Health & Diet

Burn belly fat in 15 minutes with ‘intense’ low-impact cardio – ‘feel the difference’

Expert explains why enjoying exercise is important

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Elliptical training has long been championed as a great cardio session due to its low-impact benefits. By putting no pressure on the joints, people who opt for the elliptical machine at the gym instead of the treadmill or going for a run, can continue to strengthen their hearts, lungs, and muscles without the added worry of joint-related injury.

With the low-impact element remaining key, elliptical machine workouts can help a person perform both high intensity interval training and steady-state cardio workouts in an easy way.

This also helps build stamina and endurance.

Personal trainer Amy Marturana suggested a simple exercise routine to really get people sweating.

It’s a HIIT-style routine involving the elliptical machine, which alternates between short intervals of high-intensity work and longer intervals of low-to-moderate intensity recovery.

She recommends performing 30 seconds at a high-intensity, then allow one minute’s rest.

“The recovery is there so that you can catch your breath and get ready to push hard again for the next 30-second interval,” Martuana explained.

“This workout follows a 1:2 work to rest ratio, which is pretty intense.

“If it’s too intense, switch to a 1:3 ratio.

“So, 30-second work intervals and 1.5-minute recovery intervals. No shame!”

By changing the intensity throughout, she said: “You’ll feel the difference in how hard you have to work and how out of breath you get!”

She noted that the “work” portion of this HIIT workout should be “really hard”.

“A higher incline will help get you there, but cranking up the resistance is what makes it the most challenging,” she said.

“The ‘recovery’ portion should feel easy, like you could have a conversation with someone as you move and still feel okay.”

Ms Marturana suggests starting with a moderate intensity warm-up exercise for at least five minutes before moving into the 15-minute workout.

She then advises to end with a five minute cool-down at an easy pace to get the full benefits of the work-out.

The elliptical machine, also known as the cross-trainer, has soared in popularity because it is very low-impact.

There are numerous benefits of using an elliptical, including targeting specific leg muscles and maintaining fitness after injury.

A 2017 study published by the National Library of Medicine found that burning calories on an elliptical is higher than that of some other cardio machines, such as the stationary bike.

This is because it can help slimmers lose body fat in a shorter amount of time.

To maximise fat burning, it is suggested that a user adds interval training to their workouts, mixing up the intensity and duration to accomplish more in a shorter amount of time.

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