One benefit of using an elliptical over a treadmill is that fact that an elliptical allows you to work out your upper body while also working out your legs and your cardio. To get the most upper body benefits from your elliptical, however, it is beneficial to know just how to use the machine for upper body workouts. Here are some ideas for you to try while doing elliptical upper body workouts.
Ellipticals Versus Treadmills
Unlike treadmills, which are built for nothing more than walking, jogging or running, ellipticals come equipped with handlebars as well. While some low-end ellipticals have stationary handlebars, quality ellipticals feature moveable handlebars that can be integrated into your workout. While you may choose to work out without the handlebars in order to work your core, using the handlebars can go a long way toward working out your upper body.
Pulling and Pushing with the Elliptical
When working out on an elliptical, it is easy to allow your legs to do most of the work. In this case, your arms may be just absent-mindedly moving back and forth along with your legs. While your arms can reap some benefits from this action, it will not help give your upper body a significant work out. To improve the quality of your upper body work out, concentrate on pulling and pushing the handlebars with your hands. You can further improve your upper body workout by twisting at your waist as you pull and push the handlebars.
Increasing the Resistance
A quality elliptical will give you the option to choose from different workout programs or to manually change the resistance on the machine. By changing the resistance to suit your current fitness levels and your future goals, you can more effectively work out your upper body with the help of the elliptical’s handlebars.
The more variety you add to your workout routine, the better you can increase both strength and cardio endurance. One way to accomplish this is to create a cross-training workout that involves strength training for ten minute and working out on the elliptical for ten minutes. By alternating between the two, you can further increase your strength by providing your body with the variety it craves.
An elliptical can be an effective tool for building upper body strength. To get the upper bodybuilding benefits of an elliptical, however, you must make a conscious effort to use the handlebars as more than just something to simply hold onto while working out on the elliptical.