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How to Lose Belly Fat With These 7 Cardio Workouts

by 
author image Kiera Carter
Kiera is a writer and editor specializing in fitness, nutrition, and health. When she's not writing, she's probably boxing, running, lifting, or traveling.
How to Lose Belly Fat With These 7 Cardio Workouts
Hoping to target belly fat? Consider incorporating these seven cardio workouts into your routine. Photo Credit: skynesher/E+/GettyImages

These days, when burpees and boot camps reign supreme, cardio machines don’t get a lot of love. But they’re in every gym for a reason. We spoke to fitness coaches from around the country that swear by cardio workouts tailored to individual goals. Below, their thoughts on why cardio machines should be celebrated.

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“Cardio machines are a great tool for fat burning because you can rely on the equipment to keep you at a challenging pace,” says Lindsey Clayton, running coach and co-founder of the Brave Body Project. “If you’re on your own outdoors, you might slow down when you get tired.”

Using cardio equipment at low-medium pace throughout the duration of your workout? You might not be seeing the results you want nor being as engaged with your workout as you'd hope.

No need to get discouraged. The same dreadmill that you, well, dread can be used to burn calories, boost your heart rate and help you slim down without boring you to tears. And if your goal is to lose belly fat, interval training can help speed up that process (with proper diet as priority No. 1, of course). Here are seven workouts that will get you closer to your belly fat-losing goals.

“Sprints are king when it comes to fat loss and burning calories,” Clayton says. “But endurance training will help build your base level of speed, so you’ll feel comfortable hitting those higher numbers when you sprint.”

That’s why Clayton broke this treadmill workout into two sections: one with speed intervals and one that emphasizes endurance. “Just do one if you’re short on time, or put them together with one-minute of recovery in between for a full workout,” she says.

Read more: Cardio Interval Training on a Treadmill

Running intervals on the treadmill can help you lose belly fat.
Running intervals on the treadmill can help you lose belly fat. Photo Credit: andresr/E+/GettyImages

Treadmill: Burn Belly Fat

“We’ll move in 360 degrees of motion for our warmup, then hit two hills, followed by some sprints,” Clayton says.

Get ready to burn more belly fat on the treadmill.
Get ready to burn more belly fat on the treadmill. Photo Credit: Young Kim/LIVESTRONG.COM

Treadmill: Build Endurance

“This run focuses on endurance runs with sprint intervals mixed in,” Clayton says. “The goal is to increase your base speed each time the runs get shorter.” Stay on a 1 percent incline to better simulate an outdoor run.

Build your endurance on the treadmill with this 13-minute workout.
Build your endurance on the treadmill with this 13-minute workout. Photo Credit: Young Kim/LIVESTRONG.COM
The elliptical is a low-impact way to torch calories and burn belly fat.
The elliptical is a low-impact way to torch calories and burn belly fat. Photo Credit: skynesher/E+/GettyImages

Elliptical: Blast Belly Fat With Intensity

The elliptical is a great way to burn belly fat because you can increase your intensity without increasing the impact on your joints. “Just make sure you get your heart rate up to 70 to 80 percent of your max during your intervals,” says Liz Callham, fitness manager of CRUNCH 83rd Street in New York. (Here’s how to calculate your max heart rate.)

“To do that, you’re going to need to increase the resistance.” Do Callham’s workout on “QuickStart Mode” four times a week to boost your heart rate and burn belly fat.

The elliptical is a great way to burn belly fat without being hard on your joints.
The elliptical is a great way to burn belly fat without being hard on your joints. Photo Credit: Young Kim/LIVESTRONG.COM

Read more: How to Use the Elliptical for Fat Loss

Recumbent Bike: Target the Core and Thighs

“Riding a recumbent bike targets your thighs, calves and lower abdomen while burning belly fat,” says Kam Johnson, certified personal trainer at Life Time in Chanhassen, Minnesota. “It’s also a great option for anyone with low-back pain.”

Like other cardio-machine workouts, interval training is the most effective way to burn fat on a recumbent bike, Johnson says. Master the intervals below to burn belly fat at the gym.

Got back pain? Give this recumbent bike workout a shot.
Got back pain? Give this recumbent bike workout a shot. Photo Credit: Young Kim/LIVESTRONG.COM
The rowing machine is one of the most under-utilized machines at the gym.
The rowing machine is one of the most under-utilized machines at the gym. Photo Credit: BraunS/E+/GettyImages

Rowing Machine: Engage Your Body and Tone Your Core

“The rowing machine engages your legs, back, core and arms, delivering a full-body cardio workout,” says Lisa Niren, a trainer at CityRow in New York. “Plus, it doesn’t put as much stress on your knees and hips as running does, making it great for anyone recovering from a running injury.”

Niren suggests adding strength exercises in between intervals for the best results. “Pairing rowing with strength training scorches more calories and burns more fat than just cardio alone,” she says.

In this rowing workout, Niren added core exercises for some extra midsection toning. Remember: You can’t spot reduce (meaning you can’t plank away your belly fat), but core exercises will make you a stronger, more efficient rower and overall athlete.

The rowing machine is your secret weapon in the battle against belly fat.
The rowing machine is your secret weapon in the battle against belly fat. Photo Credit: Young Kim/LIVESTRONG.COM
The air bike is foundational to CrossFit classes.
The air bike is foundational to CrossFit classes. Photo Credit: wundervisuals/E+/GettyImages

Air Bike: Blast Belly-Fat Blasting With a Circuit Workout

Geoffrey McBride, head trainer of EverybodyFights in New York, loves using an air bike to condition his fighters. For maximum midsection toning, he suggests combining bike intervals with high-intensity floor exercises to tone your core and blast calories like crazy.

“Each round of this workout includes a calorie-burning interval on the bike, followed by a body-weight exercise that focuses on the belly area,” he says.

Not every gym has an air bike, but CrossFitters, this one's for you.
Not every gym has an air bike, but CrossFitters, this one's for you. Photo Credit: Young Kim/LIVESTRONG.COM
Build your booty and burn bell fat with a Stairmaster workout.
Build your booty and burn bell fat with a Stairmaster workout. Photo Credit: Adobe Stock/Jovan

Stairmaster: Improve Strength and Speed

Megan Beck, tier 3+ personal trainer at Equinox Sports Club in Boston, broke this Stairmaster workout into three segments: “The first segment works strength, the second segment works speed and the third works both strength and speed for total-body endurance,” Beck says. “The purpose of this workout is to never allow your heart rate to remain constant, so you stay in a fat-burning zone.”

For the best results, try not to rest in between each segment and keep your abs drawn in and chest upright. “Hunching over will disengage your core,” she says.

Never get bored on the Stairmaster again with this belly-fat burning workout.
Never get bored on the Stairmaster again with this belly-fat burning workout. Photo Credit: Young Kim/LIVESTRONG.COM
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