Boosting Your Cross Trainer Workout
An effective cross trainer workout offers a great combination of cardio vascular exercise with muscle activation and strength conditioning. Harnessing a similar movement to a cross-country skier, this motion develops major muscles with a focus on the arms, thighs and abdominals. As well as burning a significant amount of calories when carried out with a high intensity, it is also a safer alternative to running with reduced stress to joints. To ensure you get the most out of this essential exercise tool, we’ve put together this simple guide.
High-intensity interval training is scientifically proven to boost cardiovascular fitness and provide the optimum conditions for fat burning long after you’ve finished at the gym. It’s also the quickest way to burn calories, meaning less time is needed on the cross trainer.
After a five to ten minute warm up, begin by adding periods of fast pedaling and high resistance for up to 1 minute. Follow this period with two to three minutes of recovery at a slower pace and repeat. Over time, you can gradually reduce the rest period and increase the intensity.
Changing the motion of your pedaling requires different muscle activation as the body carries out a movement that is unfamiliar. This can encourage better results with the muscles working harder to pedal. It’s also an effective quad and hamstring workout and improves agility. After you have become proficient, you can squat down for an even greater leg workout, alternating between periods of rest.
Make use of the handlebars
Take the focus off your legs and let your arms do all the hard work, generating the motion using a push and pull movement. This can be great for those looking to improve overall tone and strength in the arms and shoulders. It will activate the triceps and biceps for greater definition but be sure to lower the resistance to avoid injury.
Let go of the handlebars
Alternatively, to place the emphasis on the legs and abdominals, drop your arms from the handlebars for short periods of time. As you drop your arms, it will require greater core stability to keep yourself balanced. This core strengthening workout is also great for the lower back, improving posture whilst moving you closer to those washboard abs.
Gradually increase the resistance
To ensure a sustained improvement to your waistline and stamina, try to gradually increase the resistance every week. This will ensure that your body continues to work to its fullest potential, burning maximum calories and developing the upper and lower body muscles as your workouts progress.
Cross trainers are one of the best pieces of equipment to help you meet your fitness goals. Try these simple tips and you can expect impressive results.