Is the elliptical a waste of your time ?

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    Is the elliptical a waste of your time ?

    Hi,

    So i am really big into cardio, i love it, i do it 6 times per week every morning before breakfast, even on work days. It makes me feel good and healthy and it helps on a cut as well. Today I was working out at my local gym and walked into the nutrition center where I know the owner to be a very big and dedicated bodybuilder. I have known him for several years (but i never buy anything from him because its crazy expensive and a rip off)....So my question to him was if by doing cardio every day (45 minutes elyptical) if i was going to mess up my metabolism and slow it down because it would get used to it...His answer was no, but then he also stated that doing the elyptical is a big waste of time and that it does not do anything...so he said that the best thing to do is either run, or walk on the treadmill..well, im a big boy (220 pounds, 13%BF) and running hurts my knees and dedication, so im not running..........But it surprised me when he said that walking the treadmill is better than the elypitical........He brings up good points, only people doing the elyptical are fat out of shape people, you never leave the ground and just keep goind in circles.....But he said that when you walk, you are actually moving and doing something which burns more calories...if that is correct then why after doing the elyptical for 45 minutes do I feel tired, and I sweat so much that it looks like i took a shower in my shirt??? IM confused, would the more advanced people here explain ?

    Thank you
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    the only bad exercise is the one that's performed improperly...various cardio machines and exercise machines all serve their purpose to different tastes and body types. the mechanics of everyones body is slightly different (tendon, ligament length, insertion points, etc.) so we are all better at certain exercises/machines than others.

    also you have to realize that no machine exactly duplicates the mechanics of running outside so there will be no carry over in performance from one to the other
    William F. Buckley describes a conservative as, "someone who stands athwart history, yelling Stop." - and then proceeds to drag civilization back to times best left in history's dungheap.

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    Find a Versaclimber somewhere, use it. It'll kick your ass. If it has adjustable tension, your biceps and forearms will be burning within five minutes, thighs and calves, too. Ellipticals and treadmills don't even come close.

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    thanks for all your answers guys, it makes sense but im steel freaked out and wondering if i should abandon the elyptical....I thought this would be a more interesting thread to people..
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    Quote Originally Posted by QuestionGuy View Post
    thanks for all your answers guys, it makes sense but im steel freaked out and wondering if i should abandon the elyptical....I thought this would be a more interesting thread to people..
    You're posting on a bodybuilding board, and you figured cardio training on an elliptical would make for riveting banter?

    Listen, you like your elliptical and you feel you get something out of it and it doesn't hurt you, just do it. It doesn't burn as much as it SAYS it does, but I'm sure it's doing something. Personally, I'm a fan of just walking outdoors, but that's me.
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    LOL, built....the greates bodybuilders on earth do shitload of cardio before their shows..according to Jay cutler, he does at least 80 minutes of cardio a day before the Mr. O......so I tend to beleive that cardio does have a very big effect.........Its just that I am kind of disapointed that a machine which I enjoy so much, gives me so little back and I will have ot figure something else out....I will do the stairs at my gym three days a week on my days off, and since I dont have stairs at my work, I will simply have to suck it up and do 45 minute runs.
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    Elyptical is fine. You work hard at it, get your heart rate going, and build up a good sweat.

    I prefer it because it is a lot easier on the knees and I can go longer.

    If you are at 13% bf then it must be doing something for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by liftsmore View Post
    Elyptical is fine. You work hard at it, get your heart rate going, and build up a good sweat.

    I prefer it because it is a lot easier on the knees and I can go longer.

    If you are at 13% bf then it must be doing something for you.
    you are right, i am just very easily freaked out and i tend to take other peoples advice more serious than my own.....it took me a long time to drop the bodyfat....well, i took me a long time to take it serious, it only took me 6 months to drop 34 pounds and I did the elliptical the whole time but my diet was also spot on......I am doing some other reading online about the elliptical and I guess it is not as effective as I seemed to beleive, but i will still do it 4 times a week...it makes me feel good and i know it helped me get in better shape.
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    If you are heart healthy and really want to lose some body fat then try the workout bellow:

    http://www.cs.unm.edu/~wneumann/file...lla_cardio.pdf
    William F. Buckley describes a conservative as, "someone who stands athwart history, yelling Stop." - and then proceeds to drag civilization back to times best left in history's dungheap.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LAM View Post
    If you are heart healthy and really want to lose some body fat then try the workout bellow:

    http://www.cs.unm.edu/~wneumann/file...lla_cardio.pdf
    Thanks for posting this very informative article. The writer did a good job of documenting his argument. I'm starting today -- not sprinting -- but on the Versaclimber. Built recommends something similar to this with her HIT.

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    LAM, this looks great (LOOOOL, tho, I have never seen a fighter pilot look like this and I know a lot, they simply would never be able to fit in the seat).....this looks good and thank you for posting.....
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    questionguy
    so some clown behind a desk says dont do the Elyptical, the cardio exercise you have been doing, and because he says this , you'll quit????
    then you said running hurts your knees, but you'll start running instead???
    toughen up man, and tell this clown to mind his own business.
    do your Elyptical cardio, and try to get faster at it... and try to go longer. get your heart rate up to 80-90% of max and keep it there 30 minutes..
    then tell the clown behind the desk to match what you just did..
    why would you let some one dictate what kind of cardio you do?

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    Quote Originally Posted by LAM View Post
    If you are heart healthy and really want to lose some body fat then try the workout bellow:

    http://www.cs.unm.edu/~wneumann/files/guerilla_cardio.pdf
    So basically a Tabata Protocol

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    Quote Originally Posted by IainDaniel View Post
    So basically a Tabata Protocol
    yep...but really nothing revolutionary. the benefits of training at or near the VO2max are painfully obvious
    William F. Buckley describes a conservative as, "someone who stands athwart history, yelling Stop." - and then proceeds to drag civilization back to times best left in history's dungheap.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stepaukas View Post
    questionguy
    so some clown behind a desk says dont do the Elyptical, the cardio exercise you have been doing, and because he says this , you'll quit????
    then you said running hurts your knees, but you'll start running instead???
    toughen up man, and tell this clown to mind his own business.
    do your Elyptical cardio, and try to get faster at it... and try to go longer. get your heart rate up to 80-90% of max and keep it there 30 minutes..
    then tell the clown behind the desk to match what you just did..
    why would you let some one dictate what kind of cardio you do?

    Well, I know, I am just easily influenced by other people at the gym....I guess i just need to beleive in my own way, i never listen to anyone else when it comes to weights because over the years I have figured out my own routine that works well.....But its hard not to listen to someone who is twice as lean and twice as big than you, this guy has won many bodybuilding comps and really looks great...I know he is juicing and i am not and the HGH is probably helping him stay lean since most of them use that stuff year round....Running hurts my knees because I used to do so much of it all the time when I was 230-250 pounds.......So I will to the stairs at my gym 3 times a week on my days off, then I will switch to the elliptical 4 times a week on my days at work and see how it goes, so far its pretty good, my wife even says since I lost all that weight (from 250 to 216, at 13% BF) i even stopped snoring, and the sex has been crazy as well....I dont know if you can realte, but somehow everyone at the gym seems to be bigger and leaner than you when you relate...im never happy wiht the way I look, i think even if I was 260 pounds at 6%bf i would still find something to complain about...typical of a bodybuilder...
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    Quote Originally Posted by LAM View Post
    yep...but really nothing revolutionary. the benefits of training at or near the VO2max are painfully obvious
    Painfully obvious -- I don't know if the pun was intentional, but I disagree. One of the great benefits of this forum is learning from people who write from personal experience. There are reams of literature available on every imaginable form of fitness, training techniques and supplement use, but much of it is contradictory -- as the author of your article points out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2tomlinson View Post
    Painfully obvious -- I don't know if the pun was intentional, but I disagree. .
    low intensity vs high intensity in general...

    you won't find an elite athlete in any sport, anywhere telling you that got to where they are by taking it "easy"...
    William F. Buckley describes a conservative as, "someone who stands athwart history, yelling Stop." - and then proceeds to drag civilization back to times best left in history's dungheap.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2tomlinson View Post
    Find a Versaclimber somewhere, use it. It'll kick your ass. If it has adjustable tension, your biceps and forearms will be burning within five minutes, thighs and calves, too. Ellipticals and treadmills don't even come close.
    Versaclimber is a great machine, no doubt. You will get benefits from any activity, it just becomes a matter of degree. My wife runs a lot, but she also uses the elliptical on occasion, as well as the treadmill. She also likes boot camp classes and I taught her how to lift weights a few years ago. Nothing wrong with a little variety. I focus mostly on weights, and I like to walk or hike for cardio.

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    All true, Sorry if I sound like a cheerleader for the VC, it changed my life when I bought a used one about a year ago. Chronic back pain, fat, and my elliptical and treadmill bored the shit out of me. The thing is magic, the way it strengthens and stretches core muscles, and zero joint stress.

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    LAM and other experts. I copy and pasted the quote below from the Guerilla Cardio article you posted. The statement is so extreme regarding morning/afternoon fat loss that I have to question it. How could this be true? If the maxim, "Calories in, calories out" is accurate, what in the world could four or five hours make? (I just did 25-minutes on the VC, tension a quarter turn to the right. I did the Guerilla Cardio minutes 11-16 and thought I was going to have a fucking heart attack. Got heart rate up to 151. It was great! Thanks for this.)

    'For instance, I train with weights on Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and perform my Guerrilla Cardio sessions on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings, before I eat anything. (Studies show cardiovascular exer- cise performed first thing in the morn- ing, on an empty stomach, burns up to three times more fat than the same amount of exercise performed later in the afternoon!)"

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    First of all, I'm sorry, but can we please stop referring to it as an "elyptical". It's an "elliptical", like "ellipse". See the link there?

    Second, I am amazed by people who do cardio indoors on these machines. How do you not find that boring as hell? I mean, if it works for you, by all means continue to do it, but I could never bring myself to spend that much time inside going around in circles. Walking or cycling outdoors is so much more interesting, rewarding, and relaxing IMO. Swimming is probably my favorite form of cardio though. I just couldn't take the agonizingly boring experience of treadmills, stationary bikes, ellipticals, stairmasters, versaclimbers, nordic tracks, etc.

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    I'm tellin you, Greg...they already have the personal flat screens hooked up -- they are a bench, a beer, and a blowjob away from being a worthwhile experience.

    But for the sake of full disclosure, I confess to hopping into a hamster wheel now and again.

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    I forgot, now we can take the stationary bike on a "virtual trail ride" or something equally stupid and mass-marketed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Built View Post
    You're posting on a bodybuilding board, and you figured cardio training on an elliptical would make for riveting banter?

    Listen, you like your elliptical and you feel you get something out of it and it doesn't hurt you, just do it. It doesn't burn as much as it SAYS it does, but I'm sure it's doing something. Personally, I'm a fan of just walking outdoors, but that's me.
    Yea, I agree. The eliptical is low-intensity, made for older people and people who have knee issues. If you can't run, at least put a little more into it. If you go for a hike, you will hit many more muscles in your legs more intensely, different angles from rocks, hills. You will definately burn more from walking this way.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gtbmed View Post
    I forgot, now we can take the stationary bike on a "virtual trail ride" or something equally stupid and mass-marketed.
    LOL, amazing.. Whichever way it is presented, fake/lower intensity cardio isn't ideal. Why bother doing it in the gym, when the great outdoors are so much better, mentally and physically.
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    Quote Originally Posted by gtbmed View Post
    First of all, I'm sorry, but can we please stop referring to it as an "elyptical". It's an "elliptical", like "ellipse". See the link there?

    Second, I am amazed by people who do cardio indoors on these machines. How do you not find that boring as hell? I mean, if it works for you, by all means continue to do it, but I could never bring myself to spend that much time inside going around in circles. Walking or cycling outdoors is so much more interesting, rewarding, and relaxing IMO. Swimming is probably my favorite form of cardio though. I just couldn't take the agonizingly boring experience of treadmills, stationary bikes, ellipticals, stairmasters, versaclimbers, nordic tracks, etc.
    First of all, pal, I spelled elliptical correctly. Secondly, you know as much about a Versaclimber as I know about brain surgery. Less, actually. I know where the brain is located. As to swimming, I do the annual SEAL Team 4 swim across Tampa Bay every year, 3.5 miles of open water. In January. Spare me your expertise on swimming. Walking is more interesting? You are a dilettante. Have you ever tried a Versaclimber?

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    Quote Originally Posted by stepaukas View Post
    questionguy
    so some clown behind a desk says dont do the Elyptical, the cardio exercise you have been doing, and because he says this , you'll quit????
    then you said running hurts your knees, but you'll start running instead???
    toughen up man, and tell this clown to mind his own business.
    do your Elyptical cardio, and try to get faster at it... and try to go longer. get your heart rate up to 80-90% of max and keep it there 30 minutes..
    then tell the clown behind the desk to match what you just did..
    why would you let some one dictate what kind of cardio you do?
    I feel ya, I also have joint pain when I run. I do alot of HIT training while lifting, followed by about 40 min of eliptical and stair climber. Screw the moron at the front desk. Im a big guy myself 225 6ft2 9%body fat. If you are drenched and your heart rate is betwenn the cardio and fatburning stage , stick with it. It def helps me keep the fat off. just my opinion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LAM View Post
    the only bad exercise is the one that's performed improperly...various cardio machines and exercise machines all serve their purpose to different tastes and body types. the mechanics of everyones body is slightly different (tendon, ligament length, insertion points, etc.) so we are all better at certain exercises/machines than others.

    also you have to realize that no machine exactly duplicates the mechanics of running outside so there will be no carry over in performance from one to the other

    Not much left to say after this. It all boils down to anything is better than nothing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2tomlinson View Post
    First of all, pal, I spelled elliptical correctly. Secondly, you know as much about a Versaclimber as I know about brain surgery. Less, actually. I know where the brain is located. As to swimming, I do the annual SEAL Team 4 swim across Tampa Bay every year, 3.5 miles of open water. In January. Spare me your expertise on swimming. Walking is more interesting? You are a dilettante. Have you ever tried a Versaclimber?
    Cool it man, my post wasn't directed at you or anyone else specifically.

    And no, I have never tried a Versaclimber. In fact in the past 2 years I don't think I've spent more than 5 minutes at once on any piece of indoor stationary cardio equipment, and I won't. I find the experience to be incredibly boring and would much rather be outdoors. Yes, I do find walking trails to be more interesting than doing anything on an indoor machine while listening to crappy gym music.

    You found something you like, that's fine. I just can't understand it because I've always found that form of exercise to be very boring and unrewarding. You don't have to get aggressive with me just because I'm not a shameless supporter of this machine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by gtbmed View Post
    Cool it man, my post wasn't directed at you or anyone else specifically.

    And no, I have never tried a Versaclimber. In fact in the past 2 years I don't think I've spent more than 5 minutes at once on any piece of indoor stationary cardio equipment, and I won't. I find the experience to be incredibly boring and would much rather be outdoors. Yes, I do find walking trails to be more interesting than doing anything on an indoor machine while listening to crappy gym music.

    You found something you like, that's fine. I just can't understand it because I've always found that form of exercise to be very boring and unrewarding. You don't have to get aggressive with me just because I'm not a shameless supporter of this machine.
    I am also one who feels cardio indoors is kind of a drag. I grew up in an area where weather was often a prohibitive factor. So, weather permitting, outdoor cardio was a real treat. Nowdays, I live within walking distance of a nice area for running and walking that goes around a lake, and a fairly challenging hiking trail that goes up the side of a large hill. Not to mention beautiful weather. Indoor cardio seems almost painful in comparison.

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