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How Long Should You Workout on the Elliptical Machine

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We all know well that when it comes to cardio exercises, the elliptical machine is one of the best options to choose. 

The elliptical machine comes with so many exciting features as well as advantages and disadvantages. However, the most important thing which we need to be aware of is how long we should workout on the elliptical machine to stay healthy and fit.

Exercising on elliptical machines gives you the best results, but, insufficient or wrong frequencies and duration may give you negative as well as disappointing results. So, it is imperative to be aware of frequencies and duration.

Here, we are going to have a brief discussion about how long should we workout on the elliptical machine. 


Exercising for 150 minutes per week is more than enough to prevent weight gain and reduce the risk of diseases. It means that if you exercise 30 minutes per day for five days, it is sufficient. American College of Sports Medicine suggests 150–200 minutes of exercise weekly for best results.


It is enough to exercise five days a week on the elliptical machine. But, if desired, you can also exercise for more than five days. If you go for daily exercise, 10 minutes of exercise is enough to stay healthy and fit.


Exercise intensity means a maximum number of times your heart can beat in one minute. You can estimate it by subtracting your current age from 220. According to the American College of Sports Medicine, for beginners, the maximum heart rate is 55 to 65, and for experienced exercisers, it is 90%. Higher intensity can be maintained for less time – intensity and duration are inversely related to each other.


It has been observed that elliptical machines provide less joint stress and pain as compared to the treadmill or regular running. It is the best option for adults, beginners as well as for old and middle-aged people.


According to the article in The New York Times, regular exercise reduces the risk of heart disease by 45%. Walking 12 miles a week can help you to reduce your cholesterol level and longer exercise of 20 miles help you to increase good cholesterol.

According to Dr Len Kravitz, elliptical trainers allow you to burn 8–9 calories per minute. It is equal to 11.5 minutes of running or aerobic exercise.

Elliptical machines provide less joint stress and pain as compared to the treadmill or regular running.

Total minutes

For maximum benefit, you can use your elliptical for walking or jogging between 12–20 miles per week. If you exercise five days a week, and it takes you 15 minutes to travel one mile, you need to log between 36 and 60 minutes each session. If you only exercise three days a week, you need to exercise for between 60–100 minutes per session. 

Make sure to count every minute

To burn a maximum amount of calories and increase your fitness, make sure that you count every minute you exercise. Spend the first 2–5 minutes at an easy pace, and then increase the resistance and speed of your elliptical striding. Try not to hold or balance on the handrails, and instead work your upper body by using the movable bars while striding. Spend 5–7 minutes each session striding at your maximum intensity level to simulate running fast intervals.

Ways to get a perfect elliptical workout

  • Keep your feet flat on the pedals.
  • Try to mix in some core exercises.
  • Vary the incline to hit your butt muscles.
  • You can also go back on elliptical without turning your body around.
  • Use the pause button for an internal timer.
  • You must know when to use handles and when to let them go.
  • Add dumbbells.
  • It is always good to do a high-intensity interval workout.
  • Wear the proper gear. Check the best reviews from runningshorts.com

Common mistakes which everyone makes on an elliptical machine

  • Your resistance remains zero.
  • You become a sloucher.
  • You don’t enter your information.
  • You don’t change directions.
  • You don’t change your workouts for a long time.
  • You put too much pressure on your toes – you go on until you can’t feel your feet.
  • Your machine makes too much noise. If you experience such noise, it means that you are going too fast.
  • You do not work your upper half.
  • You spin your way up a hill.

The final verdict

So, it was all about the essential factor which you need to be aware of while exercising on the elliptical machine: duration, and frequency. We already mentioned how both of these factors might affect the results. 

Along with the essential factors like duration and frequency. You can also check about the top nine elliptical machines compared – Fitnesstep1.com.  You can also watch a number of YouTube videos or listen to free YouTube mp3 while you’re doing your workout.


Image credit: Freepik

Melissa Dickson did her degree in psychology at the University of Edinburgh. She has an ongoing interest in mental health and well-being. 

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