. However, I do know that there have been arguments as to whether this particular fitness equipment makes the cut to be granted the title of being the best out of all home exercise machines.
Now, for those who aren't sure, the picture on the right shows you what such an elliptical machine looks like. This machine currently sits in my living room. It was bought by my mom 6 years ago, but I never really used it because I was never a fan of remaining stationary when I exercised.
Due to this particular fact, I've always preferred going out and running around my neighborhood. Trust me, it's really interesting to see what other people squabble about, how fashion victims dress, to take in new sights and sounds, admire greenery (as much greenery as you can get in Singapore, dubbed "the Concrete Jungle") and most importantly, try different routes.
I get bored easily and I have to make it a point to change my running location every month or so because if I don't, I won't have the drive to get myself out of the house to run.
To be frank, when I saw the deliverymen bringing it into the living room 6 years ago, I thought it was a piece of junk. Really, how much workout can that give you? I didn't really try it at all. My mom was enthusiastic at first, but after a while she stopped using it too, and it's been declared a "piece of relic" by my parents.
However, when my friend told me to do a review on it, I thought that perhaps I should give it a try, since it was one of the few machines that I've not really tried before. From the moment I stepped on, I took back my words.
It was an incredibly challenging workout. See, the thing about elliptical trainers is that, you don't set any speed (as compared to treadmills), what you do is you set the intensity at which you want to run. This intensity was what made me perspire furiously. I prematurely assumed that since it's so old, it won't give me much of a challenge, so I set it to level 8, which was the highest intensity for this particular model.
I ran for 2 miles on it, and I felt like I ran 10. It was one of the best cardio sessions that I've ever had. When I headed out to run, I would run anything from 5 to 10 miles and I would be perspiring, but I never perspired as much as I did after doing the elliptical cross trainer, even after running 10 miles.
I must say that in my honest opinion, elliptical exercise machines are the best. Seriously.
As I mentioned before, treadmills require you to set a speed setting which I find extremely annoying because I don't run at a constant pace. I tend to be fast for a set period of time, slow down, speed up again and this can be very cumbersome to do on a treadmill.
Usually, (on those few occasions) when my friends drag me to a gym, and I'll get on a treadmill, I burn out really quickly because I'm not able to run at my natural rhythm. I'm forced to follow a set tempo which is not favorable for me.
Elliptical exercise machines are different because you can pretty much go at any speed you want (provided you can handle the resistance that you set for yourself). Just push with your legs and steady yourself by holding on to the arm pedals and keep at it. You are only restricted by how much energy you have. (weak smile)
It is also better than cycling machines because when you use those machines, you are sitting down and cycling. A few models provide you with the option of increasing intensity but the very fact that you are sitting down means that you don't burn as much calories as compared to using the elliptical cross trainer.
Despite my love for this machine, you should head down to a showroom and give a try yourself to see how you like the experience. If you don't like the machine, it is okay. Remember to get something that you like and feel comfortable with, only then will you want to use it often.
There are a lot of models with varying price range, so be sure not to be fooled into getting the professional range ones. Even if you are serious, I don't think it's wise to splurge thousands for one.
It is very tempting to set the intensity level to the lowest when you are exercising. Please don't do that. The benefits of elliptical exercise machines are amazing, and if you keep at it, while combining with a proper diet, you will lose weight very quickly!
Start out with a mid-range intensity level and see how you feel before making small increases until you reach the maximum level. After a while, you will realize that it feels too easy! There are two possibilities. One is that you have gotten stronger, which is definitely true because you have stayed committed to exercising, YAY! The second is that, the joints are looser, so it cannot exert as much intensity as before.
Therefore, make sure you take note from your store about servicing and whether it is convenient for you. Nothing is more annoying than getting a product and realizing that you have poor service support!
I do love the elliptical exercise machines now that I've tried it and experienced it first hand. However, remember that you should not be rash and make a purchase because of what I said. Go give it a try, explore other exercise machines, compare prices and THEN make a decision.
I know it's easy to fall into the trap of making quick purchases. I recently wanted to get a good camera for recording movies for this website. Took a while to find something I like, and the waiting process was torturous but because of taking the right amount of time to research, I'm incredibly happy with my choice.
Remember that on top of research, and making the right purchase, the most important thing is your commitment and drive to exercise. I know I sound like a broken record, but it is so vital that you keep this in mind. With commitment, you won't fail! You will keep finding other ways to succeed.
Elliptical exercise machines for the win! :P
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