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40-Minute Busy-Body Elliptical Workout

Cardio Workout: Boredom-Busting 40-Minute Elliptical

The elliptical is an endlessly versatile piece of cardio equipment, but that doesn't mean it doesn't get boring. Bust through potential boredom on this joint-friendly machine by keeping busy. Anticipating changes in direction, speed, and resistance make this 40-minute workout fly by. Watching the strides per minute (SPM) count ensures that you maintain speed while giving you something to focus on. To work the core, go hands-free going at whatever speed helps you maintain your balance. And finally, going backward on the elliptical is a great way to work the back of the legs, which often need a little extra toning. All these components make for a fun and thorough workout. Check it out when you read more.

Time Resistance* Directions SPM**
00:00-5:00 3 Warm up 135-145
05:00-6:00 5 Forward 135-145
06:00-07:00 5 Backward
07:00-09:00 7 Forward/no hands
09:00-11:00 10 Forward/hands 135-145
11:00-13:00 6 Backward
13:00-15:00 8 Forward 145-155
15:00-17:00 6 Forward 145-155
17:00-19:00 8 Forward 155-165
19:00-21:00 6 Backward
21:00-22:00 6 Forward/no hands
22:00-24:00 10 Forward/hands 135-145
24:00-26:00 6 Forward 155-165
26:00-29:00 8 Backward
29:00-31:00 8 Forward 145-155
31:00-34:00 8 Forward/no hands
34:00-35:00 5 Forward/hands 145-155
35:00-40:00 3 Cool down 135-145

*Level = Amount of resistance
**SPM = Strides per minute

As always, if this is too easy or too hard, change the amount of resistance and the strides per minute. This workout was created on an elliptical with an incline of 20 percent, so set your machine to that to begin and adjust accordingly as needed.

Click here for an image-free printable copy of the workout to take to the gym! Have fun staying busy.

Image Source: Shutterstock
Nancy-Einhart Nancy-Einhart 5 years
I love this elliptical workout. I seriously do it all the time.
glam-sugar glam-sugar 9 years
I like to change directions and not use the handles when using my elliptical also. It really does make the time go by quickly.
lady_jade lady_jade 9 years
oooh bisque thanks for the link. that's a great idea.
Fitness Fitness 9 years
Here's answers to your questions" If the space is blank you are moving your feet in the usual forward manner with your hands on the handles. My machine lists the amount of resistance in levels and has a set incline of 20 percent. I added a little explanation to the chart above. Regarding speeds, on the elliptical you set your own pace and that is where the Strides Per Minute (SPM) comes into play. In those intervals you want to make sure you're moving your feet that many times per minute.
crackaddict crackaddict 9 years
This is probably a stupid question, but are elliptical speeds universal then? I am from the UK and would love to do this but I'm not sure if my speeds are the same, its a huge gym with professional equipment so I guess it has to be...
zabrow zabrow 9 years
this sounds like a good way to stay interested on the elliptical. i like to do the 'personal trainer' setting, it does kind of the same thing. it tells you when to warm up, concentrate on pushing, concentrate on pulling, use your lower body only, up your strides per minute, go at your own pace, etc. it makes the time go by really quickly.
Peggasus Peggasus 9 years
When you say level, so you mean the elevation or the resistance? What are the blank spaces?
Bisque Bisque 9 years
Ooh, and I also have to try integrating it in my mp3 player via , I have to figure out how the timing works, but I don't want to hold a piece of paper while I'm working out. It seems more convenient to convert it that way. :)
Bisque Bisque 9 years
Sounds good. I'll try to do this as I usually just wing it when it comes to the machines at the gym. I'm too scared to ask for help as fitness is not my forte and my brother said I might get asked to pay a trainer's fee if I asked for help. I'm not usually shy, but I'm out of my element at the gym. First thing on Friday I should check how exactly do I change the level of the elliptical. :)
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