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GAMEDUTCHESS SparkPoints: (781)
Fitness Minutes: (723)
Posts: 93
2/7/13 7:30 A

I have never felt I got a very good work out on an eliptical machine.

35BYMAY SparkPoints: (1,477)
Fitness Minutes: (555)
Posts: 281
2/6/13 4:42 P

I think Paul (the trainer in question) has issues with elliptical as the only source of fitness people use... many people on his shows were obese and always chose the elliptical for working out. only the elliptical. When it came to doing his fitness tests, they all couldn't get past the first leg. So I think the point he makes is that the elliptical isn't really going to do much for you, if you are relying on it to lose weight or get fit. Aaand, he also thinks every other piece of cardio equipment is superior, lol. not saying it's true, not saying it's not :)

Edited by: 35BYMAY at: 2/6/2013 (16:45)
UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
2/6/13 1:15 P

So what if we don't "ellipt" in our regular day to day lives? It's cardio, not ST.

When doing ST and building muscle, we should be functionally building it - doing things that actually relate to the real world (BTW, when was the last real world example where you did something like 10 pushups?).

But with cardio, all we're doing is taxing the heart. However you do it. It doesn't matter if it's not "real world". Dancers don't dance outside of dancing - those aren't "real world" movements. But they still do it when dancing. Those who use the elliptical don't move like that elsewhere, but they still do it when working out.

It's no problem.

GOBO0704 SparkPoints: (1,547)
Fitness Minutes: (836)
Posts: 11
2/6/13 12:56 P

thanks for all the imput! my mom's BF has a HRM that he cant use because of his heart arythmia so he's giving it to me next time i see him. so who cares what the machines/spark says, at least now i'll know what i'm really burning.

ps - the treamill broke my feet. not literally but i cannot put weight on my heels today. i guess i need new shoes if i want to try my couch to 5k again. i'll still with the elliptical until then so i can walk like a normal person again

35BYMAY SparkPoints: (1,477)
Fitness Minutes: (555)
Posts: 281
2/6/13 12:37 P

I have posted this before, but my absolute new FAV piece of cardio equipment is the incline trainer... goes up to 30% incline, and you can walk at 2 mph and get the same calorie burn as running a 6 minute mile when you hit it at 30%! I cant do 30% just yet for more than a few mins, so I do intervals of 10%-20% for a great burn as well. Excellent choice for those looking for a low impact cardio with maximum benefits. And is a natural form of cardio, just like climbing a mountain, lol

2/6/13 12:19 P


If you read the comments in the hyperlink I posted you will know why.It is a totally unnatural combinations of body movements which has no functional carryover to our lives.

CMROBERTS0617 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (4,241)
Posts: 64
2/6/13 12:12 P

I hate the elliptical. It always hurts my feet and I feel uncoordinated.

35BYMAY SparkPoints: (1,477)
Fitness Minutes: (555)
Posts: 281
2/6/13 9:56 A

Thanks for finding that link SARGEANTMAJOR! I love Paul, and if anyone follows the show, you will understand why people tend to believe him when he says something... hence why I have never stepped foot on an elliptical since watching X-weighted lol

THINKPINK06 Posts: 1,450
2/6/13 7:49 A


LEHIA13 Posts: 537
2/6/13 4:55 A

I like them both. When I am on the treadmill I imagine I am an Amazon warrior running through the tree tops. I don't know why but I think it's fun. Anyway to get me moving. With the elliptical I don't feel very much unless the stupid hand things hit my arms. Either way they are great.

WILSON1926 SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (33,881)
Posts: 1,833
2/6/13 4:28 A

treadmill running

ZRIE014 Posts: 60,339
2/6/13 12:21 A

running on treadmill

2/6/13 12:09 A

Elliptical is my new best friend. It is so gentle on my joints. No knee pain at all where I do notice some on the treadmill. But I spend some time on the treadmill anyway. Good to keep things varied.

2/5/13 11:17 P

Here is the information cited in the last post.concerning a trainer's thoughts on the elliptical and a variety of other fitness questions. These are FAQs relating to various questions concerning fitness training. While opinions his statements are well thought out and balanced reflecting a very studied approach to training his clients.

Posted for information only.

35BYMAY SparkPoints: (1,477)
Fitness Minutes: (555)
Posts: 281
2/5/13 9:13 P

Treadmill. I will never get out of my head when a trainer on tv (canadian show called X-Weighted) said the elliptical was not a real workout (there was a lengthy reason I have forgotten). I'm sure it is, but I don't use it to this day because of what he said about it lol.

PS: How long do you do the elliptical to burn 555 calories SHUPER5??

SHUPER5 Posts: 618
2/5/13 8:41 P

Elliptical for sure!I just posted on this same problem.The Elliptical machine said I burned 555 calories but on here only 368.I love the different levels on this machine and it is definitely easy on my knees.

ICANDI4U SparkPoints: (18,850)
Fitness Minutes: (30,385)
Posts: 861
2/5/13 8:34 P

Elliptical for sure...but if I'm going to do a 5K in the summer, I better start liking the treadmill.

MOTIVATED@LAST Posts: 15,443
2/5/13 6:39 P

Spark's calorie calculator assumes that calorie burn is proportionate to bodyweight. This is true for many exercises (eg. walking, running, aerobics), but is not the case for things like the elliptical where you are working against the resistance of the machine, rather than your own bodyweight. This means the calorie burn figures can get quite distorted for heavier people using the elliptical (nothing personal intended here - it's just the math). I would place no reliance on Spark's estimate for the elliptical.

Also, your body gets more efficient (ie. burns fewer calories) at any activity it does regularly. This is probably why right now the elliptical 'feels' easier than the treadmill. Keep up with your treadmill workouts, and they will start to feel easier too.


2/5/13 3:06 P

Since the algorithms for all forms of calorie measurement are based on averages they are at best SWAGs, scientific wild ass guesses. The only accurate way to assess calories burned is in a laboratory setting measuring oxygen uptake. While it is nice to have a number to record taking into consideration that non of them are accurate simply choose the one you like, average all of them or record the lowest figure. Depending on calories burned to evaluate the quality of a workout can be misleading and in fact lead to overeating.

Just the rant of a trainer who does not let his clients worry about exercise calorie numbers but has them monitor calories in instead.

MPLANE37 SparkPoints: (78,802)
Fitness Minutes: (77,357)
Posts: 2,170
2/5/13 2:33 P

On the elliptical trainer, I can match the calories burned reported by SP only at the max. resistance setting and averaging about 50rpm, which is just moderate pace. So if your resistance was not at or near its max, probably SP calories are overestimates for you.

Edited by: MPLANE37 at: 2/5/2013 (14:34)
UNIDENT Posts: 33,498
2/5/13 2:14 P

You'll notice that Spark didn't allow you to enter the elliptical resistance/speed. They have one setting, and one only, and IMHO it's a massively inflated figure.

Check this blog of mine where I compare the elliptical and exercycle to my HRM and Spark's values for a workout and find out something very interesting about spark:

KENAMORA SparkPoints: (191,708)
Fitness Minutes: (61,038)
Posts: 2,899
2/5/13 1:26 P

Elliptical, for sure. Unless you're training and are a runner already, the elliptical machine is kinder to your joints.

GOBO0704 SparkPoints: (1,547)
Fitness Minutes: (836)
Posts: 11
2/5/13 1:24 P

So i've been using the elliptical now for a few weeks. i can get to about 40 minutes on my lunch break and i've been tracking it on spark. i decided i wanted to do a couch to 5k and today i decided to do the treadmill as well. i was able to do 15 mins before i wanted to die, so i did 15 min on the elliptical and wasnt too tired, but needed to go back to work.

i just tracked it on here and the elliptical says it's like twice the calories than the treadmill for the same amount of time and my heart rate was WAY higher on the treadmill. how is that possible?

what level is the spark elliptical calories based on? i was doing a resistance of 10 and roughly 3.6mph. on the treadmill i didnt do an incline but was going between 3.5 and 4.5 mph

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