I hear this debate going on very often in gyms, “what’s more effective elliptical machine or treadmill workout for cardio?” There is always all sorts of reasoning behind the pros one offers versus the other. Although there is all sorts of myths we can break them down and come to a conclusion.
Advantages of elliptical machine workouts:
- it is easy on the knees
- you can program the machine
- the degree of difficulty can be challenging
- it offers a new way as opposed to typical cardio workouts
Advantages of treadmill workouts:
- you can program the cardio workout that you want
- easier on the knees than running on pavement
- you can program the speed and difficulty
- change the incline to a steep degree or flat as you want
As you can see they both offer similar advantages to your workouts if you are interested in using a machine for cardiovascular purposes.
For many people, myself included, doing steady state cardio is boring and not as effective in burning fat. The good thing with these machines is you can do short bursts of intensity followed by brief rest periods.
It is best to either program a machine using something like hills, intervals or manually change your pace from slow speed to higher speed.
So in reality both types of equipment, elliptical machines and treadmills, are equally effective as long as you do a workout that is NOT a steady state cardio if you want to burn more fat.
Always switch it up. One workout do elliptical machines and the next workout do treadmill workouts and an outdoor workout the next. Combine either of these with weights or resistance bands workouts and your goal of looking like an athlete will come to you quicker than you think.