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How to Reduce Belly Fat Using an Elliptical

author image Paula Quinene
Paula Quinene is an Expert/Talent, Writer and Content Evaluator for Demand Media, with more than 1,500 articles published primarily in health, fitness and nutrition. She has been an avid weight trainer and runner since 1988. She has worked in the fitness industry since 1990. She graduated with a Bachelor's in exercise science from the University of Oregon and continues to train clients as an ACSM-Certified Health Fitness Specialist.
How to Reduce Belly Fat Using an Elliptical
Group of people using elipticals at the gym. Photo Credit IT Stock/Polka Dot/Getty Images

Belly fat is stubborn so your elliptical workouts must be aggressive. While you can’t target the fat around your gut, cardio workouts of varied duration and intensity can build your body into a fat-burning, calorie-combusting machine. Workouts lasting 40 minutes or more are optimal for using stored body fat as the primary source of calories. Short and highly intense cardio activities incinerate more calories compared to long workouts, even if the calories burned are mostly from carbohydrates. Train smartly on the elliptical to maximize your precious time and reduce your belly fat.

Go Long and Steady

Step 1

Start your long-duration workout at a moderate intensity level -- about a level 5. Pedal for 1 minute.

Step 2

Increase the resistance level by one every minute for a total of 10 minutes.

Step 3

Lower the resistance back to level 5 and then repeat this progressively challenging routine for five more rounds of 10 minutes, for a total of 60 minutes.

Step 4

Hold the mobile or stationary handlebars, whichever is most comfortable, for this long workout. Burn more calories by actively pushing and pulling on the mobile bars.

Make it Short and Sweet

Step 1

Set the resistance level to somewhere between easy and challenging, about a level 5. Press the speed button on the console so you can read the speed in rotations per minute. Make a mental note of this speed, as it is the minimum speed you must maintain during the more difficult intervals.

Step 2

Pedal for 90 seconds at this moderate resistance.

Step 3

Increase the resistance level to a moderately hard level, about a level 10. Pedal for 30 seconds. Look at your speed and be sure to pedal as fast, or faster, than your easy pace. Contract your abdominals and pump your arms as if you were running.

Step 4

Focus on engaging your abdominal muscles to keep your hips forward and your body balanced, and to tone your oblique muscles. Hold the handlebars only if you need them to maintain your balance.

Step 5

Slow down and reduce the resistance back to a level 5. Repeat this interval routine for a total of 20 minutes.

Meet In the Middle

Step 1

Set the elliptical's resistance level to a moderate intensity, about a level 7. Use a moderate speed and pedal for two minutes.

Step 2

Increase your speed to a fast pace and pedal for one minute using your arms to push and pull on the handlebars as you pedal.

Step 3

Continue to alternate between two minutes of moderate pedaling and 1 minute of fast pedaling for a total of 40 minutes.

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